And I am back! Not only doing a blog but at a model railway exhibition! Just as a visitor although this is an achievement after my Covid foiled attempt to get the layout to Ally Pally in March. It was good to get to the Bristol show on Sunday and meet up with a few familiar faces after two and a half years. Not much seems to have changed except the inevitable retreat into long sightedness over took my reluctance to carry even mild reading glasses and I now have two tints of metalic Humbrol brown
I am not going to be boring and start this off with apologising for not posting for ages as I am not sorry - I have been busy!!!
Life, work and a certain virus have obviously been getting in the way but work on stock for the new tram layout has now reached fever pitch - in relative terms of course as is over a year since this project was committed to but the six weeks that it took to build the first tram has now been reduced to six days though the miracle of CAD and the etching proce
As my posts on this project have been a bit few and far between I think a quick catch up is in order - 7mm scale Dudley trams running on 24.5mm track and starting on the rolling stock first. Although I am quite prepared to hand build the real track I really needed something a bit quicker and simpler for to test out the tram chassis design. At the end of the day if we can't get the trams running properly we will not proceed with the project. Set track would be ideal but unfortunately Hornby don't
Feeling quite proud of myself with progress so far I decided on a full glamour photo shoot which also catches up with a few extra details added since the last blog such as the drivers control unit and brake, various hand rails, lamps and the buffer.
I have also managed to meet up with Trevor and have taken delivery delivery of the first two prototype drive units for testing. I have set up a rather ingenious test track but more of this and the chassis next time.
I have long thought that if you stare at a problem for long enough the solution will eventually arrive all by itself. On this occasion the problem was how to accurately build the framework for the end windows and the time thinking about it was considerable! The solution was satisfyingly low twch and obvious. The little montage should show my basic but effective jig and if I had thought it was going to work so well I would have used a better bit of wood. As it was, I stuck the plan view of the en
The end of the last thrilling episode left us with two sides, a middle partition and a floor, so onward with much more fret sawing and soldering and eventually a pair of end partitions materialised. A bout this time I also set about the seats. In what is now becoming usual practice, I made up a set of formers for the ribs, soldered them to a flat backing piece and then set about adding the slats with strip cut on the guillotine. I know this bit of kit was an extreme indulgence and was actually q
So, the last episode was left with a third of a CradBog (Cradley Bogie), car awaiting it’s chassis, and that is exactly where it still is! The chassis is still firmly in firmly locked down Wales and as this particular body was only meant to be a test… In the spirit of testing we decided that we also needed a four wheel car as we have absolutely no idea what radius of curve these will be happy with at the totally non regulation gauge of 24.5mm. With justification in mind a start was made on a DS9
The last post saw a basic shell of a third of a Cradley Bogie - the working title for which soon became 'Cradbog', hence the title. One thing that really stands out with Up the Line is the smooth, reliable and realistic running of the locos and we wanted this to be the case again with this project. Thus the formula adopted was to go for split chassis pick up and DCC with stay alive. It is intended to have a realistic overhead wire but this will not be live. While on traditional locos there is
Something completely different indeed. Having been casting about for ideas for something new to astonish the exhibition circuit when it comes out of hibernation, I have eventually decided on something based on the Black Country tramways – a massive system of 3ft 6in tramways that had all but disappeared by 1930. As this is a completely new venture for me I decided that certain things would have to be tried out first to see if the idea was viable and first up was a tram! I was much encouraged her
Anyone who has read any of my infrequent recent blogs or worse spoken to me, will know that nothing at all has happened on the modelling front for several months due the long over due and rather complicated decorating projects that have been going on. Unfortunately I have not completely finished as our house id a definite Forth Bridge sort of project but I am at the stage where I can take a well earned pause. While I was decorating the lounge the contents were decanted into the newly decorated s
The good news is that I am sort of half way there on the decorating front with one room finished, now I have to decant the contents of the other front room into this one and start all over again!
Once the decorating is done I can get back to some modelling. It has not been all hard work however as we sneaked off to Wales for a few days last week which culminated in another trip to Dinowig. This time I started from the top. From the big bus turning circle just passed Dinorwig village th
Although modelling has now officially ceased until the end of the house decorating season I did manage one little project that had to be kept secret until now.
My friend who is very generous with his cottage in Southwold had a significant birthday so as something a bit unusual I decided to make a model of the pub nearby which I know he holds in high esteem. From a picture I taken some time ago I was able to rescale it into approximately 7mm and drew an outline plan in PhotoShop. Seve
I have now moved on from the cheese grater stage with the GVT tram loco and am convinced I made the right decision with scrapping my first attempt - not that this one is perfect and some bits are annoying me but not enough to abandon it now. It is now a very solid and stable body greatly helped by the additional metal but also by my building it upwards while having tack soldered the basic body to a sheet of copper clad PCB which really helped to keep everything straight. Here it is attached to t
After three weeks of decorating much of which being spent dangling alarmingly over the abyss of our ample hallway, I decided that today was going to be different i.e. a whole day playing with trains. Well, not quite a whole day as didn't actually surface until lunchtime but hey, I deserved it! After some consideration of which dormant project to continue with I settled on the Mk2 GVT loco a this would get me cutting metal the quickest. Think again - the revised structure meant a good couple of h
First the dilemma ,Turin60 was absolutely correct, it is a GVT loco and sorry David, I did reply to your comment trying to steer you in the right direction but it has not appeared on the blog for some reason – I probably put it on the wrong one and is now mightily confusing someone! It has become apparent that there are a couple of problems with the body which I just don’t think I can live with . The whole point of this project is to make something that is significantly better than the rather ag
With progress on the little Ruston on hold until a suitable battery and motor arrive and having got fed up of jigsaws I started on something else that I have been meaning to explore for a long time and just to add a little more audience participation I shall let you try and guess what it is!
I had assumed that getting the bends correct would be no problem with the little bending jig that I got from Metalsmiths I think, quite some time ago. Getting a nice bend no problem but in the co
On a whim on Monday I decided that I would actually just build something - not anything with any particular purpose or greater project in mind but just something I fancied doing. So, what you will see now is a Ruston 16/20 taking shape in 1/35th. If one of my more outlandish schemes we to ever see the light of day I would need a few of these so I guess it is a sort of dry run. I have recently tried and failed to fit a chip and a stay alive into a KB Scale Ruston LBT so thought that given the ext
I know, it has been ages since I have given an update. Now, that is not because I have been idle - it is because I have been VERY idle!
I am probably being a bit harsh on myself there as I have been to plenty of exhibitions but as a civilian or helping out on other peoples layouts which has been great experience. I have scaled back outings for UTL drastically and at the moment there is only one booked being for the Mid Wales show in Welshpool, 24th October this year. Hopefully things
The Severn valley Railway which, by luck rather than design, is literally at the bottom of my garden, is having it's Autumn gala which involves all night running. So after a full day of work I found myself with pint in hand at the end of the platform studying a Standard Class 4 and a masterclass in weathering of both loco and carriages. And I really regretted not having brought the big camera and tripod as was treated to a wonderful evening light - ah well!
Sort of started this one as a live blog last week while at he very Great Dorset Steam Fair but my dodgy phone scuppered my plans. More of this in a bit as must tell you that the layout is at the O Gauge Guild Telford show this weekend for what is it's last scheduled appereance. I am not saying it will be the last as I am sure some more will crop up but have had to scale back opperations quite substantially due to life just getting a bit too hectic.
Anyway, back to last weekend and I
Having established that I can make something from scratch AND make it move with my Foden steam wagon I have taken the proof of concept approach a bit further - or in fact - much smaller!
Starting point for this was an anonymous 1/43 die cast Austin 7 model from China via Ebay in a hideous bright green of which a bath in Nitromors has thankfully left no trace at all. I rebuilt the chassis in bass tube to give a decent platform to work from and started with fitting roller bearings for
Have managed to find the data lead for my phone and got myself logged into YouTube so here is my first attempt posting a video. I need to look at canabalising a couple of N20 motors to get a 1.9mm shaft onto a higher RPM gearbox as progress really is too slow. Have also now found another steering arm which should improve the turning circle. Work on a load is progressing nicely and will be updated soon.
Simond had it spot on in his comment on my last post - I guess the glimps of a roller bearing was a clue. A very new departure here and a pretty steep learning curve but made much easier by some good advice from Giles and Pikey on the RC thread - if you have not already guessed the Foden is now Radio Controlled. Although a bit of an indulgence for the current layout, as in real life, the Foden will eventually be demobbed and will feature large in a new post war creation. There was a rather lengt
With the Simplex almost finished and just needing some detail painting and couplings fitted I decided to something rather different. Reason behaind this one is that I have always wanted more road traffic on the layout but suitable models for the period are rather few and far between. Having learnt a leson for once about how long it takes to convert something after doing the bus and remembering my thoughts that it would have been easier to have started from scratch I did just that! Before I get c
My lack of blogs may suggest that nothing has been happening but that is only partly true! It is really just that nothing interesting has been happenimg but that has all just changed! Last Saturday morning I loked at a £2.50 sheet of 10 thouh Nickel Silver and thought ' I know what you shall become' and a week latter.....
Maybe not quite a complete whim as I had a second Mark Clark 3d printed Simplex chassis spare, the first working very well on a Wrighlines protected body, but neede