Printed buffers for wagons

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Guy Rixon
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Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Guy Rixon » Tue Jul 08, 2014 8:50 pm

I received today, from Shapeways, a large box of air surrounding a tiny product: a set of buffer guides for a SECR (ex LCDR) wagon. Remarkably, they seems to have come out right first time; I was expecting to do a few test shots and adjustments before getting what I wanted. Rather gratifying for a first go at 3D printing. And well done Shapeways.

printed-buffers-on-wagon-cropped.jpg


printed-buffers-on-wagon-close-up.jpg
printed-buffers-on-wagon-close-up.jpg (56.41 KiB) Viewed 7661 times


(Apologies for poor photos; I don't have the right kind of camera for this.)

The pictures show the buffers as printed, sprayed with primer, but with no surface fettling. The finish is good enough not to need it. These buffers had three ribs - the main reason for printing them, as nothing else on the market come close, and packing, presumed wooden, behind the buffer-guide casting. The print has reproduced the ribs well (0.3mm thick), and the step between the packing and the buffer guide, and the nuts holding the buffer on to the headstock. It hasn't quite managed the washers under the nuts. :D

The buffers are sprung using Maygib rams and springs. I included the 0.5mm hole for the buffer tail in the model, and it printed perfectly; I just had to rod out the printing support-material (using a buffer tail inserted from the back) and no reaming was needed. Share prices for makers of 0.5mm drill bits will now crash... The 0.9mm hole for the buffer ram was also modelled, but here I found that I needed to drill out to 1.0mm to let the buffers move. This was tricky and I cracked one buffer, but managed to repair it before assembly. When I print these again, I will expand the centre of the model by 0.1mm radially to compensate.

beachboy
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby beachboy » Thu Jul 10, 2014 8:31 am

Guy,

What is good with your buffers is the shank casing looks more of a scale thickness. Whereas w/metal tends to be very over sized.

Is the wagon a scratch build. I assume mounting the buffers, the three ribs would be positioned in some uniform way.

Dare I mention end door latches and capping.

Steve.

williambarter
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby williambarter » Thu Jul 10, 2014 9:03 am

If the orientation of the buffers was like the coaches, then the outermost rib on each side would have been on a horizontal, with the inner ribs angled up and down.

William

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John McAleely
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby John McAleely » Thu Jul 10, 2014 10:53 am

Out of curiosity, what material did you specify for shapeways to use during printing?

John Duffy
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby John Duffy » Thu Jul 10, 2014 3:32 pm

Guy did you produce a CAD file for these? If so it would be of interest to see how you went about that.

John

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Guy Rixon
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Guy Rixon » Thu Jul 10, 2014 4:55 pm

Steve: the wagon body is a cast kit designed by Chatham Kits, now sold by Roxey Mouldings. It's actually a drop-side wagon. Apart from the buffers and Bill-Bedford suspension, I haven't changed or augmented the kit. There should probably be pins, on securing chains, and eyes to latch the sides, but I have no good photos to show how they were arranged. Similarly, I don't have photographic evidence that these wagons had capping strips. So I'm holding off on further details until I have something to go by.

The photos in "An illustrated history of Southern Wagons vol. 3: SECR" show that all the wagons had one rib horizontal, but some have it pointing in and some pointing out. There doesn't seem to be a fully-consistent pattern. It's not quite as simple as "Ashford wagons have rib-in, Longhenge wagons have rib-out", although the rib-in wagons do seem to be Ashford products.

John M.: these buffers are in Frosted Ultra Detail acrylic. Nothing else on Shapeways' list will produce the detail, they reckon. The ribs, in particular, are too thin to print in anything but FUD. It's the most expensive of the plastic materials, but the amount material is so low that this doesn't really matter.

John D.: yes, there is a CAD file. In fact there are two: an OpenSCAD source file and a solid-model file in STL format, the STL version derived from a rendering of the OpenSCAD source. Both files will be offered for members' use via this forum, but only after I get the next set of prints back and verify the tweaks.

BTW, SER carriage buffers have also been modelled, from a drawing kindly loaned by William, and the test shot should be with me in a couple of weeks.

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Mark Tatlow
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Mark Tatlow » Thu Jul 10, 2014 5:36 pm

Guy,

I am a bit concerned that FUD is a bit brittle for buffers but I do admit these look the part!

I have in mind doing some for myself and using them as a master for lost wax casting. If you go to my Highland Miscellany thread either on here or at www.highlandmiscellany.com, you will see that I have quite successfully used FUD as a master for lost wax casting (not all companies would do it though, try Plataurum Design at www.plataurumdesign.com).

I had in mind getting them printed on a sprue arrangement as a group of 4 (or perhaps 5/6 to allow for cock ups!) and getting them cast without the sprue removed. Whilst I would try and cast them with holes in them for the buffer head, I suspect this will not cast well. Thus, the idea would be sprue to act as a base to allow them to be held vertically when I drill them out in a pillar drill.
Mark Tatlow

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Guy Rixon
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Guy Rixon » Thu Jul 10, 2014 10:41 pm

Mark: yes, FUD is brittle, but so far it's OK for the buffers except where I had to enlarge the main bore with a drill. Hence the latest print of buffers has the bore increased by 0.1mm to avoid the need to drill, or to get to the point where drill is only smoothing the bore.

Bill Bedford sells FUD buffers on Shapeways already, and I think the buffers in Bill's LNWR wagon-kits are FUD prints. I've built a couple of those kits and the buffers were not a problem.

I looked at your site: the signal lamps and finials are cast from the printed masters, yes? Did you have to have to fettle the prints before you could cast from them? I see that the rendering of the lamps is showing facets on the bodies and I wondered whether you had to polish them smooth.

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Mark Tatlow
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Mark Tatlow » Thu Jul 10, 2014 10:48 pm

Guy Rixon wrote:Did you have to have to fettle the prints before you could cast from them? I see that the rendering of the lamps is showing facets on the bodies and I wondered whether you had to polish them smooth.


Yes I did, with a couple of grades of wet & dry. On items in the future I will make sure there is a chunky base printed at the same time to allow me to hold them in a chuck. For the finials this could be spun in a drill to assist the process and on square things it will simply enable it to be held more easily.

I did find that the faceting on the lamps was difficult to get rid of totally due to the lenses making access with the wet & dry difficult. I did the best I could and found that actually on painting the effect does subdue slightly.

I'll post pictures of my buffers when I get to do them.
Mark Tatlow

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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby beachboy » Fri Jul 11, 2014 8:16 am

Guy,

I think most, if not all wood wagons had strip plate to protect the top sheet, and for the long bolts that fit thru the sheets to fasten to. I have seen it fitted in views of LCDR opens. If the butts, or whatever that secured the plate were flush, it becomes harder to define.

Looks to me that the curved plate at the end corner extended thru a hole in the dropside door. Hence its reason for being there. A chain attached to the plate was then pinned to the other - protruding - end. Some Co's had also a latch that droped down, much like a side gate door.

Sorry, going of subject - nice buffers. Rib angles noted.

Steve.

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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby beachboy » Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:33 am

Guy,

I am back, for the sake of what few posting there are on this site.

I had another look at your wagon and liked the restrained interior painting, complete with a blue tinge to match the exterior.
I recently found a colour pic in an old Backtrack of several BR opens, with a vg view of the interior wood. Which was a very clean & uniform colour of mature Deal; and absent were black lines suggesting the planks had parted by an inch or more.

I also came across a letter Dec 1989 from a Tony Rogers of Chatham Kits regarding my Stroudley Breakvan - a favorite. The usual problem of casting awaited. I thought these kits were really good from a cottage industry for the minor railways, and unlike MSE H/Boxes, build rather well. The nuts are in a straight line, as opposed to the wobbly one's per my 51L SW wagon. Will have a look out for some at Roxey.

Steve.

.

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Flymo748
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Flymo748 » Sat Jul 19, 2014 7:21 am

beachboy wrote:Guy,

I think most, if not all wood wagons had strip plate to protect the top sheet, and for the long bolts that fit thru the sheets to fasten to. I have seen it fitted in views of LCDR opens. If the butts, or whatever that secured the plate were flush, it becomes harder to define.

Hi Steve,

I agree with you...

Whenever the subject of wagon construction comes up, I immediately go back to the series of articles by Chris Crofts that started in MRJ No.12. On page 9, this says:

"The top of all sheeting - door, sides and fast end - was protected by a capping iron, given as 3/8 in x 2 1/4 in on the 1923 RCH drawing, but presumably 1/2 in wider for 3 in sheeting. The capping iron frequently worked loose, and it is a nice touch to model it as such on a few wagons."

HTH
Flymo
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Guy Rixon
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Guy Rixon » Sat Jul 19, 2014 11:35 am

Steve and Flymo: OK, you talked me into it. I'll upgrade the model wagon with some capping strips and extend the ironwork on the ends to represent bars passing through the hasps on the dropsides. Fixings for the capping strips will be conjectural and I'll just copy some other kind of wagon where there are reasonable pics. Not doing the pins-on-chains thing though: too tiny to do it properly and such things look ghastly if done over-scale (IMHO).

Steve: thanks for the compliment re painting. The interior is done in artists acrylics, thinned down way beyond the consistency that artists would normally use. I start with a base coat that is basically white tinted with a small amount of raw sienna to approximate new wood and a little black to darken it. For aged wood, I decrease the sienna and increase the black in the base coat, so that the base becomes light grey with a faint hint of yellow/brown; that's how this wagon started out. With the base coat in place but not dried, I work in colour variations along the wood grain, using mainly black or grey with a little raw sienna and, if I'm aiming for newish wood, sometimes some burnt umber in place of the black. The over-painting is done with thin washes. This is a watercolourist's wet-on-wet technique and it serves the same purpose as dry-brushing in enamels but without destroying the paintbrushes so quickly. The wagon ironwork is painted pretend-black-but-really-dark-grey, in enamel, after the wood paint is dry and cured.

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Colin Parks
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Colin Parks » Sat Jul 19, 2014 1:47 pm

Hi Guy,

Here is the way I added capping strip clips to a Parkside wagon. Strips of plasticard were simply pushed into saw cuts at right angles to the side. Once the solvent used to fixed them had vented off, the strips were trimmed and shaped. Much easier than fighting with three tiny rectangles of plastic per clip and in the final finishing of each clip, you can even radius the top corners. Taken to the extreme, fixing screw heads could be added with tiny bits of 0.3mm plastic rod - I never bothered!

IMG_1763 (1024x687).jpg


Finished article
IMG_1754.JPG


I suppose bent or lift sections of the capping could be represented by using 5 thou. strips of plasticard.

All the best,

Colin

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grovenor-2685
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby grovenor-2685 » Sat Jul 19, 2014 3:31 pm

Great bit of lateral thinking there, I'll store that one away for future use.
Keith

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Guy Rixon
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Guy Rixon » Sat Jul 19, 2014 4:25 pm

Great idea Colin, I'll use that if I ever do wagons that had clips on their capping. I might try it on some 2FS models.

Sadly, it doesn't apply to SECR stock, at least not in the Wainwright period. I've been back through the reference book and all the SER and SECR (post-merger) wagons have their capping strips held on with some kind of bolts or screws; my guess is coach screws. On the LCDR wagons where I can see the capping at all, there is no trace of fixings, so I'm guessing screws with flat or countersunk heads.

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Flymo748
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Re: Capping strips was Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Flymo748 » Tue Aug 05, 2014 6:34 am

Returning to the theme of the capping strips that are used to protect the tops of the planks on open wagons, a couple of weekends ago I had the opportunity to pop briefly into Quorn station on the Great Central Railway.

I was in search of something else wagon-related, and was pleased to find an unrestored wooden end-door wagon that showed the capping strips in their original places and with their original fastenings:

IMG_0024.JPG


IMG_0036.JPG


IMG_0037.JPG


I hope that these are useful in helping with modelling. I did take a further full assortment of photos of various constructional details (including things like the different styles of coupling backing plates at each end) and would happily post those if anyone is interested.

Cheers
Flymo
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Dave K
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Dave K » Wed Aug 06, 2014 9:31 am

Paul,

Like your photos, the most interesting thing for me is the colour of the wood.

I for one would not mind seeing any more photos of the wagon's ironwork.

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Flymo748
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Flymo748 » Thu Aug 07, 2014 5:33 am

dave k wrote:Paul,

Like your photos, the most interesting thing for me is the colour of the wood.

I for one would not mind seeing any more photos of the wagon's ironwork.

Hi Dave,

Well here are a few more then. First the whole side of the wagon. There is a real variety of colours, but no sign of the original paint, even at the righthand end where the strapping has fallen off. The yellow paint on the corner plates denotes the "non-end-door" end.

IMG_0030.JPG


These are the inside shots of the wagon, showing the state of the woodwork, and also the ironwork inside, together with the end of the bolts that attach the exterior ironwork.

IMG_0021.JPG


IMG_0023.JPG


IMG_0024.JPG


Finally, a couple of shots of the two couplings. These intrigued me as the coupling plates were different shapes at each end. I wonder if this was original or an in-service repair. Note also the incredibly complex shape of the coupling hook. No wonder these look best on a model from a cast item rather than an etch.

IMG_0028.JPG


IMG_0031.JPG


I have no interest in the actual type of wagon that this is, merely having photographed it for the artistic interest!

Cheers
Flymo
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shipbadger
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby shipbadger » Thu Aug 07, 2014 7:42 am

Hi all,

The taller of the two coupling plates has the look of a replacement about it, as does the buffer plank itself. It's taller as like the lugs on top of the buffer housings it would help stop the floor planks shifting when the end door is open and the wagon tipped for emptying. The one at the other end doesn't need to do this as the end is fixed. But, this wagon has the end door sealed by the two additional straps, perhaps as it became more decrepit someone decided it would not be a good idea to up end the wagon anymore :-) Modifications to in service wagons is something I'm more than familiar with on full size wagons in restoration. Sometimes if we were to model them (a wagon with four different axleboxes and two types of wheel for example) they'd probably give many a raised eyebrows at exhibitions. Repairs to in service wagons is about getting them back into revenue service as quickly and cheaply as possible, not restoring them to 'as built' condition.

Tony Comber

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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby billbedford » Thu Aug 07, 2014 8:21 am

shipbadger wrote:Hi all,

The taller of the two coupling plates has the look of a replacement about it, as does the buffer plank itself. It's taller as like the lugs on top of the buffer housings it would help stop the floor planks shifting when the end door is open and the wagon tipped for emptying. The one at the other end doesn't need to do this as the end is fixed.


The taller coupling plates and spigots on the buffer housing were part of the specs for end door wagons.

One other point -- I've only ever seen the straps over the capping strips post nationalisation. I suspect they were used to keep old wagons in service when the bulk of wagons to be repaired had become steel bodied.
Bill Bedford
Mousa Models
http://www.mousa.biz

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martinm
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby martinm » Thu Aug 07, 2014 9:09 am

The 1923 drawing (1002) of a standard 13 ton wagon reproduced in "Railway Wagon and Tank Construction and Repair; Francis Ogden, I. Pitman, 1948 show capping and capping clips, but only the draw bar face plate at the opening end which is as per the above photograph.
This is a very helpful book, giving practical information on wagons.
regards,
martin

Kos
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Kos » Thu Oct 02, 2014 11:11 am

Hi Guy,
As usual I've joined the thread a bit late! Have you posted the STL download somewhere - I can't find it.
Thanks, Stuart

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Guy Rixon
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby Guy Rixon » Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:05 pm

The STL files are large - > 50MB - so I didn't post them on this board. The SCAD source is available in another thread.

If anybody desperately wants my STL rendering, I will put it on a web server at my work. I don't think it's fair to ask the society to host 50MB files for us.
Last edited by Guy Rixon on Sun Oct 05, 2014 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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John McAleely
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Re: Printed buffers for wagons

Postby John McAleely » Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:10 pm

Guy Rixon wrote:The STL files are large - > 50MB - so I didn't post them on this board. The SCAD source is available in another thread.


This thread: viewtopic.php?f=88&t=3792 , in fact :-)


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