Empire Belt RR ALcos

Empire Belt RR ALcos
Custom Painted FA / FB Units

Thursday, March 12, 2015

FA-FB-FB-FA Project Part 3

Greeting Blog Followers,

I have to admit I'm excited about this project and the way the engines have turned out. After studying available New York Central Cigar Band FA and FB pictures upon pictures I opted for the early 1960s or original cigar band FA and FB scheme. Trust me this was not an easy decision as I went back and forth several times right up until I started cutting out the decals.

So what's the difference? The early cigar band had the NEW YORK CENTRAL about mid flank with small numbers below while the later version had a larger NEW YORK CENTRAL just above the sill with large numbers towards the rear.

My new FA-FB-FB-FA units are now numbered 1012-2305-2306-1020. These are correct NYC FA1-FB1 numbers. The project required two sets of Microscale 87-88 decals to get the proper NEW YORK CENTRAL lettering and numbers.

Let's check out the pictures...

The ALCO FA-FB-FB-FA lash up has been painted gloss black. For those spray can Picasso's out there save the rattle can caps as they make excellent painting stands

The FA-FB-FB-FA Lash Up in flat black. Notice how the gloss black really gives the units a blacker black appearance. I have gloss coated the flat black and lettered some diesels in the past but find it much better to paint the units gloss black and then letter them.

A close up and the decals used for this project, Microscale 87-88 New York Central Diesels 1960-1968.

Newly released from the New York Central Train Layout Paint Shop the ALCO FA-FB-FB-FA units head towards Terminal Yard for final inspection and hopefully their first assignment.

The units have left Terminal Yard and are running light towards Empire City's North Side Yard.
The hand rails are from a Walther's F Unit Diesel Dress Up kit.
The original plastic ones could not be salvaged  

The closely coupled ALCOs hit the curve leading to North Side Yard.
The original mars light has been removed and the bottom hole filled. 

The FA-FB-FB-FA units are on their maiden revenue service voyage with a transfer freight from North Side Yard and are heading back to Terminal Yard with a freight train made up of cars on their way to the Atlantic Pacific Rail Road and the Kings Port & Western Rail Road.   

The newly painted ALCO'S rumble through Industry City 

The following day the FA-FB-FB-FA lash up is on the point of a train from 
Terminal Yard to North Side Yard  

The four unit lash up has plenty of power to handle this steel and auto parts train.
Note the KP&W clam shell rebuilds from Kings Port Steel and further back the coil covered loads from A.P.R.R. on line customer Shapeless Steel   


  1. Beautifully done John! That simple cigar band scheme is actually very elegant on those husky FAs and the set really conveys 1960s NYC railroading!

    1. Thank you for the compliments Ralph! Much appreciated. All in all it was a nice project that I feel turned out real nice. Thank you again.