Stephen F wrote:What do people think about the option of dropping the axles and gearbox including horn blocks, or bearings and rods, with a keeper plate, as per Alan Goodwillie's thread? Mount the brakes and springs on the plate, and retain it with bolts to the frame spacers.
I would always make a chassis so that wheels sets drop out if at all possible. Lots of reasons for this, the key ones being:-
1. Because it is so much easier to paint the wheels/chassis when they are not together
2. Because I do try to assemble and quarter the drivers once only, each additional time you do it increases the risk of them moving on the axle in service.
3. Because I invariably find I need to do more work on the chassis and I don't want to solder close to the wheels. I like steel tyred wheels, and flux splashes make them go rusty. So the wheels will need to come out again.
4. Because as a general rule I like being able to take things apart again, so repairs and tweaks are easier to achieve.
If you use CSB suspension, and it is IMHO the only way to go, one of the advantages is that the Continuous Springy Beam retains the wheels in the chassis and a keeper plate isn't necessary, though something like a keeper plate may still be necessary if under hung pick-ups can't be avoided. I can see I may have to explain that one further, but not tonight.
The high level gear boxes will normally pass through P4 width frames without too much trouble, so will drop out with the axle. (Take care this may depend on your choice of horn block). You will probably have to remove the motor from the gear box first.
Finally, once out of the frames, and assuming you've accept the need to remove the wheels, a Loctited drive gear can normally be driven of the axle with a few taps with a hammer, so disassembly is possible. I chose to pin in the example above because I didn't want to remove the wheels.