Category Archives: Freudenreich Feinwerktechnik Z

BANVERKET Snowplow Locomotive

FR Freudenreich released two SJ snowplow locomotives last year that quickly sold out, they were only available to customers who pre-ordered the locomotives. A build kit including the motor is currently available for expert modelers skilled with soldering and painting small intricate parts. NOHAB the company familiar to many railroaders built the 20 Tc’s ordered by SJ in 1970 they are represented by FR as item 46.135.11 (top) and 46.135.21 (bottom) lettered for BANVERKET:

BANVERKET the government entity responsible for SJ’s railroad and infrastructure existed between the years 1988-2010, its lettering and paint scheme is the inspiration for this SJ locomotive (FR 46.135.21).

Featuring all metal construction this locomotive type includes 4 snow plows, it falls under the designation ‘MOW’ (Maintenance of Way) due to its snow clearing specialization, but it was originally used as a 4 season specialty loco, following winter months it was used for regional freight service under the class designation: Tc DLL.

Later in its history the original TC DLL was repainted and lettered for BANVERKET (1988-2010) as DLL 3124C for their MOW service for SJ.

 

SJ Ra 987 Electric Locomotive

Out of the pages of the commemorative 100 year anniversary book of the SJ is a gleaming new Ra 987 with its operators.

The Ra 987 express electric locomotive was introduced in the mid 1950’s and manufactured by ASEA with the final production of the locomotive ceasing in 1961. All 10 locomotives reportedly are still in existence as preserved museum locomotives, but before retirement these locomotives pulled express trains for nearly 30 years on two routes: Stockholm-Goteborg and Stockholm-Oslo. Ra trains consisted of characteristic SJ brown paint scheme express coaches similar to the German coaches in the 8135 “Dompfeil” set, a repaint of that set will give you a good express train set for your SJ railroad.

Similarities in appearance between the American F7 and the Ra of the SJ is not coincidental the F7 was the designers inspiration for the Ra. Two paint schemes for the Ra existed the early one is featured here, but the later one featured a broad white strip with the word “RAPID” on its nose. The later version included a variation of the headlamps. Two snowplow designs included a broad cage across the beam of the locomotive and a second one featured on the FR 46.132.01 incorporates to plows each side with a filigree cage centered between the plows.

A powerful can motor operates the locomotive along with LED powered headlamps as is standard equipment in all FR locomotives. The FR exclusive equipment includes an ingenious design for the locomotive coupler comprising an ‘L’ shaped wire thus allowing for the installation of intricately designed snowplows, this coupler system works flawlessly with Marklin Z standard couplers.

Note: the 1st version of the Ra produced by FR is long of production, but the 2nd version is planned as a production model at FR. To order the 2nd version a preorder commitment must be made with FR, it won’t be available after it is released, FR does not seem to make extras for some of their releases others seem to become regular production models.

Produced by FR in a very limited edition of 32 worldwide is the Ra 987 electric locomotive for SJ.

Siding: The MY locomotive of the DSB and its various amalgams on other railroads although diesel powered is similar in appearance to the Ra with a similar type American F7 “Bulldog Nose” plus two cab ends.

FR’s Prototypical SBB Pantograph: Installation and Description

The new pantograph for Marklin’s Ae 6/6 electric locomotives is prototypically accurate and replaces the original pantograph with a few modifications. FR of Germany has produced this very interesting and important upgrade part that is better made than the Marklin original plus it looks great! The new FR SBB pantograph is available as part number 41.190.00, each is delivered in a hard plastic case.

A side by side comparison of the Marklin original and the new FR pantograph reveals a larger pantograph with a heavier spring. The solid construction of the FR eliminates the sometimes drift seen in the Marklin pantograph. The Marklin pantograph is a bit generic as well coming in just a few variations in color otherwise the same is used on German and Swiss locos. The FR upgrade will add zip to your locomotives for Swiss railroading with striking silver finish true to the prototype.

FR pantograph on left and Marklin on the right:

Installation gets easier after the first one due to familiarity with the small parts and coordinating the assembly after modifications are made. As discussed in earlier posts assembly includes modifying the shell by removing the original plastic parts on either side of pantograph, I simply pulled them off with my fingers taking care not to damage the wires on the shell’s roof. The heat points for the original parts will provide the holes for the new FR pantograph, but first the 4 silver caps/washers need to placed around these holes, the legs of the new FR pantograph are thus placed through the washers and holes. This step can be a little tricky so take your time and work over a workbench to catch the parts if they go astray. Final step is applying pressure to the pantograph and securing with included screw. At this point the pantograph is attached, but you might notice looseness of the legs and washers of the new part, in this case I applied a very small drop of 5 minute epoxy to each hole on the interior side of shell. *NEVER USE PLASTIC CEMENT ON MARKLIN LOCOS DUE TO MELTING FROM THE SOLVENTS IN THESE CEMENTS, 5 MINUTE EPOXY IS THE ONLY RECOMMENDED GLUE FOR MARKLIN Z.  A pin will ensure a small drop versus too much glue seeping out of shell. Careful with this step, but I recommend it to marry the new parts to the shell in permanent correct orientation!

“Cargo” locomotive pictured with the original Marklin pantograph and roof equipment and Ae 6/6 locomotive features the new FR pantograph:

This highly recommended upgrade for Swiss Ae 6/6 locomotives will cost about $60 for 2 pantographs or 1 loco delivered to USA collectors, it is only available directly from FR. Photos show completed locomotives with the new FR pantograph.

Ordering from FR is fast and easy with an excellent website, careful packing and fast shipping. FR’s website uses green signals to indicate in stock items otherwise date projections for out of stock items, locos are seldom available at any given time, but they can be reserved for next production run usually 6 months out, worth the wait!

Note: FR lists the new pantograph can be used to upgrade the Re 4/4 locos, Marklin has released three thus far, but as of this posting I am not sure how the upgrade is made. I will be posting an update after speaking with Harald Freudenreich on this matter.

 

2nd Report on the new SBB pantograph: FR 41.490.00

I just received the new FR pantograph for Swiss locomotive types: Ae 6/6 and Re 4/4II, and I immediately installed it on the Marklin 8849 Serie Ae 6/6 electric locomotive; it is even better than I could have expected!

Installation of this part on one of the appropriate Marklin Z locos is a restoration project so to speak, for the first time the correct pantograph can be installed on Swiss locos which originally but incorrectly included the same style pantograph used on German locos. Until now Marklin has offered three styles of pantograph design with variations for a total of 6 different pantographs; they are all installed with a single center screw and furnished with electrical roof equipment of various cast plastic parts.

The FR pantograph is installed with a single center screw of the same diameter as the Marklin one, but simple modifications must be performed including the removal of plastic parts on each side of the original pantograph. If you want to preserve the plastic removal parts simple cut the melt points on the inside of shell: DO NOT USE A SOLDERING IRON TO REMELT THESE POINTS, USE OF AN SOLDERING IRON IN THIS MANNER WILL MORE THAN LIKELY RESULT IN PERMANENTLY DAMAGING THE SHELL BY MELTING IT. I simply pulled these parts off because I had no intention of saving them, each broke into many small pieces.

The pantograph is delivered in a nice plastic box with the screw installed in the pantograph, and a part sheet is included that contains the 4 post caps that are used in the installation. To upgrade one loco you need to buy a pair (2) of these pantographs (FR part #41.490.00). Cost to replace one pair of loco pantographs with the new FR ones is $56 including shipping for USA buyers. No directions are needed or included, but I will provide a few notes:

-First: remove shell from loco and unscrew the pantograph from inside shell

-Second: remove plastic parts from each side of original pantograph mounting on shell

-Third: working over a workbench preferably foam use tweezers to break apart 4 small post caps (part is located below foam insert in plastic box

Fourth: very small post caps are installed over the holes on shell that plastic parts (now removed) were originally engaged with, pantograph legs are inserted through the openings in the post caps, these small parts are precision made but due to their size they are somewhat difficult to work with, I installed the post caps over each of the four holes in alignment with the legs some wriggling of parts occurred before all four legs met up with the post cap holes, place pressure on pantograph top, tip upside down line-up screw in hole and tighten *you will find your own way during installation, use care to not lose parts and perhaps work over a parts collection tray working with one pantograph at a time

Several important advances have been made in Z-scaling including the advent of the 5 pole motor, side rod detailing, can motors and now a new pantograph for two Swiss class locos!

The following Marklin locos can be upgraded to the prototype with this new part: 8829 (Ae 6/6 released 1994-1996), 8849 (Ae 6/6 released 1987-1993), 8850 (Ae 6/6 released 1984-1987), 88501 (Ae 6/6 released 2003-2008), 88591 (Re 4/4II released 2012), 81410 (Ae 610 released 2010), and 81413 (Ae 6/6 released 1998-1999).

 

FR New Release: Prototypical SBB Pantographs!

Marklin Z electric locomotive pantographs are of two types: older scissor style and single arm. Variations include silver, black and blackened. Plus a third prototypical pantograph made just for the GG1’s. Marklin’s Swiss and German electric locomotives have been installed with these two styles of pantographs even though they vary with the respective prototypes. Marklin’s pantographs are an excellent standard style universally supplied on all electric locos with more recent single arm examples in black or blackened finish.

An exciting new release by FR is an upgrade for Marklin Z Swiss class Re 4/4II and Ae 6/6 locomotives with a newly designed pantograph accurate to the prototype. Here is a part described by FR that is an exact copy of the original pantographs for these locos that is easy to install. I want to share this information as it has just been announced, how long they will be available is unknown. I have already ordered 10, when they arrive I will add another post describing the installation with photos, but it looks like a unique opportunity to upgrade these Swiss locomotive types.

Re 4/4II

 

Ae6/6

Check out other FR Swiss freight cars each equipped with standard mini-club couplers, this company has been the first to release a number of interesting freight cars including K3 boxcars. Marklin’s foray into freight cars for Swiss modeling in Z is very good but limited to few examples, FR offers freight cars that have not been offered by Marklin in Z.

OBB Class 1043.010 “Valousek”: FR 43.131.01

OBB’s class 1043 entered service in Austria in 1971, it looks a lot like the SJ series of Rc locos because it is. Following very successful test runs 10 units were eventually ordered. Based on the Rc’s thyristor technology this locomotive type has proven itself for many years as a reliable design, it is even included as a locomotive type in the United States.

The proposal to build this loco by FR was made by Z-Friends International thus it was released on a limited basis for their members and those who placed pre-orders, its second release will be made this Fall.

Variations of the SJ Rc series locomotive have included changes to roof equipment, color scheme and general appearance, and it is represented by FR for SJ and OBB railways only at this time. Exceptional detailing: even the mirrors are silvered and reflective.

As part of the classification it is called a “Valousek” locomotive as it is named after the designer of the logo and color scheme Wolfgang Valousek.

FR 46.809.12 SJ Hydraulic Side Dump Cars

 

As freight cars go “maintenance of way” wagens are everywhere along the railroad right of way, they are on sidings awaiting deployment to tunnels, tracks, signals, catenary, crossings or accident clearing. Maintenance is the name of the game for every railroad due to the daily impact heavy trains bear down on track and equipment plus weather is a harsh foe of the same. In Sweden weather is a factor on railroad right of way electrical equipment and track beds thus cars with the intended purpose of aiding in daily maintenance is required. FR’s side dump cars with a load of gravel or ballast is one such example, it is based on the prototype Eo hydraulic side dump car and used on the Swedish State Railways (SJ).

Although this car type can be used for various types of loads it can be included in MOW service if it were carrying ballast as a load. Full metal construction this set includes two cars with brakeman’s platform in prototypical red/brown paint scheme.

FR 41.332.02: SBB low side gondolas for MOW service

Rolling stock representing MOW service cars can be found for Swiss Federal Railways manufactured by FR. The FR 2 car set with item number 41.332.02 includes 2-type Xs71 low side gondolas used in this example for hauling away old wood sleepers.

Featuring authentic weathering and aging the sleepers in these loads look like perfect examples to be removed and replaced with new ones. Maintenance of way operations are as important in Switzerland as with any other railroad in the world, but their exemplary track maintenance practices excel far and above other countries including the United States.

As with all FR rolling stock the chassis is constructed of metal, and body is constructed of injection molded plastic (*some FR freight cars are constructed entirely of metal, the rule for FR seems to be utilizing the correct materials for the design build). FR insignia is incorporated on the underside of chassis.

This set combined with FR’s and Marklin’s Sersa sets round out a track maintenance trainset used in Switzerland.

Marklin 88692

Marklin 82517

FR 41.331.12

Siding: Sersa is a privately owned company for the repair and maintenance of railway right of way in Switzerland.

Hot New Release: FR’s Autotransportwagen Hccrrs 47.819.01 + …02

FR continues to offer unique items for ‘Z’ including the new forthcoming release of a two car “auto-transport” set for the Norwegian State Railway (NSB). The 2 draw-bar coupled cars are full metal construction representing fully enclosed auto-transport cars to protect from harsh weather and vandalism as described on the FR website. A bellows enclosure unites the two cars that conceal their contents without openings except for unloading gates on car ends. Privately owned by MOTORTRANSPORT A.S. Drammen this car type is classified as Hccrrs and registered with the NSB. Could these be one of the more unique railway cars, they certainly are designed for their country of origin! Lively colors make Scandinavian trains a real eye catcher to assemble and run in the countryside!

FR is accepting pre-orders for this carset with proposed release of May 26, 2017. And as with all FR releases this will be produced in small batches thus selling out fast. For buyers in the United States simply register on the site and price will be reduced automatically to reflect the deduction for Germany’s 19% VAT tax.

This carset is also available in two pairs with different reporting numbers under item number 47.819.02.

Harald Freudenreich is in a class of his own. Without FR Scandinavian railroads would only be represented by a few freight sets and NOHAB locos all of which are great pieces but small in number compared with Marklin’s production of Swiss and German.

Siding: FR locos brandish a unique coupling hook that engages seamlessly with standard Marklin couplers thus allowing for the much needed snowplows at each end. Freight cars are equipped with standard Marklin couplers thereby allowing remote uncoupling on Marklin’s specialized track section for this purpose.

Siding: Can motors of current design practice are installed in FR locos, combined with mostly metal construction FR locos have the ability for pulling very long train consists.

Freudenreich Feinwerktechnik (FR) : SJ Tc307

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Harald Thom-Freudenreich just released a z gauge 2 axle loco with new tooling and design of a unique Scandinavian diesel-hydraulic snowplow: Tc307 for SJ Railways.

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Built by NOHAB from 1969-1971 there were a total of 20 Serie Tc locomotives lettered for SJ bearing this paint scheme. In 1988 SJ’s Tc locomotives were transferred to Banverket and thus repainted and lettered for Banverket: yellow car body with white roof. A specialty locomotive for clearing the ever present snowfall in Sweden during winter it doubles as a general purpose loco in months without snow whose duties include maintenance of way and regional freight service.

tc307_6 tc307_4tc307_3

The model features superb detail and coreless motor, but due to its unique design lights were not possible.

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Sharing the rails with the Tc307 is the FR SJ Rc2 1103 which is comparatively larger than the Tc307.

tc307_9

Released this month FR’s 46.135.11 will be available in the future as kit form only for advanced modelers who have attained a high level of soldering and air brushing skills.

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FR website: www.fr-model.homepage.t-online.de/