Monday 28 December 2020
Probably not the kind of thing that most people have in the house. I've had a pair of these in my hands for more than 40 years. When they lose their spring and get too bent, I bin them. Surprisingly I've never taken a pair apart. Today is that day. Simple crimped construction, so a few minutes with a pair of side cutters produced all the signal control or handrail wire I'll ever need.
Sunday 27 December 2020
I'm about 2/3 of the way though the track; just these last two points to do on the platform roads. As usual it's a little squeezy and there is is a lot of the Hopwood mentality in the approach. There is space for a 37/47 in the headshunt. No point for anything grander as it will get too big for the other end. To recap: these are the standard 43" long boards plus the Rhiw/Svanda fiddle yard, taking the overall to around 11'. Still not big, with the idea to be able to take the good bits from Rhiw and Hopwood and run some DMUs and parcels stock.
The building units are DPM and have been in Mr. Hill's care for probably 25 years waiting for a suitable use. Ideal for a non-specific industrial building that is only an inch deep. The area to the left will house another bland structure of a post office parcels building of the post war block type. his will drift away from the usual Wills sheet and probably move to a card/ Slater's brick to blend better with the DPM mouldings. Most of this will be masked by some tatty platform canopies still un-purchased from Ratio.
Wednesday 23 December 2020
An email from The Crowood Press yesterday informed me that my final tome for them was published yesterday, slightly earlier than expected. Decoded this means that the container was released from being holed up in Rotterdam and has been unloaded in Felixstowe. Anyhow, it's now available to purchase should you wish by clicking through the box to your right. It's the usual format: over a hundred pages of themed projects from the simple slate wagon on the cover, though etched brass kits et al. Actually the finished wagon on the cover is by Martin Collins in case you thought that I could get to that standard.
Tuesday 22 December 2020
I thought you might all have put your Christmas plans on hold as there was no conclusion to the Westykits cattle van test/review/build/twist. No? Well never mind as Mrs F. has just returned hotfoot from Tescos with the only thing they had left which was second hand toilet roll and figs, here's a photo of where it's up to. Transfers, weathering and couplings to do.
Saturday 12 December 2020
This is of course not so much a build as a rebuild: the boards are rescued from the GWR project, the gallows are the 12" wide set that were last used on Rhiw and the facia boards ditto. This meant that is was just a case of measuring and drilling new bolt holes for these at the appropriate spots.
I still need a name for this and indeed a more positive location. Suggestions on a five pound note please to the usual address.
With reference to the comments in the post below, I feel that this will explain. Not the classic pose, but close.
Wednesday 9 December 2020
Monday 7 December 2020
Saturday 5 December 2020
A while ago (July 2014) I wrote comment piece for RM praising the benefits of a large home layout. I touched on this briefly in another piece this year. Why is this important? Well it isn't particularly, except in yesterday's post I realised that I'd hit a turning point. Small though it maybe at 21" long the diving board (now with clamped leg) is a significant shift. Aside from a couple of nailed down bits of track for testing things, I haven't built a baseboard with track on it that wasn't destined in some way no matter how minor for public display for decades - unless you count this page of course. This was built for me.
Do railway modellers who build exhibition layouts run things at home other that for pre-show testing? In the main I would say no. Even our Mr. Hill with his developing slice of the SR in the back bedroom admits that it doesn't get a lot of running. The exhibition mindset is a deep-seated thing. I started showing things in about 1992-ish and haven't stopped since. The last thing that wasn't designed to wave in front of the public was a little 009 layout bolted to the wall in my first flat. That's more than 25 years ago.
I'm just embarking on another exhibition item (and possibly another next year for the boss which would be headed for Warley) but I keep asking why? The answer is because I can, because it's what I do and even if it just gets set up in Mr. Hill's spacious lounge and operated for a while, it's ticked the box.
Does the 21" of the diving board hint at something more significant with the return of exhibition possibly a year away? Does it count as extending around the room and more to the point... a home layout?
Friday 4 December 2020
Wednesday 2 December 2020
I had issues straight away. The axle boxes are separate as are the solebars. The latter is OK and the former was presumably for the finescalers to add rocking units more easily. The springs were unequal in length and the holes in the axle boxes matched badly with the W irons. I lined them up as best I could cosmetically and redrilled from the back though the W iron holes. This wasn't looking bad, but then it wasn't looking good either. Plus the floor had a slight wind in it.