3d Printed Freight Cars

Here's a list of the HO scale freight cars I've made using a Form One 3d printer.

Southern Pacific CS-35 Flat Car

Full article here.

Southern Pacific's CS-35 flat car was an early steel flat car design. The car was designed when the SP was under Harriman control in 1903; the CS stood for the "Common Standard" designs that were shared among the other Harriman roads. Plans appear in Tony Thompson's Southern Pacific Freight Cars book.

Because the car is only 36 feet long, it prints flat and diagonally on the Form One build platform. The wood deck is stripwood, glued on separately. I also separately applied grab irons, stirrup steps, the brake cylinder, and brake wheel.

The only problem with this car is that the SP never built any of the CS-35 cars. Apparently, there was a bake-off between 36 foot and 40 foot versions, and the 40 foot car won.

The SketchUp file and STL file to print this car are available for download on Thingiverse.

Southern Pacific CS-35A Flat Car

Full article here.

The CS-35A was a 40 foot steel flat car, also designed in 1903. Plans and pictures appear in Tony Thompson's Southern Pacific Freight Cars book.

This model was harder to print because the Form One can't fit a forty foot car flat on its build surface. I printed these cars diagonally with one side tilted up, with the Form One support structure attached to the side and stake pockets. It's easy to damage the details when removing the support material. For my first attempt, I just used SketchUp to stretch the center of the car. I noticed later that the trucks were set further towards the center, and had to redo the design.

Southern Pacific F-50-4 Flat Car

The Southern Pacific F-50-4 was designed around 1910, just after the end of Harriman control of the SP. The very thin deck makes the car distinctive. Unfortunately, it also doesn't leave much room for decals. The prototype used smaller-than average reporting marks, which are near unreadable on an HO freight car.

Like the CS-35A, I printed the F-50-4 flat cars tilted on edge to fit in the Form One's print space.

Southern Pacific W-50-3 Gondola

Full article here.

The W-50-3 gondola was built by the SP in 1913 based on the Hart convertible gondola design.

Because the sides and under frame were deep, I couldn't print the cars on edge and still have them it. Instead, I printed these cars vertically, and found I could print five cars at once. I also made separate models with the hopper doors open and closed so the cars could be used for gravel or rail.

Freight Cars on the To-Do List.

  • Mckeen self-propelled railcars.
  • More gondola and work cars?
  • 36 foot boxcars?

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