train Archives - Coastal Enterprises
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19 Dec
2018
train

Using Real Steel & Faux Metal to Fabricate Sawatzky’s Theme Park Train

Coastal Enterprises, manufacturers of Precision Board HDU, is proud to announce a series of guest blogs written by Dan Sawatzky of Imagination Corporation, posted to the Precision Board Blog each month. This month Dan Sawatzky tells us how he created a cartoonish-looking steam-powered train out of real steel and 30lb Precision Board HDU coated to look..

19 Sep
2017

Whoa, go, whistle and ring controls

Each evening and some time on weekends I sneak back out to the shop to work on my personal project - the little rail truck for the Persnickety and Doodle Railway. Progress has been rapid of late but there's a whole lot of pieces to fabricate and then weld in place. Cables need to be hooked up and tested, fastened permanently in place and then adjusted to work perfectly. There have been a LOT of pieces of sheet metal and plate to cut for this project. In the picture below there are more than seventy different plasma cut pieces of steel visible.

12 Sep
2017

What can’t you build?

Even though our shop has limited metal working tools there is little we can't accomplish with a little head scratching and ingenuity. I had great fun figuring out how to design, cut and fit the many pieces together to craft the little passenger rail car. In this case I didn't even need a sketch but instead designed as I went, imagining how it would all fit together. Once the vector drawings were done I sent the files to the MultiCam for cutting. The lower sections were cut from 1/4" steel plate and the top seat riser was done from 1/10" thick steel plate

09 Sep
2017

Re-thionking the passenger car

With the little rail truck now substantially complete and running it is time to turn my attention to other pieces of the railroad. The truck has room for a driver and one small passenger but when we have company that is not nearly enough capacity. The truck needed to pull a vehicle that could carry more passengers. We had previously built an ore car which seated four passengers but this was long before we had our MultiCam CNC plasma cutter

09 Sep
2017

Re-thinking the passenger car

With the little rail truck now substantially complete and running it is time to turn my attention to other pieces of the railroad. The truck has room for a driver and one small passenger but when we have company that is not nearly enough capacity. The truck needed to pull a vehicle that could carry more passengers. We had previously built an ore car which seated four passengers but this was long before we had our MultiCam CNC plasma cutter.

29 Aug
2017

Leverage

Now that the little trail truck is running and the bulk of the big fabricating is behind us it is time to begin all of the fun small stuff. I'm currently working on the levers which will control the functions of the vehicle. The Johnson bar which is bolted to the running board controls the forward and reverse of the variable speed hydrostatic transmission. To operate it you pull the safety back and then move the lever forward and reverse.

27 Aug
2017

Success!

This morning I cut the a last few pieces of steel on our MultiCam Plasma cutter, then welded them into place. Then I hooked up the throttle cable and took a link out of the chain. I welded up the bell mount as well.

22 Aug
2017

Back to the shop

I've been busy on weekends and an hour or two on weeknights working on my personal project - the little rail truck. Last week it was at long last ready for a test drive. I called Phoebe, my grand daughter, who has been waiting twelve long years for a test drive.  The throttle was still jury rigged, the drive train chain was not yet tightened, and a few other things yet to be done but I was confident the little rig would power it's way down the track without difficulty. I jumped into the cab and Phoebe into the sidecar. The vehicle was stable - despite Phoebe now being almost adult size and weight

06 Aug
2017

Pickup artist

Each time I can spare a few minutes of my free time I head out to the shop to work on the rail pickup. In those minutes I build a file, fire up the plasma cutter to cut some pieces or do a little welding. Those minutes add up and I am making real progress. The pickup bed is now largely complete and the four fenders are fabricated and welded into place. The transmission is in place and will soon be mated to the motor.

31 Jul
2017

Metalwork fun

More than a dozen years ago we decided to build a fifteen inch gauge railroad around our yard. Every grampa should have a model train to share with their grand kids... and mine would be big enough to ride in. I started work on the project before our fist grandchild was born