Sunday 30 June 2019


It has been a really busy time at work recently what with the opening of the new Caernarfon Station and then the Past, Present and Future gala. It was great to see cooperation between the two WHRs and long may it continue.
One bonus of the gala was that those lovely chaps from Narrow Planet were up for the weekend and after all the 12 inches to the foot fun was over they paid a visit to the Isle of Stoner and had fun playing trains then eating curry. They also donated one of their rather tidy GWR PECO GVT coaches to the fleet and it sits rather nicely with my blood and custard rake of the same.

The only modelling I've found any time for has been to paint the Crossley in readiness for Lord and Lady Stoner to take to the roads of the fair isle. I think it looks rather smart but I haven't worked out where to plant it on the layout yet.

There were two stars of the gala and one of them was Hunslet 1215 the recently restored WD loco. It is a handsome beast and I hope we get the chance to have it visit again; it made an interesting contrast with Russell. The family resemblance is clear when you look at them together. What it made me think of was the IoSR's very own Doris, a cut down version of the Langley kit for 1215.

One thing I have done is to build a stock shelf to sit above the fiddle yard. This was something I'd been toying with but one of the Narrow lads said it was urgently needed to help sort out the clutter; so here it is. The clutter is now slightly higher up and will, I dare say, allow more low level clutter to build up on the fiddle yard.

Saturday 22 June 2019

Lots of wires

We've been mental busy at work this last couple of weeks so the layout has been quite neglected but I needed some modelling therapy one evening so I continued my drive to either sell or build some of the kits in the drawer of shame. Several years ago, Barry of W^D Models gave me a couple of kits to build and I duly filed them away as I had no place to put them on the layout. A Crossley Staff Car was one of them and this week I've made it up. It is a cast resin kit which is not something I've had much experience of but it went together very simply once the parts were cleaned up. It has provided a sumptuous motor car for Lord and Lady Stoner to get about the island on. Painting next.

Whilst looking for something else I stumble upon the IoSR brass band and choir who like to tour the island in their very own carriages. They are cut down Dundas FR open coaches and I've never really run them on a layout, having built them as a bit of fun but with a little fettling of the bogies they made a trip to Underhill to entertain a train load of tourists.

I did spend a day off with the soldering iron etc. The result of which is that Rock Beach now has it's buildings and street lights illuminated. It isn't a complete job as it still needs tidying up and adding to the control panel for that end of the layout but it does mean I can play trains in the dark.

The next three pictures show the results above baseboard level. The cottage in the foreground glows rather too much as it hasn't been lined with black card like the other illuminated buildings. The drinking fountain roof has a similar problem but is easily solved.

I also had a quick go at getting the inspection saloon going with some success but it is still a bit all or nothing in the speed control department.

...and this surprised me when I opened the brown envelope. Two magazine front pages in one month. Thanks to Andrew and to Chris. 

Tuesday 4 June 2019

Lucy in 3d wirh Fleischmann

After all the excitement of the Bala show I've settled down to more ordinary modelling things. The 3D print which is designed for the Fleischmann 7000 chassis came to the front of my 'to do' list and the first job was to offer the two parts up to each other. They were a good fit but the body rode a little too high for my tastes and I could see that by removing a small amount of the printed footplate under the boiler it would drop down by the required amount.

As printed

As modified
As printed

As modified
I cut and filed away some printed material which is relatively simple but did lead to me snapping the print in a couple of places, fortunately the printed material easily glues back together with superglue. It also sticks very nicely to my fingers, but that is another story.

With added whitemetal parts

Next jobs were to add as much weight as possible to balance out the motor which has a large rear overhang. I stuffed some redundant whitemetal castings and some liquid gravity into the smokebox and sidetanks and the loco now balances nicely. Brass handrails and a smokebox door dart finished the job.
Here it is painted, I'm planning on adding some lining and it still needs the body fixing to the chassis but having tested it on the layout I now have another smooth running and useful loco.
The June edition of Narrow Gauge World has a four page article about converting Underhill into the garage layout. Regular blogistas won't learn anything new as I've detailed the work covered in the article on my blog posts over the last year or so. Nice to be on the front cover though. (Head swells a little more.)

Finally a small matter of detail; it had been pointed out that the foot crossing to the lighthouse and Rock Beach Halt could do with a 'beware of the trains' sign. I had a look on Evilbay and found some rather nice laser etched wood ones which I duly purchased and installed in various hazardous locations. It wouldn't do for the citizens of Stoner to be accidentally run over for the lack of a notice.