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First go at a whitemetal loco kit build: the Weinert V36


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There's nobody coming round, and I can't get to the club, so I have decided the time is right to start on my first whitemetal loco kit build.

 

This is an H0 model of the Deutsche Bundesbahn BR V36 (later BR 236), a three-axle, 360hp diesel-hydraulic shunter that was originally ordered for the German Army in the second world war and proved to be a (rough and ready) survivor, with examples travelling beyond Europe and remaining in use for several decades. It is a Weinert kit, manufactured about 25 years ago and bought second hand a while back, though it is still in the current Weinert catalogue (article number 0024).

 

I'm guided by the excellent build report written by Steph Dale 14 years ago and there's no point in me adding rookie comments; his experience comes through clearly.

 

What I do want to record is how straightforward and gratifying it has been to solder the main parts together. Weinert's instructions recommend gluing everything. As Steph reported, the way things fit together shows that gluing was probbaly the intended construction method (and not just a recommendation). But with a realtively fine-bit soldering iron at 230C, some liquid flux and a litle 100C solder, it is remarkably easy to get a nice seam of solder along the joins between largish parts like the bonnet sides and top. By the way, the swooshes of darker colour are some discolouration or impurity in the metal, not where I've been splashing liquid around.

 

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This is the inside of the bonnet and you can see I've managed a pretty neat seam along the join between the radiator at the left end and the side panel. There's a little spot I have missed towards the right hand end of the join between the side panel and the top. The right hand piece is the front cab bulkhead which is loosely fitted to help locate the bonnet panels.

 

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Here's the outside showing the same side and the radiator end along with the top. All pretty clean and tidy. The step between the back of the radiator and the roof is negligible in reality.

 

The reasons everything is going well so far seem to me:

  • Well designed parts
  • Nicely cast, so although like anything cast in whitemetal there is a bit of bowing this can be easily straightened out by very gently bending between the fingers and offering up to a straight edge
  • And on my part, taking plenty of time to carefully remove the very modest amount of flash on the mouldings, to offer things up, to look at the fit and true of things, and then to check again.

 

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Here's a trial fit of the frames, bufferbeams and running board. The wheels, jackshaft, coupling rods, gears, motor and pickup come ready-mounted to the inner chassis (black), so in this kit there is no pressure to get the chassis running properly.

 

So far so good. As a beginner, I think this is what you want from a kit project. Not terrifyingly complex, but a challenge that seems achieveable. Since returning to the hobby, I've been gradually investigating the skills and techniques I remember reading about as a kid. I can't magically acquire skills I didn't have then, but I do have a bit more patience nowadays so I'm in with a chance. And I'm looking forward to the rest of the build.

 

NB for anyone interested in building this kit, the instructions are naturally enough in German. There are British equivalent kits -- Britain really being the home of the whitemetal model railway kit -- but I happened to want to build a loco in line with my current German H0 interests, and I wanted to try a Weinert kit. And finally, it's worth knowing that a British whitemetal kit at list price will cost you less than a Weinert one.

 

The feature photo is V36 211, built by BMAG in Berlin in 1942, photographed at the Bavarian Railway Museum (BEM) Nördlingen in June 2019.

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The running boards, bufferbeams and frames are now basically assembled, so here's a trial assembly of the various parts.

 

I couldn't resist trial fitting the (turned steel) buffers. The shanks basically fitted straight into the cast holes. That strikes me as pretty clean accurate casting! You can see one of the rear ones isn't quite true.

IMG_20200331_075159_sml.jpg

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Welcome to the world of building locos and I am glad you are both enjoying building it and more importantly have a working chassis, something many who try fail at. Lucky or not I have found myself having retired 6 weeks early and have a bench full of loco kits in various stages of being built.

 

Keep up the good work

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