Katzhagen - Department of revisions

LGB 46690 / RhB Fad 8721 hopper retrofitted into a RhB Xac-t 93801

A bit of history

A first series of these hoppers (painted brown) was acquired by the Rhaetian Railways back in 1968. All of the following five series' appearance was almost identical to the first run. The second series was acquired in 1971, a third in 1983. The latter was painted completely yellow, the fourth series acquired in 1988 was painted gray. The fifth series which was acquired in 1993 was gray as well, but featured a yellow stripe which later on was turned into a white one with a red lettering. All of these 34 cars were relabeled from Fad to Fac types in 2003, which was subject to change later on once more and their current (2016) nomination is Xac.

The car which will be dealt with below belongs to the sixth series of five further cars now known as Xac-t types which had been acquired in 2010.

After having seen a photo of the RhB's newly acquired hoppers (on the left) I wasn't that fond of my yellow Fad cars (on the right) any longer. Remedy seemed available only by accomodating myself in the workshop for a couple of days in order to redesign and repaint the cars.
Thought - Done:

The little project was started building the missing railings by means of the prototype's photos. An aluminum tube being 8mm in diameter was used to bend the 4mm radii. Real exactness was required only with the distances between bendings - endings too long simply were subject to be cut off.

Simple jigs (fixing pins and a piece of plywood) helped to solder prototypes which then were tried on in the existing and additionally drilled holes.

Making identical parts would have been almost impossible without using suitable jigs. Painting also required a few dodges - 1mm holes had to be drilled into the 2mm poles for transfixing the parts on a fixture...

Disassembling the car was inevitable due to the required paint work and presented the author with numerous previously hidden details. Hence the efforts required with the new painting and the related fixtures had initially been underestimated...

Some elements, like f.i. the ladders were modified before painting. Other parts had to be replaced by self-made ones. Painting turned out to become an exercise in patience - no wonder given almost 90 parts had to be dealt with in at least three runs (basic paint, colour and a final clear coat).

The auxiliary steps on one side were replaced with full-fledged ones made from brass. This required the steps to be soldered together from two little sheets. Painting the chassis... requires some space.

All of the parts have been repainted and are ready for being reassembled. But first the new lettering needs to applied and fused by a final clear coat.

Changes can be viewed more detailed in a larger picture by clicking the above pictures.

The lateral views illustrate the more winsome impression of the morphed 2006 model.

And once more it turms out that the result rewards for the efforts.

Patterns for the lettering shown above can be obtained for personal usage by sending a related request.