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Blog- Shark from an LMS 20T brake van - Shark from an LMS 20t brake van - 3. Bodywork

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Here is the progress made so far with the brake van conversion. I think it is starting to capture the look of a Shark which is the main idea. The project was never meant to be a faithful replica so i'm happy with how it looks. Here's a picture so you can make your own judgement!




All the main body structure is now complete. The sides have all been constructed from 40 thou plasticard with extra pieces of framework made from strips also cut off a sheet of plasticard. The 2 inside walls/doors into the cabin have been reused from the old Hornby model. The lamp irons have been made from my favourite low budget building material - flora tub plastic. It's not very good quality plastic but you can cut some quite fine shapes using scissors and when you bend it, it folds and holds its shape. I have tried to add some door handles to give it a bit more detail. Hopefully they will stay on ok. I would like to put some hand rails on as well but don't have enough fine wire at the moment. Can anyone suggest a way of drilling some fine holes in the body sides for the hand rails without damaging anything? I'm think need to get myself a pin vice.


The old Hornby roof has had some cosmetic attention. The rain strip has had a gap filed off in the middles so that it resembles the real thing and the stove pipe has been relocated to the corner of the cabin and the old hole filled in. I tried making my own filler with filings of plasticard mixed with plastic cement - seems to have done the trick.


I have given one side an undercoat - Here's the result below:




Can anyone advise on liveries? I have chosen black just because i didn't have any olive green! but i would quite like it to be authentic for 1950s/60s steam era.


Finally for now I have made a small start on the chassis, removing the old tail light and contacts. The rest of the chassis will need some heavy remodelling. I have an idea in my head how i'm going to do it and relocate the wheels to the centre of the van. It may well become a static exhibit by the time i've finished with it!

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