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'Rob Roy' on track





I've been putting off cutting out a second set of frames for too long, so have now made a determined effort to finish this task, before the Christmas hibernation period.


Of course, it's always easier the second time and the techniques I'd developed for building frames worked well, the second time around. As before, I printed the drawings that I had made, using Silhouette Studio software, to paste onto brass sheet for use as cutting templates. Once the frames were cut out, I attached strips of 5 thou (0.125 mm) brass and curved these around the tops of the frames to form the splashers, as shown below:




I soon had two frames - and even remembered to make them 'handed', for left and right sides! The tabs that I provided made it easy to curve and fit the splasher tops to the inside frames. I had already cut out fronts for the splashers, using brass-effect vinyl, in my Silhouette cutter, and these were glued in place, as before.




The next step was to mount the frames at the correct distance apart, so that the boiler assembly could slot in between them (I haven't yet made proper boiler mountings so, for photographs, the boiler is simply resting in place). I decided to use two 1 mm thickness x 6 mm wide brass strips at each end of the frames, to provide sufficient rigidity. I then soldered two strips of thinner (10 thou - 0.25 mm) brass strip to the insides of these bars, with the ends folded up to provide 'tabs' for soldering to the insides of the frames. The completed structure is shown below:




The firebox is quite a tight fit between the frames, when sufficient clearance is left for the driving wheels at the correct Broad Gauge spacing, but everything did fit - to my considerable relief. I am considering mounting the leading pairs of wheels in a 'hidden' bogie, so that thy will have some movement to allow the locomotive to negotiate curves.




There's still a long way to go before it will become a complete locomotive (and the 'fiddly bits' always take an inordinate amount of time) but I was feeling sufficiently pleased to polish up the brass and pose the engine in its current state on a short length of Broad Gauge track.


My first reaction was to think that the polished brass looked rather garish but, of course, that is what the real thing must have looked like, in the days when pride of appearance was most important :)




May I wish you all the best for the Christmas season and into the New Year.



  • Like 9


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Hi Mike, Sure is an inspirational looking engine with that curved footplate, makes me want to have a go myself. It reminds me of the engines that Mike Sharman used to build, he was of course a Great Western man who had a love affair with Cramptons.

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Looks good Mike. I guess you do have to make your own frame spacers.


Even Kirstie Allsop was cutting out brass on the TV last night. Hope you didn't get through as many blades as she did.

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  • RMweb Gold

Mike, that looks fantastic. The coloured inset image really shows the potential too. Regardless of how far you progress with the motorization, I hope at least you'll consider painting it. 

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Many thanks for the comments and 'likes'.  Now that I've overcome some of the construction problems, I'm tempted to start again.  The Tri-ang wheels have the advantage of having the correct number of spokes but are over-large and nowhere near BGS standards.  With more confidence in the final outcome, I could now invest in some scale wheels.


Whatever else happens, I do intend to complete the painting of this model, Mikkel.  I enjoy using my models to help me to visualise how these magnificent engines really looked :)

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  • RMweb Gold

I had completely forgotten that they are Triang wheels. They are surprisingly effective!

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Thank you Duncan.  I used to think engines like this were mythical.  Now, the model helps me to understand the vision of those Broad Gauge pioneers.

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Hi Mike,

I have recently stumbled across your blog and “lost” a couple of days following your explorations and the development of your techniques.

I have to say my own efforts are strictly low-tech, double-O and post war (the second one). But I’m sure everyone has a touch of nostalgia for early GWR and the great schemes, rivalries and engineering development of that bygone era.

Thank you for your efforts and I look forward to following your progress .May I wish all you like minded enthusiasts a happy and prosperous New Year.


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Thank you for looking in, Rich.  I find it fascinating to explore the age when 'steam' was the latest thing in technology.  i seem to spend much more time researching than actually building models, though.

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