Grab Iron Practice



I’ve been saving this Accurail USRA hopper for grab iron improvement for a while now and just never gotten around to starting it. This piece is way out of my era (it’s DM&N which means it’s pre-merger with the D&IR which made the DM&IR) but I do kind of like it and could find use for it either on a diorama or as a heavily weathered MOW car. Plus it was cheap so it seems like a good practice car, if I botch it then oh well I didn’t need it anyway but if it turns out nice then I’ve got a nice looking model!

After my first attempt at stirrup steps and having trouble drilling holes in the right spots I ordered a BLMA Grab Iron Drill Template which I have had for a while now (I found it on Amazon and got it in like 2 days but it’s been sitting in it’s original packaging since). When I took the above picture I was trying to decide whether or not to cut out the material between the uprights here:

plastic to remove

As I was typing this up I decided that it didn’t make sense to keep it there so it’ll have to go.


Basically I have to find some tape and my tiny drill bits. One complication is that all of the grab irons are drop grabs except there very top one so I’ll have to re-position the template after the top one so the grabs line up.

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