A while back, I needed a Big Thunder locomotive. I already owned an LBG Olomana, so I simple took the cow catcher off, sawed off the tender and painted the boiler red. Here are photos of Olomana and my rough Big Thunder.
Now it was time to get serious and do some surgery. First, the locomotive was disassembled. Then the sand and smoke domes were cut out with a dremel cut off wheel.
Next the holes were filled with Magic Sculpt and sanded smooth
A new smoke dome was tuned on a lathe to the correct size
The round number sign on the side of the cab was removed
Bumpers were made for the front and a new headlight was fashioned out of wood. Care was taken not to damage the light bulb. The top of the new headlight housing was made of Sculpey and sanded into the proper shape.
Running board were added, some linkage was removed, paint, decals and weathering chalk and tah-duh!
You have Big Thunder Railroad Engine #4, U.B. Bold!
The proportions are not quite right, but they never really could be with the actual locomotive only about 5 feet tall and the desired G scale model should be able to accommodate an engineer. For now, I'm happy with it