The ultimate critter

Hey guys, my Narrow Gauge Gazette came today and this picture was in there. I'm intrigued. It is a home-made locomotive using a single drum donkey. Note the size of the wheel to the far right. That's on a log disconnect so figure its 30" or so. The wheels on that critter must be around 12".

Can anyone find any other pictures of this or anything like it? I'd love to build one. It was on the Slagle and Root lumber.E63D89F8-A8EC-4642-B606-452737DB9838


  • edited March 2020
    Yes Ed, I look just like them..............NOT... :smiley:

    It would be a nice project Bryan. You'l have at least one follower ! The Belgian guy... :wink:
  • The caption said that the owner was from PA so perhaps Dutch.
  • Looks like you could start with the SierraWest Dolbeer for most of the parts.
  • I have one of those lying around Jerry.
  • The Backwoods Gnat is very similar...just not the wheel diameter....alas....not easy to acquire any more...
  • Here we go had this for years.







  • So build it!!
  • No you build it. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!>Ha
  • That would look good behind your machine shop
  • I have had it over forty years not going to start now.
  • You going to save it for another 40 years!!
  • It is in my will. ...!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ha
  • Who's Will you never mentioned him??
  • Will is your very best friend.
  • I thought you were??
  • No friends no worry.
  • edited December 2021
    Had some time on my hands so started in first of 2 super critters. This one using a Dolbeer and a big ol' gear. The second will use an AH&D single spool with a chain drive. I will need to move the brake flywheel over just a touch.

    Plausable? maybe
    Reliable? doubtful
    Resourceful? sure
    Fun? absolutely

  • Well done buddy…your ingenuity never ceases to amaze me…such a joy to follow your builds
  • Very nice indeed!! Great job on that boiler!!

  • Thanks Terry and Jerry. Been something I wanted to do for a long time.

    The deck of the flat had to be modified a bit to make things fit along with the frame underneath. I'm not worried about the look of the underneath as it will never be seen because I plan on installing this onto a diorama at some point. The big 'ol gear was leftover from the sawmill build and would presumable mesh with a smaller gear on one of the wheel shafts. Not going to worry about trying to install that one though.

    I'll finish the trucks and couplers then attach this to the deck. Then will build a rudimentary cover. Don't want to build walls and hide the boiler but feel like there should be a roof.
  • Fantastic workmanship Bryan!
  • Browner, new member here. Your build sure looks like something a seat of the pants logging company would put together. Good work. Randy
  • Coming together great Bryan, love your work on the boiler and the ingenuity on bringing the rest together.

    I feel your pain on putting a roof over that boiler and hiding it, I'd put a minimal roof just over the back 1/3 of the car, (1/3s always look good). Four legs and a curved corrugated roof, should still give great visibility for the boiler and then leave everything else open, I've seen so many proto pics just like that.

    Great work so far.
  • Thanks Pap.

    Welcome aboard Randy. That is exactly what I was thinking. Looking forward to seeing a build from you.

    Thanks Karl. There is a nice example of what you describe as the NWSL HOn3 12 ton Climax. That's the look I'll be going for.
  • Bryan, cool project. Beautifully executed so far.
  • Very creative! Neat little project.
  • Thanks Joel and Tom.

    The boiler is epoxied on the deck and makes the model very top heavy. Combine this with the boiler being offset a bit to accommodate gear placement and it makes for an unstable base. I'll address that in the short term and long term.

    For working with model now, I removed one of the trucks and bolsters to give a flat surface underneath so it won't tip over while I am working. For placement on a diorama, I drilled 2 holes for anchor at each truck. The holes are very near an axle so the anchor will be blocked by a wheel when installed. The underside pic shows hole placement and a .059 brass wire. When ready to place, this will be epoxied in place. Then a hole can be poked in the diorama base for the wire to fit in. Add epoxy to the wire and a small drop to each wheel where they meet the rail and this becomes very secure.

  • Beautiful job Bryan.
  • I'm knee deep into critter #2. Made this one on a 4 wheel flat with a tender. I think I'll use a couple of wood barrels for water. The drive chain is a 1/12 motorcycle chain. Very fiddly thing to put together. 4514A12C-BA04-4C94-8A77-00237ED85B49
  • Thank Ken, BTW. It looks like I never posted a finished shot of loco #1.
    IMG_0285 (1)
    IMG_0284 (1)
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