A sneaky look at NMS transfer sheet 2…

November 25, 2009

Here is a preview of the second Nairnshire Modelling Supplies 4mm scale OO gauge loco renumber sheet. This will be a very useful one for renumbering freight sector locos with black numbers both cab side and cab front. There are numerous other uses too: any loco in a light coloured livery with black numbers. The black double arrows will find use on many locos, yellow painted enginers’ stock, track machines and multiple units in Sector liveries too. This is the last revision sheet – note the comments for the designer to make changes to adjust the balance of the sheet. Then off to print. As a point of interest, we are having the sheets printed by Microscale, so they are very high quality. So, don’t repaint a loco unnecessarily; use a NMS renumber sheet to change its identity!


Nairnshire Modelling Supplies…growing all the time. Now it’s Kadees and paints.

November 23, 2009

Nairnshire Modelling Supplies is now an authorised dealer for Kadee couplers. The first stocks are on their way from the US at this time. They will be listed on the web site as soon as they arrive. We doubt they will be with us in time for this weekend’s Falkirk show which we will be attending with the stand. However, it is likely that our new to NMS range of Phoenix Precision paints and finishing products will be – if the delivery arrives on time!

Northern Class 156 in ‘N’.

November 19, 2009

Dapol’s latest Class 156 release is decorated in the attractive Northern Spirit colours (Pre Northern Rail) of turquoise and green. The powered version (I am assuming there will be an un-powered one to go with it) is numbered 156498. Here’s some piccies of this attractive looking model.

Technical specification remains the same: Close coupled gangway options, a representation of a working BSI coupling at the front (actually a working Scharfenburg), running lights, 6-pin decoder socket and a clear view through the flush passenger compartment windows in the powered car to mention a few. In all, a very lovely looking model with good proportions and shape.

New transfers…renumber packs for rtr models and repaints.

November 18, 2009

One of the Nairnshire Modelling Supplies projects for 2009 was to work on the artwork for a new range of transfers. This is NMS-1; the first sheet of high quality scale water slide transfers for 4mm scale OO gauge BR blue and grey era locomotives together with general user grey and ‘Dutch’ yellow grey livery. They are intended to be renumbering packs for ready to run models where repainting over an already accurate and well applied livery just to change the model’s identity would seem such a waste.

Sarah and I took the opportunity to add a few extra livery elements to it so to offer added value and to enable those modellers repainting their models to be able to use basically a single sheet. The sheet includes numbers – lots of them, double arrows, two types of electrification warning notice and data panels. Also included are small black cab front numbers for modellers wishing to use this sheet and its white TOPS numbers for BR ‘Dutch’ and general user grey liveries and some numbers in the more modern typeface for figures 0, 2 and 7 which are appearing on some preserved and heritage locomotives combined with the more traditional Rail Alphabet numbers. Of course, if you find, with this sheet, that you run out of a ‘0’ or a ‘1’ from the lines of numbers, the set class numbers could be easily separated. For example, the 08 would yield an individual 0 and 8, so there is lot’s to work on!  This sheet will retail for £3.95.

The next one is nearly ready;  the same format but for Sectorisation engines using black number sets, black data panels, tiny front cab numbers together with the post-2000 modern electrification warning flash. This will be followed by BR Large Logo and Inter-City sector locos and a sheet for coaching stock. All primarily intended as high quality and high value renumber packs for rtr models. N gauge is a possibility too if this new venture for Nairnshire Modelling Supplies gains good support.

Dapol Class 153s – launched at Warley.

November 12, 2009

153-11Colour and character are two of the features of the very soon to be released Dapol N gauge Class 153 model – cute to say the least. Yet, they are no nonsense models in every respect with a high level of technical specification. Here’s a selection of pictures to whet the appetite – I think these will fly off the shop shelves. A full review with more detailed pictures will feature soon in British Railway Modelling.

153-9153334 is dressed in London Midland City livery – one that really suits the model very well. Features include all-wheel drive, creep control motor and a 6-pin DCC interface socket. This view (above) shows the rebuilt cab end with plated over windows and exhaust port.

153-10The original Class 155 cab as modelled on 153334. Note the separate footsteps for access to the door at this end of the model.

153-3Central Trains operated a fleet of Class 153s on routes such as Wolverhampton to Walsall, Lincoln to Cleethorpes together with Stafford to Stoke-on-Trent services, to mention a few. This model is a powered version and numbered 153333. The model has working running lights which have separate switches on the underside of the model. A light bar connection is also included for interior lighting.153-2Liveries are nicely applied and compare well with published photographs. 153302 is presented in East Midlands Trains’ colours.


Working couplings fitted to a cam mechanism are applied to both ends of the Class 153 model. Running a Dapol Class 156 and 153 together is simple. A dummy Class 156 model could be easily powered by a Class 153 whilst a powered Class 156 would handle a dummy Class 153 with ease.153-7

The use of dummy and powered versions of Class 153s and 156s together with a neat and compatible coupling system makes multiple working flexible and enjoyable on a layout!CRW_0012_JFR153-5Dummy and powered Class 153s coupled together. The ploughs are supplied as separate detailing parts and easily fitted to mounting holes in the underside of the model. The dummy CT model is numbered 153383.153-8The roof pops off easily to gain access to the interior for fitting a decoder and interior lighting bar.

CRW_0031_JFRDapol has hidden the drive mechanism and motor under the interior seating unit, leaving the windows clear of obstructions – a neat feature introduced with the Class 156.

153-1A neat livery finish, nicely defined details and an overall good shape makes the means the Dapol Class 153 meets the expectations set by the Class 156. Good technical details including working running lights, a DCC interface socket and interior detailing makes this a sure winner – i am sure you will agree! If you have notplaced a reservation on one by now, do so as soon as you can – they won’t last long!

I would like to thank David Jones of Dapol for the opportunity to look over and photograph the Class 153 models.

A significant milestone is passed.

November 11, 2009


Completing the ‘Down’ line of the Top Deck layout, my EM gauge scenic test track, saw the running of the first through trains;  not simply shuttling from staging yard to staging yard. The honour of the first train was handed to 47 761 ‘Isle of Iona and the South East TPO set. Whilst the run was uneventful (nothing fell off the rails), it became clear that some fettling of the scenic side track would be needed. more trains had to be run and those track defects in need of fine tuning carefully noted.


Heading off, down grade in the Dover direction. The curve at the end will be hidden in a tunnel through a chalk cliff.


Although this ballast train is running ‘wrong line’, I consider testing of track in both directions with a variety of stock formations, not necessarily prototypical, to be important. I am looking for rough rail joins, unevenness that can only be accurately detected during a running test and power supply problems.


Crossing over from the ‘Down’ to ‘Up’ lines slowly, observing how wheels react to the track formation. I was already unhappy with the turnout to the left and in front of the Class 47 in this picture and it was soon lifted for modifications.


Checking clearance as the ballast train leaves the on stage part of the layout. There will be a curved back scene at this location separating the scenic side from the staging yard side seen in the back ground. Much tidying up remains to be done before my first running session with friends this week.

As much running as possible was done with as many locomotives as possible. Weaknesses in some of the fleet soon become apparent and those poor performers were soon identified for fine tuning of their own. This process of testing and refinement can take weeks and was completed before work on laying the ‘Up’ line commenced. Wet and dry paper is used to smooth burrs from tail joins, gauge tightening on curves is sought and corrected and tightness through turnouts eased and checked.  With running tests in both directions on the ‘Down’ line complete, placing the ‘Up’ line followed before letting my friends loose on it. Should be fun!