Friday, 29 January 2016

Some Recent Wagons.

HR Fish Wagon with an interesting load.

The fish barrels are commercial resin castings though the baskets and the codfish, whose tail you can just see, and the flatfish on the deck are all cast in metal from my own moulds and now available from Invertrain. The wagon sheet is painted paper made from a drawing that I made then scanned, reduced to scale on the computer and printed.

HR D.16 Open Wagon from a Lochgorm Kit.

I built this wagon at odd moments in January from Lochgorm's recently released kit. I made improvements to the buffer beam and rebuilt the brake mechanism. The model was brush painted using enamels, the airbrush was used only at the last minute for some light weathering. The number plate on the solebar is printed paper glued to an oval metal plate and varnished to seal it. The artwork and printing was done on the computer for me by my daughter who knows about these things! And Yes...there is a number on the end of the wagon, third plank down...
Now it needs a load or something, possibly a folded HR wagon sheet, to add interest to the interior.

HR D16 open wagon and D 4 Covered van.

The open wagon is painted with Phoenix Precision Paints' Red Oxide which contrast with the covered van which is painted the earlier HR Claret... for which Floquil's Tuscan Red serves well. Transfers on the open are from HMRCS.

LNER Lowfit

I built this Lowfit recently from a Connoiseur kit which I intended to transport a tractor.  I improved the wagon by making the rings on the wagon bed actually work so they can be used to secure the tractor later, apart from this and changing the couplings to CPL ones the kit was more or less built as intended by the designer and a good design it is indeed.

The question is...which tractor should I use?  Below you can see my choices... an early Farmall tractor or a later rather classy Ferguson. Both models are 1:43 scale and available from Universal Hobbies; whichever one is used will have to be painted to match the wagon, at the moment they're still in toy mode.

Lowfit with Farmall tractor load

Lowfit with Ferguson tractor load.

Friday, 22 January 2016

HR53 Lybster construction complete

Lybster's "Drummond" backhead

Cab interior details are creatively reconstructed from what little information can be glimpsed in photos or derived from Peter Tatlow's drawing of the engine after rebuilding by Drummond in 1901. There may have been more to the backhead than I've modelled but viewed from outside the cab I think it looks the part as you'll see in the next picture...

Cab interior details.

The hinged cab doors can be open or closed, the curved topped rod behind the door holds it in position by locating in a hole in the footplate. The hinges are mounted slightly proud of the side sheet on a slim strip of n/s to enable the door to function. In the bunker is a removable block of Milliput to which the coal will be added later.

Lybster construction complete

Lybster will be painted in Drummond II plain livery in which she ran on the Wick and Lybster Light Railway from the opening of the line on 1 July 1903 to withdrawal and scrapping in 1929. A suitable driver and fireman, based on a photograph taken of the engine with its crew posing on the footplate sometime after 1917 are under construction.

Lybster ready for the paint shop

The circle of rivets behind the smokebox, along the edges of the tank top saddle and round the chimney are from Archers' Surface Details. They are relief transfers, easily applied and seem to stand up well, the success of this experiment remains to be seen after painting, however I'm sure they'll be better than no rivets at all which was the alternative.

Lybster performed well on the Carlisle club layout recently and hauled a respectable train, so I plan to take her through to the painting stage now. I don't want the engine to join the other neglected projects standing in the sidings of despair despondently wondering when their turn to be painted will come.

HR53 Lybster 1890-1929 (rebuilt1901)

Monday, 18 January 2016

HR d.16 Wagon and d.29 Van

Brake operating levers are on both sides, though the brake itself is only on one side.

The HR d.16 Drummond wagon is complete and ready for the paint shop. I made some improvements and adjustments to the kit and remade the brake gear as it was over-etched. I cut away the corners of both axle trays to allow space for the buffers to work properly and also cut a slot to accommodate the spring of the draw hook which improves matters. The end profile of the wagon was improved by making a new buffer beam and soldering a piece of square section behind it on the ends to give the beam its depth. I mounted the end part of the wagon on the new buffer beam and ensured that the end planking lined up with the side planks. I tweaked the position of the end stanchions to allow the four little bolts that flank the draw plate to sit comfortably between them.

The view above shows the rocking axle and its tray which has had material added beneath it to correct the wagon ride height. Adding a millimetre to the rocking axle end rather than subtracting at the other end also adds a little much needed space between the solebar and axle in which the springs and axlebox fit, clearance in this area is tight to say the least. The rocking axle tray is held in place by a rod which fits tight along the tray and is soldered to the upright prongs of the rocking pivot which protrude through the tray.

Lochgorm Kits HR d.16 Drummond open wagon

Buffers and couplings have been removed to chemically blacken separately. The wagon has been cleaned and degreased with cellulose thinners, a process which is done outside in the open air. The next stage is a coat of Halfords' aerosol acid etch primer.

Lochgorm Kits HR d.29 Covered Van

With care and a little modification the Lochgorm Kits' d.29 van builds into a good scale model of the prototype. The buffer beams were too wide so I made new ones, flush with the van sides and added safety chains, CPL screw couplings and a draw plate to match. One pair of the inverted "U" shaped plates which are fastened to the sole bar above the axleboxes was wrongly positioned. I found this out when I used the plates as a guide to the position of the axles, the van took on a decided asymmetrical aspect. I countered this by grinding off all four plates and replacing them with a new matching set from an AMBIS etch that I fortuitously found in my spares box.

Rather than use the rather complicated rib and stringer roof former supplied in the kit I added a cross wall to the van interior to brace the structure then thickened the roof with 1mm square section and soldered it in place. I can't see any need for it to come off anyway, there's nothing inside!

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Recent Projects.

My desk with Lochgorm's D16 wagon amid the debris of construction

Two Highland Railway wagons have occupied me since Christmas both of which will be featured here on my Blog as soon as construction is complete. The wagons are Lochgorm Kits' D.29 Covered Van and D.16 Open Wagon, the latter can be seen with most of the brass-work complete on my desk above. Neither of these are easy kits, there's a lot of fiddling, adjusting and scratch building to do before a real scale model is achieved. A copy of Peter Tatlow's recent book, "Highland Railway Carriages and Wagons" is a great help along with a scale drawing. Work started on these wagons 26/12 and they should both be complete, assembled that is, later today 13/1... three weeks hard work!