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Model Railroading > Some Upgrades for the Atlas Dash-8-40-C - Conrail Style


Date: 09/15/20 07:56
Some Upgrades for the Atlas Dash-8-40-C - Conrail Style
Author: RGDave

Hello All!

With the addition of some of the beautiful new ScaleTrains and Rapido offerings to the Onondaga Cutoff fleet, it was time to do some upgrades on the older power that runs alongside those.  

Conrail owned 25 Dash-8 40-C locomotives, which it called C40-8's.  Atlas Model RR Co did a nice job on the C40-8 model back around 1997, and while dated it is still a solid runner.   I decided to upgrade my pair of C40-8's to fit in better with the fleet.   

1.  6039, which had been running for years, was upgraded.  6026 was a hand-me-down from a friend switching priorities in the hobby and was unweathered and without sound.   Both models were upgraded and idle next to each other here at Onondaga Yard.

2.  6026 with its shell removed, and stock mechanism with an old TCS T-1 decoder.  I had added the new Conrail-style short hood L-shaped grab irons to reflect a Conrail change in 1991.

3.  6026 with the weights cut and new decoder in place, new speaker attached and ready for LED testing.

More................








Date: 09/15/20 07:59
Re: Some Upgrades for the Atlas Dash-8-40-C - Conrail Style
Author: SPDRGWfan

Is that the Iphone 4 speaker?
 



Date: 09/15/20 08:09
Re: Some Upgrades for the Atlas Dash-8-40-C - Conrail Style
Author: RGDave

4.  The stock Atlas number boards needed upgrading to to the proper size and font.  Thanks to input from TO member 'JU Tower' I found the ShellScale set that worked the best (#106) for the new number boards.  I used thin styrene, painted gloss white, for the number board backing and the numerals.  Once dry they were dullcoated and cut to size.

5.  The new numberboards are a huge improvement, and thanks to the black-on-white style, light up nicely with the stock Atlas light bar setup.   I replaced the old orange LED with a new sunny white LED from Minitronics.  I also replaced the stock snowplow with a Details West #155 plow, added Kadee scale couplers, a new brass RS-3L airhorn from Details West, a new Tsunami 2 sound decoder and iPhone 4 speaker, a CurrentKeeper module, and new weathering.   You can also clearly see the two upside-down shaped 'L' grabs here.  

6.  Windows and lights are masked and weathering applied.  I used Tamiya Panel Liner accent paints in several colors, and once that dried I followed up with Tamiya Dull Coat and enamels for the rust.  This was then oversprayed with ModelMaster acrylic Sienna paint thinned with Tamiya Acrylic thinner, which made for a great overspray effect.  More enamels and chalk dusts were used to finish things up.

Nice to see these two on the layout with their distinctive number boards, earning their keep in the rest of the fleet on the Onondaga Cutoff!

~RGDave
https://onondagacutoff.blogspot.com/








Date: 09/15/20 08:25
Re: Some Upgrades for the Atlas Dash-8-40-C - Conrail Style
Author: g-spotter1

Great looking units.  I find that the Atlas Dash8's fit well with the new offerings.  It seems that right is right.  Once all the manufacturers avoid proportional oddities, the company who builds it shouldn't matter much anymore.  A side question: what are you using for Conrail paint these days?
 



Date: 09/15/20 20:59
Re: Some Upgrades for the Atlas Dash-8-40-C - Conrail Style
Author: ChrisCampi

Cool, I've a pair of B's I'd like to add T2's too soon. This is good motivation!



Date: 09/16/20 05:21
Re: Some Upgrades for the Atlas Dash-8-40-C - Conrail Style
Author: RGDave

Thanks all!  Yes, iPhone4 speaker, which works fairly well.  An issue is the 2W output of the new Soundtraxx decoders, so you need to keep the volume reasonable as it would eventually blow out the speaker.  To my ear, though, half volume is plenty.

~RGDave



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