The first will be an 0-4-0 tram chassis in 1/2" scale on 1" gauge track in order to get my feet wet and prove a few points, the second a scratchbuilt chassis system for an 0-4-4 Forney in 1:24 scale on 32mm gauge track, and the third a rebuild of a solid framed MDC 4-4-0 kit in HO scale. There's an awful lot of work involved, but the predicted improvements in operation will be well worth it. Increased traction for a given weight, improved electrical pickup, and proper tracking through special work are all laid out in the texts.
I've also managed to acquire the following Wild Swan reference books:
- Whitemetal Locos - A Kitbuilders Guide (Iain Rice)
- Etched Loco Construction (Iain Rice)
- Locomotive Kit Chassis Construction In 4mm (Iain Rice)
- The 4mm Engine - A Scratchbuilder's Guide (R. Guy Williams)
Don't let the "4mm" reference in the titles fool you; the techniques are applicable in virtually any scale or gauge. These books go a long way towards demystifying proper locomotive construction.
I highly recommend Bott Books in the UK for their price and exceptional customer service.