Wednesday, 28 January 2015

A Sprung Class 37

The beginnings - Bachmann loco and Penbits conversion kit.

It's quite odd sometimes how you can be so up for doing something, so enthused and raring to go up until the point at which you sit down, things waiting in front of you and then you just seem have absolutely no will to do any of it. I don't know why others have similar 'modellers` block' but with me this mind set but I know with me it can be much further reaching than simply not be arsed with modelling! How enthused I am with things like this, is certainly reflected with my general mood. So with a bit of a lull over the last couple of weeks, I really wanted to crack with something. Anything. The long running brake vans came out their box and with sod all progress made during a full evening, they went back again.

The  exquisite brake gear etchings - this is top end stuff!

I'd been saving my next Penbits conversion for some time - I'm not sure why really. Maybe I wanted to try and give it the time I felt needed and deserved. Maybe it's a bit like building up to watching a DVD of a film you've been told is really great and you want to watch it without disturbances. However, you can end up setting things up to be quite a disappointment if you're not too careful! Not that Penbit's products disappoint in any shape or form! But it has given me a nice bit of enthusiasm now that I've finally started it - hopefully this can build on the success of my class 25.

The bearing carriers - these are really at the heart of the system. They're fabricated from turned bearings and etched parts. With care, they go together very nicely and they work very well indeed.

Today saw a decent start made with the bearing carriers - a neat little etch for each one, combined with a turned bearing. Sorted with very little fuss. Follow the instructions and the result should be spot on. And the class 37 etchings are just as good as those I had for the class 25 - there are just a lot more bits! And this is the only problem with diesel modelling - there's a fair bit of repetition to cater for to identical ends of the loco.

The 'bogie subframe' around which the suspension is based around. The similarity with a conventional etched steam loco chassis maybe noted. So if you're used to building, or have built, something similar then you really should have no problems with this.

The choice of loco will retain the Bachmann identity - it fits in well with West Halton and avoids having to touch the paintwork too much!

Friday, 23 January 2015

Winter at Gilberdyke Junction

Winter BioMass

The snow is disappointingly thin for photos really, but it was still a pain to get to work. It's not even snow by this point, it had started to thaw and is now just thick ice making life hard for p-way who were out packing the junction between trains. And while they wait, DBS 66088 tears through Gilberdyke with 4D88 bound for Hull Docks with empty bio-mass wagons. These trains are very long and make quite a sight when they run at the maximum speed of 75mph!

The full size image can be found on Flickr.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

In These Times of Austerity

A very long term resident of the my workbench is this model of a Hull based WD ('Dub-Dee') no. 90695 - and it is very much a long term project as my first post was in 2009 and another in 2011!

WD No. 90695 - You will have to excuse the background of my parents' kitchen!

The model is based around Bachmann's excellent model, refined with Dave Bradwell castings. I say 'refined' rather than detailed as what's there in the first place is pretty good. It's also been converted to the Doncaster pattern firebox which many of the class received later in life.


Other than not working on it over the last year or so, I'm really not sure why it has waited so long for its turn to be finished. It has been waiting for its filthiness to be applied for a long time now and, I hope, it looks like a typical Dub-Dee from the Hull area. Hull locos never seemed to suffer from excessive priming or stark lime streaking like those in other parts of the county did. There are a number of subtle streaks showing signs of heavy use all adding to the dirt.

To emphasise the lack of cleaning I haven't bothered adding any insignia to the tender. Sometimes even the best and thinnest transfers will appear rasied when complettely covered by dirt and all it achieves is making it look very model like. If you can see the detail of badges or lining then it can look great peeping through the dirt but here, no. However, the absence isn't noticed as such - we see what we want to see in many situations and here, the brain tells us that it must be there but we can't see it for the dirt, which is exactly the result I want. I can't claim credit for this idea though... Tim Shackleton uses the same ruse with his 9F in MRJ 90 and 91. Tim was very helpful with advice on finishing off my Dub-Dee!

Just a little finishing off, couplings and crew and it'll be ready after six years on the bench!

Thursday, 8 January 2015

While the World Sleeps

While the World Sleeps

While most people are in bed, VolkerRail's ballast regulater, DR77802, waits at Gilberdyke for a T3 possession to be granted. The possession is to the other side of Goole and cannot be granted until the last passenger train has left Goole station. Until then, the crew and machine have to wait patiently.

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Class 25 All Done!


As my last post mentioned, I've not completed much this year. However, this is the main result of my modelling for the year! All the other posts about the model can be found here.


I did finish one other loco this year, a model of 'Devious Diesel' for Thomas - I think he was pleased with it!

Friday, 26 December 2014

How to be a Good Son in Law


My attempt to ensure I remain the number one son in law!

As both a Christmas present and as a thank you for all the work which my Mother in Law's partner has been doing on our house, this is seemed ideal. His layout is Cornish with china clay workings, 8702 was a St Blazey engine, and matched the Bachmann varient of the 57xx, so seemed to be an ideal choice.


It's a detailed Bachmann 57XX - the model itself is very good. The tooling for the body dates back to Mainline days, although Bachmann have updated the tools to allow for different cab variants to be produced around the main moulding. The shape and proportions are very good indeed. Only the chunky handrails date the body, and even these aren't too bad.

The work centred around new handrails, which do make a huge difference. This combined with thinning the visible edges of the cab really take the body to the next level. Mainly Trains' etch for the rear windows was very useful and improved the rear of the cab no end with very little effort. I removed the moulded coal which allowed me to use the cast eight within the bunker as the base for the replacement coal. I also thinned the edges of the bunker as much as I could to help the appearance. New lamp irons all round complemented the handrails and along with new Gibson couplings and buffers, with larger MJT heads, the result is much better than out of the box. I also added RT Models' rather nice etch for the sandbox operating linkage, and moved the sandbox lids back to their correct position. I used Gibson 'shoulderless' handrail knobs and 0,45mm wire for smoke box door handles. Gibson include them in the s/box dart sets, so the real cost in the main turning. If you can save the circular boss on the smoke door when you remove any handles, this works really well.

The chassis had its brake rods replaced with new parts cut from 10 thou brass sheet, with Plastikard bolt detail but this concluded the detailing. A few changes result is a huge change to the finesse of the model. The 247 Development numberplates finished the repainting and the model was weathered using photos of locos working in the St Blazey and Fowey area using techniques stolen from various other modellers, mainly Martyn Welch and Tim Shackleton.


I hope the result is pleasing - it's certainly gone to a good home. This is only the third loco I've completed this year for various reasons and it's been a very satisfying and enjoyable project which I hope has enthused me for a bit more modelling in 2015.

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Happy Christmas!


I'd like to wish you all a great Christmas and a happy new year! May the day bring you all many train shaped gifts!

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Still Here, Still Alive

The title says a lot - and it's not a flippant one in the slightest. Over the last year (maybe longer?) I've not been well. And it's not something people talk about enough - it's not a physical condition, which makes it harder for many to understand. Depression and anxiety are subjects which many people feel embarrassed talking about, either as someone who is going through it or those who are around sufferers. Many people dismiss them, either through ignorance or small mindedness. Of course if you've never experienced these yourself, or haven't (knowingly) known someone who has experienced them, it's something which may be difficult to comprehend.


Some friends and family have turned out to be even more supportive and amazing than I could have hoped for! However some have been less impressive... You have thought I was contagious!

Hopefully there will be a few updates on here soon - I've done very little modelling over the last year really. I've had very little enthusiasm for many things sadly, but hopefully these things, as well as my own health, are improving.

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Over the Ouse

Refurbished class 60, 60001, passes over the River Ouse via Goole Bridge.


There haven't been many updates recently, but normal service should resume soon.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

A Morning in East Yorkshire


This is a nice civilised way to spend a morning - in good company, sat out int he sun by a railway line waiting for trains to go by!


I went out with my friend James for a few hours on Monday morning waiting in the sun for freight trains! Very civilised!


Click on the images to see the full size versions over on Flickr!

Saturday, 26 April 2014

York MRS 2014

Over Easter we visited the York Model Railway Show - it's very much an institution in the hobby I feel - if you're in Yorkshire and the North and you don't visit, you really are missing out.

New Bryford

One layout which was always a favourite of mine from its appearance in ModelRAIL, the old supplements, was New Bryford. So it was lovely to finally see it at the show! It's evolved and is still very much current - oddly it was much smaller than I was expecting, the photos on the original article made it appear much larger than it is. It's only 16' x 8', which is a size that many people could accommodate at home. Just the sort of layout which should be at a show!

Foston Mills

There was a great variety of exhibits at the show, the inclusion of a sub-exhibition of minimum gauge modelling was a lovely extra! There was also a good selction of larger scale modelling - Thomas loved a scenic G scale narrow gauge layout! There were a few good 7mm scale offerings too - I may have spent too much time with these. More on this another time...

Monday, 31 March 2014

Grid Farewell

Grid Farewell

York Station on 31st March 2004, the class 56 farewell tour - was it really ten years ago today?

Photo Call

Monday, 24 March 2014

In The Balance


Just a little bit of progress this afternoon with my class 08 - Brassmasters' balance weights have been added and infilled with Milliput. One of those satisfying sessions where you actually feel like you've achieved something by then end of it!

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Two Days, Three Class 37s



A couple of days at Gilberdyke this week brought a total of three class 37s! Both were working track recording trains. Direct Rail Services 37607 and 37609 worked 1Q13, Derby RTC - Derby RTC via Hull and the following day 97301, formerly 37100, worked 1Q14 Neville Hill - Derby RTC via Hull. They sounded lovely!


A closer view of the class 97 passing - if you're modelling the contemporary scene, then I think they'd make a lovely subject for a model - Bachmann loco, Shawplan bits and glazing and PenBits bogies. Sorted!