Thursday 26 October 2017

Santa special

Bluebell again.
I took this from the bridge steps to get the lamp detail on the LBSCR 4 wheeler. What I wasn't seeing was the early arrival of the staff for the Santa Specials.

Monday 23 October 2017

Bluebell Railway

 As usual on a visit to the Bluebell I head for the smaller oddball stuff that everyone else avoids Yesterday I was in riding mode with two small people in tow and lucked out with the P Class and the pre-group four-wheeelers. It's a little cramped, but far preferable to something with a tender and a brace of Mk 1s. Howard (below) was having his carb emptied and closed for the winter and I had a brief chat to the guy working on it about the worry of declining engineering skills and the education of same. The BR run an apprentice scheme to try and fight this, but other lines seem to shy away, finding it easier just to moan about the lack of cash and young interest.

Saturday 21 October 2017

B set coach

As hinted in the previous post there are issues. I went on a search for info. If you look at the RMweb and Scalefour forum there is a) more info than you'll ever need, and b) much argument about what is wrong with the Airfix coach.
I took a deep breath.
The problems are: length, one window too many, wrong headstocks, inaccurate truss rods an identity crisis: is it an E 140 or a 147 or a 145?
More deep breaths and a couple of decisions.
It basically looks OK, but I decided to change a couple of things. Firstly make the headstocks flat and not curved, change the buffers (most were close coupled - some weren't). The truss rods were a step too far as was the window - like I said before, there comes a point where starting with a kit is  the easier option. The rest is paint: ends, roof and underside get a coat of grime, droplights get touched in, interior gets a set of block colours.
So still not perfect enough for the P4-ers, but a different enough from all the other  00 B set coaches out there.

Thursday 19 October 2017

Airfix B set coach

The Airfix B set. What a bloody minefield this is. Basically everything that is right with it is wrong, and everything that is wrong with it can be solved by throwing it away and getting a Comet kit.
I shall persevere.  Oh for the piss easy world of freelancing where nothing is wrong and everything can be explained away by Miles Bevan.

Saturday 14 October 2017

Vale of Reidol coach

A break away from the GWR for a bit - well almost. A little more cut and shut this week with a Parkside (now Dundas again) VoR brake and coach bash with a few other various bits of scrap and whitemetal castings thrown in. This will make up the back of the branch rake for Orne which will be coming your way soon.

Monday 9 October 2017

Ratio signal box - the crit'

Well it's done. Sort of. Not being able to run with anything as designed, there are obvious changes and a glaring problem that looks worse here than in real life.
The kit comes with stone steps - I thought his was a bit visually boring so diddled around with the 'extra' bits that come on the sprue. These are there as they are common with the kit for the larger box. With a bit of cutting and some 20 thou strip it's possible to knock up a narrow balcony, though this would benefit from a support or two.
The kit as bought goes together well if a bit fiddly. The fail is the guttering and down pipes. The gutter pieces are shorter than the roof by about 3mm. There must be a reason for this, but I can't quite work it out. Worse are the down pipes - beautifully made and designed to stand out from the building. The problem is that it's not enough. Any real pipe in this situation  would have a swan neck to bring the pipe into the building. When I summon up the bother I'll replace with some 1mm rod suitably curved and less jarring. The foot board is loose and would need adjusting in situ.

Wednesday 4 October 2017

Warehouse Wednesday Edgebaston store

Sorry Phil.
Entering offence #2 . Just down the bank from the carpark at the ERA show last weekend was a quite attractive canal basin that looked worth a further look. So once the rain had stopped, I noodled down there. NO ENTRY EXCEPT ON BUSINESS - was what the sign said. Well after my gate vaulting escapades of the previous day, I wasn't letting a sign stop me, so I ambled nonchalantly in, camera clearly visible and working out that I was wearing a shirt and a pinstripe jacket and not a hoodie and ripped jeans, so more 'I'm taking photos' rather than 'I'm nicking your cables'. The basin was full of barges and tugs; all very freight leaning and less pretty pleasure craft. This is the first building inside the gate. I'm thinking feed and tack store in it's original usage. The location is just east of the Edgebaston reservoir.

Monday 2 October 2017

Eardington Halt crime scene

On the way up to the ERA show a few stops were made to grice the SVR. Eardington wasn't on the list, but it was spotted as we drove past and a quick U-turn was made. The whole site was firmly padlocked up. So photography was tricky. Throwing caution to the wind and ignoring the 53 year old body, I worked out that I could bounce myself over the gate. So breaking, no. Entering yes. But all in the cause of photography as an art form.

Tel me this isn't the perfect minimum space station building.
More here:

Sunday 1 October 2017

European Railway Association show

I had my doubts during set-up, but by the late afternoon de-rig it was fairly clear; the push for the hobby at the  moment is a) British diesels and b) continental. My slightly negative comments of late re: exhibitions were reversed - the ERA show was uncomfortably full at times and there was money being spent in large amounts from what I could see. This wouldn't normally be my sort of thing, but officially 'assisting' on Svanda meant I had time to compare and contrast. The general shows and the finescale are on a downward shift and the events like this are on the rise.

What was most evident was the chat and enthusiasm through out the day. I'd often thought that the continental modellers were a bit of a tribal bunch -it appears not. The team reported a better than expected day and we were well provided for. Halal chicken tikka sandwiches were a new item on the exhibitors lunch menu, but were eagerly snaffled up by self. 10/10

This was technically Svanda's last show; not that it is being retired, but simply that there is nothing else in the book. Time to consolidate.