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Showing content with the highest reputation on 07/12/16 in all areas

  1. 5 points
    Tweedale has acquired a temporary appendage. Ultimately it will form part of a small tabletop modular system seperate from the Tweedale theme, but for now it provides a run round loop for the layout, which allows operation with just one loco rather than the usual two. The plan below shows how it fits in with the rest of Tweedale... I've tried to keep the length of the run round loop as short as possible. With a capacity of 2 short-wheelbase wagons, a small turntable at one end and a wheel-screaming 6 inch radius point at the other, it just fits into 18 inches. The photo below shows the standard end pieces that will be used for the modular system. The piece at the right is the master, on which a short length of track has been carefully centred. Other end pieces are then made up so they fit the master and their rails align. In theory they should all then line up with each other, and any number of modules could be plugged together in any configuration. One end piece has been glued to the new baseboard at the left, and the other one at the top has since been attached to the main layout board. I never fail to be amazed at what one can get away with in 00. The point is a case in point (so to speak), and breaks nearly all the rules of genteel point construction. Two parallel straight lines were drawn 16.5mm apart on a piece of paper. On another piece of paper the curved rails were drawn with a compass. The latter drawing was then glued on top of the former and the straight lines traced through onto the top sheet where covered. Sleeper spacing was marked every 10mm. That gave me the template for the point. With no transitions, a sharply curved point blade and a crossing angle of about 1 in 1.8, it sounds like a recipe for disaster, yet it actually works. A bit of tweeking of the check rails and the Bachmann 0-6-0 Drewry shunter lurches around it with no trouble at all. Those curves are no place to be pushing wagons though, so the loop will be purely for the loco to run around its train. The point mechanism beneath the baseboard is shown below. The slide switch provides appropriate power to the point frog. A hole was drilled through the knob of the slide switch and a piece of brass rod glued in, and passed through a hole in the baseboard to the moving-sleeper tiebar on the point. There is enough springiness in the rod to cope with the difference in throws between the slide switch and the tiebar. Scraps of wood and bamboo skewers complete the mechanism. The point will be manually operated by a knob glued to the skewer at the right. Turntable in the next blog. Cheers Alan.
  2. 3 points
    I spent some time admiring the timber kits by Poppy's WoodTech, weighing up the pros and cons of trying out an overscale 4 mm kit or an underscale 3 mm one. The coaling platform appealed in particular, it looked more realistic than something I could make from strips of wood or styrene. After a while, I wrote to them and asked if they could do a 3.5 mm (H0) version, and my kit arrived in the post about four weeks later. We had a brief correspondence along the way concerning the best size of the sleepers because this would follow on to any further kits for H0. In essence, there is no "true to scale" model railway track for British H0, so I suggested the scale size of a real sleeper. This ends up close to the size of sleepers in Peco track (which are essentially correct but too close together), and rather smaller than the sleepers of SMP type J (which are about the right pitch but too long and too wide): Length: 29.8 ± 0.2 mm Width: 3.0 ± 0.1 mm Thickness 1.6 +0.2/-0.1 mm These dimensions represent 1/87 of a real sleeper, which is usually 8' 6" long, 10" wide and 5 or 6" thick, with tolerances added by me to blend in with Peco and SMP. The ideal being to make a kit for a scale model which looks good with the track on the British H0 modeller's own layout. I haven't built the 4 mm scale version of this kit (reviewed in the mainstream press) but the H0 kit looks much the same as the photographs I have seen. Inside the bag there are some pieces of laser-cut plywood and a sheet of instructions: The sections for the deck and the walls are to be glued up from two layers of 0.9 mm plywood, while the legs and braces underneath are a single thickness of 1.6 mm plywood. This means, the deck and walls end up a shade over scale thickness (about 1.9 mm total) while the legs and braces are spot-on. It all looks right to me - much more like real sleepers than the bases of flexi-track. The kit was a pleasure to built - all the parts are exactly the right size with virtually no filing or fitting. I chose to put walls on three edges of the platform and I trimmed these walls to the lengths I wanted but there is plenty of flexibility to choose your own arrangement here. There are ten little diagonal braces to go in underneath, these rely on simple butt joints but they were more of a fiddle than difficult. Looking at the photo below, I'm happy to see they all went in with a consistent pattern, and they are still there: The kit is entirely plywood and it includes the parts to make an access ladder - two runners with five treads. I had an off-cut of 'Plastruct' ladder to hand (probably their 1:100 scale) so I cheated and glued this on instead. I put the kit together with PVA, slightly diluted with isopropyl alcohol and water, and applied from a little dropper bottle from Metcalfe Models. So - we now have a new kit for a British H0 structure (probably the first one for some time), and it is from a British manufacturer. Furthermore, if you model in one of the less-popular scales, perhaps the GEM 1:55 narrow gauge, you might like to ask Poppy's WoodTech if they can help with a suitable kit. Their approach using laser-cutting of real wood must surely be a great help for planking and other timber fittings with a lot of repeated detail. This is a super kit. - Richard.
  3. 1 point
    As a break from layout building type stuff (wiring mostly), I decided to turf a kit out of the modelling cupboard that has been there for a while. It's the 'Steam and Things' kit for the Weston Clevedon and Portishead Rilway Drewry Railcar. I'm building it for the WCPR group, having done the Fordson tractor for them a couple of years back. As you may know I've scratchbuilt one of these in EM for my two WCPR layouts so I'm quite familiar with the prototype. I have to be honest here and confess I don't like building stuff in 7mm. It freaks me out a bit. None of my tools work. At least this has 1/8th" axles so I can use my reamer! The kit describes itself as more of a scratch aid kit of parts and I'm not finding it the easiest thing to build. So far this week we've got the body built and more or less complete. The sides have been reinforced with strips of scrap etch to keep the tops and bottoms straight and there's been quite a bit of edge seam soldering. Steps are done and just need attaching to the (presently) quite rudimentary chassis. Thankfully I've got some photos so can add all the brakes and control rods which are missing from the kit, along with quite a few other bits and pieces. And before anyone says anything, yes the wheels were only 2ft in diameter. Hopefully this won't take much longer to do as I'm itching to get back to 4mm!
  4. 1 point
    A class 27 and class 14 on the heritage line. The class 27 bringing in two LMS coaches to collect the visiting public. Taking them on a journey up the heritage line to the next heritage station. The class 14 is shunting a few wagons in to place to show the visiting public how sidings were used and the process of shunting and uncoupling. Two class 08s are seen in the still images as is a Jinty in the loco shed. I have also added some pics of the old advertising signs I have added to the scenery. These were printed off the Internet, weathered with soft pastels and glued on with pritt stick. I again used the soft pastels to make rusty marks running down the wall from the old signs. The signs look old and weathered because the layout is set in present day, but the station was in use during the 1930s up until the 1980s. https://youtu.be/58ICUpMoI5M
  5. 1 point
    Well, a month on and we've made more progress. All the track (approx 180 metres) for the lower level is now down, electrified and tested. In addition to the existing Guagemaster cased twin track unit, a new Gaugemaster twin track UDS controller has been bought to replace the old Duette (which I'm using to run the slow action point motors and to motorise the turntable). 4 trains can now run simultaneously which will please the younger family members! The layout is currently divided into 43 electrical sections, with any one of the 4 controllers able to run any section. Apart from the time it's taken (plus over 500 metres of wire) it's a very simple system. The picture makes it look much more complex than it actually is and any faults are quickly identifiable. The west end of Clapton station (Clapton West box) has also had point motors fitted to the 22 points it controls. Next step is to ensure "resilience" to the sections that will be below the high level baseboards. This includes 9 road and 2 road storage sections, plus a further 30+ points. The track has multiple feeds per section and all points will include polarity switching. The higher level baseboards will be designed to be removable in case of serious issues. I've also been very aware of the need to lay track carefully to ensure smooth running and I'm pleased to say that 30-40 wagon goods trains pass over all the junctions very well (so far....). No scenery yet..... I'm not intending to do much on that front until all the basics (track, wiring and point motors) are installed and working correctly. Following that, it's down to installing point motors in the storage yards and other sections that will ultimately become hidden.
  6. 1 point
    It's been a while as the summer gets in the way of modelling but I'm back in the loft ironing out the faults and checking my part finished projects. 37033 passes 407 in the bay at Meanach.
  7. 1 point
    Well managed to go to the European Model Ex in Brum and catch up with a few friends and have a good beer. Time short to do anything else but someone once told me , just do a bit at a time its all progress. So the two images are of a small water tower and level crossing kit built today . they have just been plonked onto the layout for the picture. They are Auhagen plastic kits which are great value. But a little bit of progress ...
  8. 1 point
    I finally managed an hour of modelling late this evening after the baby finally went to sleep, (so much for making it to the Chipping Sodbury Club as planned...) Anyway, with the weather as cold as it is, I didnt fancy a trip to the garage which means it was not possible to do the remaining work on the H26. That left a choice between starting the A20 Large Window All First (and having to finally form that tumblehome), or renumbering my second Hornby King. Given the title of this blog post it is clear which option I went for..... Today I received some 70% concentrate IPA Alcohol (from Amazon) which having read good things elsewhere on RMWeb that it is possible to use this stuff to remove printing without the shinyness you get with Microsol etc I thought I would give a try. After trying varying concentrates less than 70% without any success, I used the IPA neat from the bottle (100% IPA can be a good paint stripper so be careful!) After application I tried rubbing with a cocktail stick as directed with no success, instead having to use a dull scalpel to gently scrape off the old lettering. Unfortunatly it did still leave a shiny patch (so a coat of satin varnish will still be required), however it shifted a lot quicker than on my other King using Microsol. In fact I did find later on that a combination of the IPA first to remove the bulk, followed by the Microsol to shift the leftovers worked rather well. The footplate lining was removed using the same method, except for those parts over rivets which refused to shift. In these places the lining was simply over painted with a tin of Humbrol Satin Black. New transfers were added (HMRS) and it now awaits name plates (ordered from Modelmasters in their Black Friday sale.) I have removed the splasher / name assembly from the model to start working out how the hell I am going to fit the new name. At the moment I am thinking I will cut along the inner edge of the Hornby plate to remove the mount and splasher from the plate. then glue the new one in place behind it. I do wish Modelmasters would just include a transfer for the lining (or better yet the splasher as well) so you can directly replace the Hornby... While the model was on the work bench I also got on and completed another critical task, taking the model apart to fit a DCC decoder. I was pleasantly surprised how easy the job was. a Lenz Gold was soon plugged into position and it is now ready for testing... While looking for the decoder I found an ESU sound decoder with two wires broken off that I had been trying to fix a couple of years ago. Now on the bench to have another crack at soldering them back on (before testing to see if I have fried it or not with my rubbish soldering!) If it works, it will get reblown with King sounds and fitted to King Richard I (otherwise it will probably get a TTS decoder). I want a couple of sound locos for my daughters to play with, and TTS should be perfectly adequate for that. Just so long as I dont end up wanting more full fat decoders for myself..... One final note, I am now running out of G W R / G crest W HMRS transfers, but have 2 full sets of Great crest Western. Does anyone modelling the pre war period have the opposite problem with lots of unwanted G W R / G crest W transfers want to swap?
  9. 1 point
    After finally getting the baby to bed at half 11 last night there wasn't much time to work on the coach, with the corridor ends, roof detail and buffers now added. I did find the castings a little poor quality, lots of flash and requiring a lot of straightening on the corridor connection. It looks like the coach body isn't quite sitting square on the chassis yet, so that is the next task planned. Then it's a choice of sorting the interior or cutting those gas tanks to size
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