Several years ago RMC ( issue March 91 ) ran an article by Al Rost about converting Tichy Ore Cars to narrow gauge.
Back then I built two cars following these ideas. While it worked well, I didn't like the looks
of the wide cars next to my more typical narrow gauge cars.
When I was looking around for ore cars to use on my planned HOn3 layout
I remembered that conversion.
This time I decided to create a narrower version of the same car.
I don't have the original article in my collection any more, so I can't compare my way to the one suggested by Al. If there
are similarities, these methods are the invention of Al and I only adopted them.
- Tichy 22 Foot Wood Ore Car #4012
- HOn3 trucks of choice ( I used MDC HOn3 Archbar Trucks #2928 )
- Evergreen 4x4 styrene strips
- Bits and pieces of styrene
Modifying the slope sheet
The first step of the conversion is to narrow the slope sheet. A table saw is extremely
helpful here. In case you don't have access to one, cutting by hand would as
well be possible, but would better be done with a different procedure.
- Decide on the new width of the finished car by measuring some of your existing rolling stock.
My car is reduced to a total width of 8 scale feet.
- Each side adds 8 scale inches to the overall width, so subtract 1'4" from the total width.
- This gives you the necessary width for the slope sheet after the cutting is done. Divide by 2 and set up
the fence of your table saw to that width (3'4" in my case).
- Cut the slope sheet carefully. take the wider part and cut again. As shown on the first picture,
this should give you two smaller halves and a small strip.
- Discard the small strip and test fit the two halves. Sand where they don't fit exactly.
- Glue the two halves together, aligning them carefully.
- If you want to, you can add small pieces of 4x4's to the bottom to replace the
molded on pieces that where removed in the process.
- If you want to convert several cars, this is the time to cut all slope sheets,
as we'll have to change the setup of the table saw for the frame modifications.
- Now glue the sides (C-3) to the slope sheet. Doing so at this time makes fitting the