GWR Small Metro Tank (6) - Ready for the paint shop
GWR 2FS Metro Tank
To finish her off, the cab roof needed some detail (the whistles won't be added until she has been painted). There is a rain strip along the back edge of the cab roof, this was added from a single strand of multi-core wire (0.2mm diameter). To get this perfectly straight before attempting to solder it in place it was rolled on a flat surface (a piece of sheet steel) beneath another flat surface (a steel rule) this very quickly straightens a piece of copper wire this thin. Once this was attached, the holes for the two roof handrails were marked up and drilled along with the holes for the whistles. The handrails were formed from some Albion Models 0.2mm diameter nickel silver rod and soldered in place with a slip of card below them to ensure that they were equally spaced off the roof.
After looking at some photos I realised that I had omitted the sand box lids on the sandboxes that are at the top of the cab steps. Some 1mm rod was quickly turned up and glued into holes to represent these.
The next part to be manufactured was the smokebox front. On these early engines the smokebox door was of the dished pattern. To turn this up, a brass mandrel was made and a piece of 0.028" nickel silver sheet was soldered on the end of it before mounting in the lathe. After some little time, a smokebox front complete with dished door was formed. While mounted in the lathe, a 1mm hole was drilled in the middle of the door for accommodate the smokebox dart handles. The dart itself was turned up from a piece of nickel silver rod, but before the turning was performed a 0.4mm hole was drilled laterally across the diameter of the rod a couple of millimetres from the end to allow the handles to be threaded through.
The door hinges were the next item to be tackled, being simply formed from thin strips of 0.004" nickel silver sheet the thicker end of each jingle piece was wrapped around a piece of 0.008" guitar string to represent the hinge itself.
Once these items were cut to their final size they were soldered in place on the smokebox door/front.
Once I was happy with the smokebox door/front assembly, it was epoxied in place over the gaping hole in the front of the smokebox. Epoxy was also used as a filler on the front of the smokebox saddle below the turned smokebox front. The following day, once the epoxy had fully cued any excess was trimmed and filed away.
The next somewhat daunting task was to make the combined handrail knob/lamp socket that sits at the top of the smokebox above the door. For this a piece of 1mm diameter brass rod was drilled laterally across its diameter with a 0.3mm drill (a small indentation with a wipe or two of a knife edge needle file allowed the drill to start without sliding off to one side or the other). Once this transverse hole had been made, the rod was re-sited within a pin chuck to allow the flats of the lamp socket to be formed on the end mm or so of the rod. Once happy that I had a square section on the rod end, it was transferred to the mini drill and filed to represent the handrail knob and the shaft to attach it to the smokebox front.
The last little game was to form and fit the boiler/smokebox handrail. A length of 0.008" guitar string was carefully bent to the right shape (far easier and quicker to say than do!), and the repeatedly trial fitted around the smokebox using the previously made knob/lamp socket as a guide. The pair of handrail knobs needed on the smokebox sides were formed using my usual method of using a loop of single strand multi-core wire in the pin chuck, this is spun around a piece of handrail wire until the tails snap off.
Once I had made sufficient to allow a suitable sacrifice to the carpet god, these threaded onto the handrail and sited in the previously drilled holes in the smokebox sides. After a suitable period of fettling to ensure that I was reasonably happy with the way that the handrail lay, the knobs were touched with a wipe of solder, extra solder was needed where the twisted handrail knobs fitted into the over sized holes to be cleaned up afterwards.
So there she is. All ready for the sub-assemblies to go to the paint shops.
And a final photo to show what she looks like with all of the loose parts plonked on in their relevant positions.
Hopefully, the next few days will see a visit to the paint shops. I suspect with Autumn coming on strong that I will have to employ the de-humidifier and fan heater in the workshop/railway room/shed for a hour or two before breaking out the airbrush.