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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, 96701 said:

I have failed miserably with the electronics, so I have now moved to bolting new baseboard sections together so that I can play with tracklaying.

 

 

Edited by boxbrownie
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Oh 'allo, c'est moi again,

 

Here's another layout signal from the Ratio workshop. It's supposed to be a split Starter but the original had two different arms, the 'Main' should have been a central pivoted type, but there were none supplied in any of the kits I had, so my 'shorties' will have to do, unless I find some alternatives before I set up the mechanisms. This signal is a 'short-ar$e' like the original, though I think I could have lost 5mm on the main and dolly posts. This signal is a little different in that it had a repeater back to the signal box - hence the 3 isolators at the very top.

 

It needs painting, the primer was applied after I took the photo:

 

P1010621.JPG.4aa45163d13491ee743baa0e288d6ac8.JPG

 

Tomorrow's foray will be the Backing signal and its Theatre box.

 

Cheers,

 

Philip

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Currently on my workbench converting the latest Dapol O Gauge 48xx into something resembling a GWR 517 Class.....

 

IMG_2259.jpeg.2d1a0194affc00ad4b23cc19a730eba3.jpeg

 

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G

 

 

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My third old Atlas/Roco Plymouth #30 is finished. I really ought to weather them, but just can't bring myself to do it.

This one has been named, in memory of a certain RMweb Stalwart, particularly in the US/Canadian Section. ;)

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It was Jack "Shortliner" Trollope who sent me a link that introduced me to RMweb, so it's really his fault I've been inflicting my stuff on the Forum ever since... :D

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Posted (edited)

Latest on the plastic Big Boy...

 

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Well, I say 'plastic', but it is steadily acquiring metal! In a moment of Covid madness, I decided that the frames as supplied looked a bit plain compared to pictures of the real things so determined to add brake gear. Only there's rather a lot of it, with 16 braked wheels to contend with. Fortunately, plenty of bits n pieces of etched parts in stock so a pleasant afternoon spent sitting in the garden sunshine to produce this lot.

 

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And several late night sessions later, gingerly wielding the small soldering iron. It's slightly simplified compared to how it should be but I think it's done the job and in the spirit of the more basic nature of a plastic kit anyway. The clearances are tight but the wheels still all go round on push-along. Despite best efforts, I 'nicked' the plastic in one or two areas but a few careful brushes of the rat-tail file and all was well. Once painted it'll all blend into the background a bit more but still be 'there'.

 

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The main issue (for me) to tackle is to get the valve gear to work. I love the sight of Walschaerts valve gear lolloping around so, as you can see, the sight of the unaltered moulding (bottom) showing the expansion link and eccentric rod permanently frozen is anathema to me. Also no front part of the valve gear (combination lever and union link) provided at all. That'll never do! A fun challenge, methinks, to get plastic valve gear to work. The top casting is essentially the mirror image of the one below, but now with the expansion link cut away, the eccentric rod preserved and a suitable hole in the moulding provided to drop in a near identical etched expansion link (from an old Jamieson valve gear etch - never throw anything away!).

 

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The full set of parts laid out for one of the cylinder and motion assemblies. Coupling & connecting rods, eccentric crank and piston rod as per kit, eccentric rod salvaged and replacement expansion link provided as above and new combination lever and union link made (adapted from further bits of valve gear etch), once some measurements had been made to establish suitable hole spacings. Repeat three further times!

 

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Temporarily placed in position for the camera - that looks a bit more like it! As well as the space made in the motion bracket for the expansion link, similar cavities need to be made in the valve guide (for the top connection of the combination lever) and the drop link off the crosshead (for one end of the union link). The only all soldered pin joint needed will be that between union link and combination lever - I'll do that first before attaching anything to plastic! Other mod needed will be to the fixing of the eccentric crank in the slot driving wheel. As provided, this results in the 'nonsense' setting of the crank end being exactly in alignment with the axle, thus imparting no movement to the eccentric rod at all. This alteration easily achieved by filing a little angle off the shaped pin of the crank where it fits into the wheel.

 

More soon, hopefully when I'm at the stage of it all moving round under push-along!

 

Edited by LNER4479
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54 minutes ago, LNER4479 said:

A fun challenge, methinks, to get plastic valve gear to work.

I never got it to work on the Airfix Pug, Prairie or Biggin Hill.... serious respect if you manage it on this!!! :good:

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Before lock-down, discovered I had a spare Kato 009 mech and soon found a non-descript 3D print body to fit it.   I already had sufficient steamers and diesels for my "East Quay" line but this body looked so ancient that it represented a petrol tractor for handling the tip wagons in the sand pits.   With two bonnets each housing an engine, it definitely was a loco that could only go forward in each direction!   It came with open sides but "East Quay" is at the mouth of the River Rother and very exposed to the elements.   Luckily an old London tram trailer body was being demolished at Winchelsea so a couple of the saloon doors provided the solution to enclose the sides giving the driver the perfect wind-proof 'shed'.   So here it is before I add any further embellishments.

heath robinson on test 6.6.2020.JPG

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I'm back with the latest addition to the signals. This one caused me some issues - the day I started it was a 'bad' dat on the domestic front - one step forwards and three back!!

 

I managed to burn out two of my pico-LEDs - AAAArrrghhhh! They do NOT appreciate power without the resistors - even at a very low voltage - lesson learnt this end.

 

This is a Backing signal - the station did not have one of these - it was a standard Stop signal with Theatre box - but for a bit of variety and after consultation with Mike, The Stationmaster of this parish, he suggested I could do one of these. It works but I haven't yet found a way of making the word in the box appear when the signal is 'on'. It does says 'Goods' on some tracing paper behind but I think the original plastic is just too opaque. I don't particularly want to cut it off and carve out the screen, but I may not have the option but to do it - ar$e! And just for completeness, the cameraman wasn't up to much today either! ..........................

 

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Cheers everyone and keep safe - we're out of confinement, but restrictions are still in force.

 

Philip

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Further to the earlier, I wasn't too happy with the result so I decided to hack the Box off and modify the spare I had. The original plastic screen was removed taking care not to damage the two side supports - one 'pinged'. To solidify the supports a piece of tracing paper was superglued to the back now replacing the original plastic screen.

 

A test run showed that two thicknesses of tracing paper ought to stop words bleeding through when the Box was 'off' - it wasn't terribly convincing but it's better than before. Here are the results of the modification:

 

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Cheers,

 

Philip

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Thanks to all the chaps (and chapesses) giving me thumbs up - it's much appreciated. Just as a follow-follow-on, I have noticed that because my signals are a mix'n'match of several kits, the arms don't necessarily match the posts pivot-wise. I think there may be some more work to be done when I get round to the mechanisms. For the photos, the arms have been held in place by blu-tak! Nonetheless, I'm quite happy with the outcomes so far as it's my first modelling involving modifications ever. The last of the signals to be done over the next few days will be three single arm and five ground signals.

 

Cheers,

 

Philip

 

 

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A fun project from ‘David’s railway bits’ on Shapeways, some micro BR for 009. ;)
I made the error of choosing the cheap versatile plastic and spent ages sanding, painting and sanding!

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but I’m getting there after 7 coats!

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I can’t find any 2mm HST powercar transfers though so may have to cheat and use the solid white ones off the coaches. 

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No letters this time (thanks chaps), just 2 locos made it to the new board today. Now moving on from MERG electronics to Templot to build a couple of points to connect those 2 tracks together on a curve.

 

Not much to learn, then.

IMG_0800.jpg

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Hello chums,

 

The last of the signals (for the time being) were constructed and then went through the paint-shop. I thought there were three single signals, but it turned out to be four plus three ground signals - two 'standard', one tall and one extra-tall. Two other GSs will have to wait until I get a new supply of yellow pico-LEDs. I was pleasantly surprised that the ground signals work, though depending on the pivot alignments, the arm drops a little too far when 'on'. I don't think I shall modify these are there is very little plastic with which to play around, but I shall take greater care when drilling out the lenses on the next lot - when I get around to finding a source of the older kits.

 

Here are a few photos (the background is - er - wanting, but it was the only place where the light was good enough today):

 

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Right! Now the basic construction of the signals has been done, how do I get the mechanisms to work?

 

If anyone is interested, I do have a track diagram showing the signals in their respective positions. Mike, The Stationmaster, kindly assisted me in identifying what the signals were and their function.

 

Cheers,

 

Philip

 

 

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On 06/06/2020 at 12:48, F-UnitMad said:

I never got it to work on the Airfix Pug, Prairie or Biggin Hill.... serious respect if you manage it on this!!! :good:

Well, nothing like a challenge! Here we go then ...

 

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Yet more metal being added. One of main issues with getting all this to work is the usual problem of clearance between the leading coupling rod bearing and the back of the crosshead, acerbated in this case by the plastic coupling rods having little pips that simply locate in holes in the wheels, with no way of keeping them tight to the wheel. Hopeless for what I'm trying to achieve. So a small length of brass tube to act as a bearing and a 12BA bolt CAREFULLY(!) screwed into a hole drilled into the back of the coupling rod (pip removed). Which in turn caught on the axle washers I made earlier! So a further bit of fettling required till all was well.

 

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Meanwhile, the connecting rods were connected to the back of the cross head using a 14BA bolt, set in a slightly countersunk washer. As supplied, the plastic parts had no fixing arrangement for this at all!

 

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And here, this is how close it all is ...

 

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... even with the cylinders set out slightly further than they should be!

 

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OK ... with the main rods 'sorted', here are the mods to the eccentric crank. Another tricky bearing arrangement to get right. As supplied, there is a sizeable hole in the end of the crank where the large end of the (fixed) eccentric rod just sits doing nothing. After quite a bit of thunking, I elected to first of all plug the hole with a bit of spare sprue (left), leave to harden overnight then dress back to leave a small central pip (centre), then superglue a washer to act as the bearing (right). Also pushes the eccentric rod out a little to help with clearances. It's not like we have to worry about gauge with a big American loco!

 

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Assembly of crank to rod then relatively simple, with a 0.6mm hole in crank, 0.5mm hole in large end of rod then a Peco track pin nicely runs in the former and a push fit on to the latter, with a blob of superglue on the outer end. I also drilled out the inside (non-washer) end of the hole in the crank very slightly with a 1.4mm drill bit so as to recess the head of the pin - again tight clearances, this time between the inside of the crank and the connecting rod, once per revolution.

 

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Attach previously-sourced expansion links to the little end of the eccentric rods in a similar matter. Like a lot of this loco - repeat three times!

 

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And now for final assembly. Apologies, didn't show the combination lever / union links being put together - conventional soldered pin joint in the middle then a piece of 0.5mm brass wire through holes drilled in crosshead drop link (union link) and valve guide (combination lever).

 

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The final dodge required! As mentioned in earlier post, the cranks have a half round end that locates in a similarly shaped hole in the wheel such that there is no relative movement of the crank end (on the left). To impart said movement, I've filed a flat at about 30 degrees so as the crank can be set 'forward' as it should be (on the right). This 'larger than life' close-up shows quite well the recessed arrangement for the pins, whose ends have been filed flat to be doubly sure!

 

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And there we have it! Dontchya just love the look of Walschaerts valve? Well, I do! This (of course) is the front engine, with its longer piston and valve rods and also now with front cowcatcher assembly affixed.

 

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Why have one when you can have two? The glass of wine was satisfying.

 

But does it actually work, I hear you ask? Well, no video as such, but hopefully the following four photos will help:

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If I was really clever, I'd put them together in a little presentation with the first one fading into the next ... But I'm not that clever.

 

Just need to finish it all off now!

 

Edited by LNER4479
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Originally started life as a Bachmann Skarloey.

 

When finished, this will represent Awdry's 'Skarloey' (essentially No. 1 'Talyllyn' pre 1958 rebuild). There has already been a fair amount hacking around (running plate removed) as well as the extra front sandbox.

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The most challenging aspect so far has been the removal of the incorrect mazak coal load on the drivers side. Drilling and the use of a burr followed....with lots of colourful language!
 

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On 30/05/2020 at 19:40, LNER4479 said:

 

Well, I'm not strictly speaking SI (although I am largely staying at home) and I rarely need an excuse to do some modelling; but thought I'd enter into the spirit, very much in the light-hearted vein.

 

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Definitely look a bit weird on Shap! But the first push along test was successful, ran smoothly, all wheels stayed on the rails and it negotiated corners perfectly OK. So the washers and weights certainly not doing any harm.

 

More soon!

Hi There,

 

You need one of these for Shap.

 

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Gibbo.

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there is a conversion kit available for for the skarloe to talyllyn if any of those parts are useful like the backhead

Edited by sir douglas
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On 30/05/2020 at 19:40, LNER4479 said:

 

Well, I'm not strictly speaking SI (although I am largely staying at home) and I rarely need an excuse to do some modelling; but thought I'd enter into the spirit, very much in the light-hearted vein.

 

A particular loco type that I've long had a fascination for is:

DSC06317.jpg.e510948a1550da5b83fce66becbb5d6a.jpg

 

Made it my business to be in the States last year when this magnificent beast breathed steam once again.

 

But I'm not a US modeller! And it's rather an expensive purchase just to say I've got one. However, other options exist ...

 

DSC09973_LR.jpg.9a2b29ec3764afaa4d2248c404ffb912.jpg

Bought this some years ago - think it cost me £16. But it's been sitting in a drawer ever since, waiting for ... well, what the heck, when exactly AM I going to build the thing? So here we go (I've not made a plastic kit for years ... other than the odd wagon kit).

 

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Part No.1 and I'm into tinkering with the thing straightaway. The main handrail is a solid casting as part of the main boiler part - bit too crude for my liking so out with the cutters. And the knife. And the files.

 

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That's better! Used up my entire stock of 'long' handrail knobs in one go (but I never use them for anything else these days).

 

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More fiddling. Whilst I don't intend motorising it as such, I would like the wheels to go round as smoothly as possible in 'push along' mode. So I made up a series of washers to stop the wheels rubbing on the sides of the chassis blocks and to reduce the overall 'slop'. Not shown are some weights added to the bottom of the chassis blocks to encourage the wheels to stay on the rails. And - in a moment of true madness - I've decided to add brake rigging as it all looks a bit bare without them.

 

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Wheels now fitted with boiler unit (now sprayed satin black) temporarily plonked on top. Looks a bit ungainly at this stage - needs the front and rear bogies but they'll have to wait for now.

 

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Definitely look a bit weird on Shap! But the first push along test was successful, ran smoothly, all wheels stayed on the rails and it negotiated corners perfectly OK. So the washers and weights certainly not doing any harm.

 

More soon!

 

?!?!?!?

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With the current spare time duringLLockdown I have been going through my OO and HO locos giving them all a good run that many have never really had on end to end layouts. It's been a great way to sort out any faults. Even the Kadee couplers have been checked against the Kadee height gauges.

 

My Hornby Black Motor has run fine on the short test track but when I put it on large test circuit the decoder in it didn't like the Digikeijs DR5000 and even after resetting the decoder still no joy so a replacement decoder was fitted and it now runs fine on the Digikeijs aswell as the Digitrax system and the Sprog. First time I have had this issue.

 

The loco has now had further weathering and will get one more run to make sure all the wheels and pickups are clear of the weathering paints then it's back in it's box

20200618_081527.jpg

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I’ve been busy converting one of these Minitrains F&C 0.4.0 locos

14B30CDE-D550-4E40-93E0-529F5F640931.jpeg.c91d86476db056e1083fdda1b0a9a6d5.jpeg
 

To a classic ‘American’ 4.4.0 by inserting an Atlas N gauge in as a new chassis. 
Still waiting for the big balloon stack from Shapeways ;)

 

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49256D91-76AD-46C5-9167-E06324DB1628.jpeg.0a928b6fdc3f82c38aa361ea7649a699.jpeg

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Last Big Boy instalment:

 

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With the fiddly chassis work done, time for a few details on the body. You may recall, that one of my first jobs was to remove the all-moulded main handrail so here's the replacement 0.5mm n/s wire being fitted into position. The distinctive front bell awaits fitment.

 

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Other principal fitting on the driver's side is the regulator rod linkage (also moulded on the as-bought boiler. So this was a bit of fun making up these various parts.

 

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And now fitted, showing where it all goes (once painted, it'll be much less prominent).

 

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Not much to the tender; more or less made up as per kit. Only thing of note is, again, the replacement of the moulded rear top rails with similar metal ones.

 

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And the final part fitted ... rather boringly, was the injector pipe assemblies either side.

 

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Finished ... but anonymous.

 

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Bet that's surprised you? Obviously #4014 is the star of the moment; however, the kit (from some years ago) only includes transfers for 4006 or 4023. Both of which - oddly enough - I caught up with on the trip last year. 4023 is the one prominently displayed above the freeway on the outskirts of Omaha and, as I rather enjoyed that display, that was the one I plumped for.

 

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Just to prove the back of the tender got its marking!

 

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Now for a couple of more realistic / dramatic angles. I think it looks like a Big Boy? (ie, despite it being a bit basic in places, the kit captures the overall look well and seems to be pretty much to scale. I don't have a drawing to compare it with!)

 

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I took a picture of 4023 at Omaha from this sort of angle, which emphasises their massive size.

 

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And finally, the closest angle I could get to my fave 2019 picture of #4014.

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And now I'll leave you in peace - although I'm preparing a US photo feature for the forthcoming BRM virtual exhibition which might feature a few Big Boys (if that floats yer boat).

 

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