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It will be a while until I can get back up into my train loft, and get moving on the roadbed, track, etc. In the meantime, I am hesitant to construct more structures. It seems like I have a surfeit of those. On the other hand, who can’t use more trucks?

I saw a review for a number of new trucks from Berkshire Valley Models in a recent issue of NG&SLG. I ordered three of them. This post is for Kit #232, the REO Box Truck.

This kit builds a nice, highly detailed, model of this truck.

To quote from the Berkshire Valley instruction sheet, “Ransom E. Olds, of the Olds Motor Vehicle Company (Oldsmobile), founded the REO Motor Car Company in 1905. In 1910 REO began producing trucks…..” I assume that this truck dates from this period, which would make it ideal for my railroad set in 1915.

I took all of the metal castings and submerged them in Micro Engineering’s Rail Weathering solution. This is basically an acid, so it burned the mold release off at the same time that it gave the castings a nice weathered light-brownish color. Berkshire Valley’s suggestion to file off the wheel’s tires works great, and fast. It sure beats trying to paint those rims.

This is definitely a “craftsman” kit, but the white metal castings are very clean, and there are some nicely detailed laser cut wood pieces. The instructions are also very detailed, and bear reading thoroughly, several times, at each step in the process. If you are going to build a contest model, I’m sure you would want to make the seat removable (as the instructions suggest) because much of the motor is only visible in this manner. I’m not building for a contest, so I just glued the seat down.

Berkshire Valley explains that there was no suitable chain available to fit the drive sprockets, so they just included the chain material that they had on hand. Sometimes I could get the chain to engage in the teeth of the smaller sprockets long enough for the CA (with Zip-Kicker) to set. Other wheels like the large center flywheel had no teeth, and it was trickier to wrap and glue the chain around these. When I considered the distance from the ground to the seat, I decided to use some extra Grandt Line stirrup steps so my little guy could get up easier.

The driver I used was from McKenzie Iron & Steel. I had him on hand, and his arms are positionable.

I’ll have to come back later and fix those enormous blue eyes!

The wagon bed props are not included in the kit. I added those from things I had on hand. The crates are scratch built. I posted an article on making those a couple of years ago. See the topic “Simple crates from wooden blocks” (2/29/12).

The headlight fillers were little silver decorations made for punching on to leather works. I also had these on hand.

The layers of Dullcoat I used to secure the weathering chalks had made the windscreen pretty opaque. I washed both surfaces of it with isopropyl alcohol and water. Now it just looks like a dirty windscreen that has had some haphazard cleaning.

You always see things when you take photos of your models that you never saw before. It’s like looking at them through a microscope. In this case, it was a small hole just below the rear drop-down gate of the wagon. I was sure this was intended to be for the exhaust pipe, so I fashioned a small piece of wire to simulate that.

 

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