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Brush Type 2 Re-Birth - Judgement Day


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I don't like the Hornby 31 - the body just doesn't do it for me. I'm not sure what it is, but the overall shape just doesn't seem right. The mechanism is rather better than Lima's but the Lima body looks so much better to me. The curve of the bodysides look 'right' to my eyes. If you're happy with your Hornby 31, then you'll be saved all this aggro! :lol:

 

I bought a Hornby 31 when they first appeared, I had ordered it once it was announced but it sat in the workshop because I just wasn't happy. A new project can justify a model of 31 171 in Railfreight grey; a photo of the loco on the line provided the impetus for this model. I had Lima model which would provide the basis, but what to do for the mechanism?

 

Well I decided to sell the body and use the mechanism; problem... The Lima body is about 1 mm shorter than the Hornby one! So the Hornby chassis won't fit! Even with the ends filled down the buffer beams wouldn't be right relative to the cab fronts. SO I decided to canniblise the Hornby chassis for the bogies, motor, drive shafts and the battery box details and use these with the Lima chassis frame.

 

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The set up is very simple - in less than an hour you have a working chassis! The work was very similar to that of 37 219 which appears in my signature and the top of my blog. Very simple cut outs at the former non-powered end and simple bearing pieces from 60 thou Plastikard with 1/8" holes to take the bogie pivots. I also fitted the Hornby battery boxes and once they were in place filled them with lead and added a flat piece of Plastikard over them to provide a seat for the motor. This was secrued with silicon sealent.

 

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The chassis was very quickly wired up using the original pick up wires to test it. The loco has now a much better mechanism (though a good Lima loco is still very useful!) and will no doubt improve further once it has new wheels. The other advantage is that the bogies have finer detail too which can only enhance the overall look.

 

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The body has a long way to go, but with a little care it should be better result than the Hornby original - the Lima tooling is delightfully fine! I also have the Hornby cab interiors which will enhance things a little I hope!

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Brilliant work, I keep umming and ahhing over fitting just Hornby sideframes to an old ultrascaled p4'd 31...but this is a good modern mechanism fit for purpose

 

The Hornby bogies are easy to re-wheel too - I'll use Gibson wheels, just as I did when I used Hornby Class 50 bogies under a couple of class 37s.

 

If I do another one I'd probably just buy the bits I need as spares, unless the second hand prices are such where buying a complete loco is better value!

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Guest jim s-w

Hi James

 

How about using the center on the Hornby chassis and attaching the bufferbeams to the body? (I am offering this as a suggestion to the masses not a re-do what you have done one). With the Hornby chassis expanding anyway I might do this to the Hornby ones I have anyway.

 

Just a thought

 

Jim

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How about using the center on the Hornby chassis and attaching the bufferbeams to the body? (I am offering this as a suggestion to the masses not a re-do what you have done one).

 

I did consider this - I even cut the buffer beams off the Hornby chassis block! The only thing was I thought about how about how to locate the chassis block and then thought that since the Lima chassis frame locates perfectly within the body I'd save myself a whole load of work! The lost weight can easily made up using lead.

 

With the old glazing removed the frame needs something to locate against so I used some spare Evergreen channel in the body -

 

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The arrangement suits me, nice and simple much like me :)

 

With the Hornby chassis expanding anyway I might do this to the Hornby ones I have anyway.

 

Really?

 

Just a thought

 

A good one too! :D

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If you had used the Hornby chassis from the first batch they did you'd have had fun trying to send it back to Hornby for a replacement if it'd expanded!

 

Looking forward to your work on the body, must admit I agree the Hornby one is disappointing to miss a major feature of the overall design of these though i'd not want to put effort into a fix as its more a nice thing to have than any core requirement.

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If you had used the Hornby chassis from the first batch they did you'd have had fun trying to send it back to Hornby for a replacement if it'd expanded!

 

Especially when it was two inches shorter! :D

 

Looking forward to your work on the body, must admit I agree the Hornby one is disappointing to miss a major feature of the overall design of these though i'd not want to put effort into a fix as its more a nice thing to have than any core requirement.

 

The situation is also helped by my 'stock' of older Lima models - it becomes a very economical way of modelling then! I think the only things I've had to buy in are new wheels, Shawplan fan grille and a few small bits, such as buffers.

 

The body's already had all the grab irons on the roof replaced - they should follow the roof line yet all of those on the Hornby body were completely horizontal on the body I had. They just looked odd! Full replacement handrails should enhance the model too. Thankfully the class 31 was one of Lima's better efforts so little is required on the body :)

 

You an just make out the new grab irons in this view;

 

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Now the major work's done I'm hoping this will progress quite quickly.

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Guest jim s-w

Hi James

 

I hope you dont mind me posting this here. Inspired by your efforts I took the hacksaw to my 31 chassis this afternoon.

 

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Part 1 - lop the ends off - you can actually just break them off if you like as the chassis is very weak at the end. I also ditched the fan.

 

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Inside with the cabs and chassis ends stuck to the Lima body. I have also added a shelf so that I can reattach the Hornby chassis. Offer the chassis up and with a long drill mark the position for the screw holes. These are opened out with the chassis removed.

 

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The chassis is simply screwed back in place and the repower is done.

 

Cheers

 

Jim

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I hope you dont mind me posting this here. Inspired by your efforts I took the hacksaw to my 31 chassis this afternoon.

 

Not at all Jim!

 

It's interesting to see how two people approach the same problem and come up with two different solutions. You do seem to work a lot faster than I do! :lol:

 

By the way, whose wheels did you use?

 

I have to admit, not wanting to be bother with sorting out mountings for the Hornby chassis is probably laziness on my part! Your shelves are a delightfully simple and elegant solution! In the back of my mind was this -

 

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That's the chassis for 37 219 so I just followed the same method. (Scarily that dates from the DEmod days when people were hacking Lima 37s about!)

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Classy... I have a Hornby 31 which very well may go 'banana' on me (I hope it doesn't) but I do have a Lima 31... so we shall see... obviously The 'James' method would work well in this case... but I have to ask Jim, are you worried about your chassis... there is still a hefty lump of Chinese mazac in there? Again I hope it behaves itself.

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Guest jim s-w

Hi James

 

It has Gibson wheels. Do you know if you can get branchlines wheels for the 31 as you can for the 50? They are better.

 

Hi Griff

 

Both of my Hornby 31's are at least 4 years old but both have shown signs of very slight cracking. The way I have fitted the chassis means theres quite large expansion gaps now. Part of me wonders if the cracking is due to poor design as much as poor materials. I mean if you have a metal chassis thats a very tight fit in a plastic body they are going to expand and contract at different rates. Both of my chassis show no sign of bloom or the material breaking down and if the chassis expands then either it or the body have gotta give.

 

Think is, if my theory is right there is no point in Hornby releasing new chassis if the design isnt changed to allow for expansion.

 

Cheers

 

Jim

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It has Gibson wheels. Do you know if you can get branchlines wheels for the 31 as you can for the 50? They are better.

 

Not according to the catalogue/list I have; just the class 50 wheels. So, I'll be using Gibsons then!

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show no sign of bloom or the material breaking down and if the chassis expands then either it or the body have gotta give.

 

... if my theory is right there is no point in Hornby releasing new chassis if the design isnt changed to allow for expansion.

 

Cheers

 

Jim

 

I agree... that thin piece under the cab up to to the buffer beam is a structural failure waiting to happen.

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Think is, if my theory is right there is no point in Hornby releasing new chassis if the design isnt changed to allow for expansion.

Cheers

Jim

Although the cab fixing was the weakest point and went first on mine by the time it went to Hornby the circuit board mountings and body screw holes had all fallen off like brittle plastic. The cab fixing is pretty strong on a chassis that isn't falling apart though i'd agree it didn't need to be that thin.

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Hi James,

Excellent thread this, I have been thinking about repowering one of my old llima 31s for a while now. It was actually Jim S W on another thread that put the idea in my head. Will you still try and fit the working lights?

 

My Lima 31 might just get a new lease of life.biggrin.gif

 

Cheers Peter.

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Excellent thread this, I have been thinking about repowering one of my old llima 31s for a while now. It was actually Jim S W on another thread that put the idea in my head. Will you still try and fit the working lights?

 

Glad you like the project Pete!

 

I won't be using the Hornby lights; I think they are terribly unrealistic. The photo I'm using of 31 171 working a train on the NLLR, it doesn't appear to have any lights on, even though it has a high intensity headlight by this point. Until the the mid nineties lighting was never so noticable so in this instance I don't think it's worth it. It will be DCC though, but having stripped the Hornby chassis I can rid myself of that complex circuit board Hornby seem to like! The engineer in me just thinks it's a watse of resources!

 

If I was doing another I'd either buy the bits from East Kent Models or with some of the eBay prices coming right down, I'd just buy a secondhand model and strip that. Sell the body and you end up with a very reasonable bill for parts!

 

My Lima 31 might just get a new lease of life.biggrin.gif

 

:)

 

I like to see the better older models re-used, much like in life generally, I think too often items which are perfectly good and servicable are prematurely thrown away and scrapped. I think society would be a better place if we coudl look after things better.

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Glad you like the project Pete!

 

I won't be using the Hornby lights; I think they are terribly unrealistic. The photo I'm using of 31 171 working a train on the NLLR, it doesn't appear to have any lights on, even though it has a high intensity headlight by this point. Until the the mid nineties lighting was never so noticable so in this instance I don't think it's worth it. It will be DCC though, but having stripped the Hornby chassis I can rid myself of that complex circuit board Hornby seem to like! The engineer in me just thinks it's a watse of resources!

 

If I was doing another I'd either buy the bits from East Kent Models or with some of the eBay prices coming right down, I'd just buy a secondhand model and strip that. Sell the body and you end up with a very reasonable bill for parts!

 

 

 

smile.gif

 

I like to see the better older models re-used, much like in life generally, I think too often items which are perfectly good and servicable are prematurely thrown away and scrapped. I think society would be a better place if we coudl look after things better.

 

Thanks James,

I think the problem with lights is that they are to bright on a lot of models. I would prefer a smooth running accurate looking loco over the lights myself and I am not DCC so the dam things go on and off all the time anyway.rolleyes.gif

Since my first post I had a look on Ebay, the Hornby 31 doesn't seem that cheap at the moment but if like you say I can sell the body it won't be to bad I have done it when remotoring Lima DMUs.

Looking forwards to the rest of your project.biggrin.gif

 

Cheers Peter.

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I think the problem with lights is that they are to bright on a lot of models. I would prefer a smooth running accurate looking loco over the lights myself and I am not DCC so the dam things go on and off all the time anyway.rolleyes.gif

 

Lights to bright and white LEDs don't look right on older locos, but I have to say new passenger units and more 66s they look spot on!

 

Since my first post I had a look on Ebay, the Hornby 31 doesn't seem that cheap at the moment but if like you say I can sell the body it won't be to bad I have done it when remotoring Lima DMUs.

Looking forwards to the rest of your project.biggrin.gif

 

I've seen them go for £45 - if you can get £20 for the body, £25 for all the mechanism bits seems quite good value! Add the new wheels in and it's less than fifty quid for the full repower :D Though in my case the loco was sitting around doing nothing so I haven't had to spend much for the whole project :)

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James I have been following this project and I followed you class 37 project I think you idea of re cycling old models as you have said in your last post you do not have to spend a lot to create a good model.

 

Bravo James

 

lets have some more pictures of this project as it progresses.

 

Pete

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Thanks Pete!

 

I've talked about my feelings on my blog before about not wasting things.

 

I think it's a shame we don't make more use of older products which we may have in stock already. It costs us nothing to, at least, try and make use of them. The model railway hobby has, of late, become a rather wasteful pursuit at times as new models come on stream. As modellers surely we should be more resourceful than collectors when it comes to building up a 'fleet'? Sadly consumerism has caught on big style in some quarters and we may be loosing in the long run. Personally I think the world would be a better if we were prepared to make better use of what we already have than always striving to get the 'latest' products...

 

And even using Bradwell Castings on a Nu-Cast model!

 

I know a lot of people won't agree with me but I think if modellers carefully select elements to use in their modelling then a better end result may be the case - and I'm not saying everything old is better, it's not! But just because something is new doesn't mean it's the best. Choose carefully and the world is your oyster :)

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problem... The Lima body is about 1 mm shorter than the Hornby one!

 

Coming back to haunt me now... In terms of the body the length mentioned is lost/gained between the cabs and as such the clearances for the rear cab bulkheads is very tight indeed!

 

The lack of clearance also means the bulkheads can't be attached to the chassis as their presence would preclude the removal of the bogies, or at least make it very difficult and the risk of damage much higher. However, with proper glazing I think the end result will be rather pleasing :)

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Hi James, (and all).

 

Great thread this, I have three Hornby chassis and three lima bodies waiting to go, so this confirms my ponderings that it is possible. What originally set me off with this method was that Hornby's skinhead is only correct for a 31/0 due to the nose steps, (I think) and the box fitted body cannot be bought with boiler filler steps up the side, (again, I think).

 

Carry on with the good work, its saving me ponder time! biggrin.gif

 

Sean.

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Sean,

 

I'm quite pleased that it turns out I'm not the only one who's thought about this! I think it shows the more discerning modeller isn't quite happy with Hornby's Class 31 but does appreciate the mechanical advantages it has. And I'm pleased to have saved you pondering time! :lol:

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