Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Colorado Central Locomotive Kits | 4 Comments - Click Here :

    Robert Stears - I just received these photographs this afternoon from my friend Bill Meredith showing the mind blowing work that is coming off of his work bench.

    Here are the initial “build-up” photographs of an On3 Colorado Central Porter Bell brass/nickel silver kit mechanism being developed and built by my friend Bill Meredith. These will be available (via The Leadville Shops) as very limited run kits representing several different variations of the Colorado Central Porter-Bell locomotives. I don’t know yet about how many versions/custom variations of the kit will be available, but as one of the agent provocateurs of this project, I have reserved On3 Porter-Bell engines #30 and  #32 as in the attached photographs. Maybe I can convince Bill to do the Colorado Central saddle tank version for me in On3 as well – once my daughter graduates form college this June.

    These kits have scores of custom cast brass/nickel silver detail parts mastered by Bill Meredith, as well as detail part masters made from uber-high tech stereo lithography micro fabrication techniques. Yes, the fluted Rogers sand dome on #30 was done using a 3D Stereo-lithography master; as was the correct South Park/UP box headlight. 

    All the detail parts are extremely well designed and are dead on accurate. After seeing these wonderful detail  parts I can tell you without hesitation that they are very very cool.  Bill has also used the most advanced nickel silver and brass etching processes (using his designs) done by a group of super detail train guy maniacs in Scotland - These are the same guys who etch many of those crazy cool brass locomotive kits so common in the United Kingdom.

    Bill has designed an easy to build, historically (and mind blowing) accurate model kit of these Porter-Bell engines with working Stephenson valve gear – similar to (but more advanced than) the wonderful techniques used by our locomotive model building cousins in the United Kingdom.  Definitely museum quality work by one of the great model building masters of our, or any time.

     Custom water slide decals designed by Bill and printed by Ron Roberts of Rail Graphics, Inc. – These are supremely sweet “thin film” decals.

    As a side bar: A spin off from this C.C. Porter-Bell project are scores of accurate south Park locomotive and passenger car detail parts which will be soon available. If you are a Colorado Central fan, as I am, keep your ear to the rail.

    No exact details yet on the release date, price of the kits or exact kit version available. Watch The Leadville Shops  Facebook page for further details.

Respectfully Submitted,

Robert Stears
4 Comments - Click Here :
  1. Any chance of doing a DSP&P 17-18-19 Dawson&Bailey Mogul-and maybe D&B Mogul 1 and 4-4-0 #2?

  2. These are just too cool, Bob!

    I can tell everyone that Bill has been working on this project for at least the last 6 or 7 years. It has cost him and the company thousands of dollars. Y'all (readers) really have no idea what a project like this requires to bring to fruition. Unless you've done something similar you really have NO idea!!!

    I can tell you from personal experience what it's like to put everything you've go into a project and then have someone walk up to your table and say something like;" these are great - any chance you can do this other project?" And when you say, maybe or I'll think about it or some other cordial reply they smile all hopeful and say "please keep me posted" then turn around and walk off without investing ONE SINGLE DIME! (And likely when you do the project they want nothing from them then either).

    I've come to just love the HELL out of model railroaders because of things like this!

    You want something else from a high quality craftsman like Bill and Bob - BUY THE STUFF THEY CURRENTLY OFFER! Reward them for their efforts! Stop being little nipple suckers - gimme, gimme gimme. No one made Bill do these!

    It takes a special kind of craftsman to put his products on the line and take this kind of self-centeredness. No one intends that kind of insult but that is exactly what it is. People like Bill are extremely courageous, and generous - and tolerant beyond my personal understanding. How fortunate we are that people like Bill and Bob continue to be driven by their nature to share their talents!

    Beautiful work, Bill... I humbly feel like the little cutie's distant uncle; No part in the process but watching it somehow find the right to be very proud.

  3. If you work in Sn3, you can financially support Bill's endeavors by purchasing some of his surplus brass castings (see "Brass Castings" tab above).

    I recently invested in a big gob of them to complete projects with my Overland Sn3 locomotives--beautiful stuff!! Next are some UP swing beam tender trucks. Per Bill, a new batch of new castings are in the works now.

    Jim Courtney

  4. Robert McFarlandApril 4, 2015 at 2:17 PM

    When compared to the coaches they're pulling,it's amazing how tiny those Porters were.