Sleeper Wagons

Recently was able to find a small slot in work bench schedule and do something rather different - build something for myself !
Purchased these at Thornleigh from Aaron Denning (InFront Models) and am glad I did as they are now out of stock till more Austrains chassis become available.
The cradle is a one piece casting which required very little flash removal at all, none at all in some instances, and drilling out of 0.4 mm holes to insert ladder rungs and hand rails cut from supplied wire stock. Drilling these rung holes proved a challenge, even with the dimples quite clear I found it difficult to drill them straight and as a consequence some of the rungs look a little 'how ya goin' ! Now whilst this could be put down to 'in service abuse' it still messed with my head not being able to work out how get the drill bit in there properly, I'm sure it can be done. An etched brass fret contains the stanchions to hold the sleepers in place and these are glued into 0.4 mm holes drilled into the ends of the bolsters. Take care that they are facing the correct direction and don't be too stingy with the glue or they will fall out with a little handling.
Removal of the weight from the chassis comes next. Take care handling these chassis' as the detail, whilst quite strongly built, has a propensity to un-attach itself and disappear into the black hole under the work bench ! The weight is consigned to the bits box for future use.
The kit comes supplied with two sleeper load castings which have nice definition and the sleepers appear to be just about in scale. Some flash needs removal and I gave mine a going over with a stainless steel toothbrush sized wire brush to add a bit more texture. I then sanded the base of each casting on a block to ensure it would sit flat in the cradle.
Washing time, this is where you will find out how well you glued the stanchions in ! Usual warm soapy water and dry well. I stuck mine under the bench lamp for a few hours to make sure. Etch prime everything then a coat of Tamiya German grey for the chassis and cradle and Tamiya flesh for the sleeper loads. I brush detailed the loads using Tamiya flat brown and hull red in small amounts.
Finish off, a day or two later, with a wash of Mr Kelly's patented isocol and black Raven oil. I measured out 1ml of isocol into a medicine cup and added 1 drop of Raven oil. You can always add more coats !
Decals supplied with this kit, for these less than perfect eyes, bordered on micro surgery. Why are white lettering decals printed on white paper ?? Aaron has provided many options for decaling but oh so close together on the sheet ! I used embroidery scissors combined with my normal glasses plus the magnifier of my bench light to cut out the required numbers, depot and the standard lettering for these wagons. There are two little oops' with the decals, the first is "Ways and Works" should be "Way and Works" and the other is the printing for "Werris Ck". Have a look under the magnifier and you will see what I mean !
Add plenty of rust and dust the wagon, I also lightly dust the sleeper loads as well, this may not show in the pic, and finish with your fav flat finish. The instructions advise gluing the loads in place and I doubt they would run empty due to the lack of weight but I am going to try a small dot or two of blue tack to hold them in so I can unload them in situ for future photo ops.
Very nice kit and satisfied my bent for unusual wagons. Three down and three to go.
In Yettobenamed perway siding on Werris Ck. Pic courtesy of Ray Pilgrim.


Modelling the Railways of NSW Convention 30

All is pretty much finalised now for Convention 30.

Please have a look at www.mrnsw.blogspot.com for all the latest information and registration forms.

Hope to see you there.


Rumors of my demise......

....have been greatly exaggerated !
But if you were to judge this by my activity on this blog of late, 7 months to be precise, you could not be blamed for thinking otherwise !

Whilst activity here has been very quiet, I think I have set a new PB for inactivity, elsewhere it has been all go. In a big push to finally get the cave completed to a point where I could make a start on the layout I engaged the services of a gyprocker to line the cave and make it habitable for as much of the year as possible. In hindsight this was a very good move. I went through the quoting process and it was actually Boral themselves who gave me the best price with a job time of two to three days and then ready to paint.

Three days in and the sub contractors were inventing some new words to describe both the guy that quoted and my cave as well ! While walls and ceiling were well within the norm for being a "bit" out of square, it was the beams that had to be boxed in that caused the most grief for them. The 'quoter' had also only allowed for 'square set' edges (no cornice) but the subbies said this was not going to work and I would have problems with cracking later on due to the metal shed expanding and contracting in the temp changes. So Boral coughed up for the cornice, supplied and installed, for free ! Thank you very much indeed and Im more than happy with the job they did. IvĂ© since had several offers from people wanting to move in, not believing that this 'shed' is to become my playroom ! I suppose having carpet, an air conditioner and LCD hanging off the wall may have swayed them a bit to !!

The storage level track plan created on AnyRail
I also made a start on the benchwork for the storage level and this is nearly completed. This also incorporates 4 traverser type yards and once I get to the wiring of these yards, which will incorporate around 36 micro switches, progress will slow. As I'm sure I have mentioned in other posts, despite being in the hobby for over 3 decades Ive only built one layout, which Mum made me dismantle because she couldnt get to the bed anymore, which was built from Hornby set track from the Hornby track plans book from 1980 or 81. Apart from this attempt I've never laid a length of track. Despite this I am most fortunate to be a part of a group which comprises a truly awsome model railway "brains trust" which I will draw on heavily over the coming years. Although not a club in the true sense, it is from this experience that I can see the real value in belonging to a club or group and having access and exposure to so many varied skills, knowledge and experience.

View from east end showing showing loop storage and through road. Two traverser decks can be seen on the right.

                                     View from west end. Two more traverser decks on right.
As you can see I have gone with the tradional blue walls and white ceiling colour scheme. There is a total of 8 double and 3 quad power points spread around the room. It is lit by four double tri phospher fluro's.
Another example of "brave new world" syndrome was the purchase of a FastTracks jig from Gwydir Valley. With around 150 sets of points with the current track plan for Cambewarra this was a financial decision as well as just wanting to have a go !
 Here are the fruits of my labor so far. Have done six sets so far and have it down to about 1 hour per set not including the timber sleepers.
Thats about where I'm at so far. Still have a few jobs on the bench which may rate a post later on. Preps for the convention are well and truly underway and, as always, we are on the lookout for presenters and demonstrators. Date is yet to be finalised but towards the end of June is looking like a possibility at this stage.