Building Kozo's New Shay locomotive

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crueby

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Finally got started on a locomotive engine project - been building small steam engines for a bunch of years now, and think (hope) I am ready for a project like this one. The one part that I am still nervous about is the boiler, but hopefully by he time I get that far in I'll have a lot more practise with silver brazing (also know some Live Steamer guys that can help me out if needed).

Here are a few photos of the progress so far - have the main frame rails and bolsters done - not too much to look at, but was a lot of layout/drilling/tapping. You will note that the rails are offset to the left on the front/rear endplates - the Shay's have the boilers offset since the engine is vertical on the right side.

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There are also a lot of bolts holding nothing as yet on the endplates - they will hold footplates, handrails, etc later on. The endplates are brass - the original engine had them made up of a stack of large timbers, so I have scored the brass to outline the timbers, and will woodgrain in the paint later on.

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I cant recommend more the drilling guides that Kozo shows in his books - takes just a few minutes to make one, and makes accurate repeatable location of matching holes in the parts SO much easier. Here are the guides for the holes in the frame rails, to locate the bolsters (crossbars the wheel assemblies will mount to) as well as the footplate brackets/brace bars still to come.
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The smaller guide has holes at three different angles for the different brace bars - would have been a pain to lay out each set of holes manually on the rails.
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More to come, depending on the weather - good weather: outside sailing/canoeing, rainy weather: in the shop!
 

SilverSanJuan

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Beautiful work, crueby! I look forward to following along.

I'm building Kozo's A3 currently.

Todd
 

crueby

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Beautiful work, crueby! I look forward to following along.

I'm building Kozo's A3 currently.

Todd
Yours is coming along great - been watching that thread as I gathered materials for mine. I have several of Kozo's books, and it was a tossup whether to build the A3 or a Shay. Been practising silver soldering, learning a lot but no where near what he can do!
 
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crueby

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Got some good progress on the drawplates - nice to have some simple parts to practise silver soldering with. Made up the backer blocks for the drawplates first - did not have brass in the right width for that thickness, so used it as another chance to practise, and soldered up two pieces to get the width. Came out good - his instructions are great.

As for the drawheads themselves, started with the thin backplate - used up some C260 that has been in the drawer for a long time (hate machining the stuff, seems to smear easier than it cuts, now only get C360 or C353 which machine so much cleaner). Had to thin it a bit with the fly cutter.
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Next squared up to size the blocks for the drawheads
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and silver soldered them to the backplates - used a couple small brass screws from the back to hold them together. One went great, the other needed a retry on the soldering, think I stopped too soon and there was still liquid flux in the joint, the solder had not flowed completely. Maybe did not have both sides heated right - still learning....
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Once both were soldered, drilled for the drawbolt
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then switched to a thin mill bit and milled out the centers of the drawhead cavities
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then angled the piece 15 degrees (used a scrap piece as a guide to get it same each time) and milled the angled sides of the cavities
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then went in and drilled/tapped the holes to attach the drawheads to the thicker base
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and used the sander to round off the front faces
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All attached to the frame ends, came out looking good - happy with the results. 10 pieces down, about a thousand to go!
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Next up will be the footrails (am following Kozo's sequence pretty much)....
 

SilverSanJuan

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Excellent work! I'll bet those pockets were fun to do. As for the heating issue with the silver solder, remember to always heat the larger object. Conduction will do the work for you.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. :)

Todd
 

crueby

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Excellent work! I'll bet those pockets were fun to do. As for the heating issue with the silver solder, remember to always heat the larger object. Conduction will do the work for you.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. :)

Todd
That was probably it, heating too low and not getting the upper block to right heat. Gotta love a fun project that teaches you something too!
 

SilverSanJuan

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Yup! In the last year and half I've been learning all the things I've always wanted to learn. Something new every time I'm in my shop.

Todd
 

crueby

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Next up are the footboards and such on the ends - fairly straightforward pieces with some more practice on silver soldering (getting better at it little by little, figuring out the amount of heat to use on small vs large pieces better).

The footboards start as four narrow strips bent to a 90 degree angle plus two thicker strips for the boards themselves.

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With the strips bolted onto the end block, the boards are clamped into place and drilled for temporary screws.
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Those screws hold the boards in place for silver soldering, and are then filed off flush.

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The handrails at the top are a simple piece of brass rod, bent 90 at the ends and soldered into small lugs used to screw them to the end blocks. I heated the area of the bend to get a clean bend without cracking the rod.

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The poling pockets, used to hold large poles to push cars on sidings, are made by boring a hole in the end of a piece of bar stock to make a thick walled tube. That tube is held with the angle table at 15 degrees for cutting with a slitting saw.

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That makes a set of little angled rings.
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Those rings are then soldered to a square plate.
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The plate is drilled for a small flat head screw that holds it to the end block just below the handrail ends.
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crueby

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I got a start on the boiler support brackets, which hang down below the main frame rails and holds up the bottom of the firebox area and also holds the fire grate. There are two identical brackets, so the outlines are cut from sheet brass and screwed together for machining. The screws go where larger holes will be in the finished pieces, so there is no extra hole left. With the two pieces screwed together, the outlines are milled to size.
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Then the center opening is sawn out.
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and milled to dimension across the bottom
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and the angled part at the sides.
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Then the holes for the support rods are drilled
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and the bottom corners milled off at an angle.
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A seperate lug plate is needed at the top of the bracket to bolt it to the main rails. The lugs were made all in one longer piece to make it easier to hold square - that piece was drilled for the bolt holes, including a smaller hole in the center of each one to screw into the bracket, holding it for silver soldering (oh, and I am using the term 'silver soldering' like Kozo does - some call it silver brazing, or hard soldering. Whatever term you like, depends what country and decade you are from, I think!).
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With the brackets soldered to the lugs,
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the lugs were cut apart and trimmed to length.
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The brackets were then bolted to the main rails, ready to make the support rods. That will be done in place, using the main rails as the building jig for the rods, so that everything comes out the right size. Enough for this time, more to be done the next rainy day!
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crueby

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Couple rainy days, so good time to play back in the shop! Got the rest of the boiler support brackets done this morning.

The adjustment plates and the rod end plates were gang drilled
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and milled
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from longer pieces to make it easy to hold/align in the machine vise,
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then cut apart and trimmed to final length
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before soldering onto the rods on the brackets
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and the rod ends
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before assembly onto the model.
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It is starting to look like a loco, little by little!
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Next up are the angled brackets at the ends of the main rails - those look like they will be tricky, getting all the angles in the right directions....
 

SilverSanJuan

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Wow!!! You're just movin' right along. Looks really great!

Todd
 

Herbiev

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Looking great and love the pics
 

tms6401

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It's fun to watch one of these come alive. You are doing a fine job on it.

tms
 

crueby

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Kinda surprised myself how quickly this part of the build has gone - the main frame is done and ready for paint. A bunch of days I got going back in the shop, until looking up at the clock and going 'WHAT time is it??'. Sure ign of a fun project! Most of the parts so far are nice easy square shapes, but LOTS of little holes to tap....

Most recent parts were the angle braces at the ends, which have lots of odd compound angles to drill/solder at, fortunately Kozo gives detailed measurements for the parts and the soldering jigs, so they came together well.
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After that was a set of floorboard brackets, simple blocks, angled on bottom, and drilled using the template made at the start so they all fit perfectly (the jigs for multiple part drilling were well worth the time to make).
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Then, it was down to the floorboards - to drill the holes for those I put the whole frame up on the mill table, you can just see the low-tech machinists jack at the far end (two carriage bolts/nuts holding a crossbar) to support it during drilling.
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Once all the holes were drilled at tap size, the boards were pulled off and drilled/countersunk for the flat head screws used to hold them on.
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Ready for paint now, got some hi-temp paint that I need to test in the sprayer...
 

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Looking very nice, I'm enjoying following along.

Paul.
 

crueby

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I got a coat of paint on the main frame assembly - amazing how it changes the appearance of it all. I used some satin-finish high temperature grill paint, thinned down and airbrushed on. Below are some pictures of it sitting out in the sun to cure up (another 90 degree (F, not C!) day, perfect for it).

While waiting for it to dry, I read ahead the next chapter in Kozo's book on the truck assemblies. Sure are a lot of parts in those (wheels, axels, suspension, brakes, gears) - more than in a lot of whole engines I have done - should keep me busy for a while! So far a very enjoyable build, learning a lot from his book.

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crueby

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Got a start on the wheels for the loco - started off with a length of 2 3/8" steel round bar (heavy sucker!) for the rims, and sliced it into a series of hockey pucks, one per wheel. First one I tried using a hacksaw, then after the arm turned to rubber most of the way through, went and dug out the reciprocating saw and a metal cutting blade to do the rest. Much easier!

Following Kozo's sequences from the book, first faced off the blanks and drilled a hole in the center
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to start boring out to the inner diameter of the rim.
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Then cut a step, which will form the bearing surface of the wheel,
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and then turned it around to face off the back side to thickness and turn the high part of the step down to diameter.
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This (and 7 more to do) form the slightly oversize blanks for the rims of the wheels. They will get spokes and inner hubs silver soldered in, then will be trued/turned down to final outer dimensions. Right now they dont look like much, but lot of work given the size of them - largest pieces I can turn on the Sherline without putting in a riser block...
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SilverSanJuan

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Lookin' good! Wheels do take a lot of time. Many operations to repeat.

Todd
 
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