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      Scale Structures LTD


800-352-1554 Visit


STEAM ENGINE/BOILER KITS


www.scale-structures.com for our online catalog! Special shipping rates!


I was skeptical about the DOT loco-


motive as most of the carbody is white. White is extremely difficult to get good paint coverage from. The Kato engine’s white paint is just gorgeous. The appli- cation is even and just looks spot on. The next thing I look for is color sepa- ration where two paint colors meet. The lines should be crisp without fuzz or overspray. All three of my locomo- tives had nice clean separations and none of those fuzzy edges I was talking about. The lettering is also very crisp on all


R M C S U B S C R I B E R S


Please be sure to advise us at least two issues ahead of any mailing address change. Send us a copy of your mailing address label, plus your new address information to assure a correct address change. Please allow between 6 and 8 weeks for processing to take effect.


RAILROAD MODEL CRAFTSMAN 108 Phil Hardin Rd., Newton NJ 07860


1946 Grand Canyon Limited HO Scale


Santa Fe


of the engines. The Department of Transportation, United States of Amer- ica lettering on the DOT locomotive was clearly visible upon magnification. I have no idea how Kato managed to print all of those letters in that small round logo on the side of the engine but it is there and legible. I don’t think that anyone could do nicer paintwork than this. One of the most outstanding fea-


The Coach Yard


www.thecoachyard.com Committed to Excellence


94


tures of the Kato U30C is its mecha- nism. This locomotive runs flawlessly as you would expect it to. My models started running around the 1.2 s.m.p.h. mark and were smooth over the entire speed range. As I previously mentioned, the new mechanisms are DCC compatible. No more cutting or milling the frame to accept a generic decoder. The TCS K1D4NC decoder drops right in. I tested one of my loco- motives with the TCS decoder and the engine really began to show me what it was capable of. I was able to get the speed range matched perfectly to the prototype’s, and I was really able to dial in the performance. I couldn’t ac- curately measure the starting speed but it was below 1 s.m.p.h. The engines negotiated my worst-case scenario test track consisting of dirty, poorly assem- bled snap-track without derailing or faltering even slightly. I think I may have even stepped on some of the track causing damage to the track gauge, too. The engines did what they were made to do and did it better than most.


This kind of performance is what we all have come to expect from Kato. I love the fact that Kato is revisiting


some of its older models. I am a big fan of taking something that is already good and fine tuning it. Kato has really pushed their U30C locomotive to the near perfection mark with this offer- ing. Between the DCC capabilities, up- dated body shell and excellent perfor- mance, this locomotive is an excellent way to represent the U-boat on your layout. Who can just stop with one anyway, get several. The Kato U30C sells for $110.00 and is currently avail- able.—SCOTT LUPIA


Hart convertible ballast car: HO scale Mfd. by ProtoWest Models, 3021 Mountain Shadows Drive, Lakewood, Colorado 80215. The Rodger Ballast Car Co. of Chica-


go designed and manufactured cars specifically for transporting and dump- ing ballast for rail lines. The cars, called Hart Convertible cars, were de- signed to dump ballast in the center of the track through bottom doors or to dump to one side or both sides of the track through side doors. The dumping could be performed rapidly and eco- nomically. Due to their convertible fea- tures, they could also be used as a plain, side-dumping gondola for coal or other bulk material. In center-dumping mode, the most economical and generally used mode, the ballast was deposited in the center of the track between the rails and com- monly spread by a ballast plow or spreader coupled to the rear of the bal- last train. In side-dumping mode, a loaded


Hart Convertible car could be un- loaded by towing a top plow by a Lidgerwood steam-operated winch along the floors of a string of loaded Hart cars to deflect the load to one or both sides of the track for construction, filling or side ballast work. This side unloading subjected the cars to ex-


DECEMBER 2011


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