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LMS exMR 5 ton Fruit/Milk Van

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This design was built by the MR between 1900 and 1918.  A batch was built for the S&D in 1902 - these had an oil lamp and end steps.


Today I completed the subject vehicle. It was challenging and interesting and pushed my skills and experience.

The kit itself:


I decided to use Bill Bedford sprung W irons instead of the designed in compensation.


I've used these several times before and they do work. The hardest thing, for me anyway, is to laminate the brake shoes.

Here's an early test:


I put a fair bit of effort into the underframe detail and brake rigging. I also did the safety loops, I think this adds to the overall effect.

I won't go into chapter and verse although if there are questions I have more pictures. Here's the result this morning after weathering:


My ultimate plan is to assemble a milk train. Just for a giggle I coupled my other milk van to it:


Not too bad if I say so myself.


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Indeed they were.  The tiny script below the number is supposed to say "Load 5 tons Evenly Distributed".  I say supposed because I nicked it from a BR ex LMS suburban transfer set.  I'm not too bothered because I can't read it even with magnifier.


I should have mentioned that my source material was Historic Carriage Drawings Vol 3, NPCS by Peter Tatlow.



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Beautiful piece of work


I for one would love to see some more photos of the build




Thanks David.  Here's a few.


Some subassemblies:




Bending the flanges at the top and bottom of the flanges takes some care.  I clamp the side between a workmate and large file in order to do it without damage:




The roof took a fair bit of fettling:




Rainstrip is 0.31mm NS wire.


Here's the van body assembled with W irons installed:




Everything fit very well and I had no problems with it.  I did have to do the stepboards over again having got the orientation wrong the first time.


Underneath the body, showing the bearing carriers flopped over on their spring wire.  The wheels will retain these.




Here's the van almost complete:




Markits wire wound vacuum and steam pipes.  Kit supplied long leaf springs.  There were no usable axlebox castings, the baggie for those contained mostly broken bits.  I chopped up a Bachmann LMS bogie to get axle boxes.


I put a fair bit of effort in the underframe detail, doing the brake rigging and safety loops.


Referring to the picture above.  I had to scratch build the lower stepboards from scrap brass strip and 1mm phosphor bronze strip.


Door handles are Comet T handles which are REALLY tiny and a great fiddle to get on.  The straight handles are simply bent 0.31mm wire.  I have learned that you should use quite fine wire for handles.


The couplings are scale head Kadees with the trip pins cut off.  I think these are quite unobtrusive despite being totally incorrect.  I've gone off NEM Kadees, they are so bulky under the bufferbeam.


Hope this answers your curiosity.



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Yes, it's the old Mallard 4mm kit, later sold by Blacksmith. That old website dates back to about 2009 and only serves to show what we can't get from Coopercraft. I built one in S&DJR guise when you could still get them from Blacksmith. It's a nice kit with quite good detail for its age.



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Thanks for the info on the kits' history Jonathan and Nick.  I've had the kit for so long I've forgotten where I got it from.  I'm kind of glad I waited because had I built it earlier my skills may not have been there.   I didn't know that Coopercraft had it.



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