Wednesday, 27 April 2011


Don't worry nothing has happened to The Institution of Mechanical Engineers! However something has happened to my model of 47 817 which was named after the institution - its diecast chassis block has swollen. It has happened to a number of Heljan Class 47 models due to reactions within the mazak chassis block. The block is a very tight fit in the body so any movement can upset things. Sadly in this case it has distored the body so the effects are sadly terminal...

I decided to model 47 817 once I had completed my degree in Mechanical Engineering at Hull, even though I've not persued pure mechanical engineering defecting to The Institution of Civil Engineers once I started on the railway! Though now, of course, I'm not in an engineering role at all! But 47 817 was a nice little token of four years at Hull.

The body is now scrap but the heavily rebuilt and detailed bogies and drive will live on in another Lima conversion. So something will live on, appropriately enough, the Mechanical parts...

Friday, 22 April 2011

Daisy Duke

Unfortunately we've had to say goodbye to another cat.

I think we're a soft touch; after George died we initially said we wouldn't have any more cats as it had been a very upsetting and stressful experience at the end, and if we did have any more we'd not have another 'old' cat. That plan didn't work and we ended up with three cats from the same rescue centre from where we had got George! We took two kittens - one quite timid runt of her litter who is now just mental and one wild kitten who had been found on a main road near Hull after his mother had been knocked down. Both probably stood less chance than others of a home. And we took a little black female who was thought to be at least ten who'd been a stray taken in by an elderly lady who could no longer cope - this was Daisy.

A funny little cat really - incredibly affectionate and always wanting to sit on whoever's knee was available yet also very grumpy at times! I've never seen such a grumpy cat! But she didn't hold grudges; if you lifted her off your knee she'd growl at you and look cross but if you stroked her straight afterwards she'd be back to rubbing against your hand! We often called her Daisy Duke - she wasn't blonde with long legs but was called Daisy, no more complicated than that!

While her departure hasn't left the same hole as George's did as we still have two cats in the house - there's not the same feeling of an empty house - she'll still be missed - either as no one is fighting to sit on a knee or because no one's as committed to trying to steal food being prepared in the kitchen! Thomas had learnt her name and would shout for her - the other cats have also been looking for her.

As before I'd urge anyone who can give a home to a cat in need like this to do so - rescue centres are full of mistreated and deserving cats desperate, like Daisy, for love and attention. I don't think any animal lover would regret it.

Daisy was a funny little cat and will be sorely missed.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Low Tech Progress

Quiet time over the last week has seen a little progress made with my low tech class 47.

Just a little progress - end details with new handrails, top lamp irons, buffers and steps, but they have a real impact in making it appear substantially more complete! Actually the addition of buffers makes it look like a loco rather than a work in progress! The back plates include integral steps and are from Shawplan and intended for a class 56 but work for the 47 perfectly!

This last view shows the fillet of 20 thou plastikard which has been used to give the horn cover the slightly 'learnt forward' look which Lima missed as theirs learns back and is wrong as a result. This little change just goes towards helping get the 'face' right and more than repays the effort.

And there's been one change to the spec though I can still claim it to be a budget project as I found this 'in stock' but had forgotten about it!

It's from Ultrascale, though I believe they have discontinued it - it powers three axles of the bogie and is very controllable and quiet. The previous motor bogie will go in another Lima based class 47 so won't be wasted. I just wanted to put this new bogie to good use once I rediscovered it!

A clearer view of the continuing underframe detailing which the previous post didn't really show. I think this is a huge improvement over the Lima 'box', but I'll allow you to decide if the effort is repaid.

And finally an overall view where much of the front end work can be seen - the reprofiled windows seem to work well and the new headlights and marker lights (no 2 end only) compliment the work rather nicely I think. Hopefully it's beginning to look like a Class 47 now!