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    Yate, S. Gloucestershire

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  1. Things have moved on a bit and I've got some brass centres cut now. It took a while since I referenced back to wheels I had cut some years ago and I thought that the settings for the cutters was asking for trouble. I use carbide cutters. They are a bit expensive and they show a marked tendency to go ping if you push them too hard. So I started off slow and easy on Thursday and got one centre done, then started notching things up a bit on Friday, and got two done, and finally did a bit more notching up and got three done yesterday - on the settings I had used some years ago. :-) All six on the sheet of brass they were cut from. I find this the best way to cut centres since it is easy to hold the centres for milling and mostly cut right through, but with each having four thin tabs to keep them located, ...and the six released from the plate with a small amount of cleaning up. I still have to go round them all with scrapers and small files to finish off the spokes. I had considered doing just one as a master for casting but I opted to go with cutting the lot so that I had them to hand relatively quickly. But I'll maybe consider doing the other wheels as masters for casting. Jim.
  2. flubrush


    Yes, it was the original oval version at that Manchester exhibition. I managed to wangle a visit travelling home from a job further south in England to Scotland. It was across the aisle from Heckmondwike which was doing the rounds showing off P4. I do remember being handed the controller to carry out the shunting in the yard and finding out that the previous operator had somehow got the loco trapped in the yard and the only way out was to go through the shed. I fiddled around for a bit then, when I thought no one was looking, did a quick dive through the shed. No such luck :-) I think a good few spectators had realised my predicament and were just waiting. :-) Jim.
  3. The SSMRS stores has 28thou nickel silver strip for such requirements. It sits under the rail and can be glued to the timbers and the crossing nose soldered to it. Then you can hack about the uppers of the Society chairs to represent the crossing chairs. Jim.
  4. I've had difficulties during recuperation trying to concentrate on matters, including railway modelling. :-) But the arrival of a new book from the Caledonian Railway Society at the beginning of this week focussed minds wonderfully. https://www.crassoc.org.uk/web/node/374 I've now mapped out what locos I might build over the coming years and started work on the driving wheels I might need. I make my wheels by using my CNC mill to cut the spoke centres from brass, then fit steel tyres. I have to hand code some of the files for profiling the spokes and that usually causes a bit of messing around when I try to remember how I did it last time round, maybe several years before. :-) So I opted to produce the code for all the wheel sizes I might need so that it is available when required. The largest spoke centre on the right is for a 5' 9" 20 spoke driver which will suit any of the ubiquitous members or the Caledonian large 0-4-4 tank classes. The larger of the bogie wheel centres is for a 3' 2" wheel which also suits the large 0-4-4T. The next larger centre is fo a 5' 0" 16sp driver which will suit any variant of the Drummond 0-6-0 Jumbo. It will also suit the Lambie Class 1 4-4-0 tank along with the larger bogie wheel. The smallest centre is for a 4' 6" 14sp driver will will suit all the 0-6-0 goods tank classes. It will also suit the diminutive Drummond 0-4-4T along with the smaller centre for a 2' 6" bogie wheel. These are test cuts using Plastikard to prove out some of my hand coded files for CNC - easier on tools and nerves when trying them out for the first time. :-) The centres also have the distinctive deep boss of the Caledonian drivers. The Caledonian from Drummond to McIntosh was an inside cylinder line, so could have deep bosses on driving wheels. But most wheels available are for outside cylinder prototypes, where the boss depth was restricted by the motion. There's no way I'm going to build all these locos immediately - that's not the S scale way. :-) But I'll probably start cutting brass on a set of the 4' 6" wheel centres for an 0-6-0T and I know I've got the files available for any other wheels when the time comes. Jim.
  5. Some of the wheels on the SSMRS parts shelves are to the 4mm EM standard. Those will be the wheels manufactured by Alan Gibson Workshops - WW1, WW2, WW3, CW1 and the Gibson locomotive wheel range. I suspect that this might have been a deal that the late Robin Fielding had to come to with Colin Seymour to guarantee continuation of wheel supply when Alan Gibson retired and sold the business on. The Slaters wagon wheels, the CW2 coach wheels (original Alan Gibson) and the steel tyres to go with the brass loco wheel centres are all to SSMRS standard. The AGW wheels are also a bit undersize so watch out if you use them to design anything since Slater's wheels might not fit. Colin Seymour actually includes our S scale wagon wheels in his 4mm AGW range, listed as 3' 7" diameter wheels. :-) Jim.
  6. The price to produce a similar set of gauges today would be a lot more than the £6 price which was set a good few years ago. I made a few investigations when Parts Officer with no results which would have provided a reasonable price. The ones in the stores at the moment were made by me on my CNC machine and are a quite basic bar and slot type - to fill a gap. However, I had an idea that might produce a gauge and had started to investigate the possibilities just before the AGM, but got no further for other reasons. :-) Basically my idea is to produce a rolaguage type in two halves mounted on a screwed rod. Then the gauge can be adjusted to whatever variant is required and locknutted. The only critical part in manufacture is the width of the slot to fit the rail. This means that stores only have to stock a basic gauge assembly which can be adjusted to suit. I was never really happy with having a set of four gauges for standard gauge and the three widened gauges. Too often you require several gauges of the same measurement when building pointwork and you would accumulate a fair number of non-essential gauges if buying in sets of four. I'll have a chat with Paul Greene and see what he thinks. We are now using quite a reliable supplier who provides our steel tyres and back-to-back gauges and who might be able to do the job. Jim.
  7. I think that four foot radius is reckoned to be the minimum in S scale although some members have used smaller radii accompanied with care in selection of locomotives and rolling stock and probably a bit of judicious gauge widening. :-) Jim.
  8. As someone born in Glasgow and brought up on Clydeside, my recollection is that the city was never called "Glas-Gie" in local dialect, but "Glesga" with equal weight on both syllables. Edinburgh was called "Embra". :-) https://sco.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glesga Jim
  9. Wheels on the way shortly. :-) Jim.
  10. Ian, You will probably be OK. The society etches are 15thou nickel silver so there's about 8 thou thickness at the etch fold lines, which will be pretty strong provided you don't bend them too many times. :-) I always solder my fold lines because that's the way I've always done it. :-) Jim.
  11. You just reminded me and I dug around in the workshop to find the bits for the spoked wheels. I'll see if I can get the Cowells working - it hasn't moved for over three months. :-) Jim.
  12. In the UK, Ian Pusey drew up our track standards way back in the early 1960s and he calculated the gauge at 0.884" (22.45mm) to allow for tolerances - it should technically have been 0.883" (22.43mm) but we've worked quite happily to the "broader" gauge for fifty+ years. You could try having a discussion with Ian but I don't think you will win. :-) There are no special chairs for S scale apart from the slide chair available on the chair sprue. Providing low volume specialist chairs is an expensive business for a small sociaty so we hack the standard chairs around to reproduce the "specials". Any 4mm wheel with a flange width of 0.018" will run on our S scale standards - the Gibson 4mm wheels have that flange width and their flange depth is larger, being 0.025" against the SSMRS standard of 0.018". The tyre widths are usually at least as wide as the SSMRS ones. The SSMRS web site has a standards page here :- http://www.s-scale.org.uk/standards.htm The machine tools I mostly use these days are metric so I find myself working in metric when working in S scale. And when I use CAD I can scale to metric to work with the tools. I don't think anyone expects us to slavishly work with imperial rules. :-) You will find the constant 0.3969 come in handy in your calculator since that converts prototype inches to millimetres in S. Jim.
  13. "The excellent 80's BBC tv series "Edge of Darkness" about nuclear skulduggery features of course the home-made class 31; a bit of full-size kitbashing with a wooden body built over three diesel shunters at the Middleton Railway because apparently BR wouldn't co-operate. But the scenes in the secret underground nuclear reactor in the mountains were done using miniatures, and rear-projection for a view through the window of an underground office. " Sorry to come back to this a bit late but I was otherwise detained by thhe NHS for a month or two. :-) But to pick up on a point in the first post in the thread - it wasn't rear projection in the underground office, but front axial projection. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Front_projection_effect This gives better quality and requires a lot less set space that is required by back projection equipment. The projected material was shot on 35mm on a Mitchell camera and projected on a projector with a register pin gate to give stability. It all worked well considering we were advised that it was normally only attempted on a film stage, and not in a slate mine in North Wales. :-) Sorry for the bit of drift. :-) Jim.
  14. Sorry for the bum steer on Plastruct. I was going on memory that their cross-sections were square. The ones I remember being off-square were some of the heavier Slaters Microstrip. Hopefully Evergreen is better. Jim.
  15. Your other option is to go throuh the lists of good strip styrene suppliers and see if they do a size which suits - like Evergreen or Plastruct. Their strips are usually nicely square. Some of the cheaper strips are not. But cutting nice square strip from thick sheet is not easy. I actually use my CNC mill to cut any I need so that I get a nice square section. :-) Jim.
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