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MDC 3tr Shay

Various small work

December 29, 2005

When building a model there's always a lot of small work to do. In this case it was time to line up the can motor and to flatten the top side of the trucks.

The can motor when installed tilts a little off centre to the left of the gearbox. If Johnston hadn't made a remark in his book about it I probably wouldn't have noticed. Following his instructions I made a strip of 0,4 mm styreen to fit under the left side of the motor. As you will see later on this proved to be a vital step in the struggle for life of this little beauty. O yes, it is a beast to build but undoubtedly it is also a beauty.

The repositioned motor.

The shim makes motor shaft line up almost perfectly with the universal cup. The motor shaft must run freely in the cup.

Another job to be done before running trials was the flattening of the top of the three trucks. The housing of the trucks have a ridge on the center line with a slightly sloping surface to either side. You can image that this will make the superstructure unstable when attached to the trucks. Johnston advises to flatten the area around the pick up holes. I took a more radical way: I glued a strip of sanding paper, grit 120, to a perfectly flat piece of plywood, took the truck upside down and carefully sanded it by making gentle strokes. After every two or three strokes I checked if the glossy surface disappeared and if I was working perfectly level, taking away material evenly from the center to the sides. After achieving a flat surface I sanded it with grit 400 and 1200 respectively to smooth the surface.

Original truck

State after sanding.