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2mm Coal Tank test build

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Bad news about the BH Enterprises whistles, I've just used up the last of my 25+ year old stash.

 

Simon

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On 29/03/2020 at 15:12, Nick Mitchell said:

Having taken time off to build a Fowler 2-6-4T (plus a few other distractions), the Coal Tank is now back on my workbench for finishing off the seemingly endless list of details. I have reached the milestone of having attached every usable part from the etches.

 

At the rear end, I've added the tool boxes. These are home made, with the basic shape filed form brass and the hinge straps added from strips of shim. You can see in the photos that part of the underside of the tool boxes has been filed away to give clearance for the stay alive capacitors in the bunker. They might look a bit skinny - I was struggling to find good photos or drawings for these, so resorted to measuring a Bachmann 4mm model. A good coal load will partially obscure them anyway...

 

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The lamp irons were supplied on the etched fret, but I had to re-make the top one, filing it out of scrap etch. This iron stands proud of the bunker rear, with a second layer of etch across the bottom arm of the inverted T shape.

 

The bottom 3 irons were supplied as flat pieces of strip, which required bending all in the same place. I drilled small holes in the bunker rear to locate them, which was quite a delicate operation - the rear sheet didn't quite reach the bottom of the bunker when I originally assembled it, with the gap being filled with solder. Also, because the metal is only 4 thou thick, it is very easily distorted. I should really have put a reinforcing piece behind it, and marked/drilled the holes while it was still flat on the etch, but you live and learn! The irons were soldered in place from inside the bunker.

The rear vacuum brake pipe is a confection of copper wire.

 

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I had originally bought some tool boxes form N Brass. As with the rest of their Coal Tank castings, these were grossly over-scale - even if they were meant to be N Gauge. I had started filing them down, but in the end decided it would be quicker and easier to start from scratch.

Here is one of the castings, slightly filed, for comparison!

 

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I also had to re-make the tender filler. I haven't fitted it yet, but here is my turned version compared with the casting.

 

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I'm still pondering how best to fix the roof on, but it will need detailing. Coal tank whistles are very small indeed. I've had a go at turning one on the end of a length of 0.6mm nickel silver rod. The major problem is getting the slit narrow enough. I've done this one with a piercing saw blade and made it as deep as I dared.

 

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Some years ago (about 15) I got hold of a pair of really nice turned brass whistles from BH Enterprises. I recently acquired some more, but these were about double the size of the original pair. N Brass do a cast "Small LMS" whistle, which is similar in size to the original BHE ones. Turns out that for a Coal Tank, the whistle needs to be much smaller than any of these. By way of comparison, here is my current effort held next to one of the old BHE whistles, which is fitted to a 4F.

 

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On the chassis, I've added the operating lever for the front damper, which passes diagonally across the bottom of the firebox and ash pan - just visible in the picture below. I've also fettled the front guard irons so they don't touch the brakes (and thereby short the body to the chassis), and fitted sand delivery pipes.

 

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I've got some details to make and add around the cab area now, including the reverser and a tangle of pipes. Because the cab is fairly open, it will be worth trying to suggest some of the interior detail. Below is the start of the firebox back-head, sawn and filed from 1mm thick brass. The curved recess in the bottom edge will clear the top of the motor, which protrudes slightly into the cab.

 

backhead.jpg.b016f9664a51c21d6dc233145946b112.jpg

I agree about the N Brass castings, Nick. They often look OK, but they’re nearly always oversized, I don’t really understand why. 
 

Tim
 

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Posted (edited)

At the opposite end of things from Nick, I have finally started work on mine! 
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Edited by garethashenden
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I don't think I've seen the 0-4-2 version before :jester:

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6 hours ago, Ian Smith said:

I don't think I've seen the 0-4-2 version before :jester:


Waiting on a gear from Shop 3...

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Posted (edited)

Bit more progress, little bit every day. I tried to make sandboxes, and I’m not too happy with them, so I’ll try again. 
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The boiler and smokebox have been made, one from 9mm tube, the other from 0.005” brass. The reverse curve want nearly as hard to form as I imagined it would be.

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This has now been attached to the footplate and it’s starting to look like a Coal Tank!

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The cab sides have suffered a bit and need reenforcing. I’d also like some advice on how to turn the smokebox door. What do I start with and how do I hold it? 

Edited by garethashenden
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Gareth, I’ve only made 3 smokebox doors (but I’ve employed the same method for all). I start off with a bit of brass bar smaller than the smokebox door, face it off then solder a piece of 0.028” nickel silver sheet to the end of the bar. To get rid of all the corners on the sheet I have used a parting off tool parallel to the lathe bed to get an over-sized disc (my father and brother being toolmaker engineers would despair but it worked for me - but it did squeal a bit. I think I did the last one with a hand graver). Normal tools or hand gravers are used to shape and thin the disc from then on and when complete the smokebox door is unsoldered from the brass bar.

Ian

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Still picking away at this. The smokebox door went pretty well. The chimney, not so much. The first one was good, but I forgot to allow material for the bottom flare. The second one was much better, but the top has an incorrect dimension. The inner lip is 0.5mm too small, and I forgot the taper, so it’s a bit too stout looking. The flare is too thick, but obviously that can be fixed. Think I’ll just make a third.

 

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