The Rolling Ruffed Grouse

By Dave Wingrove

Dave Wingrove, a US On30 modeler, came up with a great idea for a kitbash. The result is an excellent and unique model, the Rolling Ruffed Grouse. Here's how he did it:

Ruffed Grouse - A chickenlike North American game bird, having mottled brownish plumage, as can be found in the Adirondack mountains. (A good name for a backwoods contraption I think.)

The guys on the maintenance crew, being a tad jealous of the bosses Tin Chicken Express, cobbled together a bunch of parts laying around to build their own rail car. While they were at it they built themselves a mobile shop car to go with it.

I think the idea of using a powered box car, or shop car creates many possibilities. Some time ago Andy Leininger uploaded a creation he called "The Thundering Turkey". It was a diecast car body that was built onto a caboose frame and pushed by a powered boxcar behind it. This had me thinking about this sort of project for a long time. Thanks for the inspiration Andy!

The whole thing is powered by a Model Power Casey Jones, 4-6-0 powered tender under the mobile shop car. (pictured in foreground). The 4-6-0 loco was cheap but the tender runs good and works well for this application. It creates the possibility of using it to push other insane unpowered monstrosities. :)

PARTS used on the Rolling Ruffed Grouse Rail-Car unit

Grandt Line

Precision Scale Company


Mobile Shop Car unit Parts


Boulder Valley Models

Grandt Line


The rest from styrene strip and sheet stock.
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This page updated March 21, 2006
Webpage © Larry Rickert
Photographs © David Wingrove