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Ruston LAT/LBT - it's not green!


Fen End Pit

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The Ruston LBT moved into the paint shop this weekend. Unlike all of the Simplex locomotives on 'Fen End Pit' I thought this one should be a non-manufacturers standard colour. A bit of contrast seemed like a nice idea and looking through my photographs of LBTs I could find them in standard Ruston green, blue, orange and yellow. You pays your money and takes your choice. Roy Link had commented what a nice colour yellow was to weather so I decided on a standard 'plant' yellow as the basis colour. While several of the photos showed locomotives in preservation with certain 'embellishments' to the colour scheme I've resisted the temptation for red buffer beams or axle boxes and picking out the strapping in different colours. I've even seen a Youtube clip of one fulling lined out!

 

Before painting I needed to sort out the headlights and these were made by getting some 8mm perspex rod and drilling a 3mm hole into the side of it to fit an LED. A suitably large resistor means that the lights are not too bright, but it is hard to do anything about the right colour balance. The while LEDs do look too 'white', a bit too much like halogen headlights, but there doesn't seem to be much I can do about it. I might try a slight wash over the front of the lens.

 

I decided the best way to get power to the LEDs was by sticking a Molex socket into the body of the locomotive connected to the LED and then use two pieces of scrap nickel-silver etch to form the plug. You can see in this picture of the chassis how these stick through the foot plate to make the connection (Just behind the front corner). Having done this for the headlamps I realized it was a much better way to make the connections and so went back and replaced the connection I had made for the loudspeaker.

 

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This picture also shows the sanding gear (probably completely unnecessary in my sand quarry) which I fabricated from brass tube on Friday night.

 

The body got sprayed with Humbrol Primer (no, 1) and then with Humbrol Trainer Yellow (Matt 24). Meanwhile I also primed the chassis and then brush painted with a mix of Matt black (33) let down with a little gray (67).

 

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I've started to tone things down a bit with some initial weathering. I've gone over the chassis with a burst of Railmatch frame dirt and also picked out the brakes and underframe detail with a little brake dust. The body also go a touch of frame dirt, applied to pick out some of the body panel joins in a vertical motion. The cab roof is significantly dirtier than the locomotive sides and as I reckoned no one would ever clean it. The engine also has some initial dusting which has picked out the shape quite nicely, There is still a lot of work to do in this area though. I've also put a fair amount of dirt around the air intake grill on the front.

 

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I'm quite pleased with the look so far. I'm particularly pleased with the way the chassis now looks like a chunky block of metal. I'll let it all harden off now and then try to remove some of the paint from the etched makers plates.

 

Oh, and by the way, on a completely unrelated topic I couldn't resist the Hornby J15 when I went into City Cycles in Ely yesterday. I know I have a kit built one already but what the heck!

 

David

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