This conversion was made by Andy V8, a narrow gauge modeller. He has given me permission to post this article on his conversion. It used a cheap plastic souvenir model of the Garratt locomotive “ H.R.Zubieta” on the 600mm gauge Ferrocarril Austral Fueguino (FCAF) line in Uraguay.
Andy used 2 Koppel locomotive chassis by the Japanese company Tsugawa to complete the conversion in about 30 minutes. Andy V8’s instructions are as follows:
First, you remove the footplate and take out the screw holding the smokebox.
You then cut the front tank from the footplate and round off the front of the footplate to let the front tank swivel.
Next, drill the front hole (between the cylinders) on the chassis right through on both chassis blocks.
You then need to counterbore the underside of the chassis block holes you have just drilled through to accommodate the head of a small BA screw.
I tapped the chassis block as well but it might not be necessary to. When you have done this you glue a nut the same size as the bolts you are using into the hole where the screw came from under the smokebox.
You can then bolt the front bogie up under the smokebox.
On both bogies I put a largish diameter thin washer between the body and the bogie to make it stable.
As the rear tank appears to be fixed to the cab on the real loco I just worked out where the pivot point of the bogie came under the floor of the cab, drilled a hole and stuck another nut in it thus giving the pivot for the rear bogie.
A small bracket was fashioned to hold the front tank and that was it! The only thing left to do is cut off the coupling pockets, or at least the inner ones on the chassis, make up some buffer beams for the bogies and cut down the ash pan to fit between the bogies.