Author Topic: Balboa K-36  (Read 3215 times)

customnscaler

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Balboa K-36
« on: December 24, 2012, 10:33:22 PM »
Got a Hon3 Balboa K-36 coming soon in the mail, want to re-power the thing for smooth and reliable performance. I'm gonna convert it to sound/dcc(tsunami). Any re-power kits you guys know of would help me out tons! Please if some one is familiar with this loco share what you know. I plan on doing a whole new topic on this forum when I start doing this work. I know I'm not the only one out there with a similar project. I will be painting the loco too, hopefully will be a good learning experience for all.

-Building whipers
-Painting brass steam loco
-Re powering
-DCC/sound install
-SMLED for headlights, marker lights and cab light.
-Maybe some weathering

I have done everything listed above before just need tips to re-power the thing and general info on the model. Everything listed above will be covered in the new topic to come when I start the work.

Thanx and happy holidays!

CharlesM

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2012, 04:27:07 PM »
I have one of the Balboa K-36 models.  I used a NWSL # 146-6 28 to 1 idler gearbox and NWSL can motor to re-power it.  I don't remember the exact motor unit however.  The motor is the largest that would fit into the cab.  It operates from 60 to 7800 rpm max.  When I got done I have a locomotive that will run from 55 SMPH down to 1 tie width per second.  This on straight DC not DCC power.  The idler gearbox will fit on the axle of the K-36 and mate right up to the gear on the axle without modifications. You don't have to remove the wheels and fit a new gear to the axle !   I also  replaced the poor quality , pitted castings on the model with new Cal-Scale and PSC units as need.  ( Headlight , bell , whistle, stack &  base ,  air pump and number boards. )  I also replaced the bent pilot deck and pilot with a new unit.  Makes a major improvement in the appearance of the loco.   Relocated the air pump on the firemans side into the correct location and replaced the air pump piping with cast pipes .  Tender got a new water hatch and air brake cylinder underneath on the frame .  They make a nice running , good  looking model with some work.  ( It was a winter project for me )

Only problem I have now is , it doesn't fit the Colorado and Southern !   Ha Ha .

Charles M


customnscaler

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2012, 01:03:54 AM »
I'd love to see some pics!

CharlesM

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2012, 01:58:30 PM »
Here are some photos of the engine after the rebuild. You can pick out some additional things I added . New injectors , blowdown controls , and air equalizing tank on the engineers side. This model had some damage to it , and required that I straighten out a bow in the center of the boiler. Whe I got done , I had to remove the handrail posts on  the engineers side and plug all of the holes and re-drill them . When done the handrails now run in a straight line , rather than wander up and down. This explains the rather moth-eaten apperance of the model. I have not re-painted it in Floquil Brass .





In spite of looking all of its 45+ years of age, it runs like a brand new loco. In fact better than when it was new from Balboa.

Charles M

customnscaler

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2012, 12:13:28 AM »
Awww what a beauty. There so beafy lookin, can't wait to get mine. I think I'm gonna paint it with the round herald and not flying scheme. Great work!

customnscaler

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2012, 03:25:14 PM »
Got mine today in the mail and it's pretty nice. No wheel wear or damage. Still have not test run it. Trying to figure out my plan for wiring and paint.

CharlesM

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2012, 04:34:22 PM »
One thing to watch out for on these older Balboa models is the quality of the solder joints. Some of the solder they used was not the best . As these enignes get older the solder can crystalize and fracture. My K-36 had some joints that I had to remover the old solder and re-solder the joints. I have owned Balboa's K's ( 3 of them ) , 2 Mason Bogies , C&S #74 , and the 2 cylinder Shay. All of them required some repair of the solder joints when I got them. The C&S # 74 actually turned itself into a kit one day. I came home to find the entire boiler section between the smokebox and the cab had come apart and was lying on the shelf next to the engine. The old solder had gotten warm and just finally let go on that  day. But Balboa built some really neat models that not many builders did. I still have the 2 Masons , and the K-36 after all this time. After all of the work on the K and the  Masons  I feel they are truly unique and one of a kind. Good luck on your project.

Charles M

customnscaler

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2013, 10:11:17 PM »
I wish I knew what motor you used I'm having a hard time figuring it out on northwest shortline web site.

CharlesM

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2013, 11:20:52 PM »
The motor I used was actually a very tight fit into the boiler space. So much that I had to modify the actual shape of the metal case on the can motor itself. I would recommend that you measure the inside of the boiler in Millimeters and find the closest one size wise that would fit. I think the motor was really for HO standard gauge models rather than HOn3.  The motor that I used probably has been replaced by now. The conversion I did was made in 2002 so that motor might not be available now.

Charles M

customnscaler

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2013, 07:55:26 PM »
Do you know what you used to couple the gear box to the motor shaft? My Loco now has paint and decals. Just waiting for the motor and LEDs. Pics to come.

CharlesM

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2013, 08:54:29 PM »
I believe that the gearbox kit has universal coupling parts in the package. They are also available separately from NWSL if different sizes are needed.

Charles M

cadetpwr

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Re: Balboa K-36
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2013, 10:11:02 PM »
Nice work on the K36, I had one of those at one time but had to return it to the shop I bought it from due to issues that were not revealed till I had the model in hand.  It had a driver set out of quarter and had been run that way for quite awhile resulting in some severe side rod wear.  To the point of not much left before it would tear thru the side rod.  Ran with a nice lope.  For the price I paid, I expected better.  Right now I will be looking at a Balboa T12 ten wheeler at the show this coming Saturday.   Has been nicely pro painted, weathered and lighted.  I still want another K36 someday.   Great work, are you planning a proper paint job or just going to leave it unpainted?    Mike