Crossing First Street in San Jose

Engine 2765 was the first brass locomotive I ever bought - a Sunset "Prestige" model with less detail, but its can motor has made it a great runner on my layout. This was also the first locomotive I'd converted to DCC, first locomotive I'd converted to sound, and my first brass locomotive. Messing with the locomotive was always traumatic, such as when I broke a piston rod, or when I had to disassemble the whole locomotive for painting. Still, I managed to reassemble the locomotive every time, and it's done a huge amount of running in its lifetime.
2765 has a Soundtraxx decoder in the whaleback tender. A 1 inch speaker is located in the whaleback tender, facing down through holes drilled in the floor. Both headlights are wired. Originally, I'd placed the decoder in the boiler, cutting the number of wires I needed to run to the tender, but removing the weight for decoder space kept the locomotive from pulling well. I later rewired 2765, putting the decoder in the tender and connecting the tender to the locomotive with my usual four pin plug.
I painted the locomotive with Floquil paints. The base color is the lightened black often suggested in the model press. I used a slightly lightened Floquil graphite for the smokebox and firebox; the color's almost the same tone as the black. This was a happy coincidence, for it makes the locomotive resemble photos from before 1946. (After 1946, SP painted the fronts of the smokebox silver, making the front of the locomotive much brighter.) I'm really happy with the weathering on the locomotive; the running gear has a gray dusty appearance. I used dry-brushing and an airbrush to add white deposits from evaporating wire and black stains from oil spills.