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Tony Wright

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Tony Wright last won the day on January 15

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  1. Pity you couldn't make York, Clive, You missed a good show. Looking at your pictures above, I think from the point of view of utilising/altering older models, you're unsurpassed! I took some older models to sell at York, and they all did. Thanks to all who bought them. Certainly not an older model (in fact, brand new), was Hornby's latest DCC LN, which I took with me to test. Thanks to Charlie Petty, I was able to run it on DCC. Though I have no idea what a Nelson's whistle sounds like, it did work. It also revealed seven 'chuffs' per wheel revolution, which I thought odd, given that there should be eight. I'm told the chip cannot be altered. Regards, Tony.
  2. One model collected from the York Show was Ian Wilson's detailed Hornby D16/3. I detailed it and Tom Foster weathered it. He really is the master of this process. His work is so subtle and so natural. Thanks Tom. Actually, the 'detailing' was no more than to remove the awful couplings, chop off the obtrusive pocket in the bogie's front stretcher, fit a screw shackle to the front 'beam, put a lamp in place, and add a crew and fire irons/shovel. Tom coaled it. Though not that common, ex-GE 4-4-0s did work this far westwards on the M&GNR, so I'll probably be borrowing it.
  3. That's very good work Andy, Thanks for showing us. My own afternoon 'Talisman' was built many years ago now, from a mixture of kits and modified RTR. In these two views it's seen heading south through LB behind A1 60136 ALCAZAR (DJH/Wright/Rathbone). When I built the twin FOs from Mailcoach kits, I was ignorant of the necessity of putting extra doors at each inner, LH end. I'm afraid that's how they're staying. Every time I take a picture in tight perspective like this, it reminds me how far I've yet to go with regard to getting adjacent cars I've built/modified riding at a consistent height, with no lean whatsoever. I keep trying! I've heard it said in some quarters that 'wiggly' or 'banana' carriages are the fault of the camera. That's tosh in my opinion (and I've said it before). They're like that because that's how they are!
  4. Just a brief comment on the excellent York Show over the Easter weekend. Firstly, a huge 'thank you' to Malcolm Scrimshaw and his team for putting together such a splendid event. For my part, as usual I gabbled on and on (windbagged!) about this and that regarding model railways. Mo's heard it so many times that she now switches off! However, thanks to her 'banking' expertise and the most generous of contributions from visitors, we made over £130.00 for CRUK. It would seem now that every show we attend makes in excess of £100.00. May I please thank all those who donated so generously? We were in a super position on the first floor mezzanine. Derek Mundy busy in the background making signals. Thanks to Ian Wilson for designing my banner. My display. Having the CRUK collecting box does prove an incentive. Thanks again to all those who popped something in, even though I didn't have much to fix. Usually when demonstrating, I don't actually 'make' very much.................. However, this time I managed to put the replacement Comet frames together for this Bachmann B1. I was able to demonstrate jig-assembly and soldering techniques. I did cock-up a bit (I can't multi-task), but un-cocked-up with relative ease, amusing some spectators at the same time. Just along the way were Bob Dawson and his grandson Scott Waterfield. Their architectural modelling is beautifully-done. Once more, many thanks.
  5. Thanks for these, Eric, Good to see you at York. And thanks to the others for their pictures of their model HUMORIST. Can anything be done (easily) about that ridiculously-long expansion link on the Hornby A3's valve gear? Though the finish you achieve (and others, too) with improving the BR green on Hornby's A3s, my eye is always drawn to the angle of the eccentric rod, which is always too low at the front end. Especially in motion it doesn't give that beautifully-'lazy' appearance of Gresley's valve gear. It looks almost 'frantic'! The DJH gear is much more realistic. Regards, Tony.
  6. My pleasure, Bernard, This is the occasion of HUMORIST's last overhaul at Doncaster. It has all the 'final' A3 modifications, though retains those unique, A1-style smoke deflectors. She's got an A4 boiler (which not all A3s received), AWS (only the Canal quartet were never fitted with this device), split handrail on the smokebox door (consequent on the top lamp bracket being lowered - not on all A3s), a Smith Stone speedo and electric warning flashes. The front 'plate retains the incorrect styles of '6' and '9'. Though I never saw this loco (as didn't legions of southern 'spotters!), from a personal point of view those deflectors look 'clumsy', especially in comparison with the German-style fitted latterly to most other A3s (not the Canal quartet, though). Though those deflectors suited the A1s, the A3's smokebox is further forward and the relationship isn't 'right' in my view - entirely subjective, of course. I know Eric Kidd (Merlin) has made a very fine model of this loco, and I once took its picture, but that's now in BRM's archive. Perhaps Eric might show us. Regards, Tony.
  7. Ormskirk? A lovely place. I trained as a teacher there from 1967 to 1970. The last steam expresses ran through there between Liverpool Exchange and Preston. Why didn't I take any pictures? Thanks for posting. Regards, Tony.
  8. Thanks John, It's the axles which give the trouble. The split chassis seems fine as it is, as do the motors, but the wheels on the half-axles are all over the place. Often the motion is at angles only a contortionist could achieve, and I'm incapable of fixing the darn things. I've taken the things apart and invariably the plastic 'muffs' have split. They're supposed to hold the axles together, at the right quartering but, by splitting, they fail - completely! Gluing isn't an option (not that I know of), so, perhaps, Graeme King's idea of making resin replacements might work. From what I can surmise, it would appear to have nothing to do with use. Some brought to me have had hard lives (which might indicate a reason for failure), but others seem to have done no hard work at all. One brought was effectively brand new - not even run. Yet, it still fell to bits. I know I might have to build replacement Comet chassis for Gilbert Barnatt's ailing studs of split chassis Bachmann B1s and V2s. Oh for the time! Regards, Tony.
  9. What a wonderful picture, Clem, Thanks for posting it. I agree with your comments regarding Andrew's work being far superior to any RTR, but the standards he sets are in a minority. Indeed, in my opinion, it takes a very competent modeller indeed to just match what's now provided straight from a box. The problem arises, of course (and it's been discussed before), as to what those who can't (or worse, won't) make high-quality models for themselves feel about this. It might be all right for the likes of me to extol the virtues of making things for oneself (as you do), but might those who can't, feel slightly 'left out', or even looked down upon? Not by posters on here, but I've encountered it in some groups. Without doubt, the rise in quality and fidelity of the latest RTR models (notwithstanding bits falling off!) has made the hobby so much more egalitarian, and anyone, as long as they can pay for it, will have model as good (if not better) than many built by hand. As I say, it takes a very competent modeller indeed to produce a model to the same standard as, say, this.................? Hornby even went to the trouble of modelling this A3 with an A4 boiler, something I've never done! They've also fitted AWS which, ironically, this example, being shedded at Carlisle Canal, never received. Good though it is, there's something 'flat' about Hornby's rendition of BR green. But, with a little bit of skill..................... This is the same loco. All I've done is to change its identity, change the bogie wheels and hand it over to Tom Foster for weathering. That is exactly the same green, but a touch of Klear brings it to life. I should have carved off the top wiggly pipe on this side of the smokebox. It's the one Hornby A3 I still retain on Little Bytham. Can I 'match' it? That's not for me to say. This is a SE Finecast example I built, painted by Ian Rathbone. It is, of course, much more powerful. What does all this show, if anything? That, previously, one had to be a 'reasonable' builder and a very good painter to produce a model that is to the same standard (or very similar) to what can now be obtained RTR? And, the latter will cost considerably less! From my own point of view, irrespective of if my locos are as 'good' as current RTR equivalents, I consider it irrelevant. I'll continue making my own because 'that's what I do'. What I feel it should show is that what's available right now RTR is a marvellous 'starting point' for those who wish to improve and personalise their models. If they can't make a loco, never mind, just detail/improve/personalise/weather/etc what they've just bought. For those who can't do that, well; others can do it for them (at a price), but they'll still only ever end up as possessions. Nothing beats doing something for oneself, especially if it personalises something which everyone else just buys. Regards, Tony.
  10. Thanks for that, Robert, The mazak 'rot' and split gears on (some) Hornby locos are problems I've encountered quite frequently of late during my loco-doctoring sessions. I can't fix them. Is there a cure? Mind you, those incidences have paled into insignificance compared with the legions of split-chassis Mainline/Replica/Bachmann things brought along by glum-faced visitors. Again, I have no cure. Thankfully, Bachmann has abandoned such ghastly mechanisms. Packaging? I recall the days when each of my Christmas/birthday present Tri-ang locos came in a stout cardboard box, with corrugated cardboard inside, the couplings protected by mini toilet rolls and a bottle of oil provided! If nothing else, all those stout boxes provided substructures for scenery. Yes, I've now had other Bulleid diesels running on LB, and don't they run well? Regards, Tony.
  11. I don't think the attitude of BRM is 'grotesque', Arun; perhaps just pragmatic. The statement wasn't issued with any malice, just a matter of fact observation. It wasn't in the form of a letter, it was face-to-face. I certainly wasn't 'upset' by it, though I was slightly puzzled. It's not for me to say any more, anyway, and, if the magazine (any magazine) sees an article on building a large and complex locomotive no longer for its readership, then so be it. Though it might be the observations of a reactionary old git (lots of 'agrees' here), I'm convinced that the popular press has gone towards less-complex, easy-to-do, aimed at the inexperienced and fewer long-term projects in more recent years. If this approach produces a more successful (from a commercial point of view) series of model railway magazines, then it's one worth pursuing. Regards, Tony.
  12. I wonder if any 'collector' out there might be able to help, please............... I chap along the road is moving, and he's brought me a box of model railway stuff which has languished in his loft for over 20 years. There are three locos. I've cleaned and oiled them and they now work very well. They are......... A Triang/Hornby 'Dock Authority' four-wheeled diesel in black. This is as near 'mint' boxed as I've seen. A Hornby-Dublo R1 0-6-0T in green. Battered a bit. A Playcraft NB Type 2 diesel, 61XX. In excellent condition, but no box. Does anyone know what these might be worth? Not much? There are also wagons, signals, bits and pieces and what have you, all in 'iffy' condition, probably worth no more than a couple of quid each. There's some Hornby track, but it's rusting away. Many thanks in anticipation.
  13. Good afternoon Chas, Certainly 60009, 60010 and 60013 had lost their coats of arms by later BR days (maybe early in 60010's case). It would seem that 60011 and 60012 kept theirs until (or near to) withdrawal. Paints for weathering? Always enamels ( I can't get on with brushing-acrylics, unless it's for scenery). I use a mixture of Humbrol's matt black, dark grey, 'leather' and matt white, all dry-brushed on. I hope this helps, Regards, Tony.
  14. Thanks for your comments, Mick, I infer from what you've said in the past, you don't 'do' shows. If my inference is incorrect, I apologise. If correct, perhaps the following observations might be of (little) interest. I attend lots of shows, in part as a 'loco doctor'. I've lost count of the number of Hornby A4s brought to me with the lubricator drive hanging loose. Not at the crankpin, but at the top where the (daft) little hook arrangement has come off the piece of wire holding it in place - not whilst attempting to take the body off, I might add. It's not a question of redesigning the chassis, it should not (in my opinion) have been designed like that in the first place. In some cases, the little 'hook' has broken, and the only cure then is to remove the drive altogether. There's no doubt it looks 'scale', and Hornby should be congratulated for that, but to have to separate parts of the motion to get the body off is still 'daft' in my opinion. This is Hornby's arrangement, and it looks very realistic, I have to say (we won't mention the wrong lean to the return crank this side, nor the upward slope towards the rear of the slidebars/crosshead). The poor bogie wheels have been replaced (but we've been there before). As you explain, to get the body off, that rear crankpin has to be removed (and then found again after it's made a bid for freedom!). Here's my arrangement on a SE Finecast A4. One could argue that the Hornby one looks better, and the whole thing is more-detailed (I concede that, though my return crank leans the right way, the slidebar/crosshead leans down towards the rear, and it's much more substantial). The little 'parallelogram' at the top of the lubricator link is attached to the body, but the pivot at the top is attached to the frames (you can just see the top of it poking above the footplate, which has a hole in it, as it should). As with Hornby's, that little parallelogram does not move backwards and forwards (as it really should). 'Several tender bodies wrecked'! Hardly an advertisement for good, simple design. Though Hornby's A4 body might be easy to remove from its chassis, have you tried getting the body off (easily) a Bachmann Austerity or an 80XXX? Not your period, I know. I hope I'm perceived as giving praise where it's due, and there's no doubt the current range of RTR steam-outline locos is incredible with regard to realism in appearance and fidelity to prototype. However, despite your observations, individual items are much more difficult to get apart and the robustness is just not there. You're quite capable of dismantling things (and rebuilding them into fantastic creations), but the majority of RTR purchasers don't have your experience and skill. If that majority has difficulty in simply taking a body off a chassis because of 'daft' arrangements, then that can't be right, can it? Or, don't the manufacturers want their products to be taken apart? That range of highly-realistic models has made the hobby much more egalitarian (which is good), and, in your own case, has allowed you to create some very high-standard locos (I imagine your stud would be much, much smaller without the current RTR range). Bachmann, of course, don't bother fitting the lubricator drive to their A4s, so it's not a problem getting the body off the chassis. However, the original split chassis (now replaced by Bachmann with a much-better one in its last A4 offerings) was a bit of a dud. This is a Bachmann A4 body on a SE Finecast chassis, towing a modified SE Finecast tender. The whole lot has been painted beautifully by Ian Rathbone. Regards, Tony.
  15. What a wonderful photo of a wonderful model, Dave, My thanks for posting. I take it it's at (or a representation of) Glasgow Central. I mention that because the buildings look very similar to those bordering the great station on the eastern side (now replaced by the Jury's Inn, which we stay in when attending the Glasgow Show). I agree entirely with your comments, and they reiterate my point to an extent; that is, current RTR standards are much higher than most can achieve. Indeed, it would take a highly-skilled craftsman/woman to match what's currently available. That said, and as you so rightly observe, it's much more interesting to see models which folk have made/modified themselves. I can see everything RTR on the box-shifters' stands at shows, and there's much of it now on layouts. I don't mind if it's been personally-altered, but just plonking down a just-bought loco on a layout is not on in my view, especially when folk have paid to see it! This is a scene on a beautifully-observed layout depicting the SR in the '30s. Most of the structures on it have been scratch-built. I've photographed it for a magazine. One of the club members running it had just bought (minutes before) this Bachmann SR Atlantic. Though no doubt a mighty-fine model, I found it incongruous (taking this picture to prove my point). What about that awful front coupling? Where are the route discs? Where is the crew? What about real coal in the tender? What about weathering? And so on, and so on. I was asked for my comments, and, at least, the front coupling went in response to them. Still no 'real' coupling, nor standpipes on the front buffer beam/platform. Neither of these pictures will be submitted! I respect the views of others who claim 'my' opinion counts for nothing in these matters. In their opinion, what folk wish to do is entirely up to them, even at a show where punters have paid to see their 'work'. That said, I hope they respect my 'responsibility' to only submit images of folk's work, not just purchasing-power. Regards, Tony.
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