Through the paint shops

I recently changed the filters in my spray booth after putting it off for far too long. It won’t come as a suprise that it was a much easier job than I had built it up to be in my mind. Having done that I made a start on my backlog of stock ready for painting.

First up is a Slaters MR open wagon. I picked this kit up cheap from the bring and buy at the GOG Halifax show. I added internal detail to it from plastic strip as I built it but otherwise it’s straight from the very ancient box…

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A mistake in my eagerness!

Seeing this kit advertised I focussed upon the “LMS Design” element of the description not upon the build date so subsequently I have a wagon that doesn’t fit with my modelling timeline so as a few shows are imminent I thought that I would build it to sell to raise a bit of cash.

Here are a few shots of progress so far.

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A friend who built one of these had casting that had not witness marks for drilling out the axle boxes – I was lucky mine were nicely cast!BR Pipe Wagon 002 Almost all the add on parts for this kit are cast white metal, despite planning to sell it I have scratch built the most vulnerable parts – so far these have been: guard irons, coupling hooks (Connoisseur beefed up with scrap etch).BR Pipe Wagon 005 BR Pipe Wagon 004 BR Pipe Wagon 003 I also managed to melt one of the plates that cover where the coupling hook goes through the buffer beams so I made a couple of those too. The next bit of scratch building was the brake cross beam. The cast one was too short so I cut off the cast arm that goes to the vacuum cylinder and made a new rod from copper tube and brass rod.BR Pipe Wagon 002 The next issue on mine was the tie bars between the axle boxes they are etched and have dimples for the rivets/bolts. I pressed them out before testing against the wagon and the bolt heads were out of line so I remade them from some scrap nickel strip.BR Pipe Wagon 001


I also added a spare MMP etched plate – not quite right for the wagon in terms of it’s detail but infinitely better than the cast blob provided in the kit

BR Pipe Wagon 007

The next problem which my friend also encountered was that the cast brakes are not long enough to fit close enough to the wheels – the next job is working out the best way to make them fit…..

GER Sand Wagon – another nice kit from Connoisseur

Next up is another one of Jim’s goodies this one the GER/LNER Sand Wagon. This is the only kit of Jim’s that I have built so far that has compensation built in.

I built it straight from the instructions, the only change being that I only added brake gear on one side. Parts are provided for both sides.

Having looked in volume one of LNER wagons at the couple of photo’s in there, I couldn’t make out a second set of brake gear.

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Next on the workbench is a Welcome Wagons BR Pipe wagon.

I am building this to sell – Sadly I didn’t read the description too well when I bought it, homing in on the LMS design rather than when they were built. So it’s a bit late for the period that I model.

Ready for the paintshop

Work on this slowed down as I went away for a couple of days at the New Year. A visit to the NRM at Shildon allowed me to see work on the A4 Dominion of Canada which is being cosmetically restored there to garter blue including both side skirts and the bell.

Since returning I have cracked on and finished the milk van ready for painting.

As I got to the final details I was looking at the cast whitemetal vacuum pipes and thinking that they would be quite vulnerable so I got some 1.5mm brass rod a few bits of scrap etch and some 24 gauge brass wire and made up these as replacements

Connoisseur MR Milk Van 001 Connoisseur MR Milk Van 002

In terms of time spent I could probably have bought some cast lost wax ones cheaper but I did enjoy fiddling about with them and I am pleased with the result.

These are a few shots of the van with the remaining details added. As I did with the brake van I beefed up the brakes with scrap etch to make them a bit stronger.


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Midland Milk Van

Since finishing the Floor Cloth Wagon and still being on holiday I haven’t rested on my laurells. Next up on the workbench is another of last year’s Christmas gifts, a Connoisseur Diagram 416 Midland Milk Van.

For once Jim seems to have provided more in the way of details than is necessary for this diagram of van.

He provides torpedo vents for the roof and their positions but referring to Midlad Carriages an illustrated review by Jenkinson ad Essery reveals: “However, in 1904, the MR decided to fit many of its fruit and milk vans with torpedo ventilators to improve matters. We have no evidence that any of D416 were so treated”

The accompanying photo is the same photo that is included in Jim’s instructions along with the drawing. Jim also provides a more detailed approx 7mm scale drawing. Both of these drawings show long handles for one of each pair of doors and there are etched T handles provided for the left hand doors.

The photo however only shows ring type handles on the left hand doors and by good fortune I had some nice Griffin castings in stock for these.

I am not sure whether the safety chains would have been removed by LMS days but I like them so I have added them. I opened out the holes in some short handrail knobs and soldered the chain into them before adding the hooks and soldering them to the ends.

Jim’s Midland buffer castings are very nice but I don’t particularly like the way that he offers to spring them so I raided the spares box and came up with some turned heads and modified them into “normal” sprung buffers.

Connoisseur MR Milk Van 005

This is where I got to just as the New Year chimed last night.

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