Make do and Mend - Inspecting on Six Wheels

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drmditch
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by drmditch »

After taking over thirty years to build my latest locomotive, I thought a 'quick' project would be fun. I keep reading Peter Tatlow's LNER Wagons with interest (does anybody know when we might get Volume 4b?) and speculating on what would be fun to build. So, in less than two weeks, here is a GNR 19' Van!
Post_01 - Small.JPG
I did not actually fit the vacuum pipes until after midnight, so it took an hour over two weeks, (but at least it enabled me to re-take the pictures this morning (1st Feb) by daylight. This is much kinder to my modelling and painting skills.!
Post_02 - Small.JPG
I've built several vehicles from scratch before (my favourite being an NER G6 25 ton bogie van), but I think I'm reasonably happy with this one.
No compromises anywhere, except for the buffers (which I'll replace with proper GNR ones when I can find some), and of course the clunky but necessary couplings!
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by cthompson »

Super job, David! I can think of several people who would like to see a photograph of the NER diagram G6 bogie van, too....
jwealleans
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by jwealleans »

Less than two weeks..... I'll point that out to Peter S next time I see him - the one I finished off last year had been started by him ' at least 20 years ago'.....
drmditch
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by drmditch »

Short cuts that don't work!

I had an idea before Christmas to make containers (the 1920/30s variety) by pre-printing the sides and making them up into a box. The idea came from some pictures of Hornby (as in tinplate) pre-war LNER containers. This was supposed to save time in construction and to make the lettering easier.

I then tried to make one up very quickly as a present! All this did was to prove that it never pays to rush.
Post_01.JPG
Two days later, I've made up two 'A' containers, one with pre-printed sides, and one without. These are based on the pictures and plan from Peter Tatlows 'LNER Wagons - An Illustrated Overview' and some of the NRM pictures.
Post_02.JPG
I think the pre-printed sides would have worked better if I'd included some planking, but I think the one without the pre-printing is better. I haven't fitted all the lifting hooks yet, partly because I haven't found the ones that disappeared after I'd made them. I do have some etched hooks, turnbuckles and loops for the fittings, but for the moment I need to relax by making something a little larger than 1.5 mm wide. The pre-printing idea might work better with a B or an R2 - where the lettering does not cross the strapping as much. When I've recovered from these I might try one of those.
Post_05.JPG
The NRM references are:-
1995-7233_LIVST_RF_1
and
1995-7233_LIVST_RF_2

There are more interesting NRM container pictures, most of the LNER ones appear to be in the Liverpool Street section.
drmditch
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by drmditch »

CAUTION - This post mentions railways indentified with three letters!

As the title of this thread implies, I don’t like throwing anything away if it can be made into anything useful. The plastic mouldings that the regular manufacturers have produced over the years show a lot of nice detail, but, until they saw the error of their ways, were distorted to fit a ‘standard’ ten foot wheelbase steel underframe.

Shown below are examples of what I’ve managed to produce. An original Mainline (although re-painted) mineral wagon is to the left.
Post_01.JPG
The Peco R-20 underframe kit provides options for a wooden underframe with a nine foot wheelbase. By taking the original moulding and making four saw cuts – one inside each end and one inside each side of the the door strapping – the body can be reduced to a scale length, and the Peco underframe fits nicely. I used to buy the Peco kit for less than £4.00, so this was a cost effective way to build up a substantial train. I have also used other kit underframes for some vehicles.

(The example of the original shown is the last one I have left. I think there were about ten originally – from Mainline and Bachmann.)

The same technique also works on other wagons. The next example being a Dapol one, from before they introduced their nine foot wheelbase. This has a local interest for me, and I have some others in stock to process as well. Here the spare material all had to be removed from inside the corner plates, so as to avoid damaging the lettering.
Post_02.JPG
I also used this technique on one of the very old Mainline ‘Ellis and Everard’ wagons. (Sorry, I don’t have an original left any more for the ’before and after’ pictures.) As with the Weardale wagon, the end stanchions and ‘door bangers’ were reworked in plastic. There is a nice picture of the prototype (or something very close to it) in page 39 of Bob Essery’s ‘Freight Train Operation for the Railway Modeller. My converted model is not quite like it, but is much nicer than the rather toylike original. (I think so anyway – and it runs on my railway!)
Post_03.JPG
It is also possible to use the ‘cut-and-shut’ technique on other wagons.
The next photograph is of a converted Bachmann 16 ton mineral (one the old over-length ones) next to a kit-built equivalent. (Sorry I haven’t fitted the ‘door bangers’ yet.) In this one the original underframe was shortened with cuts either side of the ‘V’ hanger, with the brake shoes and rigging re-cycled from spare sprues from kits of nine foot wheelbase wagons. On this one I left the original buffers although they have been replaced on other examples. There is a rake of fourteen sixteen-ton minerals, three of which are conversions like the one illustrated to LMS diagram D2134, another to an MOT equivalent with different side door detail, and the remainder built from Dapol, Cambrian, and Parkside kits and some of the newer Bachmann RTR vehicles. They all look very good behind my 04/8 – itself a conversion from a Bachmann 04. (Again, I think so and it’s my railway!)
Post_04.JPG
Last edited by drmditch on Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
drmditch
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by drmditch »

For ages there was an RTR cattle wagon produced by Mainline and inherited by Bachmann with ‘NE’ printed on what was basically an ex-Midland vehicle. The next picture shows my conversion to something like the LMS Diagram D1661. The centre doors and the ends are from the original, with the outer parts of the sides rebuilt to provide the greater length. Dimensions are from Mr Essery’s LMS Wagons Volume 1. This allows much greater detail of the diagonal strapping and bolt head detail to be shown, although it looks much nicer in reality than in my inadequate photograph.
Post_05.JPG
The ‘W’ irons and axle boxes are recycled (you need two chassis to get four ‘W’ irons – to avoid the moulded on brake levers). They were cut out and fitted to scratch build solebars. The brake shoes came from the ‘bits box’ (I think they were Dapol originally), and the double ‘V’ hangers, and brake rigging are scratch-built. Cutting and lengthening the roof was a bit tricky. It needed a lot of filling and rubbing down.

(The photograph appears to show a bow in the solebars. I hadn’t noticed this in the model. Presumably this LMS vehicle with its 11’ wheelbase would have been less susceptible to bowing than the LNER 9’ equivalent!)

Next to build is an Alexander J21, which I have been thinking about for ages. Although, I was thinking about whether the Airfix/Dapol Lowmac kit could be built as a GE/LNER MAC K.
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Atlantic 3279
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by Atlantic 3279 »

drmditch wrote:I was thinking about whether the Airfix/Dapol Lowmac kit could be built as a GE/LNER MAC K.
My first etched kit was a D & S GE Lowmac. Much later I built the far cheaper and easier Airfix / Dapol plastc kit when the tools for this were re-discovered. They look almost identical, and there's nothing problematic that I can see if you wanted to make the tiny alterations to turn one into the other.
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jwealleans
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by jwealleans »

I had been told that about the Lowmac as well. Buffers and axleboxes, presumably - is much else different?

I have to confess, David, that I failed to take your container to Nottingham. Those you've illustrated look very good, though.
DS239
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8

Post by DS239 »

Some very nice modelling there drmditch! I'm all for the re-cycling ethos :D
drmditch wrote:The 52ft Brake Third is a recycling of the old Hornby 'short' gresley mouldings.
Interesting,-any chance of a photo of this :?:
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by Atlantic 3279 »

jwealleans wrote:I had been told that about the Lowmac as well. Buffers and axleboxes, presumably - is much else different?
I'll try to either post side-by-side photos tomorrow, or have the vehicles with me at York.
DS239 wrote:drmditch wrote:
The 52ft Brake Third is a recycling of the old Hornby 'short' gresley mouldings.


DS239 wrote:
drmditch wrote:The 52ft Brake Third is a recycling of the old Hornby 'short' gresley mouldings.
Interesting,-any chance of a photo of this :?:
I'd be interested to see that too.
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drmditch
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by drmditch »

My first etched kit was a D & S GE Lowmac. Much later I built the far cheaper and easier Airfix / Dapol plastc kit when the tools for this were re-discovered. They look almost identical, and there's nothing problematic that I can see if you wanted to make the tiny alterations to turn one into the other.
I had been told that about the Lowmac as well. Buffers and axleboxes, presumably - is much else different?
Post_10.JPG
Here is the MAK K so far. The Dapol instruction sheet says that the model is based on those built at Shildon in 1953. According to Peter Tatlow LNER Wagons Vol1, these were built to the basic design of GER Diagram 50. Mine will be No.621696, a GER built example from 1904, of which Mr Tatlow provides a good picture, although mine will be in LNER livery. The dimensions of the kit match up very well to the drawing, except for the diagonal cut-away at the end of the side-frames. However, the photographs do not appear to quite match the drawing. The spring hangers on the moulding also do not match the drawings, but I chose to leave them rather than make a clumsy rebuild.

Very easy construction, but as with the other Dapol kits I have built and/or modified the plastic is very soft and easily damaged.

What I did was:-
- Modified the end cut-away (to match the picture I'm working from)
- Shaved down and rebuilt the axleboxes.
- Removed the Dapol coupling mount
- Drilled the frames and fitted brass bearings. (This vehicle will be carrying a heavy load!)
- Removed some extraneous detail from the sides, including a large box on the end of one of the side frames, for which I couldn’t see any evidence in the pictures.
- Adapted and fitted brass buffers from my spares box. (I think they were old Triang ones originally, but were quite a close match to the GER originals.)
Because of the thickness of the plastic mouldings I had to file a flat on top of the buffer housings to get the heads into the correct position.
- Remove and replace the triangular web on the RH end of each frame. Dapol only make this half height, presumably to clear the brake lever.
- Fitted flanges to the triangular webs on the side-frames.

Still to do are:-
- Fit a few more flanges, and add some bolt/rivet head detail (This is just my pride showing here!)
- Modify and fit the brake levers. Mt Tatlow shows two variants.
- (Possibly) Remove and replace the securing rings with some etched ones I have in stock.
- Add some weights underneath.
- Fit my standard couplings.
- Paint and Letter.
- Build a suitable load!

I'm sure that Atlantic's models will be better than mine, so it would be nice to see them!
drmditch
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by drmditch »

Well, since people were polite enough to ask, here are some pictures of my re-cycled 52’ Gresley coaches. Other people have done the same thing, but these ones are all my own! I’m sorry I’ve forgotten the diagram numbers. I keep meaning to write them on the bottom of the vehicles, but they are all based on drawings and documents from Messrs Harris and Campling, and on some of Mr Banks very useful published articles.

I should say that they do look much better on my railway than in the very inadequate photographs. (Apart from all the clumsy detail, the way I set up the camera seems to show a bow in some vehicles that isn’t really there!)

They are all made from chopped up side panels from the old Hornby ‘short’ Gresley coaches, re-assembled onto a sheet plastic strip along the lower coach sides. New partitions provide structural strength. (It was quite tricky getting these to the right shape – and I’ve kept a template in case I do any more!) The ends are cast white metal from 247 developments, except for the brake end which is plastic. The roofs are re-cycled Hornby, with new ventilators and other detail.

When planning the cutting of the original Hornby body shells, you have to sacrifice some roofs, in order not to damage the cantlines on the side sections you want. I think it took eight donor vehicles to produce the three models. The brake compartment sides are in short supply, and in the case of the four-compartment brake, I had to change the mouldings with thin plastic. (You have to pare away the moulded look-outs as well.)
Post_06.JPG
Post_07.JPG
Post_08.JPG
The first one I made, the five compartment brake, has an underframe with plastic solebars. These were not entirely satisfactory, so for the others I developed a brass structure made up of:-
- Brass channel solebars, with a wooden strip insert to reduce the apparent depth of the web.
- These are soldered to brass cross pieces to give structural strength.
- The cross-members, rodding, and turnbuckles are all made up from brass.
- The queen posts are made from small brass bolts, with the the thread filed off after the rodding was secured with nuts.
- Plastic sheet was then glued and bolted to the brass to allow the structure to be secured to the body and additional details to be added.
- The battery boxes, dynamo’s, brake cylinders and and ‘V’ hangers are mostly scratch built from plastic, with some MJT components on some of the vehicles.
Post_09.JPG
I was very poor when I made these, (and I am again now – the banking crisis having killed my overseas contracts!), so I also re-used the Hornby bogies. They may be crude but they run well and reliably.

The roofs are removable, because I have ideas to fit lighting to them eventually.

The overscale rain strips are all my fault. (Sorry they look so bad in the photographs.) When I fit the lighting I will have to replace them.

The livery is original Hornby, worked up with my favourite acrylic wood shades. I like to think it gives a suitable battered and in-service for four years look! The glazing is partly from SE Finecast (they do glazing packs for the original short Hornby coaches) and partly individually cut from acrylic sheet. This is fine provided that not too many escape onto the carpet!

To match the rake, I built a Kirk/Coopercraft CL. This has the same brass underframe, 247 ends, Hornby bogies and a Hornby roof. (This process does leave you with a lot of spare roofs). The windows here are all individually cut and fitted. The side I photographed happened to be the one where I had more difficulty with the adhesive. Never mind – it’s a cold day and the steam heating is on!

(Now I do have some of the adhesives that don’t damage clear plastic)

Of course, as soon as soon as I had finished this rake, Hornby produced their excellent new models. I have three of them – but haven’t dared to start weathering them yet!

Compared to them, my own re-cycled vehicles are clumsy with overstated detail. They also cost a lot less money!
Last edited by drmditch on Thu Mar 28, 2013 6:22 pm, edited 3 times in total.
drmditch
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by drmditch »

Here is the CL - I think there must be some limiter to stop more than four pictures in one post.
Post_11.JPG
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by Atlantic 3279 »

I hadn't thought of turning the 57' fantasy Gresley coaches of the 70s/80s type into the 52'6" flat-ended stock. My efforts concentrated on stretching them to 61'6" or reducing to the shorter length but keeping the bow-ends. I've stll got leftovers, so you may now have added another project to my never-diminishing list. I'll try to get back with those Lowmac pictures later.
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manna
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Re: Make do and Mend - A Q7/Sentinels/NER Coaches/A8/some tr

Post by manna »

G'Day Gents

Excellent looking coaches,half the fun of railway modelling is making what you want. :wink:


manna
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