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1:55th scale
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2018 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first two figures have their "new clothes" - the overalls have come out a bit shiny and need a repaint, but otherwise I'm pleased with them - at least they no longer look like businessmen. During painting the arm cam off the left hand figure and at this magnification you can see it's been re-set a bit too low. Maybe some filler needed, to build it back up.



Since the picture was posted the population has doubled
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2018 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Had some time today, and got the body-work of the boxcar finished. It took longer than I thought it would, with all the ladders to make and little bits of strapping for the door runners and catches.

Just need to find a good box-car brown in my paint collection.

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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now the boxcar is finished it does make some of the ex-HO rolling stock look rather slim. I thing the old-style gondola can get away with it, but I'm seriously thinking whether the 0-4-0T will need beefing up a little. The cab is the main area to tackle, and could usefully do with an extra 5mm of width, as well as a little height - one of the reasons I wanted to make a start on some working figures to assess the trains' proportions. It looks like the cab will need widening and could usefully have its roof raised around 3mm, or should I just bite the bullet and make a look-alike Porter cab for it. At all events I have a plastic nozzle that could be cut down to form a decent loco chimney.
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 5:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The paint's drying on the three items of rolling stock constructed so far. When painting the red gondola I realised it had corrugated steel ends, so these were filed down and vertical strapping added, plus end sills to give the brake-man somewhere to perch when operating the wheel, which is now set on a vertical pole. I found some press-studs in the sewing box, which work quite well for any cars not already provided. I'll try and bring the photos up to date tomorrow.

Time now to work out what reporting marks the cars will carry. A trawl through my part-used decal sheets showed the best bet would be to use my Southern Pacific/Cotton Belt letters, which have plenty of letters O, N, C, S and T for a potential fleet of about 8-10 vehicles. After some map-gazing and doodling with possible names I think it will be the Tallahatchie and Choctaw County RR (TCC), putting it squarely in the Mississippi delta and Bobbie Gentry land; my American layouts tend to have names with musical connections, and I had thought the layout might be called Muddy Waters. However, the railroad's chosen name also provides the the local business owners, for instance Thompson, Taylor or even MacAllister & Son (if the layout is set on/before 2nd June 1953).
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alastairq



Joined: 31 Aug 2008
Posts: 360
Location: the land that time forgot

PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seasick Steve??? Smile
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2018 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Progress on several fronts over the past couple of days. The baseboard for Muddy Waters is done - I'm trying out a method described in MTI of a light framework and 6mm plywood, topped with half-inch balsa to give a wharf-side appearance with the minimum of carpentry. It works, as all the carpentry was done yesterday afternoon with the gluing done overnight and this morning, with time out for some shopping - rail joiners to buy.

While the glue on the baseboard surface was drying I did some work on more of the figures, and there will soon be two railroad personnel and another man, standing with hands in pockets. I'm swapping the torsos and legs around from various bodies to get slight variety in the poses, heights, and using different hat styles to mix it up a little more. On the rolling stock front, an old Tri-ang reefer is providing part of the body to go on one of the recently arrived flat cars, while a cheap gondola has been shortened and will get some planked sides to turn it into another boxcar.

Meanwhile a bid of 2.99 plus postage, bagged another 0-4-0T loco - a Lima version of the L'il Tugger tank engine. It is an old model, repainted and a little bit scruffy so there were no other bidders, but it should be good for some rather drastic cab modification. The valve gear is not so accurate as the Model Power version, but I can always add some cosmetic slide bars, once I can test it on the track, which should be ready by the time it arrives.
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first of the flat car donors has been shortened to a scale 22ft to match the boxcar. This one is going to be a reefer with sides from an incomplete Tri-ang TC model. The doors have been enlarged a little and I need to extend the locking bars. The sides can then be cemented onto the outside of the donor flat, which will make them the correct width, and I'll provide new ends and roof.


Meanwhile, here's the work in progress on one of the new figures (body Preiser + added headgear, legs from a Slater figure - slightly adjusted).
The painting needs a second coat, as I handled him too soon and some of it rubbed off.
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 12:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 0-4-0T arrived this morning. First inspection revealed it to be a fairly elderly model, as had been hinted by its brass wheels, seen in one of the photos. It turned out to be picking up on only one pair of wheels, but a quick tweak of the PB wheel contacts cured that, and after a wheel-clean and a drop of oil it started running much more freely. It does need a lot more weight adding, being seriously light-footed, but I can leave the side tanks in place and stuff them with lead sheet.

As the baseboard and track is complete I want to get the wiring in (only four connections) today if possible, after which there'll be a gap before there's more modelling time.

BTW can anyone confirm if a very dilute coat of PVA will act as a flatting agent on gloss paint?

[Edit] finished connecting the wiring to the track and had a test session with various locos. The Model Power 0-4-0T is OK, and the new Lima version runs better than it did when first unwrapped after a spot of oil and a tweak to the pick-ups. My Bachmann Plymouth - due to become a boxcab - is superb, and an old Piko railbus chassis runs very well, too, and could yet be turned into a primitive doodlebug.
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2133
Location: London

PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2018 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ever hopeful, I've won another online auction lot of a Model Power 0-4-0T of the L'il Tugger variety, at its starting price. There are slight issues with the body - the front pilot looks as if the width has been trimmed, but as I need it to be wider than the HO one and would have worked on it anyway, that's not a cause for concern. What may have put more people off is the fact that the chassis and body seem to be held together under the cab by a bendy bit of styrene, suggesting that the nub on the chassis that ought to fit into a slot in the body is missing. Again, something that ought to be reasonably easy to deal with.

Meanwhile I've been tackling the ground cover and have "paved" some of the roadway areas beside the track with card that will get a wash of plaster slurry at a later date. The more ticklish problem is how to plant the alternative buildings for HO and 1:55th scale so that, as far as possible, the joins don't show. I am mounting buildings on 1/8th inch thick balsa sheets, and building up the surrounding ground with a balsa frame for the foundations to drop into.


The head-scratching started with the narrow gauge freight and passenger depot, which is larger than the footprint of the HO version, and also on several different levels. In the end I've made the 1:55 scale depot sit on a deck which extends over part of the river - where the HO riverboat will fit.


At present it's a mass of small joined-up bits of balsa, the result of some false starts, but all will be covered with coffee-stirrer deck boards when it's finished - hopefully tomorrow. The HO depot will be on the other side of the line and can be retained in position with small wooden blocks, which a small yard office can fit over in the larger scale, if the foundation pit idea doesn't work.

Apologies for the messy pictures; this is the untidy stage of construction, but all will need to be put away mid-week, so I can concentrate on some maintenance work on Shellsea Harbour.
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