Many modern railcars have a bewildering array of pipes and wires for brakes and communication when running in or with a train. Mine is loosely based on the RHB ABe4_4-II and as such needs more bits of metal hanging off the front than a south American dictators dress uniform. The number of people modelling modern German narrow gauge railways in 1:55 scale is quite small,* so it would be a long wait for any of the model making companies to come along and make handy detail packs. I dug up a set of guitar strings I’d scrounged from a friend several years ago and hoarded ever since, and made a sort of ‘impression’ of the original.
After all, woolly maths and guesswork has worked for me so far, why change now?
As far as I can tell, the pipes are for air brake systems, something electrical (possibly train heating) and the long one is a jumper cable for the control systems. Apparently the railcars were used for pushing the slowploughs and could be controlled from the snowplough cabs.
Right now it has enough almost gold metal that it really does resemble the uniform of a south American dictator, and it may stay that way for a while, as it is a bit of a faff setting everything up to prime models, so I plan to wait until I have several ready before I move further.
So now I need to make several more models. Life is hard.
*One, at the last count. Group meetings are quiet but easy to organise.