Installing The Exterior

Assembling the exterior siding on the Horse Car is similar to other kits (see step 5. Car Siding) except there are sub wall panels to install and molded door panels to adjust for. Here is how I approached this part of the build.

Step 1 - Installing the Sub Walls

The exterior walls are comprised of a sandwich of 1/16" flat sheet bass followed by a pre-finished scribed siding layer.
The sheet stock is applied to the sub frame first, then the scribed siding is applied on top.

The first step is to determine where the four doors are positioned on the shell.
Note that the four doors are not the same size, two are long at 6 feet while the other two are shorter at 5 ft 6 inches.
The short doors are at the same end of the car, the longer doors at the other.

Now the kit instructions suggest the sheet stick siding be run the full length of the car side, then the doors and scrbided siding are placed on top of this. I felt the doors would stand too proud of the siding if I followed this approach - the door castings were too thick.
Instead I chose to leave a gap in both the sub wall and the scribed siding to accommodate the door thickness.
Locate the door positions on the sub frame (one long, the other short), cut the sub panels to length and glue in position.
I did this by placing the car frame on it's side, gluing the panels in place then placing weights on top while the glue set.
Then I fipped the car over and installed the sub walls on the other side.


Here is the sub frame before the siding is installed.


The sub wall panels have been installed with gaps left for the doors.

Step 2 - Installing the Letter Boards

After the sub walls were in place the end letter boards were installed. Though the following photo is of a different car, the concept of glueing and clamping the end boards applies.


Use bar clamps to hold the end letter boards in place while the glue dries.


Once the glue has dried, the end letter boards are sanded to follow the profile of the curved roof line.

Next step is to install the curved ledger board on the end letter boards.
To ease the installation process, I carefully pre-bent the thin wood strip by running it carefully through my fingers until it matched the curved profile of the roof.
It was then glued to the end of the car with some sticks to help hold the curve while the glue set.


Popsicle sticks & clamps hold the ledger board in place while the glue sets.

I then painted the letter boards and underside of the roof over hang with boxcar red before installing the scribed siding.

Step 3 - Installing the Outer Siding

Now for the fun part - installing the pre finished scribed siding.
Locate the side and end panels in the kit. Orient yourself with each piece, where it needs to be cut and where it goes on the model.
The manufacturer has painted some white indexing marks on the wall panels to help identify where the panels need to be cut.

I installed the end panels first as we want the side wall panels to over lap the end panels.
Locate the end panels and cut them slightly wider that the end of the car.
Now glue these in place using clamps to hold the panels flat until the glue has dried.
Next sand the edges of the end panels so that they line up with the sides.


The end sribed siding panels have been installed. Note the letter boards have been painted.

Next I installed the side panels starting with the centre panel.
Cut this piece to length and glue in place with weights to hold it flat until the glue has set.

Next position the door casting in place and cut the end panels slightly longer than the wall section.


Here the centre panel has been glued into position, the door is dropped in place and we're currently checking the length of the right hand panel.

Glue all four end panels in place using weights to hold them flat until the glue sets.

As with the end panels, we need to trim the lenght of the side end panels so they line up with the end panels.
Approach this sanding carefully as you do not want to end up sanding the end panels.


Here is the car with the side panels installed. Note we have not installed the doors yet.

This completes the installtion of the car sides.


This Web page is maintained by Grant Knowles and was last updated on December 29, 2015.