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12 hours ago, Tony Wright said:

Reading the standard works by Bixley, Blackburn, Chorley, King, Newton and Larkin, they would appear to be very accurate, Graham.

 

Did you assist Kernow with the models' development? 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

 

Yes I assisted Kernow since the outset of the model, and full time since the middle of  last year.

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2 hours ago, LNER4479 said:

Was hoping to post these last night but thwarted by the upgrade

 

DSC01468.JPG.1fb564831dcac64480d2fbf463dbb0a6.JPG

Can't quite remember where it was up to at last update but here's the new (replacement, as it turns out) signal for Retford, with its arms painted, but yet to be linked up.

 

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As a reminder(?), these are miniature somersaults and the individual parts aren't very big.

 

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To glaze or not to glaze? Looking at pictures of the layout, some signals have the spectacle glazing added, some don't? Me being me, I eventually decided that, in spite of the extra work and fiddlly-ness involved, I would add said glazing ...

 

DSC01507.JPG.ddbe6faf21279a6109594424bc9610b2.JPG

Now the linking up, involving three pieces of 0.37 soft iron wire for each arm. I think this took about 3 evenings (1.5 to 2 hours per session).

 

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All done and now with base made up - thanks to Andrew (Major Clanger) for providing dimensions and other details for me to do this. Fingers crossed I got it right. Just now needs pull rods from cranks in the centre of the platform to complete the mechanism.

 

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Done. Including adding the railing and ladder.

 

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And to prove they work.

 

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I rather like the fact that the railing has a gap in for one of the lower arms to operate - as per the photo of the original.

 

Apologies for the poor quality of these final photos. The plan is for Tony to take some better shots later today - hopefully without the need to do all the photo editing round the lattice-work, etc!

 

Very nice work! I know from personal experience just how fiddly it is assembling the operating rods and cranks on signals like that.

 

There can't be many signals left to do on Retford now. There are a couple for coming out of the shed/yard, maybe one on the down slow behind the station and one or two at Babworth.

 

Will you be doing those as well?

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8 hours ago, Craigw said:

 

The valve gear etch was done by Rod Neep and MRJ and was in conjunction with the article on building the DJH Black five that was in MRJ 25. The article on the Brassmasters Black 5 was much later and was by Guy Williams IIRC.

 

Regards,

 

Craig W

 

Thank you, Craig, for that correction - it's an age / memory thing!

 

The Brassmasters connection was that I obtained the etches with the intention of fitting them to, amongst other things, a BM Black 5 - which is STILL incomplete after all these years!

 

CJI.

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This photo is from after the diveunder was constructed in the mid-1960s and the track layout at the north end of the station had been simplified. I don't know whether the signal at the north end of platform 1 had been there in 1957 or what moves it would signal.

 

3969416787_8e1f41b72f_o.jpgRetford platform 1 looking North by Phil Sangwell, on Flickr

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32 minutes ago, robertcwp said:

This photo is from after the diveunder was constructed in the mid-1960s and the track layout at the north end of the station had been simplified. I don't know whether the signal at the north end of platform 1 had been there in 1957 or what moves it would signal.

 

3969416787_8e1f41b72f_o.jpgRetford platform 1 looking North by Phil Sangwell, on Flickr

 

That was there in 1957 but is so well hidden away I had forgotten it. I can't remember of it was upper quadrant or GNR style at the date of the layout. I have a vague recollection of Roy telling me that he had somebody who had offered to make it but I have no idea if that ever happened or not.  It was for shunt moves from Pl 1 to either the up main or the yard.

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7 minutes ago, t-b-g said:

 

That was there in 1957 but is so well hidden away I had forgotten it. I can't remember of it was upper quadrant or GNR style at the date of the layout. I have a vague recollection of Roy telling me that he had somebody who had offered to make it but I have no idea if that ever happened or not.  It was for shunt moves from Pl 1 to either the up main or the yard.

Thanks, it's a shame this J6 is in the way in this 1957 image - one of several apparently taken on 1 June 1957 that I acquired recently - note also the shunt signal: 

 

51318552302_b854bf2257_c.jpg64243_Retford_1-6-57 by Robert Carroll, on Flickr

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1 hour ago, robertcwp said:

Thanks, it's a shame this J6 is in the way in this 1957 image - one of several apparently taken on 1 June 1957 that I acquired recently - note also the shunt signal: 

 

51318552302_b854bf2257_c.jpg64243_Retford_1-6-57 by Robert Carroll, on Flickr

 

When the signalling for the layout was being planned, it was astonishing just how many changes took place in a short period of time. In the end, one or two educated guesses had to be made as to what certain signals looked like for the summer (was it August when the signal was demolished by a derailment?) 1957 period. We had photos either side of the date that showed different signals but we never knew exactly when they changed.

 

I spent many hours with Roy looking through photos and dates trying to establish the accurate details.

 

I do know that he had some photos of that signal, especially a nice shot from the loading dock looking towards the station showing the rear. Where they are now is not something I know anything about.

 

 

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37 minutes ago, t-b-g said:

 

When the signalling for the layout was being planned, it was astonishing just how many changes took place in a short period of time. In the end, one or two educated guesses had to be made as to what certain signals looked like for the summer (was it August when the signal was demolished by a derailment?) 1957 period. We had photos either side of the date that showed different signals but we never knew exactly when they changed.

 

I spent many hours with Roy looking through photos and dates trying to establish the accurate details.

 

I do know that he had some photos of that signal, especially a nice shot from the loading dock looking towards the station showing the rear. Where they are now is not something I know anything about.

 

 

Thanks. Here is an example of the challenge:

51270618188_8d6391e21f_c.jpg62667_Retford_1-6-57 by Robert Carroll, on Flickr

Apparently Roy did become aware that the signals visible here were present in 1957 but was happy with the platform 2 signals already built so they remained as they were.

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1 hour ago, robertcwp said:

Thanks. Here is an example of the challenge:

51270618188_8d6391e21f_c.jpg62667_Retford_1-6-57 by Robert Carroll, on Flickr

Apparently Roy did become aware that the signals visible here were present in 1957 but was happy with the platform 2 signals already built so they remained as they were.

 

That little bunch of signals at the end of Pl 2 and 3 were the worst offenders in terms of changes around the date. The repeaters under the station canopy were altered several times. A "best guess" was made, Mick Moore produced the lovely signals and a short while later a correctly dated photo came to light.

 

An executive decision was made that the signals produced already were too good to alter/replace. Slightly later photos show the signals by the 10 and 80 mph speed restrictions being replaced by the ones on the layout, so it isn't wrong by more than about a year, with the miniature arms under the canopy being repeaters for the full sized ones above.

 

It always intrigued me as the signal and its repeater were on either side of the points they protected. So if the driver couldn't see the first signal (which is why a repeater would be there in the first place) they were being, in effect, given the go ahead by a signal on the far side of the point the signal was protecting. I am not saying that it is wrong in any way, just that I used to look at it and think it seemed unusual.

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1 hour ago, Tony Wright said:

Speaking of Retford's signals, I took the opportunity today to photograph the one just made by Graham Nicholas......................

 

876534726_GrahamNicholassignal01.jpg.f1ac22fb26322188783b9da12ceaac5f.jpg

 

736382651_GrahamNicholassignal02.jpg.0572adedcb6f1f70b37cd66c0c38bf77.jpg

 

What a beautiful piece of work it is.

 

Another beautiful piece of work is the Finney A3, pictured recently in these pages, which I'm selling on behalf of a widow.

 

367494132_6007301.jpg.21c39eece1d65cc3f36422e1262393fe.jpg

 

1220993208_6007302.jpg.0970015c9e7a84b4c8db4c52b1e9682e.jpg

 

And, I'm delighted to say Sandra has bought it. 

 

It fairly romped round Retford this afternoon, taking 13 bogies with ease...................... Then, the eccentric crank came off on one side! (Thanks Andrew for alerting us to this). In order to ensure visual accuracy, the builder had applied the tiniest amount of solder, so that the end of the crankpin was still visible. Visually-accurate it might have been, but this is a loco destined for hard work. I soldered both cranks on much more securely.

 

In true Retford 'Pacific' fashion, at the moment she's running without a pony truck. The wheelset needs fitting to give sufficient sideways movement inside the Cartazzi frames.

 

Thank you so much Sandra for buying this. It's found its spiritual home - much more appropriate than a life in a glass case! 

 

Thanks for your hospitality today, too. 

The signal looks good and the A3 looks at home. Is it on the up Heart of Midlothian set? It looks like a Hornby BSO at the front.

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3 minutes ago, robertcwp said:

The signal looks good and the A3 looks at home. Is it on the up Heart of Midlothian set? It looks like a Hornby BSO at the front.

Yes Robert, it’s on the up Heart of Midlothian replacing 60108 Gay Crusader. I ran her several more times around Retford and no further problems occurred. She’s not going to replace 60108 on this train, in fact I haven’t decided on which train I will place her but it will be on one of the principal expresses. 60108 is one of the best engines on Retford and a credit to Roy who built her so I want her to stay on the Heart of Midlothian.

 

60073 St Gatien is beautifully finished but I would like to know her provenance. She has probably been built by a professional builder but there’s no indication on the loco of the identity of that builder. I suspect the loco is probably quite old as she has a Portescap motor but a very quiet one which would seem to indicate that it was an early Portescap. Does anyone know when Portescaps were first introduced?

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1 hour ago, sandra said:

Does anyone know when Portescaps were first introduced?

I seem to recall buying my first one in late 1981, so sometime before that. I fitted it into a Ks O4 and it's performed well ever since. Not that she gets to run as often now that I have 4 Bachmann O4s on the layout with more waiting to be upgraded.

 

That one purchase set me on the road to using Portescaps in most locos I built for a long time. I still have quite a few to use in future builds. I expect I'll just have to free them up!

Andrew

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8 hours ago, St Enodoc said:

Possibly not your best turn of phrase, Tony...

Perhaps not,

 

But more succinct than 'It gives me the greatest pleasure to announce, to the whole community on here, that Sandra Orpen, that great saviour of Retford, after seeing the Finney A3 I had for sale (on behalf of a widow) in action - the A3, not the widow - (and especially after I'd made the return cranks more-durable), has decided to purchase the aforementioned superlative model of a non-streamlined Gresley Pacific (for a not inconsiderable sum), by the simple expedient of writing me a cheque'. 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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7 hours ago, Woodcock29 said:

 

I seem to recall buying my first one in late 1981, so sometime before that. I fitted it into a Ks O4 and it's performed well ever since. Not that she gets to run as often now that I have 4 Bachmann O4s on the layout with more waiting to be upgraded.

 

That one purchase set me on the road to using Portescaps in most locos I built for a long time. I still have quite a few to use in future builds. I expect I'll just have to free them up!

Andrew

Good morning Andrew,

 

Most of the locos in the collection I'm currently selling (most having now gone) are Portescap-fitted - apart from a couple, absolutely gummed-up, but now freed. The exceptions are those built by DJH, which have open-framed motors. 

 

Some of those Portescaps were 'relatively quiet', but some had the characteristic whine. I don't know if the quieter ones are older (though the Bradwell J27, which must have been one of the last commissions, has a very-quiet one), but my experience of these powerful units is that most whine in (to me) a most-disagreeable manner.

 

As friends observed last Wednesday when running LB, though the layout has very few Portescap-powered locos, one could always tell when they ran that they were so fitted. 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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8 hours ago, Woodcock29 said:

 

I seem to recall buying my first one in late 1981, so sometime before that. I fitted it into a Ks O4 and it's performed well ever since. Not that she gets to run as often now that I have 4 Bachmann O4s on the layout with more waiting to be upgraded.

 

That one purchase set me on the road to using Portescaps in most locos I built for a long time. I still have quite a few to use in future builds. I expect I'll just have to free them up!

Andrew

I am rather struggling with this, as I remember Ken Pelling  showing me a prototype at an Eastbourne show in the late 1970s.  His were marketed under a different name, so there maybe a distinction between his product and Portescap. Any thoughts?

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I remember it being called the Kean RG4 at that time, but it's the same product I believe ? The British part of the product being the gearbox, and Portescap being the brand name of the motor within ?

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Sorry to lower the tone from such a high fidelity build, to something that was described as super detail in its day (later 60's?) but I've recently taken delivery of a bit of old school modelling, in the form of a Wills Crab:

SAM_9707.JPG.f3a13b762275f50b55558d6e2b22aa64.JPG

 

Its of its time as it uses a Triang 2-6-2T chassis, but has been fitted with Romfords. The valve gear is triang, although the cross heads don't appear to be. I think there may be a way of fitting Lima cylinders and valve gear to update that bit though.

Shes fitted with a 5 pole XO4 motor, although I've not powered her up yet. Having said all that she's a delight to see, and has a presence that the Lima ones just don't seem to have. 

Sadly she has been lettered up with the post 1928 gold shaded red transfers that were used on black locos, whereas she should have gold shaded black ones, and also a number in the 13xxx range!

SAM_9708.JPG.de1482100fa59c939ebf2302a2579779.JPG

SAM_9709.JPG.e0880d00615d5e7d9e5ef8646e7c4c6c.JPG

 

I've never tried removing transfers from a loco that I want to keep the paint on. Could someone explain the process for me please?

 

Andy G

 

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1 hour ago, Barclay said:

I remember it being called the Kean RG4 at that time, but it's the same product I believe ? The British part of the product being the gearbox, and Portescap being the brand name of the motor within ?

I remeber seeing them at Scalefour North at the Norfolk Gardens Hotel in Bradford  in 1977/78

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2 hours ago, uax6 said:

Sorry to lower the tone from such a high fidelity build, to something that was described as super detail in its day (later 60's?) but I've recently taken delivery of a bit of old school modelling, in the form of a Wills Crab:

SAM_9707.JPG.f3a13b762275f50b55558d6e2b22aa64.JPG

 

Its of its time as it uses a Triang 2-6-2T chassis, but has been fitted with Romfords. The valve gear is triang, although the cross heads don't appear to be. I think there may be a way of fitting Lima cylinders and valve gear to update that bit though.

Shes fitted with a 5 pole XO4 motor, although I've not powered her up yet. Having said all that she's a delight to see, and has a presence that the Lima ones just don't seem to have. 

Sadly she has been lettered up with the post 1928 gold shaded red transfers that were used on black locos, whereas she should have gold shaded black ones, and also a number in the 13xxx range!

SAM_9708.JPG.de1482100fa59c939ebf2302a2579779.JPG

SAM_9709.JPG.e0880d00615d5e7d9e5ef8646e7c4c6c.JPG

 

I've never tried removing transfers from a loco that I want to keep the paint on. Could someone explain the process for me please?

 

Andy G

 

Assuming paintwork is enamel, T-Cut would probably be your best bet here: small amount worked gently over the transfer area with the side of a blunt cocktail stick/wooden cuticle thingmy. Once transfers are gone, remove any remaining T-Cut with cotton buds; hey presto, nice high gloss area ready to receive new transfers. Just be careful not to work the T-Cut over any transfers etc., you wish to keep. Pic shows a renumber done exactly as above, after subsequent clear coat (deliberately uneven) and before weathering

 

IMG_20210721_1148280.jpg.1bb48e97c7ed7f055ba69644afa415a7.jpg

Edited by James Fitzjames
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6 minutes ago, James Fitzjames said:

Assuming paintwork is enamel, T-Cut would probably be your best bet here: small amount worked gently over the transfer area with the side of a blunt cocktail stick/wooden cuticle thingmy. Once transfers are gone, remove with cotton buds; hey presto, nice high gloss area ready to receive new transfers. Just be careful not to work the T-Cut over any transfers etc., you wish to keep. Pic shows a renumber done exactly as above, after subsequent clear coat (deliberately uneven) and before weathering

 

IMG_20210721_1148280.jpg.1bb48e97c7ed7f055ba69644afa415a7.jpg

 

That looks like it has been painted after a holiday in South Wales, very effective.

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I recall Portescaps being associated somehow with the name Kean but not sure how?

 

I understand the motor was a Swiss Falhaber (not sure of spelling) and as stated above the gearbox was British.

The first were the quietest in my experience and I understand that the noise of later versions was due to the gearbox and possibly because the gears were not so well refined. I've heard they can be refined by running the gearbox with toothpaste in it after removing all the oil although I've not tried it.  I may do one day when using one of the number I have in stock.

 

The first photo below is the original type of Box and they were called Escap. 

1403061869_earlyPortescapbox.jpg.1387bcc76654aa3c1262edfc90d0a692.jpg

 

On the back the company's name is Portescap - there were two different addresses on the early boxes.

20210721_194326(0).jpg.3632d9e44a2f4e26b03350b007337d31.jpg

 

20210721_194147.jpg.12a5ac7ed9e3c8954180157916deff37.jpg

 

The later packaging was in a bubble wrap sleeve in the box below:

2062507740_laterPortescapbox.jpg.10cd8d1a30430db10077afb7fd353bb8.jpg

and after that they just came in bubble wrap packs but maybe because they were bought in bulk?

 

Andrew

 

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