On the workbench: Warren’s got a Sn2 2-8-0


Warren’s Sn2 2-8-0 from an HOn3 brass model.  New domes, cab and a few other parts make for a simple conversion that captures the 2-foot look and yet keeps it unique for his free-lanced logging line.

Warren Judge sent the following photos of the 2-8-0 for his freelanced logging layout.  The model is not 100% complete, but still worthy of looking.  It started out as an HOn3 brass 2-8-0 and got a new cab from Jerry Wilson and new domes too.  At this point, the locomotive will get a new motor and DCC.


The open cab door is a nice touch.  The green color creates a point of interest


Warren extended the width of the tender floor to give the tender the over hanging look


A parting shot of the 2-8-0 conversion

Warren is working on a portable layout.  Hopefully he’ll soon have photos of the 2-8-0 running on the layout.

Posted in Locomotive, On the workbench, Warren Judge | 4 Comments

Sn2 Coupler Height Gauge from Shapeways

Jeremy Jordan has started to design Sn2 products and making them available through shapeways.  His first release is a coupler height gauge.  It looks like a nice product that will result in reliable car and coupler heights.  In his email to the Sn2_Trains yahoogroup he stated that it will fit both Kadee 714 and and Sergent narrow boxes….  Here is is full email text:

I made this for myself, but wanted to pass along this to all that model Sn2. I have an Sn2 coupler and car height gauge for sale on shapeways.com. Track to coupler height is 9/32 and it will fit both Kadee 714 and Sergent narrow shank boxes (upside down or the bottom detail sanded off). I have printed this in Frosted Ultra Detail and it looks and works awesome!. Freight car is a Mount Blue Sn2 SRRL box resting (not attached) on Blackstone trucks. 

Shapeways prices are based on printed volume, and this is a bit pricey for what it is, but I didn’t want something that was so light that it flew off the track when touched. 



3D Printed coupler height gauge in use measuring the bottom of the car. Flip it around to check coupler height.

The 9/32″ height equates to 18″ freight car bottom, which is prototype height.  Read more about it on the standards page.


Here is the digital image of the gauge from Shapeways. Gotta like the “SN2” on the side so the purpose is clear.

For those who do not want to purchase a coupler height gauge, I described how to make one in this post – https://sn2trains.com/2014/10/07/sn2-coupler-height-gauge/


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PLW announcement – Feb 8 2016

Portland Locomotive Works continues to announce limited run products.  Here is today’s announcement.  Contact Gary Kohler soon if you have interest.  It’s not clear if the boxcars are Sn2.

PLW will be working on and planning a late Spring release of the following:
WW&F derrick car 10 in Sn2 and OnX.
WW&F proposed tank car in S and O
PLW plans to have a pilot model (or possible release) of
SR&RL boxcars 121-125 (as built) at the Midwest Narrow Gauge Show this March 17-19.
F&M log bunk in Sn2 are in the works and we are taking reservations now. Please contact us direct for details.
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PLW – Log buggies in development

Gary Kohler and crew of Portland Locomotive Works continue to work on more projects.  I say more, because in the past 18 months or so, they have released passenger cars, Kingfield Engine house, wood turntables, flangers, Farmington freight office, and more.  Most of these are very limited run.  So one must contact Gary to know what’s coming.

The most recent project in development is the SR&RL/F&M(or is it Eustis) log bunks.  Currently the On2 are in development and the Sn2 will follow.

PLW On2 log bunk prototype

PLW On2 log bunk prototype

The model features laser cut wood frame, 3D printed journals, 3D printed bunk, 3D printed link and pin couplers.  He plans to provide wheelsets too.  It’s likely the Sn2 version will use KD wheelsets.  The poles between cars are to be a 3D print too.

The cars tended to run as unit trains with a flat car at the beginning and end of the string of cars.  The flats would have a bunk on them too.

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PLW Announcement – Wood Turntables

In recent months, Portland Locomotive Works (PLW) has been producing a number of products for the Sn2 modeler (and HOn30 and On2/30).  Here are some of the recent releases and in manufacture products for Sn2

  • Monson Combine and like coach (check PLW for availability)
  • SR&RL Passenger Cars 17 & 18 (limited production, shipped, sold out?)
  • SR&RL Kingfield 3-Stall Engine house (sold out? in manufacturing)
  • Maine Moose – Yes, the animals (check PLW for availability)
  • SR&RL Plows 513 & 514 (check PLW for availability)

Coming soon, PLW will be taking reservations

Sn2 wood turntable design by PLW

Sn2 wood turntable design by PLW

  • SR&RL Wood turntable (WW&F and a similar turntable).  Wood frame to be provided PLW is trying to determine if a spider can be provided.
  • SR&RL Kingfield girder turntable (in planning)
  • SR&RL Steel Turntables (in consideration)
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Sn2 Free-mo Update – Sherwin Williams paint used for fascia!

The Sn2 Crew member decided to refresh the fascia paint for the 2014 National NMRA train show.  See the Sn2 Free-mo standard for the paint specs.  Consider using a flat version of the paint for ground paint.

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Make an Sn2 Coupler Height Gauge

David Keith provided these images of his coupler height gauge.  He made it by stacking layers of styrene to the under car body height (to measure the under body height on one end) and then adding a couple more layers and mounting a coupler.

The Sn2 coupler height standards are not the same as HOn3.  See standards elsewhere on this site.  Tom Troughton (sp?) made a similar gauge for Sn3.  His is a bit more refined than mine.

On the left is a tab for sliding under cars to verify that the body of a car is at the proper height.  At right, a KD-714 HOn3 coupler has been added.

On the left is a tab for sliding under cars to verify that the body of a car is at the proper height. At right, a KD-714 HOn3 coupler has been added.

A coupler height check.  This gauge does not yet have anything to center the gauge on the rails, but that should be easy enough to add.

A coupler height check. This gauge does not yet have anything to center the gauge on the rails, but that should be easy enough to add.

Click buy a coupler height gauge if you do not make one.

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