Kirk Twins Coach Bogie Mounting/Connections

Further to my last post I was asked to take some photos of the actual connection between the two coaches.

Kirk Twins – Bogie mounting brackets
Kirk Twins – Bogie mounting brackets
Kirk Twins – Bogie mounting brackets


Due to the tin overlay that I had added to the headstock I decided on the belt and braces pins right through approach to hopefully prevent them coming apart.

More on the Kirk Twins

Having got the Beer wagons finished I don’t seem to have much to show for recent modelling session until now.
Last weekend after teaching my car to swim in a flood or two I made some visible progress on the Kirk twins.
Rain strips fitted – very topical, step boards fitted both from Evergreen strip which comes in longer lengths than the equivalent Plastruct and is just long enough for the 51 footers. I am not sure what I will use for the 4 60′ corridor coaches I have in the stash.
I also sorted out the articulation between the coaches and made top hat bush to set the centre ride height.

Now all I need to do ir remember where I put the turnbuckle castings for safe keeping after drilling them out and I can crack on with the remaining underframe detailing.

Refinement of the Coupling Hooks

The eagle eyed amongst you will also note that I have attacked the rather square profile of the coupling hook with some diamond coated burrs that fit my Dremel
In true Blue Peter fashion – Before:

Gladiator ex GCR Open Wagon – With Trestle Bar

It looks more like a proper coupling hook now

Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar

Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar

Another session last night saw the GC open is almost finished, it just needs retaining chains for the side doors on the other side and the buffers fitting properly – just posed here for the photos.

Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar

The inside is nicely detailed albeit the bottom doors are for the version without the trestle bar so mine will be tarped when finished so they won’t be visible.

Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar

I will definitely be adding more of these to a shopping list in the future.

Slaters Vans and Cattle Wagons complete and ready for delivery

The Slaters Wagons are finally complete and although I have enjoyed the building of them I am glad that they are finished and will be delivered to their owner next weekend at Bristol Show.
They are to be used on a Layout called Hobson’s Brewery, hence the faint ‘ALE’ branding on the cattle wagons.
Here are the official portraits of each van.

Slaters form LMS Cattle/Ale Wagons – Ready for delivery
Slaters form LMS Cattle/Ale Wagons – Ready for delivery

Sadly Paul Barlett informs me that running number B68501 belongs to a steel mineral….but I am sure that I took the numbers from the ranges supplied in the Slaters instructions – all things BR not being my strong point.

Slaters BR Vans – Ready for delivery
Slaters BR Vans – Ready for delivery
Slaters form LMS Cattle/Ale Wagons – Ready for delivery
Slaters form LMS Cattle/Ale Wagons – Ready for delivery
Slaters BR Vans – Ready for delivery
Slaters BR Vans – Ready for delivery
Slaters 7mm Scale LMS Cattle Wagons
Slaters form LMS Cattle/Ale Wagons – Ready for delivery

Slaters 7mm Cattle Wagons and BR Vans

Bob’s wagons are now well under way with just a few jobs remaining before I can get them on their way to him.

Slaters 7mm Scale LMS Cattle Wagons
Slaters 7mm Scale LMS Cattle Wagons
Slaters 7mm Scale LMS Cattle Wagons
Slaters 7mm Scale LMS Cattle Wagons
Slaters 7mm Scale BR Vans
Slaters 7mm Scale BR Vans
Slaters 7mm Scale BR Vans


Jobs still to do are:
Fix on the roofsAdd additional weightWeather the underframes of the cattle wagonsWeather the vans.
I hope to have the weathering, and weight completed tonight.



Gladiator ex GCR Open with Trestle Bar

Minor health issues this week have stopped play for a few days so it was only last night when I made more progress.
The open wagon is well on it’s way now and it just needs the trestle bar and final details.
I also need to work out just how to spring the buffers because they are turned brass heads that are designed for springing with a piece of piano type wire passing between them and the coupling hook tail.


Aside from the buffers it’s a lovely kit to build with everything fitting as and where it should.

Gladiator ex GCR Open Wagon – With Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GCR Open Wagon – With Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GCR Open Wagon – With Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GCR Open Wagon – With Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GCR Open Wagon – With Trestle Bar

Gladiator ex GCR 10 Ton Open Wagon with Trestle Bar

Having spent all my Christmas break building things for other people I decided to take a day out to build something for me. I had a look in my kit stash and came up with a Gladiator kit for a GCR 10 ton Open Wagon which Chris bought me from Geoff Stratford just before he sold Gladiator To David and Trisha Hill.

So far it has been excellent to build with all parts fitting as they should and the only bits of fettling were to remove the ends of the sole bars to enable them to fit under the bottom of the buffer plank.

Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar
Gladiator ex GC Open Wagon with Trestle Bar

Gladiator J6 – Valencing

I spent 2 and 1/2 hours last night preparing the cradle for the foot plate which contains the valances….
Some this was my own fault because it’s quite thick nickel silver and like David found out when he built one recently, you need to file a lot out of either side of the fold lines to allow the valances to sit vertical.  I had attempted to fold up one side some time ago which needs a bit of brute strength but then found that it wouldn’t come to 90 degrees.
The first job was to straighten the side already bent enough to allow me to file out the fold line. I did this by annealing with the microflame and then using the vice to squash the etch back almost flat. Once I had filed the fold lines, I bent it as far as I could with one of the sides off a set of bending bars and then used a rubber mallet to bash it to the final 90 degree fold while the middle section was firmly gripped in a second set of bending bars to ensure that it stayed flat.
Hopefully I will get the footplate shaped and soldered on tonight so I will take photos after that.

Ivatt Self Trimming Tender Finished at last with lot’s of learning along the way

Yesterday saw the tender completed apart from wiring the pick ups and setting the ride height which will be done towards the end of the build.
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Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Chassis

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Chassis

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Chassis

You will note that I have added an extra frame spacer. I did this because I am using the tender for pick ups and wanted to ensure that there was no flexing which might affect them – The brass spacer was a scaled up P4 spacer from the spares box which I cut down to fit.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Pick ups fitted

Back onto the loco next.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Upperworks Complete

Because we stayed in Wakefield this weekend it gave me an extra evening at the bench – usually I am worn out by the time we get to Bishop Auckland and rarely do anything once I arrive on Friday evening.
As luck would have it I was able to finish work early too so I had around 5 hours at the bench which saw off the remaining upper works details.
The coal rails were too long and I had to split them at the rear of the tender. I think that this is a result of the cut out in the tender flare for the hand grip which is a feature of this type of tender.
I followed David Hill’s example and soldered half round beading over the coal rails and what an improvement it’s made.
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Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Tender body complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Tender body complete

I also put half round beading in one the inside of the front hand grip sections to make it a round profile. and you can see the additional lamp bracket too which wouldn’t focus on my last photo session.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Tender body complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Tender body complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Tender body complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Tender body complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Tender body complete

I also got around not fitting a nut to secure the front of the tender top by tapping a piece of tube and soldering it in when the nut should be.
This just leaves me with the chassis which I have made a start on.

Gladiator J6 – Tender Lamp Irons

I didn’t seem to make much visible progress in last night’s session but I got the lamp irons on and hopefully you can see why I prefer to replace etched versions with cast ones where possible.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Lamp Irons and Tank filler fitted

 I have also fitted one inside the side sheet at the front of the tender but alas the camera decided to focus on the nearside so the added lamp iron came out so blurred you couldn’t see it.
I will try again when I next take photos.
I did manage to add the tank filler though so another detail bites the dust.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Lamp Irons and Tank filler fitted

Coal rails next I think.

Gladiator J6 – Detailing the tender top

Further progress on the tender for the J6. Starting off with a slight backward step.
While struggling with the instructions I hadn’t read the text when fitting the lifting eyes I just followed the drawing which unfortunately showed the wrong type of backing plate. Reading through the text late last week I saw my error and by coincidence David Hill of Gladiator pointed it out the day after on the Guild forum.
My customer had seen the post and said it didn’t matter if they didn’t show too much but it was only a few minutes of a job with the microflame and a scalpel to take them off and swap them for the right ones.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – some details added

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Lifting Eye backing plate

Next I added the vacuum and steam heat pipes to the rear of the tender.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – some details added

Then I started on the front.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – some details added

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – some details added

The brake standard was one that I had in my spares box that was left over from the B16 build. The other levers are bent wire and scrap etch.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – some details added

The bucket is one of Jim McGeown’s castings that I had sat on my desk for a long time after I had made a bit of a mess of trying to hollow it out.
I took it back into the workshop to see if I could do anything with it after being informed that the hole in the left hand side was for a bucket. I then remembered the collets that I had made for drilling the valve guide castings on the Streamlined Duchess and used one of them to tidy up the inside of the bucket top using a dental burr and lastly soldered a handle on from scrap etch.

Bucket for J6 Tender

Slaters Ale Wagons – from LMS Cattle Wagons

While in the North East on a weekend recently I have been doing a bit of wagon building on the workbench all by coincidence from Slaters are three LMS Cattle wagons, a couple of  BR vans and an NER 20 ton hopper. The cattle wagons are to be finished as Ale wagons and much progress was made on them this weekend.
Gogin from this:
To this.

Slaters LMS Cattle Wagons – to be finished as Ale wagons

Slaters LMS Cattle Wagons – to be finished as Ale wagons

Slaters LMS Cattle Wagons – to be finished as Ale wagons

I also managed to get all the roofs canvassed and a coat of primer
Just before posting this I also got them primed.

Gladiator J6 Tender Fundamentals complete

More progress last night. Despite starting quite late I managed to get the two coal space sides in place.
I had anticipated that one of them may not fit very well and might leave a gap that would in fairness be hidden by the coal but I was pleasantly surprised when after a little tweaking with pliers and a rub of some abrasive paper it went into place as it should. Just the details and coal rails to add now.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Coal space complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Coal space complete

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Coal space complete

I am not sure why but I chose to use shiny sinks to clean it up after I finished instead of my usual Bar Keepers Friend and it turned all the solder black making it look to be worse than it is.

More Tender moments and it’s not even anywhere near Valentines day

Last Thursday evening I made much progress on the tender for the J6.
The coal plate is now in as is the front section of the tender.

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender coal plate fitted

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender coal plate fitted

Gladiator J6 Ivatt Self Trimming Tender coal plate fitted

There is still a goodly amount of cleaning up to do and the sides of the coal space are still to solder in but I feel that I have broken it’s back now.

Tender and Grilled without a barbie in sight…

And then there were two, I successfully made the second grill last night so that’s a bit of a relief.
I am still awaiting some of the replacement bits for the chassis – they were ordered later after my customer decided that he would like the chassis improved too.

N7/3 Scratch Built Rear Window Half Coal Bars – and then there were two

Having made the second grill for the N7 I then picked up the tender front for the J6 and made the last small piece to get the main structure of the tender front ready for fitting and final details.

Gladiator J6 Tender Front – last bits before the details

Flares fitted to Ivatt Self Trimming Tender.

Further to my last post below are some photos of the flares as fitted to the J6 self trimming tender. There is still much cleaning up and some filling of the corners with solder to do but so far I am very pleased with how they are going.

Starting with some shots after soldering on the flares but before starting to filling the corners with solder.

Gladiator Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Fitting the flares

Gladiator Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Fitting the flares

Gladiator Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Fitting the flares

Gladiator Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Fitting the flares

Then with the mostly filled in corners.

Gladiator Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Fitting the flares

Gladiator Ivatt Self Trimming Tender – Fitting the flares