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I wasn't sure where to post this as this project will probably seem a bit noddy to most of you, so I decided to classify it as a 'modification' project.

 

A bit of background, I received my first trainset when I was a kid in the seventies, it was a Triang and consisted of a Battle of Britain Class steam loco, a Class 29 Diesel, a Dockyard Shunter with some freight wagons and some red mark 2 coaches. The layout was fitted to a board and it was housed in the garage, a pretty decent setup for the time. I don't know why but my favourite loco was always the shunter - still have it, although its in a bit of a sorry state.

 

As I entered my early teens the set became a bit tired and I started to lose interest, until I received my second set which was the Lima freight set with a green Deltic. My interest grew again and as I had started to earn pocket money, I began to build the set with mostly second hand stock from Hatton's in Smithdown Road - you couldn't get me away from that shop at the time! A second hand 37 with blue mark 2 coaches, new HST cars with second hand mark 3 coaches and other nik naks, whatever I could afford.

 

Anyway I always wanted the Hornby Class 08 shunter in BR blue but couldn't afford it or justify it really. However I did manage to pick up a second hand Lima Class 09 from Hattons for I think it was £4.50. The model wasn't as refined as the Hornby and it was a bit knocked about, as it had no buffers and the rear ladders were missing - but it was a shunter! 

 

So this loco had been in storage for a least 25 years, maybe more and I stripped it down and serviced it mechanically and electrically and it runs as good as gold. So what to do with it? Sell it, I'm quite fond of it and would then be thinking about replacing it but again, I can't really justify that and would rather spend money on a decent 47 or 56. It got me thinking, why do any of us bother buying shunters for a layout? They aren't very practical are they and they feel more like a prop than something you are going to give any real amount of running on the layout.

 

So I've decided to keep the loco as orginal as possible and just make modest improvements on a tight budget (theme here). I've already embarked on the DCC route so the most expensive part will probaly be the decoder for about a tenner, although my gut feeling is that I'll also need a stay alive, but I can build that. I finally managed to get the buffers for £4 but they need finishing properly. The glazing units cost £1.50 and look great, transforming the model, my loco never had a glazing unit and I'm not sure whether Lima actually fitted them, does anyone know? I've fitted five LEDs including a cab light for a total cost of £1.75 and the 0.5mm fibre optic cost 99p for a metre. I'm currently (pun) sizing the resistors, only 250ohm for the whites but I'll probably up that. 1K for the reds and 10K for the cab light which both look OK. There is some light bleed, so I'll probably need more internal paint but this is the first time I've done this so I'm still learning. I hope there is enough space for all the electronics!

 

    

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Class 09 (5).jpg

Edited by APT Fan
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10 hours ago, APT Fan said:

why do any of us bother buying shunters for a layout? They aren't very practical are they and they feel more like a prop than something you are going to give any real amount of running on the layout.

 

 

Ha ha all of my loco's are shunters !

 

The Lima 08 is a little distorted shape wise but it can still look the part, as you have shown. 35-40 years ago I detailed this one up - the coupling rods can stand a little thinning down, but not all the way, they aren't strong enough, so I practised a little 'Tromp-L'oeil' - the rods are matt black with the bosses red and a thin red line joining them up. Looks a bit rubbish in the cold light of day but on a layout it wasn't all bad !

 

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38 minutes ago, Barclay said:

Ha ha all of my loco's are shunters !

 

The Lima 08 is a little distorted shape wise but it can still look the part, as you have shown. 35-40 years ago I detailed this one up - the coupling rods can stand a little thinning down, but not all the way, they aren't strong enough, so I practised a little 'Tromp-L'oeil' - the rods are matt black with the bosses red and a thin red line joining them up. Looks a bit rubbish in the cold light of day but on a layout it wasn't all bad !

 

WP_20200629_08_31_21_Pro.jpg.d133e8015560089445197d5129b8e6e9.jpg

 

Really? Is your layout a shunting yard? I'd get that if I were to ever build a shunting yard, but even then I started thinking about how the coupling / uncoupling would work when moving coaches short distances, I'd soon get bored with that side. I guess I just like to see locos running and pulling loads, at least with DCC, if this loco does spend a lot of time stopped I can still have the lights on for a bit of interest.

 

I'm looking at painting the front ladders black and I'd like to have a go at 3D printing some replacements for the rear. Repaint the hand rails silver and the wheel couplings yellow, maybe add some overhead wires decals too.

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Oh yes - shunting rules, and the 08 is surely the most charismatic of BR's loco's...

I have to say though I went back in time many years ago so this is the only diesel on the layout now - it's an old Kitmaster body on a Crownline or Impetus chassis. Not quite right for the LMS version but I might tweak it one day. I love the lighting on your loco, that kind of stuff is beyond me, especially in DC..

 

I remember that Lima loco ran very well back in the day. I added pickups to the centre axle and that helped with reliability.

 

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On 29/06/2020 at 10:16, Barclay said:

Oh yes - shunting rules, and the 08 is surely the most charismatic of BR's loco's...

I have to say though I went back in time many years ago so this is the only diesel on the layout now - it's an old Kitmaster body on a Crownline or Impetus chassis. Not quite right for the LMS version but I might tweak it one day. I love the lighting on your loco, that kind of stuff is beyond me, especially in DC..

 

I remember that Lima loco ran very well back in the day. I added pickups to the centre axle and that helped with reliability.

 

WP_20190209_11_44_56_Pro.jpg.2c741c39d0e7240d790493678aa7ba52.jpg

 

I notice that there is no glazing in the loco, seems to be a common theme for most manufacturers of older shunters, I wonder why? Space? I've fitted flush glazing, made a big difference especially with the cab lighting. I notice the rear ladders seem to use metal wire, do you know what material these are made from.

 

I studied electronics years ago but haven't done anything serious for ages, this little project has been very enjoyable and satisfying for me. I was inspired by this video:-

 

 

My main concern was getting the scaling correct for the lighting lenses, I noticed in the video the presenter had used 1.0mm fibre optic - but that was for a Class 47. These shunters seem to have been fitted with surface mount conduit type lighting and the lenses looked pretty small to me. Initially I was going to go for 0.75mm but after running a vernier across the lenses, I thought 0.5mm was a better match for the scale. I noticed in the video that the presenter painted the lenses red too for appearance purposes, I've done the same but in reality its really difficult to see this as the lenses are that small. You can't actually tell there is lighting there unless its lit, in a way that was the effect I was trying to achieve to maintain the appearance. The zoomed in picture shows the detail, the paint really isn't as bad as it looks here and the lens is actually correctly centred. Do people think I've got the scaling correct?

 

 

Class 09 (6).jpg

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I think it's right to keep things small - although I don't know how big the lenses were I don't think they should be prominent so they look really good.

 

I am a nightmare for not bothering with glazing, although on a recent project I filed up individual windows from sheet perspex and it was easier than I thought it would be, so when I upgrade this loco it will get windows!

 

The ladders were soldered up from brass wire, having first scored some guide lines in a bit of wood to hold them in place whilst soldering. I think etched brass signal ladders would do the trick though - Wizard Models do some that ought to suit.

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I'm pretty sure the Lima 09 never had glazing. Neither of mine do, nor any sign of it ever being there, and I don't recall seeing a photo of a standard model so fitted. 

 

I do like Barclay's disguised rods. They look just fine to me if I don't blow the photo up too far. I reckon they'd work well at "normal viewing distances". 

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If I was doing what you are then I’d probably go with 10k resistors on all the LEDs, they are so dim in real life it is hard to see that they are on. 
 

With the optic fibre you can hold the end of the fibre close to - but not touching - the bit of the soldering iron for a couple of seconds which will cause the end to melt slightly into a lens. 
 

Your mention of ladders confused me initially as originally 08s had ladders up the nose, but they were removed early on, I see that you are talking about the cab footsteps! 
 

Nice work on the loco though, hope you can get it running smoothly and slowly enough to be a usable shunter. 
 

Andi

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4 hours ago, Dagworth said:

If I was doing what you are then I’d probably go with 10k resistors on all the LEDs, they are so dim in real life it is hard to see that they are on. 
 

With the optic fibre you can hold the end of the fibre close to - but not touching - the bit of the soldering iron for a couple of seconds which will cause the end to melt slightly into a lens. 
 

Your mention of ladders confused me initially as originally 08s had ladders up the nose, but they were removed early on, I see that you are talking about the cab footsteps! 
 

Nice work on the loco though, hope you can get it running smoothly and slowly enough to be a usable shunter. 
 

Andi

 

Thanks, yes steps! I've been playing with 3D printing and had a go at some ladders, so that was kind of on my mind. Even with quite low resistor values alot less light has been getting through than I expected - the light beam is tiny, so I might end up somewhere between the two resistances. I must admit I've struggled to produce the dome effect for a lens using heat and I ended up using a nail buffer instead. I think my missuss is getting a bit worried about me with her nail buffers going missing, I've also used her red nail varish for the lens colours, not to mention the cotton buds as well! I found this website as a reference for the 09 lighting appearance (copyrighted):-

 

http://www.totnestrains.com/class-09.html

 

Do you foresee a problem running this with DCC? In my mind, the motor receives a 'cleaner' and more accurate power supply from the electronics of a DCC decoder compared to a DC supply and some of those old transformers were really ropey in terms of being stablised and volt drop etc. Has the motor technology improved that much in newer locos?

 

I recently converted a Mainline Class 56 to DCC and slow speed running has really been improved, it even runs much better on DC! Oddly its worse at higher speeds and looses the signal when entering a right handed bend after a long straight. It's almost as if the body moves too much on the bend and my gut feeling is that more weight in the chassis might help and also a bit of housekeeping (tracks etc) before looking at the stay alive route.   

  

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

So I've completed the DCC installation and slow speed running is great, it crawls along nicely at a speed setting of 6 (127max). Its a bit 'clunky' in reverse but this seems to be more of a mechanical issue with the gearbox/couplings as I don't think this is a particularly refined model but its nice and functional though.

 

In terms of the lighting, I appreciate the advice about resistor sizes but I ended up going with 10K (cab), 1K (red), 660ohm (white) mainly because I like to see reasonably bright lights. I still have the option of dimming them by adding value 12 (constant dim) to the relevant CV - hopefully you can see the effect in the pictures? The circuit board for the resistors and diodes (for shunting mode) has an element of 1980s miniaturisation about it but I've just used the parts I have available.

 

I've started the detailing by painting the coupling bar, although the paint has reacted a little bit to the lacquer, so I might have to have another go, we'll see. I have some 'Overhead wires' decals to add and I think the handrails and steps would look better painted. I might paint the inside of the cab and motor white to create a 'reflection' effect with the cab light. I'm not sure how to tackle the replacement rear steps yet?

 

  

Class 09 (7).jpg

Class 09 (8).jpg

Class 09 (9).jpg

Class 09 (10).jpg

Class 09 (11).jpg

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On 30/06/2020 at 14:50, PatB said:

I'm pretty sure the Lima 09 never had glazing. Neither of mine do, nor any sign of it ever being there, and I don't recall seeing a photo of a standard model so fitted. 

 

The Lima 09 didn't have glazing, but unlike the (old) Hornby offering it does have outside frames which makes a big difference!

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1 hour ago, andyman7 said:

The Lima 09 didn't have glazing, but unlike the (old) Hornby offering it does have outside frames which makes a big difference!

Quite so, and it's much easier to add glazing than a set of frames and flycranks. 

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Bit of a trip down memory lane for me, this thread!! :yes: The 1970s - Second hand locos at sensible priices, basic models you could add detail to, ah, happy days!!

Although I think that back then the Lima 08 (or 09 as they numbered it!!) was always more desirable than the Hornby 08, because as others have said it had outside frames. I remember Ian Futers' articles, his layout "Lochside" was a favourite of mine which I never saw for real, but still have the RM articles.

To the model at hand here, I agree with "turn down the brightness" on the lights!! Unless a loco was in a tunnel, not even the domino headcodes showed up brightly. Only with the introduction of the HST, and high-intensity headlights (fitted to 50s & 87s at first if memory serves) did BR locos get very bright lights.

As for "why buy a Shunter?" well even if your interest is the main line, in the 70s there were still plenty of shunting duties to be attended to; empty carraige stock movements, parcel train marshalling, adding & detaching parcels stock to & from express trains, not to mention countless freight operations. You don't just need a small shunty-plank layout to find uses for a shunting loco. ;)

Edit - forgot to add:- a tip I read years ago for Lima locos - add more weight!! They seem to thrive on it & run better. I did it myself, it does work.

Edited by F-UnitMad
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Hi all,

It is amazing the results you can get from upgrading older engines for peanuts. Why spend £100-150 on a new engine when you can get a good looking engine from updating your older stock for £30-50. Plus all the fun and satisfaction of doing the upgrading. As you can see by my threads here. I have a great belief that too many engines that may give years more service are discarded when a little fettling would have them looking and running great. Keep up the good work. I have 2 Lima 08's and 2 Wrenn 08's. They are still in original condition and boxed. But I may one day upgrade them similar to you.

Edited by cypherman
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2 hours ago, cypherman said:

Hi all,

It is amazing the results you can get from upgrading older engines for peanuts. Why spend £100-150 on a new engine when you can get a good looking engine from updating your older stock for £30-50. Plus all the fun and satisfaction of doing the upgrading. As you can see by my threads here. I have a great belief that too many engines that may give years more service are discarded when a little fettling would have them looking and running great. Keep up the good work. I have 2 Lima 08's and 2 Wrenn 08's. They are still in original condition and boxed. But I may one day upgrade them similar to you.

I've just picked up a Triang Diesel Shunter with scale wheels and outside frames added to the chassis for £15. It will be mated to a Kitmaster shunter body from my scrapbox, a new addition to the 08 family for under a score.....

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  • 1 month later...

I love the Lima 09s, I’ve about 8 of them, although one is wearing a Hornby body as the Lima chassis is nice than the steam loco chassis Hornby used with the odd wheel set spacing. I don’t think I paid more than about £12 for any of them, I’ve attached a photo of my 13 but made with Lima 09s, I’m going to be running auto decoupling via a decoder in the master and sound with a speaker in each from the slave. They were both driven but I found you get some hunting so the slave now is just weighted but not driven. She’s also running a CD player motor and has a lovely slow crawl

BA052AA2-7CE8-410F-8B39-9AF4C2B6F3BE.jpeg

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 05/09/2020 at 21:21, Jon Gridley said:

I love the Lima 09s, I’ve about 8 of them, although one is wearing a Hornby body as the Lima chassis is nice than the steam loco chassis Hornby used with the odd wheel set spacing. I don’t think I paid more than about £12 for any of them, I’ve attached a photo of my 13 but made with Lima 09s, I’m going to be running auto decoupling via a decoder in the master and sound with a speaker in each from the slave. They were both driven but I found you get some hunting so the slave now is just weighted but not driven. She’s also running a CD player motor and has a lovely slow crawl

BA052AA2-7CE8-410F-8B39-9AF4C2B6F3BE.jpeg

 Looks good, I like the buffers!

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I've added some more detail, electric flashes and a littel bit of paint! I've actually painted some of the inside of the cab area white to give it a bit of internal reflection from the cab light. I'm probably now at the limit of what can be improved given the level of detail of the original model and my own abilities. I still haven't decided how to tackle the rear steps. Tell you what, its got great low speed running, its been happily crawling around a less than perfect loop for the past hour. I think its helped giving it a bit of high speed running first.

Class 09 (12).jpg

Class 09 (13).jpg

Class 09 (14).jpg

Class 09 (15).jpg

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