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This is a blog about *finishing* rolling stock conversions! The last year has seen an increasing number of locos and coaches in various states of disassembly filling up all available flat surfaces awaiting an upgrade of one sort or another. Sound familiar? As the end of 2021 approaches, it’s definitely time to start finishing some! For those who’ve not yet taken part of the paint finish off one of their £100+ locomotives or £35+ coaches, read on…


I’m aiming to finish four conversions/upgrades per month for the next few months, using this blog as a vehicle to keep momentum. All the models are derived from the latest-standard Graham Farish products and converted to 2mm FS by swapping the axles for 2mm drop-in wheels. Varying amounts of work are being undertaken to either individualise them or convert them into the types of rolling stock needed for BR operations in the late 80s/early 90s. Hopefully the results will show it’s not particularly difficult to create something a little bit different or unique that can add up to recreate a prototypical train formation.


To start with, something pretty straightforward with some custom transfers that I ordered a while back; conversions of 47535 into 47526 Northumbria and 37407 into 37412 Loch Lomond.


The conversions were very straightforward. The original white printed-on numbers and nameplates were carefully scraped off with the end of a cocktail stick. After that, I created a gloss surface to best accept the transfers by masking the surrounding area and using circular motions of a cotton wool bud dipped in a little toothpaste. There is just enough abrasive in the paste to create a shiny surface on the existing paint finish after 2-3 minutes. Once the toothpaste was wiped off, transfers were applied from Railtec Transfers.


I’ve no connection with Railtec other than being a very happy repeat customer, because their transfers are high-quality and simple to use. The detail in the transfers even goes down to the correct spacing of the numbers for a particular locomotive and the location of rivets on the 3D printed nameplates; they really are so much simpler to use than etches.


Both engines still require a couple of light coats of varnish to seal. I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I’ll point it out first before someone else does - 47526’s BR Large Logo should be at the No.1 end, but given that the factory finish had it at the No.2 end and I didn’t want the hassle of a repaint, I’m going to live with it for now… I’m also undecided whether or not to lower 37412 by a mm or so, but I’m treating them both as ‘finished’ enough for the purposes of this blog!


Edited by Kaolin2FS
Feature Photo added

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