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Firecracker

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  1. Another quick update, with the aftermath of today’s visit to Monk Bar models. First up, one of the Dapol bogie bolster E’s followed me home. Very nice, the brake rigging and exquisite stanchions stand out in particular. Only issue I might have is with the coupling pockets, I can see why they’re mounted so far out on the bogies, but even with short kadees the gap between the buffers is a mite excessive. It’s getting quite heavily weathered, plan is a wagon still in its last BR livery that’s still plugging on for the S&T department. It’s planned to get a load of bits of signal gantry as well. The next round of projects arrived as well, including one of the new dia. 1/142&1/124 13t hoppers. Now a while ago I built one of Five79’s lovely 21t minerals and said did Peco fancy redoing the Parkside instructions to the same standard? Well, if these are what Peco will produce going forward, I’m suitably impressed. Owain
  2. Just a quick photo, the meeting of the two Rustons. So whilst Queenie (aka ‘Charlie Strong’) shunts the station groups wagon and the tool van into a position where it can be unloaded, the soon to be named ‘Alfie’ passes with a short working for the S&T department. Owain
  3. A bit more, following it’s decoder being addressed correctly, the class 24 got gently weathered, with the usual games workshop and MIG products. Mostly focussed on the roof, the intention is a machine that’s used regularly, looked after, cleaned and stabled outside. As it may be noticed from this, the foam core back scene has been finished. Which makes it easier to get photos like this without the background clutter distracting from the subject. At the northern end, an idea occurred which is because the layout is used sometimes without the northern fiddleyard board in place, to prevent accidents and improve the cosmetics there would be a removable panel in the back scene (yes, that bridge us getting a wing wall at some point) thus: Finally, some Woodland Scenics fencing bought on spec a while back has been added to one of the field hedges. Owain
  4. A little bit more progress. First up, the yellow Ruston has had its decoder fitted and has been reunited with its runner (which in turn has had the spurious lettering removed). The result on the deck of the conflat incidentally is a wash of Games Workshop ‘Nuln Oil’ over a coat of Humbrol 121. The idea is this is staying pretty clean, to suggest its recently ex-works. Then, a catch-up session with decoders, with the Ruston, the W&M railbus and the class 24 getting their addresses sorted. Finally, after over a year the MF135 tractor that sits in the field above the PWay yard has been weathered, with a mix of MIG and Games Workshop products. The bale spike also gained some paint at the same time. Owain
  5. Right. Apologies for the prolonged absence, it’s been a crazy busy summer (following on from a busy spring, but, to quote Ned Kelly, ‘Such is life’). Anywhere, where were we? For those who haven’t already discovered it, have a look at Ruston’s ‘Charlie Strong Metals (and watery lane sidings)’. If you like excellent workmanship, he’s got it in spades and if (like me) you’re a Peaky Blinders fan, the name dropping is brilliant. Anyway, he’s done a Ruston in the fictional livery of Alfie Solomons (Civil engineering) of Camden Town (in the series, Alfie’s a Jewish gangster from Camden, played by the superb Tom Hardy. But I digress.). Anyway, I’d already tipped my hat with the suggestion that the other Ruston 48ds had entered preservation from Charlie’s yard, so when he suggests in his thread that preservationists are after the one ex. ole Alfie, what’s a man to do? Especially when Hornby releases one in (incorrect) Grant Plant yellow which Monk Bar happened to have in the case when I popped in today. So a quick dab with a bit of white spirit on a cotton wool bud later, it poses on its first trial run in Sedbergh yard. The sign writing is next to do, rumour has it it’s being named as well. In reality, it’s getting the wheels repainted and a gaugemaster 6 pin decoder fitted. It might end up with a stay alive shoehorned in as well (I do fancy having one that runs reliably without the runner wagon). Also picked up (well done amazon, you’ve finally, after 5 years, started to produce recommendations for things I’m actually interested in) some new stuff to try. In less positive news, following some customer work, I decided to attack (finally) one of the chassis blocks of the Heljan duff’s seen earlier with the milling machine. It skimmed up Ok, however during machining a crack appeared. So during... And after. That wasn’t supposed to happen. Anyone want a Heljan duff with a very duff chassis block? Ah well, another flat battery in the car park of life.... Owain
  6. Today’s running session has yielded a few more photos, so here’s a selection of the standard mogul (this appears a lot because a) I like it and b) it runs smooth as oiled silk) and the class 24 in passenger services. A charter with the vintage carriages and the 56xx also makes an appearance, the bubble pops in and the little Ruston gets in on the fun with a short pway working. Owain
  7. That was my understanding as well, so I’m glad you confirm it! Think Hatton have said they’re covering the NER in later releases. Owain
  8. A very quick update, breathing on the Hornby coaches. I’ve focussed on the brake van and the SECR first, because the NBR efforts are page holders, to represent vehicles in NER livery. Anyway, they’ve both gained running boards from Evergreen styrene and the brake has been relettered as a Caledonian vehicle, with the ends retouched in Crimson. Now I know there’s a lot of errors with this, the paneling on the van is wrong, the livery details are wrong, the colours aren’t quite right, there should be a single rather than the double door into the guards compartment, but in my defence, it’s closer to the Caley vans than anything that the LNWR had (at least the Caley vans had the glazed end and duckets) If anyone who likes my ‘what if’ ramblings wants to know how these survived, the SECR coach was a recovered from its retirement as a summerhouse at St Bees and originally arrived in Cumbria in WW2 as transport for workers at ROF Drigg. The brake was recovered from a small holding outside Wigton, where it had been used as a feed and tack store. It owes its survival to being protected from the elements by a second shed being built over it and it’s fortunate discovery by a supporter of the railway, one Ben ‘Monkey’ Harris, who happened to also own the local company ‘Harris Plant’ who’d been contracted to clear the site for development. So it’s brisk recovery and despatch to Sedbergh on a Hiab lorry resulted. Owain
  9. Finally managed to get a photo I was happy enough with to put on this thread. 76080 departs Sedbergh with the 1100 departure for Ingleton. Owain
  10. A couple from today’s services, with the 8f on the lunchtime diner and the standard mogul on the passenger service, plus the bubble filling in. The class 24’s stabled in the yard, ready for tomorrow’s service (one diesel and one steam loco, no diner). The 8F propels the empty diner stock to shed for stabling and servicing, returning with the maroon rake. This runs the last train, the mogul will propel its coaches to shed to stable in Jackdaw siding and the maroon rake will stable in the platform overnight, to be taken out by the 24 as the first train of the day tomorrow Owain
  11. It’s one of the two that were staff accommodation at the Bungalow Hotel, Sandsend, that were recovered to Blennerhasset mill. It’s been rechassised onto the PMV chassis following the discovery of the condition of the LMS ex tube wagon chassis it was on (which the railways CME condemned on the spot). As an aside, the class 24 owes its survival to one Bill Fredrickson (who worked in BR management on the LM and GE regions). He purchased it (along with the class 25 and the class 15 (which was dumped at Stratford, awaiting scrapping, after its second life as a carriage heating unit) from BR and ownership was transferred to the railway trust in return for life membership. The class 24 has been a long term overhaul project, including major bodywork, a full engine overhaul, rewinding of the traction motors and retyreing, but has now reentered service, allowing the class 25 to be withdrawn for an overdue top end overhaul on the power unit and some bogie work. Owain
  12. So, when I splashed out on the new controller, Martin (being the shrewd gadgie he is) instead of plopping something simple onto the track to demo it in the shop laid temptation before me in the form of a very nice sound fitted class 24. After token resistance, I caved in and allowed him to order one in for me. It arrived today. Itsa verra noice... You feeling alright Bachman? The NEM pockets are even at the right height.. Now the last time I played with DCC sound was a while ago and it was a bit gimmicky at the time. Now, however, I do like it. Another project was purchased, following a bit of playing. Take a Hornby generic 6w coach and the chassis out of a park side SECR PMV kit (which will also yield a grounded body) and (hopefully) you’ll end up with something that’s definitely got that preserved edge and is different. Owain
  13. What is it with Bachmann and NEM pockets? On the mark 1’s, they’re too high. On the LMS porthole, they’re too low (as a kadee shows against the test gauge). I decided I wanted to keep the close coupler mechanism and for once it’s not the pocket’s too slack, so the pocket needed to be raised. So file out the lower edge of the groove in the arm where it runs on the floor and add a shim to the the top edge to raise it. Think that’s called a result. But WHY!? And running in the diner rake. A couple more photos, the signals have been sited with the 8F (still needs a little dirt) on the diner and the 4F on a passenger. The diner departs southwards. Owain
  14. The results of the latest wringing out of my wallet at my local. First up, I picked up two packs of the whitemetal figures Hornby have released as the Basset Lowke steampunk effort. Now, the detail on these is exquisite, they scale to between 5’4” to 6’4” tall and for a preserved railway they’ll add a nice cameo or two. Not everyone’s cup of tea (other beverages are available) but I think I’ll have fun with these. Just got to loose the bases first. Next up, a Stanier porthole composite at a reduced price (I saw this last week and resolved to look for it the following week). Idea is it’s going into the diner rake as non-dining accommodation. Also passengers for the rail busses and a coach or two lurk in the background. On the modelling front, I’ve made a start on the signals, from the Ratio kits. Some of these were built for a previous layout, they’re being tarted up and breathed on. So from L to R, we have Pl 1 northbound starter, pl1 southbound starter, pl2 northbound starter (with disc for Waterside siding (I’m not 100 % sure how correct this signal is, so if it’s wrong, shout)) and finally pl2 southbound starter, with doll for movements to the shed. Apart from a ground signal to control the run round movements, that’s the lot, I’m assuming all other signals are off stage. Owain
  15. Because we haven’t had some for a while, I fancied a few photos showing the overall progress. So, the pway gang natter to one of the station lot, who’s tidying up the grass with the fergie and topper. Their steed waits on the headshunt along with the gunpowder van that’s used as a mobile store. The class 15 sits on a southbound service. The northbound DMU it’s waiting for runs in and tokens are swapped. The shop stores vans in the car park and someone’s taking their dad out for a day on the train. The Ruston sits in Waterside siding with a short works train. The trout’s to be loaded with fresh ballast for a spot ballasting job later in the week. The top of the car park, a snapper waits for the DMU to depart, a new running in board for Barbon gets its paint and a joke’s shared outside the S&T workshop container. Finally the class 15 departs southwards. Owain
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