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Everything posted by PJT

  1. Are you drilling in from the outside of the roof, or out from the inside? If the former, try marking and drilling out from the inside of the roof. That way you're drilling into a concave surface rather than onto a convex one - a drill will always try to wander away on a convex surface and the smaller the drill, the more chance it will flex and snap when it does so. If however you'd rather drill from the outside in, use a fine sharp object like a scribe (most centre punches would be way too large, creating an unwanted dent in the roof) to create a tiny point mark in the roof that
  2. I agree with Zunnan, Great Central I'm sure wasn't one of the early A1s with a suspect motor (put it this way, my Great Central's fine). However, while you've got the body off, you might want to flex the fallplate a bit so it's not resting on the tender (that assumes you're close coupling the loco to the tender), and clip a bit less than half the length off the springs above the front bogie and Cartazzi axle, restretching what's left of the springs back to their original length. That allows more weight onto the driving wheels (while still ensuring the springs do their job) and hugely improve
  3. No, we've never talked to the Bluebell Museum about it - but since you mention it I'm sure we probably should, because it'd be a lovely little anecdote for them - though it was discussed at length very enthusiastically with the platform staff at Sheffield Park on the day. None of us had cameras that day, either (whereas today of course pretty well all of us would have had a camera phone each and would have captured the moment in still picture, video and sound from every angle; how times change!). Newhaven Museum know all about it though, through a much more recent visit there. Gr
  4. You and me both - me, for very sentimental reasons. I have family connections to Fenchurch going back to Edwardian times - my grandmother, whose father was blacksmith and farrier at Newhaven Marine, used to blag rides on Fenchurch on the East and West Quay branches when she was a girl and loved it, as did most residents of Newhaven at that time - it was 'their engine'. Fast forward 60-70 years to the early 1970s and our family visit to the Blubell Railway, she was so overjoyed to see Fenchurch again (at that time in black Newhaven Harbour Company livery) after all that time, she
  5. I know, Brian; I read that in Wright Writes the other day and as I did so I thought 'Blimey! It seems so hard to believe that what he's referring to is sitting in my loft!' Of course I was already aware of the esteem in which Maindee East Engine Shed is held by so many modellers, but Tony's comment certainly helped to put the pressure on - in the nicest possible way - to ensure I do justice to it, both in the restoration work I do on it and also what I ultimately decide to do with it. No. The auctioneers' approach to the vendors to see if they would mind me getting in
  6. Hello Brian, The answer is 'Yes, I've made some progress, but nowhere near as much as I'd wanted to by now'. In fact, the last two or three months of last year and the first month or so of 2020 I made very pleasing progress repairing damaged buildings and scenery, given the limited time I had available to spend on it while also sorting out my mother in a nursing home. I hadn't begun to repair the damaged telegraph poles and yard lamps, but I felt satisfied that I'd done the layout justice in the repairs I'd done up to that point. I did take some photos before starting, so I can
  7. Mike, though the pre-release Hornby images had lined cylinders, if you Google 46211 Queen Maud and look at the images of the real thing (as I've just done, following your post), several colour photos show it with plain black cylinders. I was a bit surprised, too, though unlined cylinders isn't unknown on BR green locos of course (A3s, for a start). Pete T.
  8. You won't be disappointed, Robbie. When you get it sitting in front of you, it's just gorgeous. Hornby really excelled themselves on this one. Pete T.
  9. Well, the replacement traction tyres - described on eBay as Railroad ones - arrived this morning. I took them out of the envelope and thought 'Shame, they look too narrow, just like the ones I got before.' However, I've just fitted them this evening to my Blundells and they fit just like the originals - not quite filling the width of the grooves on the driving wheels, but a whole lot better than the sloppy, under-width 'Castle/Schools' replacements I got 18 months ago. The loco runs perfectly with them fitted too. So, success. Thank you again, Robert. I'm not sure I'd have giv
  10. What really shocked me about mine was the speed at which the Mazak rot manifested itself. In the space of absolutely no more than 2 months it went from an outwardly fine looking model to something that looked like it had been repeatedly dropped to the floor, on either end (a lot worse at the front). It's a salutory lesson to check more often in your model railway collection the locos that are publicly known to be Mazak rot suspects. I've always worked in car and car parts manufacturing and I'm well used to seeing wrecked pressure die cast impure Mazak car badges and bright tri
  11. Yes, it's hex head screws, Barry. Actually, Hornby do a rather neat nut spanner or 'runner' (Part no. R913, usually £4.00-5.00 or so) with the two most common sizes for valve gear/con rod/coupling rod screws at either end. Saves chewing screw heads up with something that's not quite the right size and does the job in seconds. It's a bit expensive for what you get when we're all used to seeing so many tuppenny-ha'penny Far Eastern tools these days, but it's absolutely the right tool for the job and it fits most Hornby and Bachmann locos in my experience, so for me it was a good i
  12. Lovely photo of my Pam's favourite loco. Virtually all she knows about steam locos is that she cabbed Silver Fox with her Grandad, at Retford (they lived very close by the station, in Darrel Road). Heavens, I wish I had! However, it must have been taken a few years before 1965. Silver Fox was withdrawn in 1963 and in the photo she hasn't got overhead line warning flashes which puts it back before 1961-ish, I think. Pete T.
  13. Thank you, Robert, I've just looked at them and ordered a pair. By the description in the eBay listing, the Schools they fit are the Railroad ones - R3158 Dover and R3172 Cheltenham - whereas my Blundells (and that of Barrymx5, above) is the super detail issue Schools, R2744. But, hey, they've got to be the right sort of diameter and looking at the photo on eBay they certainly look wider than the ones I bought before, so they're worth a try for £1.99 plus p+p. Thanks again - when they arrive I'll try them and post the results here. Pete T.
  14. Yes, you're absolutely right, I should have been clearer. What I should have said (and what I meant) was that the deformed running plate is the most obvious symptom of the chassis block's expansion. Mine was horrendous to look at - it was a bit like The Incredible Hulk bursting out of his clothes at either end to look at - very dramatic. I ended up buying a very cheap, badly cared for, non-runner Schools to donate its chassis to my Cheltenham. The parts of the body that had been distorted by the chassis expansion from within took a long time and a lot of intricate, careful pers
  15. Me again! My model of Blundells (coincidentally) shed its traction tyres about 18 months ago. Unfortunately traction tyres are not listed on the Hornby Schools service sheet, but a quick Google revealed several recommendations to use the Castle traction tyres, which are Hornby part no. X9763. I ordered some on line; they were called 'X9763 Castle and Schools Class' tyres by the shop selling them. When they arrived I was a bit disappointed to find they were appreciably narrower than the originals from my loco but were, if not exactly the right diameter, very close to it. As a res
  16. Oh, no problem; perhaps we both misunderstood each other a bit. I'll tell you what, though, with the number of secondhand locos that are sold without their manuals, service sheets or their detailing/accessory bags, there must be a hell of a lot of now largely useless bits of paper and anonymous sets of steps, draincocks and brake rods cluttering up drawers in modellers' homes! Pete T.
  17. Thank you for the advice, G-BOAF, and I did think about that aspect while typing my post. Aside from my engineering work I've also worked as a technical illustrator for nearly 40 years, so thinking about, dealing with and chasing up copyright and associated issues is far from lost on me. However, on this occasion, creating a copy of an obsolete document that the publisher has no interest in making available to give to someone for their own personal use, to replace a mislaid original, without commercial loss to the copyright holder and without technical liability, is surely not a problem (cer
  18. Yes, I can. Also I can confirm it's a Loksound V4.0 decoder. Functions are (quoted exactly in Hornby's words, which are a little strange sometimes!): F0 - Not applicable F1 - Sound on/off F2 - Whistle long F3 - Coupler F4 - Whistle short F5 - Injector F6 - Shunting mode F7 - Coal shovelling F8 - Cylinder blow out F9 - Safety valve F10 - Curve squeal F11 - Rail clank F12 - Conductor's signal F13 - Sand F14 - Air pump (slow) F15 - Air pump (fast) Hope that sorts you out. However, since you
  19. That was my first thought, but without knowing the timescale of exhibitions getting going again, nor knowing whether or not you had a time limit on recreating Ardingly, I wasn't going to mention it. Funnily enough, my T9 rebuild statistics are the same as yours. That's a lovely sentiment. And a good excuse for a bit of legitimate modelling time! If I come across a later tender in Malachite, would you like me to PM you, just in case? Pete T. P.S. - Just thought about the Lemaitre chimney. Dave Ellis at SE Finecas
  20. Two more points to go with the cab windows comment above: 1. Ardingly was certainly one of the Schools to get a Lemaitre multiple blastpipe and chimney, but I don't know when the conversion was carried out. 2. It had the later style tender, with curved backing-plate steps that echoed those on the loco and toolboxes that ran across the tender rather than being sited longitudinally on each side, as in your photo of Wellington. Hornby certainly make the later type tender, and they've done it in the Malachite livery if that's what you're after. Unfortunately, the model Hornby ma
  21. Dart, dartboard, bullseye. Absolutely the nub of the problem. Well said, John. Pete T.
  22. Actually, at risk of being a bit pedantic (and going a bit further off topic), robot built cars can be quite different in dimensions from one side to the other, too. In most cases it doesn't matter that much - so long as every bodyshell made for a particular car model is consistently 3/4 inch longer on one side than the other, you can account for the deviation from drawing and everything will consistently fit together the same way on each body made. However, the problems rack up very quickly when dimensions vary from one assembly to the next - i.e. the consistency goes out of the
  23. That's not the bit that qualifies you as 'old' (in my book you can get excited about having 'the right tool at the right price' for the job at any age). It's the bit beforehand, saying how the people in the shop don't know anything about the stuff they're selling; that definitely means you've joined the club of grumpy old so-and-so's. And I expect you're right, too. Pete T.
  24. And on how many other affordable cars could you open the bonnet and sit in comfort on the front wheel while you worked on the engine? Pete T.
  25. 'Hark, the Herald axles swing', as we Triumph drivers used to say. At least with the Italian Michelotti design of the Herald and Vitesse, the back end of your car would hop around a roundabout in a reasonably stylish sort of way. Pete T.
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