Sunday, 29 April 2012

Hudson Hacking

It looks as if the Somerthorpe Miniature Railway's PW department has relented, as another wagon build has emerged on the workbench.  This again uses parts recycled from a previous, slightly unsatisfactory build...

This RCL Hudson frame is the one used previously under a cut-down Black Dog Mining flat top.  It didn't run to well , I had put this down to replacement wheelsets, but I have subsequently discovered that during the build (itself something of a bodge) I hadn't aligned the axle box mouldlings properly, hence a wobbly ride.  Removing the axle box mouldings in one piece was a no-go, so a slightly more innovative solution was called for....

I'll be modelling this, the PW wagon of the Sherwood Forest Railway, one of a few 15" gauge wagons I can say that I have travelled in:

This real-life Hudson-bash actually has the axleboxes mounted on some angle iron behind the main frames with with the axles shortened for 15" gauge, I'm assured it was like that when they bought it from Tal-y-Cafn.

Model wise this has allowed something of a cheat, please look away now if you are a time served O14 modeller...

Yes, that is a much butchered Peco chassis living under there!  I was inspired to work this way after the success of the Peco/Black Dog adaptor under the 'Loco Coal' wagon, where I see the frame as a 'veneer' over the Peco chassis.  I this case I also slimmed down the recovered RCL axleboxes and glued them over the Peco axleguards, shorn of their N gauge detail.  Once the glue was set the axleguards were cut and filed to the same shape as the axleboxes, completing the illusion.  From normal viewing angles the deception is not visible, and the fact that the wheels are too small isn't noticeable.

Progress with the other two wagons has reached the varnishing stage, whilst some loads are being assembled from the spares box:

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Gonna Paint That Wagon...

"Gonna paint a wagon, gonna paint it good, we ain't bragging, we're gonna coat that wood..."

The Simpsons have a lot to answer for!  OK, so it isn't actually wood, it's styrene pretending to be wood, and I used a water based paint, but apart from that....

A variety of acrylic paints, Humbrol, Vallejo and Citadel were employed in painting the two wagons, edging out all of the ironwork was actually a lot simpler than I had imagined it would be.

The next stage was to add lettering to the loco coal wagon.  This was done the old school way, using dry print lettering.  I tend to use the end of a cocktail stick in a pin vice to rub down the transfer, it has a fine, replaceable point, and you an see what you are doing.

A coat or acrylic matt varnish sealed the transfers into place, although an overall coat of varnish will be applied in due course.

More developments on the wagon front may be on the cards, although this is very much dependent on the whims of the Somerthorpe Miniature Railway PW department! However, readers may be interested to know that all traces of industrial O9 left the building yesterday....

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Eyes Wide Open

The birth of baby Amelia on Sunday 25th March has created a new regime in the Peake household, and seeing her with eyes wide open made me open my own...

I had started to wonder some time ago whether my more recent O9 industrial models, such as the Drewery-bash loco and some open wagons on Black Dog Mining chassis, were a journey in the wrong direction.  Although that project including a replacement flat wagon (on Hudson chassis) for the 'Shifting Sands' fleet, that didn't work out as planned, and I was perhaps a bit too hasty in whipping chassis away from the 'Shifting Sands' works fleet.  What was required were new miniature railway style wagons.

At Narrow Gauge North I had picked up an old example of the Black Dog Mining WA01 chassis frame to fit over a Peco 10ft wheelbase wagon chassis.  With the odd half hour to spare each day during my first week of  paternity leave I used this as a basis to create a body based on the ex-Sutton Miniature Railway 'Loco Coal' wagon that lives in the Griffin Hall museum at Cleethorpes.

(L) Sutton style 'Loco Coal' wagon (R) Cleethorpes style general-purpose wagon
This is a fairly faithful recreation of the original, down to a set of N-Brass buffers on the headstocks!

The other wagon illustrated is a revival of the 'Shifting Sands' wagon that used to carry two oil drums.  Shorn of it's newer industrial drop-side body this has received a new, simpler body based upon two of the Cleethorpes works fleet.  The eagle eyed will see that the body is slightly short of the chassis length - this is deliberate in order to make it look different from the normal Black Dog products.

These little projects have kept me occupied at a time when starting something new is all to daunting, I must get around to painting them!