October 3, 2016
Having completed the OHLE gantries on Dudley Heath, the push to prepare more electric stock has started with a Class 310 (AM10) No. 310106 and a Class 90. The Class 90, based on the venerable Graham Farish model has reached the paint shop already and may be completed in time for the Aberdeen Model Railway Club exhibition at the end of the month. It is to be finished as 90 033 in June 2004 condition wearing Railfreight Distribution international livery as seen below.
Note the lack of a fairing at the pantograph end of the loco (nearest the camera). The model will have full detailing of the buffer beam at the end equipped with the fairing and a coupling at the non-fairing end.
Next up: Class 150/0 No. 150002…
I very much doubt that the second of the prototype Class 150/0s will be finished in time for the Aberdeen show. Vehicles No.s 55201 and 55301 are now equipped with the former Class 154 roof mounted air-con vents, a feature which was not applied to the centre car. The driving cab doors have been changed from inward slam doors to a representation of power doors. The hand rail recess es are now filled and finished with wet and dry paper. Note that the original roof vents have been removed.
Remedial work on the centre car No. 55401 has been completed. After the cut and shut stage of the project, the body was undercoated in rail grey to reveal any faults in the area where the two body sections had been joined. As always, some further work was required (see above) to make the join as seamless as humanly possible – not easy with all those roof ribs! It has since returned to the paint booth for a second undercoat of rail grey and the additional finishing appears to be much better. Once that undercoat has fully dried in the next couple of days, the first livery colour will be applied.
In the meantime, No. 90 033 has passed through the paint booth for warning panel yellow. RfD international blue and slate grey are next! More on the Class 310 soon.
March 16, 2015
Showing pictures of part completed work lays your soul, or at least your painting one, bare for all to see. Rough edges and the lack of transfers and touching up is apparent in this pair of work-in-progress shots of the OO gauge Class 950 project.
This particular project is a long-running saga of problems with some of the parts and making the Bachmann Class 150/1 to Class 950 conversion kit by PH Design Model Railway Products work satisfactorily. The primer stage involved a great deal of rubbing down and filling to blend in the door infill panels as can be seen in the image below. Care was taken not to remove excess plastic from the body shells when rubbing down with wet and dry paper so not to distort its appearance. Now the bulk of the paint work is complete, an end to this project is finally in sight after many weeks of work!
Whilst on the subject of Class 150s, another one is making its way through the paint shop. Awaiting lining and some touch-up of the masked lines is this N gauge Graham Farish model to become No. 150123 in an earlier version of Centro livery.
There’s no conversion work involved, only a strip down and repaint. It has to be my favourite livery as applied to favourite Sprinters. It should be ready in time for its debut at the Perth show in June where Dudley Heath will be making its first outing to a Scottish show other than Inverness! More on this one soon.
January 30, 2015
‘Wheal Annah’, a compact N gauge layout based on a Cornish china clay theme, is being prepared for the Model Rail Scotland exhibition where it will be displayed on the Hornby Magazine stand. Whilst it is primarily based in the 1970s, I plan to collect together some stock to allow a few trains of the 1980s to be run for a little more variety.
The new Graham Farish Polybulk wagon is one addition to the fleet and one I can also use on my other N gauge display layout ‘Dudley Heath’. It’s an amazing-looking model, albeit relatively costly to collect more than a couple at any one time. Masses of separate details, NEM coupling pockets, metal buffers and a an excellent representation of the complex shape of the hopper body make this one of the top British N gauge freight stock models around.
Three versions are available in N gauge including the early one above; a weathered version with the simplified Polybulk “Traffic Services” livery and a pristine one with intermediate ‘Traffic Services’ markings. List prices at the time of writing come in around £39-£42.
The N gauge version follows the OO gauge model which was released about 12months before the Graham Farish model. I picked one up before the list price rocketed to nearly £60 for a weathered version. When you look at the level of detail on the OO gauge model and the time it probably takes to assemble one, the price tag of £50-60 comes as no surprise.
Putting a rake of these together is going to be a challenge to the modelling budget! The time to look at quality rather than quantity when a planning layout theme is definitely upon us.