I'm not normally a builder of coaches, although there is no real reason for this, just that I got hooked on building locos and the occasional wagon. As part of my desire to finish some of those long started and put aside projects I pulled this Blacksmiths coach kit out of the cupboard. I was given this for Christmas many years ago and got as far as doing a fold and soldering the two ends before realising I had messed up by not putting the tumblehome in the ends. Annoyed with myself at making a mistake so early on it was put in a cupboard to be left for almost 10 years.
So fast forward to 2017 and out it came, the ends were corrected and then the tumblehome added to the sides. The basic box was built, followed by the sole bars, buffer beams and retaining plates for the rocking W-irons. Steps have been added to one end. Last night I built the basic rocking W-irons, added the bearings and popped the wheels in. Now it looks like a coach and rolls up and down the track.
Next stage is the under frame details, brake gear etc. plus the end details on the other end, but the instructions are unclear as to what is on the end without steps. It looks like there is some kind of pipe or bar across with the attachment points. However I have no idea if there are corresponding etches for any of this - the instructions simply do not say.
Likewise the under frame detail is a little patchy in the instructions. The end wheels sets are covered in the diagrams and have enough detail to be able to work out how to build the brake gear. However the centre wheels are not shown, nor any of the casting locations. In fact the instructions are a fairly poor, difficult to read photocopy. Some the instructions have been cut off by the photocopier, ending in mid-sentence. There is a great part in the instructions that say "Attached as per diagram but" - it's anyones guess what the "but" might be! So some of this is going to have to be by guesswork or from interpretation of the pictures.
If anybody has one of these kits with a better copy of the instructions or a complete model, I would really appreciate hearing from you.
I would really like to get this to a stage that it can be painted soon since I am enrolled on the "Painting & Lining" course with Ian Rathbone at Missenden Abbey over the first weekend of March. If only I had planned better I would have more models ready for painting and not trying to do all those finishing touches to so many models in the next two weeks.
EDIT: Since posting this I have now come across one photo of Diagram R2 in as built condition, http://penrhos.me.uk/Rdiags.shtml. This seems to show very little below the sole bar, certainly no brake cylinder or brakes of any sort. And not the very long take that comes as a white metal component in the kit. I must say I am struggling to find where to fit the tank that is supplied, it appears to be too long to fit between the articulated W-irons.