The AM/BJ/FJ end platform cars of the NSWGR
Painting Timeline for the AM/BJ/FJs
New- possibly varnished or painted Purple Brown, the available evidence is open to interpretation
From 1920s till sometime after 1946-Fully lined Russet and Tuscan Red
Approx 1946 till rebuilt as BJ/FJ-Simple lined Tuscan Red and Russet
From rebuilt till next repaint after 1954-Simple lined Tuscan Red and Russet
First repaint after 1954 till withdrawral-All
over Tuscan Red, various levels of lining depending on time repainted.
Comments on the Trainorama models and prototype colour schemes.
As you can see from the above timeline the AM in overall Tuscan Red is totally spurious, though that livery is correct for some BJ/FJs towards the end of their lives. I have seen photos of certain BJ/FJ still in Tuscan and Russet in the early 60s. At least one BJ was all over Tuscan Red on July 4th, 1955. (P101, The Fifties, Decade of Change, John Stormont, NSWRTM, (1992). There is also a photo in this book (p99) of an AM in Simple lined Tuscan and Russet. Also in Steam in the Sixties (NSWRTM, 1994) P101 is a photo of the BJ with Dean bogies in the overall Tuscan red livery, with rebuilt sides, taken in 1961. Sadly, like most recent RTM publications the captions are laughably inadequate and often inaccurate, but the photos are wonderful. As far as I know, (I havn't seen any photos to the contrary) The BJ/FJs in overall Tuscan Red were always fully lined. i.e. thick yellow line below window sill, thin line above windows, thin lines around panels on end. Some may have had the simple lining (one thick line below window sill, no top line and no lining on ends) or no lining at all but, as I said, I havn't seen any photos. Getting back to the model, to be completely accurate, if you want an AM the model would have to be repainted in Tuscan and Russet, or fully lined Russet and Tuscan Red, for a pre-war version. BJ/FJs can be simple lined Tuscan and Russet, (except for the 2 converted in 1930, which could be fully lined Russet and Tuscan Red) or left as they are with the repainting of the bottom yellow line to full width of the belt rail. The lining style of the bought model is actually more appropriate for the Tuscan and Russet style than the overall red style, as the bottom line is a thin one, right for Tuscan and Russet, rather than the correct full width style. I did paint the samples correctly, but the factory got it wrong. Further on the number, AM 1782, this was one of the three fitted with "Dean" bogies, not the 2ADs that the rest of the class had, and therefore both the number and the livery is incorrect for the AM.
Fitting Kadees to the model
I usually just glue them on with liquid cement, which seem to work quite well. I have , in the past, drilled and tapped right through the end platform, used a plastic Kaydee bolt, and then filled, sanded and cleaned up the upper surface to disguise the end of the bolt. Unless the models are subjected to a lot of rough handling just glueing the couplers seems to be enough, even on LF where my models get quite a lot of handling in the fiddle yards. I have had the occasional failure, but this is usually at the junction between the box and the box lid. I realise that a lot of modellers prefer to paint their models before attaching couplers, but I always attach my couplers firmly before painting, and providing the paint is thinly applied and the couplers properly lubricated, I have had few problems. This is especially important on LF as most of the operations are shunting orientated, so the couplers have to work properly, which they do about 98% of the time.
Converting and Superdetailing.
I can't improve on Allan Brown and Ian Dunn's
excellent article on superdetailing the AM/BJ/FJ beginning on P15, August
1994 issue of AMRM. I used it extensively to build my model of AM/FJ
1782, though watch the placement of the roof vents as the diagrams don't
match up with the photos of the prototype.