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#22 Smokebox

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Smokin!!!

The GS-4 has a large smokebox door.  It is complex and a casting was the only way to go.  A friend of mine offered to make an aluminum casting of it.  I drew up the plans and started to make the pattern for the castings out of wood.  Glued a bunch of wood pieces together, let them dry, mounted them on my metal lathe (low speed), borrowed some wood lathe cutters and away I was... doing something I never did before.  

Well, after realizing that I was no Norm Abram of "This Old House" who makes it look soooo easy using a wood lathe, I decided that I had to make a cutter and put it in the tool holder of the metal lathe.  This let me make very accurate cuts.  I also used the auto feed to speed things along.   Had wood shavings ALL OVER!  What a mess...  After 12 hours, the final product came out excellent.  

 

 

Still need to fill in the filets and sand it down, then it's off to the foundry.  

 

Here's the finished patterns...

 

And here's the result after it came back from the foundry and a little bit of machine work.  Thanks Tom!  Excellent job!  It was cast in 535 Almag.  This stuff is heavy.  If I were to make another one, I would hollow out both pieces to reduce cost and weight.  Still need to put the smokebox dogs on, lights etc.  Save that for later.

 

Well, I decided to file, sand and polish the smokebox door (another 8 hours) and glad I did.  I put the smokebox dogs (26) on and drilled/tapped the perimeter for studs/nuts (64).  The only thing left to do was to put the lights and numbers in.  That will come after I get her running.

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#01 So It Began #2 Frame #3 Drivers #4 Quartering #5 Trucks #6 Frame & Wheels #7 Side Rods #8 Cylinder Boring #9 Cyl/Valve Liners #10 Cyl/Valve Cover #11 Pistons & Valves #12 Cyl Assembled #13 Boiler #14 Suspension #15 Crosshead #16 Brakes #17 Link Support #18 Bell #19 Crosshead (again) #20 Connecting Rod #21 Stationary Runner #22 Smokebox #23 Valve Gear #24 Running on Air #25 Piston Rings #26 Axle Pump #27 Plating #28 Lubrication #29 Blast Nozzle #30 Stack #31 Steam Turret #32 Burner Manifold #33 Mounting Brackets #34 Boiler Insulation #35 Jacketing #36 Cab #37 Throttle #38 Reverse Lever #39 Track Test #40 Smokebox Access #41 Electric Blower #42 Turbulators #43 Burner Test #44 Piping #45 Cab (part 2) #46 Inaugural Run #47 Post Steamup #48 Smokebox Lights #49 Running Boards #50 Pilot #51 Skirting #52 Paint #53 Lettering #54 Whistle #55 Skyline Casing #56 Fuel System Mods #57 Odds and Ends #58 Turbos

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Last modified: 09/02/2017.