Come Together... Right now...
Finally got to the point where I
permanently mounted the body to the frame. Had to persuade everything
to fit but after some minor adjustments, the body was welded to the
frame. Some of my live steam friends suggested I allow for the removal
of the water tank for repairs later in life in case of rust or leaks.
Unfortunately, the way I designed the tender, the tank was an integral
part of the body/frame structure and would be impossible to do. Here is
the tender with a few more things to do before sandblasting. Made a
temporary seat which will be replaced with a custom seat next year
Here's some pictures of how I
resolved the problem of getting the propane cylinder out of the tender.
As you may recall from my earlier postings, the propane cylinder would
barely fit in the tender. The problem was that there was no room to
tilt it up to take it out or put it in. I made an opening in the front
of the tender and made a sliding door out of 1/8" plate steel. This
gave me just enough room to slide the cylinder forward which allowed it
to clear the back of the tender.
The last piece was to put the
trim around the top opening. More rivets! Later on, a lid will be made
to cover the water tank, which is in the rear portion of the tender.
I got the tender back from the
sandblasters. Here's a picture of the tender sandblasted and turned
upside down so the bottom could be painted.
The water piping, air brake
lines and electrical wiring were installed next. I did this before
painting the body because it was easier with the tender upside down and
I didn't want to roll it over on fresh paint after I painted the body.
Here's the tender with a fresh
coat of self etching primer. A bit of body work to smooth things out
and then it's time for the paint.
Here is the water tank with
about 10 coats of truck bed liner. I used white so I could see inside
easier. As it says on the label, make sure you do this in a well
ventilated area. This was actually done right after sandblasting and
before any paint was applied. The baffles were removed for the
picture. I tested the water tank for leaks. None found. The tank
holds just over 18 gallons. I hope that's enough to keep me going for a
while. Here you can see the hand pump and the overflow pipe. That
bulge on the back wall is for the rear light.
Here's the control panel. Still
need to put labels on things so I remember what switch does what. All
the toggles are illuminated so I can see them easily at night.
The flat panel on top of the
tender on the left side is covering the water tank. It is temporary
until I make one with the prototypical water doors, etc. The hoses on
the right bottom still need to be mated to the engine so they were left
a bit longer so they could be cut to the proper length.
Here you can see where the rear
light will go. I have pictures showing the lights in the previous
section. I'll put them on later.
And here it is waiting to be
loaded up on the trailer. Within the next two weeks, we'll see how
everything works out.
Most of the work for the tender
lights were done, so the only thing to do was to install them and
connect the wires to the fuse panel.
Finally got it painted. Need to
get the lettering done.
Here's the Tender with the new
seat. My handiwork is not that great when it comes to upholstery so I
had the seat made. The guys at "Midwest Upholstery" in Orland Park, did
an excellent job.