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I think after I'm going to buy a Hornby body and have another go with that. Truth is I think this old kit body is pretty horrid.

I naively thought at the time of planning, simply being a 'kit' the model would be far superior as a base to detail over the old Hornby plastic one but after having a good look I think I was wrong.



I don't know what is the most accurate in terms of basic dimentions so last night I measured my metal body to that of my Hornby Thomas, which is basically an E2 with a few tweaks and it seems the Hornby one is 2mm's shorter and about 2mm's fatter. I don't know which is more accurate but to be honest Im unsure if It matters that much. Both models seem to have pro's and con's.

Hornby's running plate is thicker and to my eye more correct when compared to prototype, yet the metal ones are too thin, conversely the running plate curves at each end I think are more flowingly accurate on the metal one but hard to build neat, whereas the Hornby one has them too tall and sharp an angle. The metal one has a better detailed and shaped smokebox saddle plus rivet detail on the tanks, but the Hornby has the 'lip' around the tank tops and bunker, an open cab, plus a thinner more realistic roof and bunker lamp irons etc.


So taken together it seems each option has things going for it and things against it.

I'd like your thoughts on this as I'm seriously thinking of just tweaking a Hornby E2 slightly. Nothing fancy, just tank extensions and a couple of details.

About 30 minutes ago I decided to cut out the doors and re-do them. The first was easy enough, the second however split the cab roof off, broke part of the ill fitting running plate and generally buggered everything up, so much so that I couldn't seem to get it back and in line very easily. These two pictures tell the story...





Many appologies to those who may have been disapointed or even offended at this, but it had to be done I'm afraid. It just isn't worth any more of my time and effort for a base model that clearely doesn't want to co-operate, and is so disapointingly thick, ill fitting and crude to begin with that amongst literally hours of (what should be unnessasary) remedial work, will ultimately require a wealth of extra detailing work that the Hornby one already has. Sorry.


I'm not angry, but relieved, I actually found it rather funny. I haven't gave up on the chassis.


Right, mr Ebay, where are you.....



Plastic looks sharper and thinner, white metal I've lost faith with as a base. It's just too bloody crude.

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Yup, I know.  There isn't an etched kit though to my mind and I don't fancy scratch building one.  I'm not 'that' commited yet.



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BRILLIANT! I believe I have a new favorite desktop photo!



(There is no failure, only experience)

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I do think that condemning the entire medium of whitemetal on the basis of an extremely old, un-revised kit is perhaps a bit rash.


This must be one of Wills/SEFinecast's oldest kits and the reason that it hasn't been upgraded is the Hornby model (which is a bit short in the bunker - there was a rebuild of one by Francis Samish in BRM, probably about 15 years ago). There are some  excellent kits in that range although the E2 certainly isn't one of them.


The only direct comparison that I can make is for the LSWR O2. Finecast's kit for this is a league ahead of the etched Gibson version though both can be made to produce a nice model: the chassis is about the same amount of work of course, but the body of the Gibson version is poorly designed and very difficult to build square with a host of designed-in errors and potential to incorporate more errors. 


The best route in that instance would probably be the Finecast chassis, boiler and fittings (the quality control on the Gibson brass castings was abysmal - this was from Alan Gibson, NOT the current owners) and Gibson tanks and cab but only for the reasons of weight distribution with an 0-4-4.


The assumption that "simply being a 'kit' the model would be far superior as a base to detail" is interesting, to say the least...


Good luck with the next attempt.


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Thanks Adam. I was very naive to think it would be better for being a mit. But I have learnt now.


I'm not condemning white metal as a medium, I'm just saying my experience hasn't gave me much confidence in it. Plus who wants a cab side a scale 6-7 inches thick!?

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In some cases cab openings can be chamfered to give the illusion of scale thickness. Iain Rice's 'Whitemetal Locos' book (Wild Swan) is well worth picking up.



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