Friday, 24 June 2016

Exmoor - Paintshop Progress (Part 2)

Having set the loco aside for a few days I re-started work by tidying up a few areas that the photographs had shown up. Over the following evenings I then fitted the whistle and safety valves into place on the dome, secured the crew in the cab and fitted the cab roof , added coal to the bunkers and fitted MicroTrains couplers.

As if it were on a test run at it's builders, these photos were captured in natural light on 'The Headshunt'.

The project has now reached it's natural break point as it is now complete with all parts added that can be at this stage... To complete the loco will need it's name and worksplates, presently on order from Narrow Planet, plus a little light, appropriate weathering and maybe one or two extra details. 

For now it is resident in my display cabinet.


Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Exmoor - Paintshop Progress (Part 1)

By the middle of May the Exmoor build had entered the paintshop and the first coats of primer were applied using Halfords aerosol cans. I find it helpful to use red oxide on the buffer beams to avoid too many coats of red acrylic later on. 

I then masked off the smokebox, footplate edges, buffer beams etc, essentially anything that would not be body colour. I then applied Halfords Rover 'Tahiti Blue' from another aerosol. After masking was removed the result was this rather ghostly looking appearance.

The red bufferbeams, cream cab interior and various areas of black were applied by hand using acrylic paints, largely of Vallejo origin. Once a coat of Testors 'Dulcote' had been applied I started the process of assembling various sub-assemblies over the last fortnight, the cab/tank unit being securely fitted to the boiler/front end, then all the pipework was added including the regulator lever to the outside of the dome.

At this stage I gave the model a further waft of Dulcote to hide some of the glue marks and set the model aside for a few days to allow the varnish to fully harden.

To be continued...


Sunday, 19 June 2016

Theakston - Fantastic in Pastic

At the recent 7mm NGA AGM at Burton-upon-Trent Roger Chivers had examples of his second O9 plastic kit on sale. It is for a Ravenglass & Eskdakle 'Theakston' stone wagon and simply requires wheels and couplings to complete.

A very pleasant 45 minutes of my time one evening put the parts together. I must admit I did struggle to get any wheels into it, I have resorted to a bit of drilling and splaying out of the axle boxes in order to fit Farish coach wheelsets (current production). Technically they are too small at 6mm diameter, but Roger has designed the kit to take the correct 8mm downwards.

The next job was to equip it with MicroTrains couplers. With Farish wheelsets fitted the base of the headstock is 6mm from rail level so only a 1mm deep section needs to be removed to put the coupler mounting height at 7mm.

You can just make out in this picture where the middle bar of the chassis frame is cut back to clear the coupler and to give it space to move backwards to function.

I then made a refinement to the top edge of the body in an attempt to reduce it's visual thickness. I have removed some material at a 45 degree angle, carefully stopping at the line of moulded rivets on the sides. This is a trick I've used in the past on items such as Airfix mineral wagon kits and once painted should trick the eye into believing the top edge is thinner.

Whilst at Burton Steve Lamb's 'Reclaim' caught my eye. A development of the Julian Andrews' 'United Brick' layout plan (now of course Howard Martin's 'Avalon Brickworks') this has provided much food for thought, and the possibility of an O9 version using materials stored in the workshop is quite apealing...


Saturday, 4 June 2016

What a load of rubbish!

As a diversion from the ongoing build of the Exmoor 0-6-2T I recently raided the bits boxes and produced a range of lineside clutter that could grace the yard of a future O9 shed or workshop scene. I suppose they complement the recently completed coach under repair.

There's a fair bit of history here. The cab contains parts from numerous half-started projects, the wooden planking is rejected parts from one of my O-16.5 wagon builds; the lattice girders were once intended as a water tower base for 'Shifting Sands'; the door is a left-over from carriage building at the time the Avalon Line masters were made; the wheels are the left-overs from my Del-Prado based Bassett-Lowke Class 30 project and the saddle tank from Badger. The litter bin is a resin casting I acquired some time ago, painted up with a forthcoming project in mind.

The bits box also contained what was due to be part of the kitchen equipment for the kiosk on 'Shifting Sands'. I decided to challenge myself to make it a workbench with a few items of equipment on it, all from the bits boxes. This is the result...

Apart from a piece of 1/16th" brass tube, the drill press is made entirely from re-purposed Dapol Railbus kit underframe parts, as is the tool box, and the majority of the vice (some Knightwing loco kit parts ended up in there too). The file and piece in the vice are Duncan Models castings. It will need a little more junk adding in due course once it has a home to go to. I may now have a go at making some more workshop equipment from the bits boxes, watch this space...

You may think that all this points to a workshop diorama being planned, and you might be right. However, what emerges in due course may be another scene completely involving that litter bin, we shall see. I have been working on a potential diorama base using something that may look rather familiar.

I'm just having to resist making it into a micro layout....