Snow plow project started (finally!)

Well, it took a few months – but yesterday I finally got a start on the CNR snow plow project I introduced back in mid-December.
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The weather was perfect – I worked on the deck and was able to do two coats of Scalecoat Sanding Sealer on all wood pieces, with time to lightly sand after each coat using a fine emery board. I was also able to assemble most of the basic body before dinner. It’s starting to look less like a box of wood, and more like a plow:
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A couple of the thinner wood sheets – used to form the body at the narrow point behind the wings – had warped after spending 60-something years in the kit box. (Who wouldn’t?) I therefore strengthened these with some pieces of 0.040″ thick styrene sheet glued to their backs with CA.

Other than that one issue, the kit is going together really nicely, with few surprises. I’m impressed at the skill that went into fabricating the pre-shaped pieces such as the bulkheads inside the car body. And while the kit required me to shape the pointed edge onto the spine that supports the plow blade, in the end I loved carving and sanding this piece to shape.

Building a vintage kit like this requires a different set of skills than assembling today’s state of the art laser cut wood kits and it’s great to exercise those skills.

The real challenge comes next: Forming the plow blade from a sheet of tin supplied with the kit. The sheet is pre-marked with cut and fold lines, but it’ll still take some careful fettling to do a good job. I’ll save that for a day when I’m feeling really confident…

(As an aside, this marks my 800th post to the blog. Thanks, everyone, for coming along for the ride. I’m really enjoying this!)

10 thoughts on “Snow plow project started (finally!)

  1. Trevor,

    I actually have one of these kits from the same vintage. It’s unassembled of course, and something that I may also save for a cold winter day, so I’ll look to your advice to see how this one shapes up, especially the shaping of the sheet metal plow blade. Over the years I’ve assembled quite a few Northeastern/Ambroid kits, and I’ve found that they age in the box pretty well and produce some fine models. I’ve build a few of their express reefer kits, and the end result is a quality product. Another interesting kit of theirs was their wooden stock car kit where the car sides were cut from a single sheet of basswood with slits cut into it to form the spaces between the boards. Amazing stuff from yesteryear.

    Bob Frascella

  2. Trevor,
    If you need a practice sheet of tin (or if you mess up on the one provided), locate your favorite beverage in a aluminum can. After drinking, cut the top and bottom off, and you’ll have a decent sized piece of aluminum to work with. It might be a bit harder to work that tin, but it you anneal the aluminum it will become quite flexible. I’ve used this technique to run aluminum cans through a paper crimper to represent corrugated siding in large scale.

  3. Congrats Trevor on the 800th post. I’ve enjoyed your blog from when I first started reading it, and looking at the progress of your fine layout. Love the photos too; both real and model. Great job!
    Cheers, Gord

  4. Trevor
    First of all, thank you for the 800 (and counting) posts. Your willingness to share has enriched the hobby.

    Your old Ambroid kit brought back a lot of memories of my earlier in HO and S. These kits were fun to build. I liked the old Ambroid 1-in-5000 kits in HO.


  5. Trevor,

    Thanks for posting this project. Seeing how the bones of the older kits went together provides insight and inspiration to plan and tackle my On2 plows.

    Looking forward to the party at post #1000!



  6. Firstly, congratulations on 800 posts, Trevor.
    That certainly is some achievement, and I can honestly say that I have gained inspiration from some of them!
    So it is worthwhile!

    As for the plow, it certainly looks the part, and would be beefy enough to clear the real stuff over here (well, the amount we normally get down on the South Coast, anyway…..)!

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