Partly from frustration and partly because I like to see things move I decided I wanted to do a little project that was going to be reasonably quick to get to a stage were I could run a loco. About 2 weeks ago, at Expo EM I purchased an unbuilt Wills Finecast kit of an 1804 GWR Saddle tank, last week at Railex I also obtained the etched nickel silver chassis from SE Finecast and some Gibson wheels for it. So on Friday evening I decided to make the chassis. These Finecast etched chassis go together really quickly and using my Avonside jig made a nice square chassis in no time at all, a Comet GB1 50:1 gearbox and a Mashima 1620 mated to t made up the power plant. So on Saturday morning I sprayed the chassis with etch primer and left for 24 hours. Meanwhile Saturday evening gave me a chance to start on the body. So far all was going I might have my running chassis in time to test run it at our club evening on Wednesday.
Sadly Sunday did not go to plan and I had no time until the evening to touch it again. Still I managed to paint the chassis at least and solder a few more bits on the body. I like to only fit Gibson wheels once if I can, so wanted to paint the chassis before fitting the wheels for the first time. Monday evening was spent adding the wheels, making the motor fit and working on reaming the rods out to take the Gibson crank pins. Only a few hours, so it has motor and wheels fitted, rods on one side ready but not finished on the other.
Maybe I will get time tomorrow to do the rods on the other side and add the pickups, if not then the test run will have to wait another week. Still I did cheat and have run it with a 9volt PP9 battery and the rods loosely fitted, it seems to run acceptably, but the proof will not be known until the chassis is finished. I am a little nervous about the crankpins since I had to drill the wheels as the holes for the pins were missing. It would be easy to have one of the crank pins out of alignment and end up with a binding chassis.
The other interesting thing is what the prototype really is. It is not an 1804 Class saddle tank as it says on the box, nor is it really an 1854 which is what it was latter renamed to be. From looking at my copy of J H Russell I suspect it is really a variant of the 1701 class - maybe somebody out there knows for sure?
As a quickie project, for some nearly instant gratification, it is not looking too bad - of course finishing it is another matter