“and there’s more”

To quote a comedian whose name I cannot remember – “and there’s more”

Last night I only had a little time at the bench and got completely distracted from the brake van by thoughts on vacuum tanks for the all third. I recently managed to get some really good underfloor detail photos from an LNER 3 compartment first at Stainmore railway. which included good shots of vacuum tanks and cylinders – They are on my Flickr site should anyone need them

This is where I got to, they still need much cleaning up and for the legs to be straightened/cut to length and I plan to solder them to some scrap brass plate to give an area to glue to.

Scratch Built LNER Coach Vacuum Tanks

Scratch Built LNER Coach Vacuum Tanks

Raising the Standards

I managed a little more on the internals for the V4 brake van last night.
Being, by inclination and birth, a tight fisted Yorkshire man. I don’t throw much away, and sometime ago I bought a thousand 10ba brass CS screws. The problem was that when I bought them they only had them in 1 1/2″ lengths. This means that most of them that I have used so far, have needed cutting down. This has resulted in me having a few 1″ lengths of 10ba studding.
Fast forward to my cleaning up one of Slaters’ very nice cast Brake Standards for the V4 and I clumsily broke off the the spigot for attaching it to the floor. At first I was just going to solder it to the brass floor and be done with it but then I thought that having the floor removable for as long as possible would help with painting the inside.
So I drilled out the base where the spigot had been and soldered in a length of the aforementioned stud. A little of the solder wicked up the thread but a quick run down the thread with a 10ba die soon sorted that.
I then thought that with a bit of filing I could use a 10ba nut with some scrap etch to represent the lever for the brake cross shaft and although turning the handle doesn’t actuate the brakes it still looks the part.
It wasn’t a great leap to think that I may as well do the same with the stove to make it removable too.

Modified Slaters Brake Standard and Guard’s Stove

Modified Slaters Brake Standard and Guard’s Stove

All about Dynamos, LNER Coach Dynamos that is.

Work progressed over the weekend with much of the available time being spent on fitting the roof which is now almost there. It’s the first one of Ian’s bow ended roofs that I have tackled and I am sure another would be much easier.

In between sessions on the roof I attached the battery box and prepared the V hangers for the vacuum cylinders. Not many words and not much to show visually either.

What is worth sharing visually, is that I did more work to one of the dynamos.

Starting from this, if you will forgive the repeat of an earlier photo.

Kirk Coach Dynamos – with a few additions

And using this as my working example (this is one of the very nice Sidelines castings).

Sidlelines LNER Coach Dynamo

I arrived at this.

Ian Kirk + scratchbuilt parts LNER Coach Dynamo

Ian Kirk + scratchbuilt parts LNER Coach Dynamo

Ian Kirk + scratchbuilt parts LNER Coach Dynamo

I am so pleased with the result that I plan to [s]rip[/s] gently prise the dynamo off the parcels coach that I am building for myself which just needs final details and painting and modifying it to the same spec.

Small Steps, Quite Literally!

Last night saw more small steps – quite literally in that I made up the rather nifty etched steps for the Tevan

Parkside Tevan Steps

Then I did a bit more on the V4 brake van getting the floor cut and fitted ready for soldering in once I have fitted the brake gear etc. – I made the floor from a scrap etched part and I have yet to decide whether to fill the holes with rod or leave them. – There are only 5 and they are less than a mm in diameter and will they be seen with the roof on, I doubt it.

Connoisseur NER V4 Brake Van

I also made a couple of inserts for above the veranda which once soldered in place will increase the gluing area for sticking the roof on once painted.

Connoisseur NER V4 Brake Van

Parkside GWR Tevan

I must really be in touch with my feminine side when it comes to building wagons because I have been multitasking. In between sorting out bits for and building the KIRK BG I have also managed to put together one of two kits that I recently bought to build for sale.

This one being a Parkside Kit for a GWR Tevan. Not being a GWR/WR modeller I have relied somewhat on the historical info in the kit and one photo that I found on the net of a preserved example.

Apparently these were converted in the late 1930’s from Mica Insulated vans by removing the interior hoppers for Drikold refrigerant and the roof hatches from which they were accessed. The were then used for the conveyance of tea and coffee from the Lyons Depot at Greenford.

Having said that, apparently there is photographic evidence that at least one of them retained its roof hatches and, me being me, I chose to model the unusual one. – Helped along by the provision of the hatches in the kit. Another plus is that they lasted in to the mid 1960’s

At the minute the plan is to finish in BR WR livery as being the most attractive to prospective buyers.

 

7mm scale Parkside GWR Tevan

7mm scale Parkside GWR Tevan

Although you can’t see it unless, (and to quote Jim Snowden saying recently) “it falls off” I chose to add the vacuum pipe run under the floor and the smaller pipe to the vac cylinder.

 

7mm scale Parkside GWR Tevan

Modified by CombineZP

Apart from adding a pair of rather nice fold up etched steps it’s ready for the paint shop.

Looking Like An LNER Coach At Last

Further work ensued on the BG this weekend and it’s now starting to look coach like.

Ignore the bogies, they were to hand so I used them to prop the coach on for the photos

 

Ian Kirk 7mm scale 52 foot BG

Ian Kirk 7mm scale 52 foot BG

Ian Kirk 7mm scale 52 foot BG

Ian Kirk 7mm scale 52 foot BG

In between I made up the battery boxes for the all 3rd.

Ian Kirk 7mm scale Battery boxes with added detail

More photo stacking

I did a couple more photo stacking experiments and I am now getting the hang of it – the first of these being the better outcome.

Ex Caledonian Timber and Ore Wagons

Ex Caledonian Timber and Ore Wagons

Back to the Workbench at Last – Further Work on the Diagram V4

Due to recovering from minor surgery, I haven’t felt like venturing into the workshop since early February and apart from a bit done on the Kirk coaches a couple of weekends ago I haven’t done any modelling at all.

Last night I ventured forth and got stuck in with the NER V4 brake van again. I added the remaining corner patches, the guard irons across the door ways and added the foot boards. I had done the roof at the last session that I did but forgot to take any photos of it.

I think that apart from the brakes and remaining handrails that fit into the end posts all the brass work on the outside is complete so whitemetal fittings next.

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

As on the other NER brake vans I made a replacement for the cast chimney from tube.

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

Connoiseur NER Diagram V4 Brake Van

 

Photo Stacking Experiments

I have been experimenting with photo stacking for some time using the free software ‘CombineZP’ but only recently have I played about with changing the point of focus.
Here are some of my experiments using a couple of timber and ore wagons
Using a Canon 350D, first I used the manual point of focus setting for the following shots. They were then stacked using CombineZP.

Ex Caledonian Timber and Ore Wagons

Ex Caledonian Timber and Ore Wagons

Ex Caledonian Timber and Ore Wagons

Unfortunately there are only 5 manual focus points on the horizontal plane (there are only 3 in the vertical plane) and for some reason I cannot seem to select the one on the extreme left (unless it is selected but the LED has died). This means that some of it is out of focus.
The last photo is taken using the cameras Auto Depth of field function and then 6 shots stacked.

Ex Caledonian Timber and Ore Wagons

It has turned out to be the best of all of them.

Kirk 52′ BG Humble Beginings

Although still recovering I managed to get more done on the Kirk BG last weekend.

There was a small moulding fault on one of the sections so I elected to use it in the side that I was cutting out for the ducket. The ducket itself is one of my Silhouette cut examples Oddly I needed to cut a couple of different sizes because the ones that I had left from the last build were slightly small in the hole.

There was another issue with the solebars for the kit which were all twisted as they came. An email from Don to Ian Kirk had some replacements in the post next day. I had already stuck the sides together so it wasn’t worth asking Ian to replace the section with the moulding fault. I just cut the section out squarely and let in a piece of styrene rod. Once dry I filed it to shape (much like they would have repaired damage to a coach in service). – I must take this opportunity to commend Ian for his prompt service.

Kirk Coach sides – additional details

Three weeks ago I had added the base plates for the bump stops, I added the bump stops themselves on Saturday. After leaving them over night to set I filed them to uniform length using a scrap of 10 thou styrene with a hole in it. I also add the upper hinges but I will leave the lower ones until later because they are a bit vulnerable.

Kirk Coach sides – additional details

I also worked on detailing the ends – I like to build up as many sub assemblies as I can before putting it together.

First I made a couple of door knobs from some styrene rod.

Then I added them to the doors in the ends along with lamp irons and lighting connectors. I used my ever handy lense tissue to make the canvas tops for the corridor connections.

Kirk Coach ends – BG

And finally I detailed up the Dynamos. These are a bit plain as they come and I had initially stuck a H section stem but seeing a 1/32 scratch build of a Pullman coach over on RMweb shamed me into doing something better. – I still need to make the mounting brackets yet. There are two because Don has asked me to build and all third to go with the other two as well.

Kirk Coach Dynamos – with a few additions

Even more Brass origami

Isn’t it always the way? You look at the photos and realise that you have missed something. In this case it was the pins and chains for the side doors.

Powsides GER 5 Plank Open

I got the second NER Birdcage brake to a similar state as the first one – just needing buffers and working out how best to fit the roof post painting.

Connoisseur NER V1 Brake Vans

And then something that came together almost as a surprise.  As I was doing the two V1 vans I started to clean up and make the various folds in a V4 van and before I knew it, quite a bit was to was ready to solder up.

Connoisseur NER V4 Brake Van

The doors are sliding doors and the way that Jim has portrayed them made leaving one of them partially open almost irresistible. It means that I will need to model an interior but that doesn’t faze me.

Connoisseur NER V4 Brake Van

Connoisseur NER V4 Brake Van

Again it’s a Connoisseur kit and to that I have added square brass rod to beef up the vertical and horizontal framing and some internal planking to the veranda ends.

Connoisseur NER V4 Brake Van

It all needs a good clean up before I go much further with it.

NER Birdcage Brake Van – the second one coming along nicely.

A decent session at the bench yesterday saw the 2nd NER Birdcage brake well on it’s way.

At the suggestion of a friend I looked at the photo to determine whether there were frames in the windows that I cut in the end.

There isn’t a frame as such on the photo but I decided to try to replicate the etched frame that’s etched in the other end.

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van

 

Powsides GER 5 Plank Open Wagon

Some minor surgery combined with Sinusitis has laid me up for the best part of two weeks so the work bench has been quiet. Filling a little more in the way of head space I opted to finish a long time inhabitant of the queens shelf, a Powsides GER 5 plank Open. Before placing it aside I had built it all apart from adding the castings and I am not really sure why I hadn’t completed it.
It proved a fairly straightforward build apart from the fact that the brake shoes were miles from the wheels so I had to split them and move them out towards the wheels. Then make a brass strip to represent the tumbler which I soldered to the rear of the castings after filing a slot. The only other changes were (after reviewing photos in Tatlow) to add some ex Connoisseur GER ratchet brake lever guides instead of the supplied hole/pin version.

Powsides GER 5 Plank Open

Powsides GER 5 Plank Open

Powsides GER 5 Plank Open

Powsides GER 5 Plank Open

Next its back to the NER Brake vans.

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van – final details

Not much modelling done over the weekend due to a combination of not feeling well on Saturday and a trip to Pontefract show on Sunday. Which was very enjoyable even if I did come back with etches for 4 Pullman coaches which Chris spotted and encouraged me to buy that I hadn’t planned on…

A few hours last night had the first van almost complete (I had thought it complete until I remembered that I hadn’t fitted a couple of hand rails or any guard irons under the brake yokes.

 

Modified by CombineZP

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van – Hand rails fitted

The hand rails that are missing are the two small ones above the wrap around rails in this view – the other end should have similar fitted about a quarter of the way up the windows.

Modified by CombineZP

Modified by CombineZP

I didn’t fancy trying to drill out the rather nice cast chimney because it’s very slender so I scratched a pair of replacements from telescoping tube and a cover plate from the spares box, completed them.

I also noted on the drawing that the sliding doors had a hasp so I made a couple from scrap etch.

Modified by CombineZP

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake with Side Cotes

Last night, the procrastination was over and I got on with removing the end from the other van.

Like a lot of things that you worry yourself about it was really quiet an easy job in the end.

Using a few aluminium hair grips and self locking tweezers as heat sinks for the steps and lamp irons I managed to get the end off, remove the offending bits of metal (with a combination of piercing saw/ rotary sanding drum and a cylindrical burr grinder in the dremel finished off with files) and subsequently soldered back on without anything coming adrift, Yeay!!!

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake with Side Cotes

And for completeness these are the photos of progress on the other van that I forgot to post last night….

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van – Hand rails fitted

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van – Hand rails fitted

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van – Hand rails fitted

 

Connoisseur NER Birdcage Brake Van – Hand rails fitted

The last couple of evenings have seen further work on the Birdcage brakes.
Monday saw some of the hand rails and the end posts fitted. – Chris bought me a Proxxon Mini Pillar drill and a Proxxon Bench Vice for Christmas and they have been invaluable in doing these especially drilling out the cast end posts for the handrails.

 

Connoissuer NER Birdcage Brake Van

Connoissuer NER Birdcage Brake Van

Connoissuer NER Birdcage Brake Van

Connoissuer NER Birdcage Brake Van

Then last night saw the remaining body side handrails fitted along with the upper ones on one end. The drawing and photo from the Sadler book that I am working from has a different layout of the hand rails on the end than Jim shows in his instructions with the end rails passing through the end posts rather than attaching to the outer face of them.

The interested may wonder why I am just working on this one at the moment. That because I think that the only way to be happy with the one with duckets is going to be to remove the end with the birdcage and then cut out the intrusive sides of the ducket and I am still building up the courage to have a go at it….

LNER A Type Container – Scratch Built with the aid of a Silhouette Cutter

While taking photos yesterday I completely forgot the LNER Container. I managed to get the body painted a couple of weeks ago but I wasn’t happy with the colour so I mixed some more. While I had the transfers out I applied some. The photo that I am working from has the container on an ex GER OCT which was before dedicated container wagons were produced. On that basis I am going to leave the paint work fairly pristine although I will no doubt weather the OCT when I get that far.

Silhouette Cut LNER A Type Container Lettered and Painted

Silhouette Cut LNER A Type Container Lettered and Painted

Silhouette Cut LNER A Type Container Lettered and Painted

 

Turning wagon building into an art form – or is it just the photography…..

Aside from doing some detailing work on another Kirk coach, last weekends task was to add transfers to the various Parkside builds that I have been working on recently.
Starting with the LMS Beer Van.

Parkside LMS Beer Van (Diag D1817)

Parkside LMS Beer Van (Diag D1817)

Parkside LMS 12 ton van (Diag D1664)

Parkside LMS 12 ton van (Diag D1664)

Parkside LNER 12Ton unfitted Van

Parkside LNER 12Ton unfitted Van

Parkside LNER 12Ton unfitted Van

Parkside LNER 12Ton unfitted Van

Parkside NBR 4 plank Open modified into a coke wagon

Parkside NBR 4 plank Open modified into a coke wagon

Slaters Gloucester 5 Plank Open with Skytrex Sack load

And finally an arty shot that was created by accident as I was preparing the photos

Parkside LNER 12Ton unfitted Van

More work on the Aviaries…..

In between messing about getting my DCC working I have made further progress on the two NER Brake vans. I have been quite impressed that I have managed to add almost all the detail to sub assemblies before making up the main units and adding the solebars. The only things to add to the upper bodies are some corner plates that fold around the corners, some handrails that also go around the ends, the cast end posts and the lower footboards which I need the W Irons in place before I can cut the supports to final length.

7mm Scale Connoisseur Models NER Birdcage Brake Vans

The roof is still loose. Jim recommends leaving it loose to glaze and making it clip on afterwards I need to explore how I can do this yet.

7mm Scale Connoisseur Models NER Birdcage Brake Vans

7mm Scale Connoisseur Models NER Birdcage Brake Vans

Although I have the birdcage for the second one assembled it’s not soldered to the roof yet.

7mm Scale Connoisseur Models NER Birdcage Brake Vans

7mm Scale Connoisseur Models NER Birdcage Brake Vans

Paul Gallon over on RMweb kindly reminded me that the example that I am trying to reproduce with this one also had windows in the birdcage end.
In the photo above you can seem my error. I cut out the windows using those at the other end as a template but didn’t think about the fact the the side duckets have sides which protrude into the van internally and that the sides nearest the end windows partially obscure it. – Why is it that you never notice these things until you have made nice job of soldering the body together, made much more difficult by the fact that on this end I couldn’t get to the inside so I had to solder it from the outside and clean up.

7mm Scale Connoisseur Models NER Birdcage Brake Vans