My Workbench Archive, October - December 2005
Tuesday 20th December 2005
Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!
I'm planning to spend a little more time modelling over the Christmas break, so hopefully in January I will have several finished models to show off, but for now here is a bumper selection of photos to look at. Some have been taken recently, and others slightly older, but none have appeared on this website before. Enjoy!
And finally, as we approach the first anniversary of the scenery & building construction on Wells Green TMD, I couldn't resist including a photograph taken last January when I stacked up all my out-of-the-box '90's and '92's on the layout to see what it would look like. It seems so long ago now!
All these locomotives have now been detailed and have operated on the layout in their new guises at exhibitions with the exception of the EWS red 90020 at the rear.
You can see the diesel depot building is in fact made of plywood and the sky was originally painted blue before I changed my mind and went for a cloudy photographic backscene!
Tuesday 13th December 2005
Whilst going through the entire website updating various things, I suddenly remembered that I'd never yet shown the photo of my eye-catching fiddle yard screen, that I took several months ago. I had intended to help prove my support for DEMU as part of an OMWB piece that never materialised, but here is the picture anyway!
The fiddle yard measures 3' by 1' 6", and is basically a fan of sidings, of which the 'official' use is somewhere to put surplus locos when not in use - but the 'unofficial' use of the fiddle yard is that it makes an excellent place to store drinks behind. Would make an awesome location for a mini-fridge, but sadly there is not quite enough room.
The blue-on-yellow wording I decided was an appropriate way of publicising DEMU using their own colour scheme, which does tend to make the layout stand out from the normal sea of BR Southern Greens or GWR Chocolate browns that most layout fascias seem to be painted in!
Tuesday 6th December 2005
Like everyone else, I went to the Warley show and have subsequently done a website update based upon what I bought there. Well sort of.
It was a pleasure to look at many of the D&E layouts on show, and meet up with familiar faces from the past as well as meeting up with people whom previously, I had only known their names from e-groups and websites. It was nice talking to you all!
I haven't actually gone to the trouble of showing any photographs of the items I bought, but for the record I purchased two Bachmann '57's, a whole heap of Shawplan bits to add detail to the (presumably now defunct) Heljan class 47s - although my Danish locos are assured a long and happy future despite some impressive competition from the Bachmann range. As well as these items I purchased some nice Bachmann 'ICI' TTA tank wagons (a little out of period for Wells Green TMD but needed for another project!) and lots of little detailing parts, too numerous to mention. Equally long as the list of parts I did buy is the list of things I forgot to buy!
But the main purchase of the day - and one that I am most excited about - is my new Lenz set 100 and transformer, with a solitary Lenz Gold decoder to fit into a Hornby 90. The diesels will hopefully all get Southwest Digital sound decoders, but until they create a decoder that makes 'popping' noises, all the AC electrics will get the Lenz 'Gold' decoders.
So there I was, sat down on Sunday evening in the lounge watching DVDs, whilst lovingly stroking my new handset dreaming of all the fun times we will have together in the future, and all the amazing new things I can do, looking ahead to the times I can just park up a loco and then another one next to it, without even touching an isolation switch. Mmm!
Seriously though, DCC will completely change operation on Wells Green TMD, giving me a lot more freedom to move locos around where I choose, along with adding new levels of realism including fully-functioning lighting and DCC sound.
I'm going to wait until after Summer 2006 before I convert the layout over to DCC, for two reasons -
1) There's three instruction booklets with the Lenz 100, so learning the 'ins and outs' of the system will take a while and:
2) The main reason (and probably the excuse which is closest to the truth) is that its going to cost a small fortune to convert the entire stocklist to DCC, so I'll have to pace myself when buying decoders.
27th November 2005
at the head of a train formed of 'Autoballaster' wagons, as well
as MHA and MTA wagons. 08804 is just to the left of the photograph.
some photographs of my trip to Didcot last Thursday, for me it proved
to be an excellent day out with loads of interesting things to see!
I'd never been to Didcot on a weekday before, and was amazed at
the volume of freight I saw compared to my normal Sunday afternoon
excursions, where the most you got to see was the class 165/166
fleet and a few HSTs.
used last Thursday as an opportunity to take many photographs of
wagons, for future modelling projects, and the trains formed of
MHA, MTA, MFA and MKA wagons were particularly useful as I now have
a load more wagons that I'm desperate to model!
couldn't resist taking a photo of this sign - modified presumably
by someone who has children!
was nice to see a rake of HQAG 'Autoballaster' wagons in Railtrack
livery - something that I have always wanted to model, so I now
have a nice set of photos to help out with fine detailing should
I ever get round to it. In addition, two water cannon trains were
stabled at Didcot for several hours, one 'top and tailed' by 66014
and 66078, whilst the other had 66175 and 66194 at each end.
nicely weathered 66537 with a container train.
well as the First Great Western Link fleet of 'Turbo's, between
10am and 3pm I saw no fewer than twenty-three class 66s and fifty-eight
class 43 power cars, along with a smattering of other classes adding
to the variety.
go to Didcot without taking the obligatory HST shot - trouble is
I normally reside on Platforms 4/5 so all my HST pics contain hundreds
of lampposts, meaning I seem to only end up with front-three quarter
shots of power cars and no quality pics of the trailers!
60065 approaching with a long rake of 'Gunnell's.
welcome was the appearance of three class 60s, 60048 "North
Eastern", 60065 "Spirit of Jaguar" and
the rather odd looking EWS-branded triple grey 60090. At least when
60046 was re-branded EWS kept the nameplates on the machine, but
60090 looked much worse now someone has taken off the "Quinag" plates.
appeared on an MOD working during the afternoon, making a pleasant
change from class 66s.
when out 'trainspotting' I like to play games with some of the other
enthusiasts further down the platform - try it, its really easy
to do, and with some fun results!
example, everyone might be looking out for a train coming from the
North, so you suddenly turn to look towards the South, with a look
of anticipation on your face, binoculars held in the air, camera
at the ready, and you can cause a whole gang of people to turn round,
even though there may be no train approaching! Everyone else seems
to assume you have some special 'gen' or that you have just spotted
something particularly unusual in the distance!
know it sounds childish, but it is really interesting to examine
peoples' behaviour whilst on the platform. I always like to go and
have a chat with the lone spotter at the end of a platform, rather
than the usual big gangs you get towards the station buffet, because
more often than not they are the true enthusiasts, prepared to spend
hours in the wind and rain to see a particular working, and you
can pick their brains to find out certain bits of information you
might need, whether it be details of what loco was working which
freight service, or chances are they could be a modeller and you
can have a nice long chat with them about their layout!
my favourite image of the day was of these stabled class 66s above,
taken at around 3.15pm, when a huge band of rain and wind swept
in from the North, it really did get this dark under the shelter!
The atmosphere is something which I will remember for a long time
- the sight of EWS traincrew running around in the rain, the smell
of oil, the salt blowing around on the platform, the rain banging
on the roof, and the noise and relative warmth of Voyager 220012
stabled next to us (out of shot).
23rd November 2005
the scenes at Wells Green TMD - exhibition viewers don't get to
see inside the shed! Here's a photo of the depot building complete
with the replaced wires. I didn't realise the jars of paint had
appeared in the photograph until after I'd packed the camera away,
but the colours will be used on a model of 37029 in DRS Blue.
a lot is on the workbench at the moment, but work on the layout
itself continues. The overhead catenary is being revamped, with
new wires going in around the depot building at the left hand side
of the layout. In addition to this, I am in the process of remodelling
the three tensioners with the associated wiring, along with the
termination posts, meticulously following photographs to make sure
I get the right look. Visitors to either DEMU Showcase or the Worthing
MRC exhibitions will have noticed the wiring a bit of a bodge-job,
and I wanted to re-do this and model something the layout deserves!
have attempted to show some of the work done in the photograph below,
but the camera has had problems focussing in on the wires in question
but I can't be bothered to get the tripod out right now!
is still quite a bit of work to be done, including the addition
of termination posts behind the bufferstops, but this is what has
been completed in the last couple of days.
I'll be off to Didcot tomorrow (am I the only person who still finds
Didcot exciting even though the 37s, 47s and 58s have gone?!) so
hopefully I'll have some nice snaps to show on the website for your
enjoyment (or perhaps just my enjoyment then!). I hope to get into
DCC fairly soon, I had originally planned to get into it during
next Summer, but I'm getting more impatient and even more jealous
of other peoples sound-chipped locos. I want noise!
I'll get a Lenz set 100 at the Warley show, but I have the nasty
feeling I'll blow most of my modelling budget on some Hornby '60's
and a couple of Bachmann '57's!
17th November 2005
the lazy way!
the first of the long awaited duo of RT Rail class 08 shunters to
be worked on, 08648 in yellow and black livery, complete with 'Wrekin
Construction' branding on one of the bodyside doors. The other shunter
will be RT Rail's 08762 in all-over black.
in my normal 'lazy' style, keen to get on with a "quick afternoon
project", instead of carefully breaking down the Hornby loco
into its separate component parts ready for repainting, I decided
to take the easy route, masking off the wheels and yellow 'wasp'
stripes, I then proceeded to spray Halfords car primer all over
it. It'll be all right when I've finished. Hopefully.
for me, this was over three and a half weeks ago, and the part-finished
model has laid on my Workbench ever since, thereby removing any
speed benefits of not breaking down the model for repainting. Harrumph!
on the wagon front, the MTA worked on last week has had a load added
inside, along with some bits of trackside debris that might possibly
end up in a wagon following an engineering possession.
parts are still to be painted, but visible here are lumps of trackside
cable troughing, a pallet, some sleepers and a bent piece of rail!
11th November 2005
in the paint shop - this will eventually be painted into faded 'Dutch'
livery - the yellow is just undercoat.
really want to get round to producing some show-stoppingly excellent
locomotives ready for the next round of exhibitions beginning January
14th, but instead I keep on making more wagons!
latest in the works are a group of three Parkside Dundas 'Rudd'
wagons. These are awesome kits, the old cliché "they
just fall together" is certainly true in this instance. You
can see the pictures of the previous batch of Parkside kits I built
on the 'Wagons' page.
'Rudd' will be in an orange and grey livery whilst another will
be in dirty Loadhaul colours. The final wagon will appear in a battered,
faded 'Dutch' livery.
is a modified Bachmann 'MTA' (only half weathered, hence the odd
appearance!), with chassis improvements visible. Hopefully, in the
next issue of DEMU's UPDate magazine, there will be my review of
the MTA, together with details of possible improvements - so this
is just to prove that I practice what I preach!
wagon has been renumbered as 395051, using one of Martyn Read's
excellent photographs as a guide. Probably what attracted me was
the graffiti, making the wagon stand out a little bit more in a
block train. However, I do seem to have a penchant for modelling
'unusual' wagons, or ones with detail differences.
worried that when I've assembled the whole train I'll realise that
I have modelled the most smashed up, abused, disgusting and downright
weird wagons that was physically possible, and have forgotten the
plain, boring everyday 'bog standard' wagons. So at some point I'll
have to just do some renumbering and light weathering to ensure
my train is vaguely ordinary!
6th November 2005
a lot has been happening on the 'workbench' - in reality a patio
table covered in tools and lumps of plastic situated in the dining
some reason this month, all the magazines have been coming out around
the same time and I haven't been able to read them all and model
at the same time. MRM was out a couple of weeks ago, followed by
RAIL, The Railway Magazine and Traction.
RAIL again, and Rail Express (excellent mag but they spelt my name
wrong in the 'Thanks' section - if anyone bumps into Jamers Makin,
say 'Hi' to him from me!). Finally, Model Rail hit the doormat on
Friday, so that scuppered my plans of weathering and detailing a
Hornby 'Coalfish'. Surely you can just pretend the magazine never
arrived through the post and just get on with modelling? Not me!
I can't help myself, I'm always thumbing through the latest issues
of a magazine to check for D&E content or to read the latest
news and goings on in the hobby.
not a lot of modelling has been going on at the moment, but I have
added two extra pages to this website recently, one page devoted
to 'Loftus Road', a new layout being built by Worthing MRC members Pete Hollman, James
Rann and myself.. And I have finally
got round to showing how I make my transfers, something I have had
a lot of interest shown, both at exhibitions, and through the website.
2nd November 2005
much to do, so little time to do it!
thought I'd dig out some locos I bought for various layout plans
I had, and detail them up. These two Heljan class 47s have been
sitting in their boxes for the past year or so awaiting attention.
The triple grey '47' will become 47223 "British Petroleum",
an Immingham loco that was transferred to the FPFR Ripple Lane petroleum
pool around 1990. When completed, it is hoped 47223 will appear
on the Loftus Road layout.
in Intercity Swallow livery was purchased simply because I really
like the livery! I have not decided on an identity for the machine
yet, I know I would like to renumber it to a 'namer' but I have
yet to find the perfect loco for the job. It is one of the rare
times when I have bought a model before deciding on a prototype
to recreate, and it is becoming the hardest to choose!
"Springburn" was a possible candidate (especially as it
carried the livery well into privatisation, meaning the loco could
even appear on Wells Green TMD) but was discounted due to Heljan
doing a release of '826. I wanted something a little bit different!
47841 and 47810 both remain a possibility, however.
while back I also bought a Danish 'Western' to be converted into
a model of the preserved D1015 "Western Champion", complete
wrap-round yellow ends and high intensity headlights in the Headcode
boxes. However, this remains a long way off. There are some errors
with the cab roof profile, and this could take time to remodel properly.
I get the impression from magazine reviews that even if I were to
chop off the cabs and replace them with a large dollop of Blu-Tack,
then they would probably be more accurate than Heljan's effort!
I'll have a stab at working on these locos over the next few months,
but I also have many other projects I'd like to start/complete in
time for Model Rail Scotland next February. For starters, I have
a got a Bachy '66' which will be sliced into hundreds of little
pieces before being reassembled as the low-emission 66951. Should
theres Fragonset's 45112 "The Royal Army Ordnance Corps"
which I would like to model in its BR Blue livery. And EWS Class
60s, 60005/036/097, utilising the Hornby model. Not forgetting 'Thunderbirds'
57303 and 57311 using the Bachmann release. Hmm...and Heljan's '33'
is coming out soon...would love a model of Fragonset 33103 "SWORDFISH"!
those '47's will have to stay in their red and blue boxes that little
29th October 2005
week, One wagon
of tinkering with locos, I thought I'd take a break, and instead
decided to add to my collection of engineering wagons. For a while
now I have wanted to make some 'Limpet's, which are converted POAs
with the sides cut down, to limit the weight of ballast inside the
on Monday, I bought a Bachmann POA and spent the rest of the week
weathering and battering it to represent MKA wagon 390256. I'd photographed
the prototype at Didcot some years back and had wanted to model
the awful condition that these wagons are in. I really like the
way in which the holes were cut in the sides, leaving the tattered
Yeoman logos chopped in half!
top two panels were cut out 5mm deep, then pieces of 1.5mm Microstrip
were added underneath these panels. Next, I used a soldering iron
to soften the plastic, enabling me to gradually bend out the bottom
of the panels to recreate the dents and bulges where the heavy ballast
has distorted the metal. A scalpel was then taken to the the wagon,
to model the scars the bodywork receives when being unloaded by
underframe received quite a few modifications to correct it, including
the different suspension, but instead of using Cambrian spares,
I decided to hack the existing moulding into shape, by cutting down
and filing half of it away, following photographs to make sure I
got the right look. Holes were drilled into the underframe where
Bachmann's moulding did not convey enough depth, and the two girders
were added to the chassis. The MKA's TOPS panel was made on a PC
using CorelDraw with a 'Stencil' font. Electrification flashes were
then added at 'trendy' angles, as on the prototype.
the rusty, beaten-up appearance of the MKA was done by applying
various shades of brown paint, and then rubbing off using a cotton
bud, leaving enough paint on to get a nice streaky effect. This
also helped show up the scars made by the scalpel, as the grooves
were now filled with paint. Then, after much drybrushing and patch
painting, other areas of rust were painted on, not forgetting the
inside of the wagon too.
also bought five other POAs, to convert into wagons I've seen carrying
the old ARC livery, along with other favourites such as Loadhaul
black and orange. I'll also recreate several wagons in a 'Dutch'
style livery, where a yellow stripe has been painted on top of the
old Yeoman grey, with logo still visible.
21st October 2005
'66's I have been going on about for the past few weeks have finally
been finished, with the numbers added, and other details painted
in. They just need weathering now to bring them up to exhibition
standard, but this will be completed at a later date. Now I have
eight Bachmann class 66s (six in EWS livery, one Freightliner, and
another green 'Shed' earmarked as a donor for the low emission 66951)
I couldn't resist lining them up to see what the overall effect
Green TMD can only accommodate 12 locomotives, so having eight locos
all of the same type on the layout is pretty intense, and something
that probably would not happen at an exhibition. This is because
I like to appeal to the casual visitor as well as the hardened enthusiast,
who would observe all the different numbers/variations, I would
imagine it is a bit boring seeing eight near-identical locos parked
up all in the same livery. In fact, for most enthusiasts it would
be boring seeing eight class 66s parked up!
normal service should resume soon with some AC electric locomotives
being worked on, 86901 and 86902 are being 'overhauled' (they're
the yellow locos which appear in everyone's photographs!), with
revised roof detail and other extras added inside the cabs.
the Loadbanks were the least detailed locomotives I had worked on
prior to the exhibition debut, yet they proved to be the most popular
locos on the layout at DEMU Showcase. I only painted them on a whim
- nearly three years ago I had originally planned to model RES liveried
86210 C.I.T 75th Anniversary and Intercity liveried 86253 The Manchester Guardian (amongst many other '86's), and had
bought the donor models ready to be worked on.
some bizarre twist in fate, 86210 and 86253 were then selected to
be converted into NR's 'loadbanks' and my planned locos were now
history. The livery on the 86/9s was so attractive, I thought 'Why
not paint it?' and went ahead and recreated it in 4mm. So it turned
out I ended up modelling the same two locos, but in a completely
13th October 2005
some of the latest locomotives to pass through the workshops, models
of 66006, 66010 and 66076. At the moment they are only partially
detailed, with quite a bit more work still to do. Unlike many people,
I actually like the class 66, and had wanted to make satisfactory
models of them for years, but with only the Lima model available,
it was not possible.
Now with the Bachmann model being available, things have been made
a little easier, and I can't stop buying them! At around £55,
they are outstanding value for money, and only require a small amount
of detailing to bring the model to life.
and EWS logos are easily removed using enamel thinners, left to
soak on the model for around 20 minutes, before being scrubbed off
with a stiff paintbrush. Be careful to only put thinners on the
gold bodyside band, otherwise you might end up with a strange whitened
effect on your EWS maroon!
buying transfers for these locos from Fox, don't be conned into
buying the special renumbering pack for the Bachmann '66' - the
transfers only include enough EWS logos for one loco, and they are
a different colour anyway. Instead, buy the Fox Transfers complete
relivery pack, F4977/5, because this includes enough transfers to
do three locos, and is only a little bit more expensive than the
renumbering pack. You also get a number of other transfers such
as electrification flashes, 'three beasties' and TOPS panels, ready
for use on other projects.
work on the layout continues, with the overhead wires inside the
depot building being removed, ready to be replaced with new ones,
because of a lack of tension due to being attached in a 'bodge job'
in the days just prior to DEMU Showcase!
the lack of wires at the entrance to the depot building!
November - December 2008 Archived OMWB
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July - August 2008 Archived OMWB
May - June 2008 Archived OMWB
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