Chronicling the development of my Cambrian and Narrow Gauge 4mm scale model railway

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Wanderings in the Principality

Work has been manic so nothing to report on the Penlowry front.

Instead here’s some views from Cardiff earlier today. Firstly a trio of benches.

The GWR shirtbutton and BR (W) are from Cardiff Central while the scroll is from Cardiff Queen Street.

Just to prove that I went to all three Cardiff named stations this morning, here are views of the incredibly long platform at Cardiff Bay and the sad demise of the remains bit of the canopy since I was last there. On the plus side, there is a very nice bullhead buffer stop.

Finally here is the BR flag still flying above Cardiff Central. The flag and the funnels of BR ships were the only official uses of the BR double arrow in reverse.


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The tortoise

Things are very slow in Penlowry at the moment. It’s probably the cold. Which is demonstrating that it gets inside the house too much which is precipitating me to spend more time planning house bashing than model making.

However a quick break this afternoon while awaiting a document from my colleague allowed me a small progression on the two latest motive power builds.

I need to get both of them to a point where they are rigid enough to make them fit on to their respective proprietary chassis. In the case of 4415, that is an Arnold 0-6-0 rather than the Minitrix one it’s supposed to use. The Arnold chassis is a little larger so requires a bit more hacking, while the 15xx was designed to go on the chassis that comes in the complete kit, not a proprietary one so will require some serious surgery to accommodate the proposed donor.

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Double trouble

As I’m not yet proficient in white metal electric glue, I tend to use epoxy for joining low melt metal together.

I tend to find there is a fair amount of wastage and so to try and avoid that, particularly given my Yorkshire upbringing, I will, where I can, have a couple of things that need gluing going at a time.

And thus, I am currently building some old traction and some new, but in a twist, the steam traction is 21 years younger than the diesel.

Relating back to my last post, the 15xx will be the tank engine of Mini me 2 while the KS will be a model of the pioneer, 4415.

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Doing a model engineer… again

It’s well known in the model engineering community that it can be beneficial to name one of your creations after your partner. It happens in the model railway world too. A glance at 247 Developments fictitious range shows a number of interesting names such as Ellen, Lady Harriet, Beryl Ann, Bob, John, and Old Misery…

When you look closely, it’s been going on for at least a hundred and twenty five years.

I too have a penchant for adding family touches to the model railway but I prefer to be a little more subtle. Both my boys will be represented by tank engines when I’ve built them. The difference is I use the numbers of the locos to show the significance.

I realised I was in danger of not representing the most important person in the family, and so the very graceful Hawksworth Modified Hall which will appear on Penlowry will be Fountains Hall, being an excellent choice as it is beautiful and in Yorkshire…

(C) Ben Brooksbank

Making a mark

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Despite not having printed out the layout plans, I can, using the powers of a tape measure, start to work out what can stay and what can go on the layout.

To recap, the boards that I inherited had the fiddle yard to the LHS whereas I’m having it on the RHS. The original RH end of the board was a terminating station whereas now it’s going to be a through station.

I therefore measured out and marked the old platform and removed the excess. In reality I think much of the original platform will be discarded as I want stone (slate) facing and the original top has sagged so I’ll replace with plywood.

However this current cut allows me to work out the rest of the track plan.

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It was my tender behind y’r honour

Ok, so nipping back to Court for a moment…

What we do know is that there isn’t really much of a standard thing as a GW tender. The only tenders that definitely always had the same type of tank and frame during their life are the Hawksworth ones behind the Counties which were 6″ wider than all the others.

Apart from that, the tenders were like the London Routemaster, entering the works the tank and chassis were separated and overhauled at different rates so what then came back out was almost certainly different.

And so it was I noticed that a number of Collett 3500 gal tenders ended up with Dean chassis. I also noticed the Collett 3500 tank bore a striking resemblance to a Dean 3500 with an added raised lip around the tank filler area.

Thus, for my Saint, all I had to do was add the raised Collett feature and I had a passable Collett 3500 tender using the original one that came with the Saint model which saves messing about with fitting a new body to the tender drive.

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Also for the paintshop

I’ve got a few model vehicles and a couple of like to portray being transported by rail. I recently acquired a Wrenn Lowmac as it is the GW version. Getting a GW liveried Wrenn Lowmac however still seems to cost an arm and a leg due to the collector types but the ones in BR brown are rather more common.

I therefore picked one up nice and cheaply and have rubbed it down ready for painting in GW freight grey. I also threw the roller wheels in the bin and got some Alan Gibson 10.5mm replacements to suit.