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Dad-1's Blog

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I Needed A Rest.



Our Youngest Son is moving into a New house this weekend ...... Strange I shall be very busy ?

To clear decks I moved a few 'almost' finished wagons to the loft layout for safe temp[orary

storage. The two sidings have 22 wagons that I've made up since June or July. A surprising

number are from original Airfix kits, a few from the Dapol versions, something like 13 of them.

The Engineers train from Cambrian kits, as is the Borail, but that was made up a few years ago.

With just a couple of Parkside, I've made many Parkside over previous years.






All sitting on my "Two Short Planks" made 2008, a mere 12" wide long plank that in places has 6 lines, I was told it couldn't be done,

but it did a few exhibitions around Milton Keynes area starting at the Train Collectors Club exhibition in 2009. Now retired to my loft !!


Geoff T.

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I really like the look of this layout! 


I'm also happy to see a Dapol b tank enthusiast!!! It's strange timing as i am pondering whether to buy a cambrian mermaid and wondered how you found building the kits?


And is that an upgraded Dapol 20t brake van i see?

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Hi Westernviscount,


The last part first as it's the easiest. Yes that is a Dapol BR Brake Van kit that is now fitted with a TrainTech movement activated

tail lamp as well as all the grab rails removed and replaced with 0.5 mm brass wires. The roof vents were removed and replaced

with white metal ones in the right place and cabin windows glazed. They can be bought so cheaply and while needing work to

bring to modern standards I thoroughly enjoy the process !!


Cambrian kits ...... Difficult as they are not for the novice, yet make up eventually into nice models. One of my first Mods is to cut

off the brake hanging spigots, these are set for EM/P4 wheel spacing and will leave you with brakes dangling in the air miles from

a wheel !! My fix is to find some plastic rod that just about fits a brakes moulded in hole, glue in with about a couple of mm sticking

out. I then countersink into the solebar at the spigot location small holes (DON'T DRILL RIGHT THROUGH) that allow the rod extensions

to locate into. Take great care when trying to put the headstocks, solebars and frame infill together, this can be a nightmare.

I also found it best to stick one tip-rail fitting onto the body (The one with the small rollers you have to glue in). The second tip-rail

I attach to the chassis. Ahh I remember now that I trimmed off some bolt heads where the tip-rails sit on the chassis - I got a better

fit that way. These are certainly not a first kit job !!!


Geoff T.

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Thanks Geoff,


I think the Dapol kits are excellent still and usually at less than £6 a go they are a bargain. 


I too am a fan of revamping these kits, my latest being a conversion to an LNER 20t example. 


Thanks for the tips on building a mermaid. I agree, Cambrian kits are not for beginners. I found the catfish really difficult, finding it hard to get the chassis true. The mermaid will certainly add to my engineers train. 




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