P4 Starter Pack A: 16T Steel Mineral Wagon

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Lord Colnago
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P4 Starter Pack A: 16T Steel Mineral Wagon

Postby Lord Colnago » Sun Feb 07, 2016 6:58 pm

Some of you may have noticed a request elsewhere on this forum for tutorials in the form of DVDs. We shall have to see where that leads us, but there was also a request, from MikeH, for a simple sprung wagon tutorial, for which I volunteered my services. I thought that the forum was as good a place as any to do it and would be a lot simpler that making a DVD, which I have never done and doubt if I would know where to start. Anyway, after consulting with MikeH, I decided that a simple BR 16T steel mineral, with Morton two shoe brake gear, would be just about as simple as it can get.

I have used components that I am happy using but the same methods can be used with different components. I don't believe that there is anything in the techniques used that is beyond anyone's capabilities. Hopefully, I will explain what I am doing to everyone's satisfaction but, as always, feel free to ask if you have any questions.

By way of introduction then, here is a shot of the components that I shall use so that you can see what we're in for.

20160206_183645.jpg


The first thing I usually do when starting off on a wagon, is to find a suitable photo of the type. From this, I determine the components required such as what type of chassis/W-iron combination it has, the axle boxes, buffers, couplings and any other relevant items that I will need. I write this down on a card, as shown below, and keep this to hand throughout. I also reference the specific photo I'm using so that I can find it easily if I have to but I always change the number by one or two digits as I'm certainly not good enough to exactly replicate weathering, particularly on steel wagons!

20160206_183455.jpg


That's it for now. Next time, we'll make a start on the body as there isn't too much to do on this particular wagon.
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steamraiser
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby steamraiser » Sun Feb 07, 2016 7:45 pm

I will be watching with interest, as I would like to build a number with Justin's chassis kit.

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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Knuckles » Sun Feb 07, 2016 8:05 pm

Same here. Just to re-iterate, the concept I laid forth in the DVD thread was for tutorials but also just to film peoples layouts for whisky and bone idle relaxing fun.

I'm pretty comfortable with most wagon conversion builds I have tried but I am yet to do an all metal under frame as I can never work out which bits I need. The word Morton seems popular but eh. I've only tried Bill's springing so far but I like them so happy to continue. Compo' as I call it I have fitted a few times but usually for some reason the chassis has to be dug into I found.

Looking forward to following this thread.
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Noel
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Noel » Sun Feb 07, 2016 9:32 pm

Although it is attributed to D1/106, it was built so late [1951, probably in November of that year] that it has been turned out as a D1/108 vehicle [2 shoe Morton brakes, not 4 shoe either-side and so no bottom doors either], as David Larkin points out. At least it makes the brake gear more straightforward :D . It is pretty certain that other late-1960s survivors of this lot would also have been substantially replated in the same way as B68819, since body life on a 16T mineral was normally only around 15 years before major repairs. Doing the weathering on this one should be interesting.

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Lord Colnago
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Lord Colnago » Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:10 am

As there isn't a great deal of work to be done on the body, I thought that was as good a place as any to start. Those experienced types out there will have to forgive me as I intend to keep things fairly basic for the benefit of those still learning the game. I also believe that pictures provide better explanations in most cases so this tutorial will be picture heavy. So, lets get going.

20160208_173748.jpg


This shows the body sides and ends removed from their sprues. As you can see, there is a bit of tidying up to do and some mould lines also need removing. There are moulded handles on the door end, which need careful removing.

20160208_183137.jpg


Here are the sides, cleaned up and the door end has been drilled 0.35mm. in the appropriate places in order that wire handles can be fitted.

20160208_190237.jpg


In order to ensure a square wagon body, I fix one side to one end and then use a square, as shown, to ensure the squareness. Leave the parts in this position until the joint has hardened. Repeat the process for the other side and end and, when that assembly has hardened off, join the two and you should have a nice, square wagon body.

20160208_192223 (3).jpg


The body sides and ends have now been assembled and I have made up a floor from 40thou, plasticard. I prefer to make up my own floor as I prefer the flat floor it provides for fixing to the chassis. You can use the moulded floor supplied with the body and file off any raised moulding. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that, I just prefer my way.

20160208_192445.jpg


This is just to show the inside of our wagon. I scored the door outlines so that they would show up a little better. The process should be obvious but if anyone wants an explanation, just ask.

20160208_194504.jpg


A view of the door end, showing the replacement wire handles fitted. That is basically all that really needs doing to the body so its on to the chassis.

20160208_200629.jpg


I intend to pretty much follow the instructions as far as the chassis is concerned. The first job is to remove the chassis top plate from the fret and clean off the etched cusps with a fine file. Then there are some rivets to be pressed out, if required. On this chassis, they are, and whilst I have a rivet press, I cannot assume that everyone else has, so I offer this alternative. Take any pointed tool like a scriber or punch, place it as shown in the half-etched rivet hole and gently press down. Repeat the process until they are all done.

20160208_200727 (2).jpg


Here is the result and, as you can see, it is nice and neat.

20160208_200934.jpg


We now have to fold up the headstocks. The best tool for this is a hold and fold and I would thoroughly recommend purchasing one. You will never regret it. The first folds are the outer ones at each end. There isn't much to get hold of as you can see. The best way I have found, is to hold the main body of the etch in the tool and using the steel edge provided with it, fold the short end up through 90 degrees. Check this with a square.

20160208_201237.jpg


This photo shows the etch in the tool, ready to make the second fold and thus complete the headstock. Again, use the steel tool provided and make another 90 degree fold.

20160208_201355 (8).jpg


This shows the completed headstock. Again, check with a square. Apologies for the lack of focus.

20160208_201443.jpg


I've included this one to show that, even when gripped in the hold and fold tool, the rivets suffer no damage, something that could happen if you used a vice for this job.

What if you haven't got a hold and fold tool and have no desire to buy one? The alternative method that I would suggest would be to make the first fold using a vice. Grip the bottom of the headsock in the vice and fold the main body of the etch through 90 degrees. To make the second fold, hold the main part of the body and press gently on the fold line. I have tried this and, as long as you are careful, you will get the required fold. Don't forget to check that the folds are at 90 degrees.

20160208_203400 (2).jpg


We now move on to the W-Irons, which come as a one piece etch, as shown. Again, clean up the etched cusps before making any folds.

20160208_203458 (4).jpg


Once again, the hold and fold tool is used to do just that. Firstly fold the solebars through 90 degrees and check with a square. You have to make the fold with the etch held this way. If you hold it the other way around, that little bit of etch that you can see peeping out in the centre of the fold line will prevent a neat fold as well as being just plain wrong!

20160208_203659 (4).jpg


This shows the ends being folded up, using the method mentioned earlier. As mentioned, go gently and the etch will fold without a problem.

20160208_203915 (3).jpg


The inner folds are a little trickier. I have found the best way of doing this is to use a tool, in this case a ruler, that is as close to the width of the fold as possible. Hold the etch and use the ruler to press against the fold, bringing it up through 90 degrees. I hope the photo makes this clearer as I couldn't use both hands to form the fold and use the camera at the same time.

20160208_203942.jpg


Apologies for the out of focus photo, which attempts to show to completed job, ready for the next stage in the process.

20160208_201631 (2).jpg


I use wooden blocks quite a bit for things like the next job. This one has already been used for both 9' and 10' wheelbase chassis. As you can see, the last time was for a 10' chassis. All that I need to do here is move the 1mm. wire pins into the 9' positions and make a start. Rumney Models chassis use this pinning method to ensure accurate alignment of the chassis top with the W-Iron assembly and it makes life a whole lot easier for us modellers.

20160208_204127 (6).jpg


The first thing to do is to place the chassis top onto the pins as shown.

20160208_204154.jpg


Now the W-Iron assembly is placed on top of it and the soldering iron switched on in readiness for joining the two parts.

20160208_204913 (2).jpg


Here we have the completed job and I have included this shot to highlight the fact that the two slots that you can see on the etch need to be kept clear of solder. The other end of the W-Iron assembly can be soldered along its full length.

That's it for this first session. Next up, the solebars and maybe, the brake assembly. I'll have to see how it goes. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
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Knuckles
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Knuckles » Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:37 am

Great idea for the pins set in wood as a dedicated alignment jig of sorts. I have only thus far used MJT rockers and Bill Bedford springies so I'm unsure when I would need the set up you have, but I can see the point if you build a lot of them. Makes sense.

I doubt I'll ever buy a hold and fold because for me at least the price is through the roof and for that monster version you have moreso! I have no doubt they make life easier and more accurate though. I just use a chunky set square and a vice usually. So far that has been easy enough.

I like how this tutorial / blog is going so looking forward to its progression as I want to start building full blown etched underframes for wagons but can never understand what I am to buy for what kit.
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby iak » Tue Feb 09, 2016 8:45 am

Very good reading and some tasty morsels to ponder on.
You can always learn as someone always has developed a different and better way to do something :thumb
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby MikeH » Tue Feb 09, 2016 8:58 am

Thanks John,

That first part of the tutorial looks great and a great idea with the block of wood. I think I need to go off and purchase a few extra bits now but nothing as yet looks daunting at all. Can I ask, what glue did you use?

Cheers

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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Andy W » Tue Feb 09, 2016 9:23 am

Yes, an excellent thread M'Lord. One problem I've had in the past with different kits is varying ride heights from different manufacturers. Do you do a test for floor thickness and position within body?
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Lord Colnago » Tue Feb 09, 2016 11:24 am

A quick couple of replies to the last two postings.

For plastic kits, I use Slaters Mekpak but anything similar will do. Most general stockists, such as Eileen's Emporium, will have something to suit.

The key to setting correct buffer heights usually lies in whatever chassis or W-Irons you use in the wagon. In this instance, I am using a complete chassis kit, which sets the height for you. Masokits sub frames perform a similar function for you. Using individual W-Irons presents a slightly different situation. I drop the made up W-Irons between the solebars, carefully turn the wagon over and set it on a piece of track. Measure the buffer height, either with a ruler or against a jig. Lastly, pack the W-Irons to the correct height if necessary. If they're too high, then its a little more fun. You will need to remove those sections of the floor from underneath the W-Irons to form a recess. Next, glue in another "floor" above the original one and repeat the process outlined above.

I hope all is clear after all that but, as always, just ask if anything is unclear.
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Will L
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Will L » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:05 pm

What an excellent post, do keep it up M'Lord. One little thing

Lord Colnago wrote:...We now have to fold up the headstocks. The best tool for this is a hold and fold and I would thoroughly recommend purchasing one. You will never regret it...

What if you haven't got a hold and fold tool and have no desire to buy one? The alternative method that I would suggest would be to make the first fold using a vice. Grip the bottom of the headstock in the vice and fold the main body of the etch through 90 degrees. To make the second fold, hold the main part of the body and press gently on the fold line. I have tried this and, as long as you are careful, you will get the required fold. Don't forget to check that the folds are at 90 degrees.


While I know a Hold and Fold is a good tool and may people like them, if you leaned to bend up an etched fret before they were invented it does seem like an unnecessary investment. There is nothing a Hold and Fold can do which you can't do just as well with a steel rule, a cutting mat, a craft knife and flat jawed pliers. All of which will need anyway. You will note no reference to a vice.

You do your basic big fold by holding the fret down firmly between ruler and cutting mat, with the fold line just visible under the ruler edge. Then using the craft knife, get between fret and cutting mat and ease the etch up just a bit to start the fold, going along the full length. Then go round again to bend it up a bit further, and once more to get a full 90 degrees. Small folds are done in the smooth jawed pliers.

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Lord Colnago
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Lord Colnago » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:11 pm

Hi Will,

All good stuff. I was lucky enough to aquire my hold and fold many a long year ago. It came from the States before such things were available here and was reasonably priced. Even the small one cost more now! Such is the way of things.
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby dal-t » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:35 pm

It may well be true (in fact I'm sure it is) that no-one needs a hold 'n fold, but once you've used one, going back to the ruler or steel bar method is such a drag, particularly for small pieces. Those headstocks m'lord was folding are massive compared to some of the etch detail I find myself adding to aviation models (try the roof boxes in a 1/72 Lynx, for instance). I wouldn't even consider them without my hold 'n fold, with its conveniently-sized fingers for everything. It also gives much crisper edges than using pliers. But come to think of it, maybe I should ditch the darn thing, and get my sanity back (and a bit more time for railway modelling) ...
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Will L
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Will L » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:47 pm

Truth is this is fertile "what works for you" territory.

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steamraiser
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby steamraiser » Tue Feb 09, 2016 5:14 pm

Keep up the good work Lord Colnago.
(It is a shame we cannot show our appreciation in a similar manner to that on RM Web)

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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Lord Colnago » Tue Feb 09, 2016 5:36 pm

Thanks Gordon,

I'm not on RMWeb so I don't know what that means. Thanks anyway, its always nice to be appreciated.
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Knuckles » Tue Feb 09, 2016 8:50 pm

I'm guessing he means the advanced like buttons? I'm only guessing so if I'm wrong no worries.

Unlike Facebook and others where a :thumb like button is now used mostly to say "Meh, seen it yeah yeah...can't be bothered to talk to you," thus increasing social retardation, bone idleness and dissapointing everyone who gets an email notification, RMweb have in my opinion came up with a good idea to slightly repair the situation by having different type of 'Like' buttons, such as; Thanks, Craftsmanship/Clever, Agree etc.
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby steamraiser » Tue Feb 09, 2016 11:40 pm

Thanks Knuckles. A spot on explanation.
It saves clogging up a thread with individual posts of appreciation, but still lets the thread author know that his / her efforts ARE appreciated.
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby dal-t » Wed Feb 10, 2016 9:24 am

Were we not promised a 'Like' button? Is this another pre-election (pre-Forum Update!) promise never to be honoured? I think we should be told ...
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Knuckles » Wed Feb 10, 2016 10:12 am

I don't want a like button. :(

Reasons explained above - it just kills conversation.
If done like RMweb then that is not as bad though.
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby SHurst » Wed Feb 10, 2016 10:47 am

Wow - what an interesting thread. I have learnt so much more about building wagons :)

As for "Social Media Threads" , why not opt for the simple solution and all move to RMWeb :?: This would have the added advantage of keeping this forum clear for all the "bone idle" and "social retards" - the Armchair Modellers :?: :D

Better still why not have a Society Data Sheet outlining all the latest "most uses" for "like"/"advanced like" buttons :?:
That way nobody's ego could ever be bruised by not getting appreciation for what they have done :D

I hope this is not taken too seriously - I would hate to "offend" anybody by expressing an "honest" view however :o :shock: :? ;)

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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Knuckles » Wed Feb 10, 2016 2:32 pm

Well I'm not purposely trying to offend anyone but I now greatly prize honesty and truth more than popularity as I spent most my life tip toeing like a mouse trying not to offend anyone and pandering because that is how my personality was (a 'Politically Correct' mindset - don't get me started on PC! I'm it's enemy), as a result I always ended worse off, so after a certain time around 5 or so years ago I cracked and did a 180. Sod it.

Now I don't care as much. I do care and I don't purposely try to offend people but if I feel strong enough that something is to be said, even knowing it might wind someone up then a lot of the time I'll say it and take the heat if needed. If something is considered important enough I would rather wind someone up and loose a friend over it, I've spent most my life being mostly a loner anyway as I never properly fit in anywhere so to me it's nothing new either way.

I'm not saying anyone is bone idle but if anyone feels like it speaks to them that's up to the individual to decide, if anyone feels some cognitive dissonance and is convicted of the claim that isn't a doing of mine.

Also just to clarify, I never called anyone a social retard, I mean the like button in my experience at least Encourages the retardation (slowing down / hindering) of social exchanges. It is much easier to hit 'like' and be done with it. Also on FB a lot use 'like' to just mean, "Yeah yeah, seen it, whatever."

Also I'm talking about Facebook more than anything. Since Facebook arrived and other forums adopted the like button, on some other forums my posts that used to be a hive of conversation have shrivelled into a flat plain with silent thumbs growing out of the parched mud cracks. it'd make a great surreal artistic landscape. I even made a massive post and asked people to not like my posts unless they were going to say what they like or dislike about it but no one bothered to honour it. Easier to hit 'Like' and go grab a beer I guess.

That said I do actually consider myself to be considerate but it is selective - you CANNOT (Caps for n00b emphasis!) please everyone, especially if you want to freely express something or be honest or truthfull. I can be hard to get to know properly as I have little middle ground for anything and I have a severe intolerance for Ox Poo now, but I do care for people and don't actively try to upset/anger people. I'm just more willing to than I used to in certain contexts. My signature quote says it all.
I haven't mastered the balance, freely admitted.

I wouldn't want us to lose this forum and us all move over to RMweb only - that'd be a great loss as we have a really good community going here with a common interest. :thumb I enjoy hanging out here more than there a lot of the time. See, I used an emoticon but I used it with text - Waaaay different.


I guess you could say I'm a Marmite member!



Ok, I think we are in danger of derailing the thread again. Those track gauges must be dodgy. :?
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Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Lord Colnago » Wed Feb 10, 2016 4:35 pm

OK, time for the next lesson, or selection of photographs, depending on how you look at it. But first, I feel a word on the current distraction might be appropriate. I'm not a social media person, I'm not even giving to using emoticons, except on very rare occasions. I have my own sense of humour, which I sometimes inject into my writings, but I feel no need to emphasise it in any way. You either get it or you don't. Anyway, I digress. Whilst Knuckles' last posting would seem to have wrapped up that particular discussion, it occers to me that it might be worthy of discussion on its own thread. After all, there may be quite a number of members who aren't particularly interested in wagons or, who are competent enough to have no need of a tutorial and they will have not seen the discussion thus far. A thread of its own would open it up to everyone. I will leave that to those interested in such things.

For now, on to more interesting matters. I did not get as far as the brakes this session but much work has been done solebar-wise. To begin with, the basic solebar etch needs bending to shape.

20160209_191304 (2).jpg


Here is the basic etch, set up in my hold and fold. I set it up this way around as it is much easier to bend the bigger side of the fold than the other and its also easier to check that it is at 90 degrees when you have done so. You must, however, ensure that the etch is tightly gripped by the device, otherwise trouble will ensue. I'm sure you can guess how I know such things. If you haven't got a hold and fold or similar, the job can be done in a vice. The jaws of some modellers' vices are not as long as the etch shown here, in which case, try using some aluminium angle, held in the vice, to extend the grip. In this case, it is even more essential to ensure that the etch is firmly held along its entire length.

20160209_192714 (2).jpg


Here we see the basic solebar etches, now folded, along with the relevant overlays. This particular vehicle had a riveted chassis but overlays are also provided on the etch for those with welded ones. All is made clear in the instruction booklet. The etches have been cleaned up prior to the next job. A word of warning here. Take a geat deal of care when removing what little etched cusp there is from the overlays. They are extremely delicate and can be easily wrinkled, which is difficult to put right. I use a small square fine file, the finest I have, and work along the length of the etch as far as possible.

20160209_193009 (2).jpg


This slightly out of focus shot, shows a trial fit of the basic solebar etch in place on the chassis. As you can see its a good fit, not tight, but you don't want any gaps at the end. I find a trial fit useful at this stage and it only takes a few seconds to do it. It took longer to photograph!

20160209_194323 (2).jpg


This shot shows the overlays soldered in place, but there is a knack to it. The instructions recommend putting a slight bow into the overlays to make them easier to fit and you can see where I have done this in one of the previous photos. When looking at the outside face of the overlay, the ends should bow away from you. The tabs at the bottom of the overlay fit into slots on the base etch. This is best achieved by holding the overlay at around the 45 degree mark and inserting the tabs in the slot. Make sure the tabs stay in place when straightening up the overlay. The cheeky little blighters try to escape. When you're satisfied that all is aligned, solder the two parts together. I have found that, using the minimal amount of solder along the top seam is all that's required. Solder from one end to the first tab first, then check that everything is still aligned before continuing. If all's well, complete the join. If not, its much easier to separate them now and re-do the job.

20160209_203639 (2).jpg


After soldering, there are a variety of accoutrements that need soldering to the solebars before fitting them to the wagon. In this case, we're looking at the builder's plate and label clip, both of which are easily sweated in place. I also fitted wire horse hooks. In the photo that I'm using as the basis of this model, its not clear to me whether there are horse hooks fitted. If I was pushed on it, I'd say probably not. However, every other photo that I've seen of this type does have horse hooks fitted, despite having holes in the W-Irons for the purpose, so I've gone that way here. The base photo was also taken later than my modelling period, so it may have lost its horse hooks when the obvious partial re-plating was done. Who knows!

20160209_203802 (2).jpg


Here we have the first solebar soldered in place. You can see what a good fit it is and it also confirms that you have a 90 degree angle on the headstock folds.

20160209_204142 (2).jpg


Here we have the view they didn't want you to see! There are, as you can see, four tabs on top of the solebar etch, which fit into the four slots shown. They are slightly recessed when fitted so a fair amount of solder is required to ensure that the recessed tabs in their slots are soldered in place and that the solder isn't just sitting on the top plate. I'm sure that purists are palpitating as I write but that's their problem. This method works for me.

20160209_204430 (2).jpg


This is the photo that you would usually see of the finished joint. Its easy to clean off the excess solder. I use a small coarse file to deal with the worst of it and finish off with wet and dry for, I'm sure you'll agree, a very neat finish. It is essential that the top plate remains clear of any solder as we will need a good fit for the body when the time comes and any stray solder will prevent it sitting properly on the chassis. Its also important to clear the solder out of the file after each job, to prevent it clogging up. Nothing clogs a file better that solder. Using a coarse file make this job much easier.

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The last job of this session was the fitting of the spring stops, as shown. Its now time, however, for a tall tale. These stops are on the same fret as the solebar details but between fitting the details and getting to this stage, the fret disappeared. Much work top disturbance and carpet crawling ensued. I even took my fleece off to check inside, but all to no avail. As I write, its still hiding. Now normally, at this point much bad language and object throwing would precede jumping up and down and pulling out of hair. But I am prepared for such eventualities (in most cases). Many kit suppliers put extra or alternative bits on their frets that you won't need. Rumney, Masokits and Dave Bradwell being amongst them. I don't, therefore, throw these frets away as you never know when they might come in handy. I keep each suppliers frets in separate tins. Its a practice that I would thoroughly recommend to anyone building multiples of kits from the same supplier. The same could be said for spare castings. Anyway, I retrieved four spring stops from my tin of Rumney bits and all was well.

As for forming and fitting them, I would recomment forming these small strips into a U shape first of all and then folding out the feet to give the required shape. They are etched through at the point where each fold is required and look like a very small ladder with quite thick rounds. (Never rungs in the Fire Brigade). Before folding, run a fine layer of solder along the backs and do the same on the solebars where they are attached. Getting them into place is fun but, once there, hold them in place with the point of a fine file or similar and touch with the soldering iron on both "feet". When you have fixed them, place the same file inside the stop and give a slight tug. Just enough to ensure that they are properly attached. If you don't, then they will, at best, distort, or at worst, disappear down the plughole when you clean the model at the end of the session, which is now.
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DaveHarris
Posts: 121
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2012 9:08 pm

Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby DaveHarris » Wed Feb 10, 2016 8:41 pm

Just to echo the earlier comments. Many thanks for this thread, its a great help!!! :thumb

Knuckles
Posts: 1128
Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:15 pm

Re: A wagon tutorial

Postby Knuckles » Thu Feb 11, 2016 12:29 am

Great tutorial so far. The solebar soldering seems to be roughly the same as coupling rod laminations in practice. That's the impression I'm getting.

Good job so far. May have a go at some point but looking to see the rest.

I learnt something too that should be obvious - Horse hooks or loops. Never knew they existed but with a 3 second think it is perfectly obvious. Oh well.
“He who dares not offend cannot be honest.” Thomas Paine

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Mostly offering Loco kits & bits in 4mm.


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