Incidently ,Reynaulds sells these kits for a little less than Walthers.
As for the Dipper, I hope your getting the one with the pink track, which you probably are, since I don't think the blue one is available anymore, unless you get one off ebay. Be especially carefull with the track, and lift systems. Mine runs, but finicky, I added a large magnet to the top of the 2nd hill, (the one that goes over the station), to slow the train down a bit, and keep it on the track. It will take alot of experimenting to keep the train on the track.
As for the Mouse. Mine, doesn't even operate at all. The lift doesn't work, but it was the first kit I ever bought, and it may have turned out better if I had started out with some of the smaller rides first. Be really carefull again, with the track and lift. The cars are also very hard to assemble, and have very small parts. Tweezers or jewler's tools could help you with the small parts. Again, problems with this ride include the cars derailing, they also have trouble completing the cirtuit.
And for both kits, you shouldn't paint the track, as it could really mess up the ride. Unless you can't get it running and give up and leave it as a static ride. That's what I did with my Wild Mouse, I just recently painted it. I gave up on getting it to run.
You may also want to check out the yahoo group, ride modelers which can be found here: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ridemodelers/
There are alot of people there, that could offer tips. Since, it's just focused on ride modeling, you'll probably find alot more help there, than you would here on this forum.
All I would recommend is finding a glue that dries/sets quickly. I forget what I was using, but it took a while to set, which made it even harder. If you have never put together an "adult" model before, this would be a really big challenge, but do-able if you have patience and a lot of free time.
For those who know:Is the pink and blue dippers the same track design.
l. If you've never done any modelling, spend a few dollars and build a couple of HO freight and passenger car models first. They are inexpensive and don't take much time, but they give you a feel for the little tricks involved in assembling everything, getting the wheels to roll properly, etc.
2. Getting these coaster trains to operate reliably requires attention to two details : track and weight. Remember small wafer thin metal plates can add properly distributed weight to the cars. The joints where track sections come together must be absolutely smooth. And the trackage as a whole must be absolutely smooth. Figure on spending a couple of evenings using fine grain Emery paper.
3. You will need one of those magnifier headsets or a large modeller's magnifying class mounted on a table edge bracket, so you can see tiny imperfections.
4. If you still have trouble, take your problems to the local HO model railroad association. They have specialists who can help. If you live out in the middle of nowhere with no modelling club, go to the nearest professional watch repair specialist.
5. Don't assume it's an idiosyncratic model which just doesn't work. It does work. A working roller coaster may be the most difficult of any model to build, 10 or 20 times tricker than trains, planes, boats or even other amusement park models. it takes a lot of tinkering. But it works. And once you get the track and car weights set up, it will work for years.
6. The first one you build you need to build according to the instructions. But people and clubs that build several of these have learned to shim the outside track slightly higher than the model sets up. This solves the track jumping problem. Unfortunately, once you have the model built, this is almost impossible to do, and before you build the first one, you don't know how high to shim it up.
7. if you're trying to puzzle out the dynamics of this thing, keep in mind that it cannot be true to scale, because the gravitational, centrifugal and centripedal forces remain constant even though the model draws down all the other proportions. So the coaster is actually dropping and cornering faster than it should be for the height, radius and weight. *** Edited 2/22/2004 5:15:52 PM UTC by Trekker Park***
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