Back on November 11, I posted about upgrading an Athearn 86′ hi-cube in order to bring it up to the quality of current ready-to-roll models. I’m not a glutton for punishment. I’m doing this because there is no model of Greenville 86′ hi-cube on the market. Hopefully, now that I’ve started this project, someone like ExactRail will do this car the right way.
Since November, I’ve torn this dollar-bin model apart and started on the improvements. The plan is to keep the factory paint and touch up the spots where I’ve shaved bits away. With that in mind, I started by reworking the floor and frame in order to make everything fit more securely. While I was doing that, I added weight to the inside of the floor to bring it up to NMRA specs. I tossed the stock trucks and the pivoting coupler shank and reshaped the center beam. After that, I glued the floor/frame to the body.
Moving to the exterior of the car, I shaved off all the molded-on grabs, brake gear, and tack boards. I also reshaped the side panels at each end of both sides to bring the model a little closer to the prototype Greenville car. With the carving part complete, I started adding parts back to the model.
So far, I’ve installed the wire side grabs and trucks. Next up, I’ll make and install the end grab rails and walkover platform. I have a variety of draft gear, lift bars, and brake equipment among my parts cache, but I want to match all of this to a specific car. These details changed over time, so I’ll spend some time looking for more photos of NYC Greenville hi-cubes with Hyrda-Cushion draft gear.
I’m close to finishing this car, but I only go to it when other projects are stalled for one reason or another. I’ll post more pics when I make more progress. Until then, here’s a photo-summary of the project.