Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Renumbering a loco.

Last weekend a question was asked on the N Gauge Yahoo Group of which I am a member about changing the details on locos - numbers, crests etc. I thought a series of photos and a longer explanation may be of use.

This is the kit I use to renumber a loco. Normally it isn't as neat as this :-))

Going clockwise from the right: Fowler Locomotives by Brian Haresnape. The loco at the bottom of the dust cover is the subject I am planning on modeling. The white lid to the bottom left is from one of the girls baby jelly jars. 5mls of water goes nicely into this (using a syringe) and it is here the transfers are soaked prior to affixing to the model. Swiss Army pocket knife. I use the scissors (and although it is currently MIA, the toothpick is handy for poking transfers around on models to position them). Small (00) paint brush. Bamboo kebab stick. Bottle of nail polish remover (Coles Persona for Australians reading this - non-acetone variety). Bachfar Jinty purchased from Ebay (needs fettling to get it to work properly but was purchased with a view to putting a 2mm chassis under it from Fencehouses) and under the Jinty some Fox 10inch numbers (FRH 2004) and some small Late Crest transfers from Modelmaster via the NGS shop (can't tell you the code for those).

The more knowledgeable engine pickers of Jinties will have spotted the anomaly on this one already. The Darlington style number position. Apparently, according to the caption for the same photo inside the book, it was shopped at Darlington in 1964 and appeared ex-works with its number painted on the tankside instead of the bunker. As the loco was withdrawn in 1966 I suspect it looked like this until then. I thought, as it was something different, I would model it. A bit late for my normal steam operations but Rule 1 and all that.
As an aside, it is easier to work from a photo - I changed a Dapol Ivatt from 41271 to 41220 on the basis I have a photo of this loco at St Alban's Abbey. Another destined for 2mm work.

I put the nail polish remover on with the paint brush over the bits I want to remove. Works really well on plastic (like the smokebox door) and not so well on the metal bits of Farish locos. Works fine on diesels (having done 60078 out of Mainline freight into "something secret") as these are plastic bodies as are the Dapol ones. No dramas on Farish tenders to date either. You can see where the number (47338 if memory serves) and crest were.

The renumbering in progress. The photo shows the first 4 just above the access to the center sandbox (I assume) so this gave me a starting point. The skewer, having been used to gently scrape the old number and crest off is now being used as a poker to get the new one aligned.

The finished job. Took about 30 mins from start to finish. If there are any dramas with taking paint off this is easily fixed with a bit of Humbrol No 33 (Matt Black). Obviously doing something like a Jinty or 4F (which are unlined) is a good place to start as any mistakes are more easily rectified. With a bit of practice and confidence... See Victoria earlier on this month.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

UFO Progress

No photos with this one - just a list of what has been done.

  • Victoria - finished
  • Trafalgar - finished
  • Ocean - cabside transfers to be done
  • Parkside Dundas LNER 20T mineral x 2 - done
  • Parkside Dundas BR 24.5T mineral - done
  • Chivers Tube x 5 - done pending arrival of transfers from NGS
  • Ultima Giant - done albeit with white transfers! (waiting for yellow when I will fix – and waiting for 2mmFSA bogies)
  • Ultima Siphon F - same as Giant
  • Ultima Thompson BG - transfers to be put on and then bogies from 2mmFSA
  • Ultima Gresley BG sides on Minitrix donor coach - done pending transfers and roof
  • NGS Gresley BG - just needs glazing done
  • Farish Cl 33 repaint - pretty much done. One cab end still needs doing but rest done
    ready for transfers
  • Farish Cl 31 repaint - done pending transfers
  • 2mmFS Banana - finished (pending coupling choice)
  • 2mmFS conversion of Peco tanker - finished (pending coupling choice)
  • 2mmFS LNWR Van - finished pending transfers (DG Couplings decided on for this one)
  • TPM 4VEP - one DTC started, MBSO waiting for motor and the rest painted blue – not a lot of progress on this one but being allowed to go back to Hatton's for a 150 chassis will see enthusiasm grow.

Orders for the bogies, missing transfers and some outstanding nameplates have been placed. Hopefully there will be a pile of missing bits forthcoming from the NGS AGM this weekend (thanks Iain and Fred for volunteering to sort this out). I still have some work to do obviously - this weekend will see some more transfers put on, especially on the BGs and hopefully Ocean as this will finish my three Peco Jub repaints which were started years ago.

It has been a good feeling getting these UFOs done - thanks to Amity's challenge. The biggest thing has been the time taken to finish things off. The progress has been slow (waiting for paint to dry) and at times tedious (three transfers aside minimum) but the pile is shrinking which is a good thing. There is still plenty of UFOs but all things being equal, the list will be much shorter by the start of the next school semester in July. Then the UFO will be a layout.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Condemned Coach saved by SVR

When Dapol first produced their Collett Coaches I was keen to get some Blood and Custard ones to supplement my Mk 1 fleet. Unfortunately Dapol's choice of colour wasn't too great. Yes, I know there are photos showing a more Oranges and Cream version than the LMR and ER versions but the four I got were a disappointment.

I stripped one down with the intention of repainting it - and even had a couple of goes. As none of these were taped up well enough to prevent runs and didn't use an airbrush, the result wasn't too flash. I even had a go at painting it plain maroon but the maroon I used didn't match the rake of Dapol maroon coaches.

As part of the "finish 10 UFO challenge" set by my wife, finishing this coach was on the list. Having given the spray red a go and deciding it was a miss, I stripped the coach body (again) and had a thought. The idea of a condemned coach being saved by a preservation society would work I thought, and be something different in a train running in my Banger Blue collection.

So tonight, while watching the Pies beat the Roos (I am assuming that is what will happen, the score is pretty lop sided as I type) I dirtied the coach up more - only used Humbrol 118 and 33 on it; the rest of the effect is from the stripping process - and then wrote the condemned symbols and wording along with the SVR (I have enjoyed my visits to the Severn Valley Railway and look forward to taking my family - and they have a couple of these coaches AFAIK) and then used some of Amity's vinyls from her Craft Robo to make the tarps. Hopefully these will bed down a bit more as time goes on.

By doing it this way, should I work out how to do a better job the coach may be restored - just like the real thing!

Let me know what you think either by leaving a comment, post to either the VAG or N Gauge group or direct email.


Way back in 1996 I purchased a second hand Peco Jubilee with the intent of running it as 5565 "Victoria". As I got more interested in the British Railway scene (Victoria was one of the earlier locos I purchased with no real purpose - I didn't have a layout, didn't have a plan but knew, having been born in Victoria, that this was one of the "must haves regardless") I ended up settling on the Midland Region in the 1950's as my main N gauge focus (although recently the time period between my and my wife's birth years is becoming a bit of a theme in N as well!). This meant that Victoria (as yet undealt with and running with no number and no name) was repainted into BR Green and lined using Fox transfers. Fox also provided the numbers. All this happened in around 2000-2001 after St Alban's Priory had been built, exhibited and was on the way to the first of its many tweaks!

Fast forward a bit and the BRMA (Q) modelling competition in 2007. I managed to win two sections and thus got a small consideration. This consideration was turned into, finally, brass name plates (which hitherto I had been unable to source), from, I think, the good offices of Bob Jones and Fencehouses.

Last night, I got a roundtuit and, 15 years after purchase, Victoria is finished in BR Green with name and number as required. I haven't done the numberplate on the smokebox - no numbers small enough in my collection of transfers and the usual suspects (Guilplates et al) have been unwilling to do a numberplate for me (which is a shame as the Jackson Evans ones from the NGS shop come with numberplates so presumably it can be done).

As an aside - Trafalgar (a similarly dealt with Peco Jub) also got its name plates last night to finish it off. 45682 is using the nameplates what come with 5682 the Farish Jubilee. Amity's Red Jub is waiting for her to get her train mojo back to renumber it and put the Queensland plates she has on it.

Monday, May 3, 2010

More UFOs

As mentioned in the first post today I have a few UFOs.

Having joined the 2mm FSA I discovered that replacement etches for the various Chivers Finescale N Gauge models were available. Now I like these kits very much but have found that they don't run very well - which I put solely down to the builder rather than the designer! The replacement chassis, designed by Fencehouse, being etches, are sturdier and end up square meaning running is much smoother.

To date I have built 5 chassis to go under my BR Tube wagons (Dia 1/448) and 3 out of 4 chassis to go under my collection of LMS wagons. The Tubes are here in Longreach and so progress has been made in fixing these. 4 have been dealt with and the last is waiting couplings. I am still using the N Gauges ones as these wagons, having been produced in the 1960's, are more use on N gauge layouts than 2mm ones - the 2mm ones currently planned are either Pre-grouping (W&U - GER) or Grouping (Fairford GWR) or BR Steam (St Alban's Abbey - BR(M)).

The other wagon in this photo is a Parkside Dundas LNER coal wagon. Like the Chivers one it is running on a new etched chassis from the 2mm. There is a pair of these (and a BR steel coal wagon) which have had the treatment. Again, N gauge rapidos are being used.

This last picture shows three of my 2mm FSA kits - Prestwin, LNWR D88 van and BR Banana Van. The Prestwin is destined for N Gauge but the other two are going to be 2mm runners. The LNWR van has been painted using Humbrol 79 after a tip on the 2mm VAG - thanks Jim! DG Couplings for it - not sure about the Banana Van as it is most likely to wind up on the W&U although Bananas weren't grown there!


They have arrived!!! My pair of Ixion Model Railways (http://www.ixionmodels.com/) GWR Manors arrived on Friday - a day earlier than the world wide release date of 1 May, although since we don't have Saturday mail deliveries in Australia and Monday is a public holiday here in Queensland I am not complaining!

I originally ordered "one of whatever you are producing" back when Ixion first announced themselves in 2007 - and according to Lindsay O'Reilly, I was their first order! As time progressed they announced that "whatever" was going to be the Manor - in three versions of green and a limited run of BR black. I picked the black one as it was more suitable for my time period of the 1950's than the other options.

As time further progressed, the limited aspect of the black one was limited only to it being black - 300 of each (GWR shirt button, GWR letters, BR early crest black and BR late crest lined green) were to be produced.

Disaster struck with the initial release being 8% too large. Something back in the 1970's which wouldn't have been a problem was a huge issue in the more discerning noughties. Ixion did a very brave thing and cancelled half the production run and recalled the half which had been released. 18 months later (or thereabouts) the new ones are here, and they are beauties.

If you are a fan of the GWR and model N gauge then you have to have one of these - I am only half of that and have two. Both are excellent runners and haulers - I have had them running on the Darling Daughters trainset with an eclectic rake behind including 7 Dapol light bar ready Collett coaches, 6 Farish Staniers, 4 Farish Mk 2's, 2 Bachmann PRR Coaches from the 1970's, 3 Farish seacows and a couple of coaches of indeterminate parentage.

A YouTube video shows a Engineering Prototype running on Ben Lawson's Sturminister Newton layout hauling 35 coaches. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WyyBfEBPALI

Purchase is by mail order only - and due to exchange rate fluctuations annoyingly only from Ixion for those living Down Under. Dapol (www.dapol.co.uk) have the exclusive sales in the Northern Hemisphere and the prices are on the websites.


Pretty well every railway modeller I know has a box of UFOs - Un Finished Objects. Mine is pretty extensive and so Amity challenged me to get some of them finished. The picture below shows 10 UFOs which were selected to be FOed as much as possible with the resources I have here in Longreach. As I go though, I am making a list of what needs to be purchased to fully FO them.
The stack includes some etched sides for a Gresley BG which I am going to fit to a Minitrix donor coach (the windows are damaged on the coach), a Dapol B/C Collett which is going to be repainted as something stripped the B of the bottom on one side, some Farish four wheelers which I am planning on doing something with to use with a Terrier, a couple of parcels railcars which need building, three TPM Motorising chassis which need sorting so I can use them on a 2EPB, 4VEP and the aforementioned Parcels railcars - although that is 4 items with only three motorising kits!

There is also some Ratio kits which need fixing - a water tank, coaling stage and train shed as well as a white metal scammel.

We will see how it all goes - a start was made last week and two of the three Ratio bits have been done, the sides have been fitted to the donor coach and a first attempt has been made on the repaint but I am not happy with it so it is going into the stripper this afternoon.