Thursday, 22 August 2019

And so it begins (Part 3)

Photo 7
With the first loop virtually complete, it was time to lay the foundations for the second loop (Photo 7).
Photo 8

As this was much higher at the front edge due to the slope of the land, a third layer of concrete bricks had to be laid (Photo 8).
Photo 9

Photo 10

Timber half logs are added to complete the front edge (Photo 10).

Part 2
Part 1

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

And so it begins (Part 2)

Photo 4
After the initial straight had been laid, the beginning of the curve was created. Similar to the blocks but now I used concrete bricks to help shape the bend. They were placed laterally.
Photo 5
An alpine bed was created in front of the blocks to help soften the appearance whilst creating a  miniature landscape. Half log rolls were attached to the blocks. Not everyone's cup of tea but only time and weather will tell if the final appearance works.
Photo 6

Bit by bit the blocks, track and alpine bed started to take shape.

Monday, 19 November 2018

And so it begins....

Photo 1
Mid March and the worst of the winter weather had passed. This is my canvas for the new Homestyal Light Railway. Two round axis markers were dug to help calculate the radius for the two ends of the layout (Photo 1).
Photo 2
The basic layout shape was scribed into the existing grassed area using a spade to a depth of approx. four inches. This was to be my outline during it's construction. The layout consisted of a loop and cross-over section. The terminal station will be at the front left of the loop, not yet scribed. (Photo 2).
Photo 3
The front straight section was made from concrete blocks with a depth of 140mm, sufficient for a single track line. I decided quite early on to use several construction methods with the idea, in time, to advise others of best method. The blocks were laid on to concrete as I went along, approx. two inches deep with additional concrete laid along the sides to the same depth. Once level and vertical they were left to set before mortar was added to the joints. Some of the joints have wooden blocks added to aid track pinning later. I found "Jenga" to be useful for this exercise. (Photo 3).

Saturday, 10 March 2018

HLR - The new canvas!

This is where HLR will be created during 2018. Hopefully, weather permitting, the foundations will start to be laid during March. Many changes and ideas are on the drawing board waiting to be created. One of the big changes will be NO track power and LGB locomotives.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Friday, 3 March 2017

How I built my Swift Sixteen Classic Standard Four Wheel Coach

As previously posted I have already built one of these Swift Sixteen coaches but as promised, here's a detailed description of how I built the next one with tips and advice based upon my experience. Other coaches in the series can be built in the same way.

In my first coach I drilled the holes for the handles, grab rails, couplings and brake pipes after it had been painted, which in hindsight would have been simpler and less risky if I had drilled the holes prior to assembly.

Drill bit sizes used were:

Handles: 2.0mm
Grab rails: 1.2mm
Couplings: 4.5mm
Brake pipes: 1.0mm & 2.0mm

These sizes are based upon Swift Sixteen Detailing Parts.

Of course, holes and their sizes are determined by your choice of furniture.

Another useful tip to simplify the making of the windows, is to cut and loose fit the panes now whilst the coach panels are not assembled. This will later assist with the paint spraying after the assembly of the panels. Label the panes per side and set aside.

Rub down the four inside faces of the coach panels with a fine "wet & dry" sandpaper and then wash in soapy water. Dry and then mask the bottom inside edge of the two side panels with 10mm masking tape. This will allow you to glue the side steps later in the build.

Glue the four sides together ensuring all's square. Leave for half an hour or so to set.

Drill bit sizes used were:

Pilot hole: 1mm
Panel hole: 2.0mm

I found this was a good time to drill the holes for the roof fitting. Measure 10mm down and centrally from the top of each end panel and drill the pilot hole. Loose fit the roof, hold in position and drill the pilot hole through to the roof section of each end. Remove the roof and drill each panel hole. Slightly counter sink to accommodate the screw head. Now refit the roof and screw the sections together. I found it a good idea at this point to use the "hair-dryer" treatment to help shape the roof into position, especially in the centre. The use of clamps held it during this process. Once cooled, remove the clamps and check for fit.

The floor needs to be cut around the perimeter to enable it to fit inside the internal coach panels. For this I used a Dremmel and cutting wheel. Approximately 2mm from each edge.

To add some weight and to enhance the appearance of the floor I used "coffee stirrers", individually glued to create the look of floorboards.

Once glued, sand the boards and edges.
Turn over the floor and fix the axle holders between the moulded bars, the stiffening bars and side frame detail.

In preparation for painting insert a small strip of masking tape into the axle grooves ready for the gluing of the axles later.
I use Vallejo Model Air spray paints for painting. All components were initially painted with a grey surface primer (74.601).

The inside coach walls and wooden seats were painted Mahagony (71.036).
Refit the panes and wedge coffee stirrers with blu tack between them to secure in place.
Mask the top and bottom openings prior to spraying.

For my colour scheme the top half of the coach was painted Sand (Ivory) (71.075).
Once the top half had dried it was carefully masked from the "join" line upwards.

The bottom half was then painted Dark Brown (71.042).
Again and once dried, all masking tape was removed.

Gloss Varnish was then applied to the external sides and end panels (70.510).
The underneath and running boards were top coated with Black (71.057) before a finishing coat of Satin Varnish (70.522) was applied.
The seats were finished with Gloss Varnish (70.510).
The 10mm masking tape was removed from the bottom of the side panels and the running boards were fixed.
The floor was then dropped into position and glued to the running board hangers.
The seats were then fixed to the wooden flooring.

Using the holes made at the beginning, the grab handles, door handles, buffers and brake pipes were all fixed in place.

The roof was painted in two stages, internal and external. First the internal with Aged White (71.132) and the external with Medium Sea Grey (71.049). When the internal had dried it was completely masked off before the external was applied.

Both surfaces were finished off with Matt Varnish (70.520).

The windows were refitted and secured in place using PVA glue which I found to be better and less obvious than other glues. However and since then I have found Deluxe Materials Glue 'n' Glaze to be just as good.

And finally, the finished roof was fitted and screwed to the end panels.

Friday, 16 September 2016

Classic Standard Four Wheel Coach - Pt.3

Since my last post this coach is near completion.

Sprayed with Vallejo Model Air paints and varnishes.

Brass fittings are supplied from Swift Sixteen.

I will post the finished coach once the roof and seats have been painted and the windows glazed.

As this is the first of four coaches to be built, I will in due course post a more detailed, step by step guide to building them, with additional tips and advice.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Bala Lake Railway

Amongst the high mountains of Snowdonia are two deep river valleys - the Dee and the Tryweryn. The River Dee emerges from Bala Lake where the Bala Lake Railway operates parallel to the east shore between Bala and Llanwchllyn.

Alice preparing for departure at Llanwchllyn.
Llanwchllyn Station.
Holy War coming round at Llanwchllyn Station.

Monday, 4 April 2016

Lahaina Ka'anapali & Pacific Railroad, Maui, Hawaii.

Although there have been promises of this railway re-opening at the end of 2015 and now 2016, looking at what I saw, I can't see it re-opening any time soon!

Situated in Maui between Lahaina and Ka'anapali this 6 mile railroad passes fields of cane and rises to cross the impressive Hahakea Trestle for a view of the ocean and the West Maul Mountains.

Lahaina Station.
Turntable warning.
Lahaina Station.
Train times at Pu'ukoli'i Station.
Cane hopper at Pu'ukoli'i Station.
The only locomotive on display.
Looking up the line from Lahaina Station turntable.

Friday, 19 February 2016

Classic Standard Four Wheel Coach - Pt.2

The roof was checked for alignment before a securing screw was fitted to both ends. To do this a 2.5mm hole at each end was drilled through the end panels and counter sunk.

With the roof loosely fitted, a pencil mark was made through the end panels to the roof section. A pilot hole of 1.6mm was then made through the marked roof section at both ends.

The chassis needed trimming on all four edges using a Dremmel cutting disc and sander. The corners were rounded to assist the final fit.

The stiffening bars and axle holders were fitted in place with the glue allowed to set.

Next I decided to add some weight whilst improving the appearance of the floor section with the addition of 'coffee stirrers'.
Two sizes of floor boarding were used culminating in the centre of the floor. Each strip was fixed with supa-glue.

Once the flooring was fixed, it was sanded smooth. Later in the build process it will be varnished.

Part 1