Monday, 24 September 2012

Coal Tank at CD0GG

Passing through the scenic section of the CD0GG layout

The exterior detail of my Coal Tank, apart from the troublesome tool boxes which I'm still working on, is nearly complete. I took her to the bi-monthly CD0GG Open Day on Saturday for a run on their you can see, the scenic section is very impressive. The engine ran smoothly with a train of five bogie coaches and could have handled more. She weighs just under 800g, with most of the added weight low down and centred over the drivers.

Coal Tank Crew, Driver on the left and Fireman.

The crew attracted some attention and favourable comment at the CD0GG Open Day and David Gibson snapped a set up immediately. I don't think he has a Coal Tank to put them to work on but these characters can drive lots of different engines, I'm sure you could find a job for them yourself on one of your engines. Both the driver and the fireman are available now in my "Heroes of the Footplate" range; they are...

R21. Driver for a LNWR Coal Tank

R22. Fireman for a LNWR Coal Tank.

Cab detail almost finished.

The most fiddly component in the cab, a part I made myself, was the little vacuum brake valve that sits on top of the backhead. I've not fastened it in place yet as I think I'll have to glue it more touch of the soldering iron I fear and the whole lot might drop to bits! It's connected to the vacuum ejector that sits on the right hand tank top inside the cab by a curved pipe and also connects to the brake valve attached to the outside of the cab front...though I'm still wondering how to make this connection. The brake vacuum gauge is on order and on its way from LGM, this will fit opposite the boiler pressure gauge and that'll just about finish the job... though I've just noticed that the whistle, which protrudes through a hole in the cab roof, needs an operating lever.   

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Cab details and a crew

Part finished cab interior detail
 The cab of a NW Coal Tank is a crowded and busy place. I decided to model the cab detail from the drawing of the cab fittings c.1891 in Peter Skellon's recent book on the Coal Tanks published by the Bahamas Society. This is prior to the fitting of carriage warming equipment which further complicated the interior pipework. Most of the castings I've used in the cab are from LGM, these are invaluable though some need a little modification. I tried to find some suitable commercially available 4ft toolboxes for the engine, without success. So I decided to fabricate a master pattern then make a mould and cast myself a pair in white metal. The pattern sits, as yet unfinished, on the bunker; below is some of the coal, embeded in a Milliput former, which will eventually spill out onto the floor of the cab.

The crew are almost complete.  

The crew are designed to make the best use of a very cramped space, I've based the fireman's pose on  several photos of Coal Tanks with the driver or fireman straddling the cover over the pipework that connects the side tanks to the bunker. The driver in contrast is busy looking through the spectacle plate window and adjusting his cap; his left leg rests on  the top of one of the wooden boxes, provided for the crew to stand on, that flanked the backhead.

The "Crew for an LNWR Coal Tank" will soon be available in my "Heroes of the Footplate" range of 1:43 scale figures.