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Bandsaw Steve

Hogwarts Express, Scratchbuild, 1/48 Scale

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3 hours ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

and swept the small bits of leaf debris away before lighting up the torch.  Australians don't generally approve of folks teaching their daughters to use gas torches around dried leaf litter these days

Gidday Steve, a very wise precaution. 👍🙂

 

3 hours ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

it allows the early structural work to be done at high temperature and the later details to be added at temperatures way below those that threaten re-melting of the first joints. 

That's a very clever idea, I would not have thought of it myself, I'll have to remember that trick.

     I've been wondering how the project is going, whether BB has stuck with it or succumbed to other attractions of school holidays (quite understandable). The perseverance of you both is very commendable. That cabin is very well done. Regards to you both, Jeff.

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Making Tracks

 

 

This locomotive still does not have all of it's wheels on, and, obviously enough, it needs them.

 

The pilot wheels bogie - I think that that's correct term - is going to be very roughly modelled initially just to get the last wheels securely attached. All we did here was glue a block of wood under the frame of the loco and stick two appropriately shaped slabs of plywood, at exactly the correct thickness, onto the side of the block. There is no question of this bogie ever actually swivelling.

IrPicL3.jpg

 

BB glued the wheels on with two-part araldite and made sure that they were at exactly the same gauge and level as the rest of the wheels.

3dm6TDT.jpg

 

Leaving this! - which I think looks quite good.  Don't worry about the big expanse of raw plywood on the pilot bogie, we can sort that out later on with some greeblies to make it look much more convincing. There is another issue however...

zGpUv59.jpg

 

Of all common modelling subjects, railway locomotives and rolling stock are the ones that most need to sit on a base. It's OK to have a nicely built aeroplane or a car just sitting on a polished wooden shelf or a ship sitting on a plinth. But rail vehicles not on a track?  Nope, that's no good! It just looks... wrong... unfinished...unnatural.  So we have to make some track for this thing.  I found a length of cheap white pine that was a suitable length and width and marked up some of it's sharp edges for removal.

zX8R9zI.jpg

 

I hit the edges with this plane, a tool I rarely use because it requires certain skills and judgement that I sorely lack, and set up the profile of a slightly raised railway embankment. 

zus6e16.jpg

 

Meanwhile BB cut up about a hundred railway sleepers from thin popsicle sticks. She did a very good job of getting them all the same length too. She then squirted some E6000 about and started sticking them on. This was kinda fun!

fSQYbBV.jpg

 

E6000 is a glue that I don't use much and we probably would have used PVA if I wasn't running low, but Hendie swears by the stuff and on the couple of occasions I have used it I have found it to be very impressive. Unlike PVA it comes out of it's little bottle / spray unit very watery and initially it really looks like it won't hold anything. But if you hold it firmly in place 'clamped' down for about 12 hours, the stuff forms a bond that's damned near unbreakable.  And so it was that each of these sleepers were set onto the pine embankment as if with concrete.

niOml7S.jpg

 

We actually made quite an impressive length of track. Unfortunately we won't be able to use all of this as display space in our house is limited.

KsLK6j6.jpg

 

After hitting the whole thing with a spray of grey primer BB set about painting the sleepers as shown below.

dk2Fvbg.jpg

 

Her eye for colour is pretty good. She was not happy with the result below claiming that the finish was 'too clean' and that the brown was 'too bright and too reddish'. It needed to be 'dirtier and greyer...'  I agreed. 

KzmP9rR.jpg

 

Luckily I have a 25 year old can of black watercolour pigment in reserve for just such emergencies.  She declared this finish 'perfect'.

1M05lCS.jpg

 

Now we needed some ballast.  Around here much of the 'soil' is really just sand so it wasn't hard to find some 1/48 scale gravel.  We had to filter all of the leaves and dead insects and seeds and stuff out.

oxl9sYs.jpg

 

See what I mean?  I can't help but think that this could be good for some future diorama action, but for now it's in the bin.

o6KqWST.jpg

 

We couldn't filter out the really fine stuff so resorted to 'dry blowing' just like the old-time gold prospectors around Kalgoorlie. Here I'm holding the vacuum cleaner - set to 'blow' mode - while BB pours the sand through the air current. The sand,  heavily laden with Gold of course - because this is Western Australia - falls through the current while the seeds and flakes of leaves and so forth just blow away.  Nice clean sand remains in the bucket below, sand we can use as railway ballast. 

cF5k6R6.jpg

 

Here's some weird stuff I picked up at a craft fair a few years ago. It's a white fluid - in some regards a bit like E6000 - that's used as means of rendering fabric really stiff so that it can be modelled and sculptured into any desired shape. It could be useful if making a model of a tent or a tarpaulin or a camouflage net.  Anyhow, as I was very low on PVA and E6000 is expensive we decided to try this stuff as a way of holding the ballast in place.

xyaQRHM.jpg

 

Here we are conducting a trial, which worked beautifully. 

dt7IFrs.jpg

 

So soon we were drowning our embankment with Powertex and smothering it with ballast as shown below.

6wqqrNE.jpg

 

All of which worked out quite spiffingly we think. :thumbsup: We are both very happy with this. The rails however are yet to be attached permanently somehow and that's giving me pause for thought...

QNL4NL3.jpg

 

Anyhow, this step was huge fun for both of us and it didn't take long either. OK - gotta make tracks now ! Oh, no I don't! We've just finished that job! 😀

 

Bandsaw Ballast Steve and Baby Ballast Bandsaw

 

 

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Those are magnificent tracks indeed!

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Well done you two!!   An impressive setting there for a fine locomotive.   Just noticed the clear plastic tacks standing in for buffers and doing a very fine job! 

 

Frank

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Great work going on here.

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Well done to both of you...… 10 points to Gryffindor (not sure on correct spelling).

 

H

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On 1/31/2020 at 7:56 AM, Bandsaw Steve said:

E6000 is a glue that I don't use much and we probably would have used PVA if I wasn't running low, but Hendie swears by the stuff

 

Interesting.  I know we have talked about E6000 in the past but after seeing your photo's now realise that your E6000 is different from my E6000.  The stuff you are using looks like it behaves very much like PVA glue.  The E6000 I use is a transparent solvent based thick sticky goo - very much like silicone sealant.

 

Nice track laying you two.  Particularly like the color variation in the ballast along the length of the tracks,, and the drawing pin buffers are a nice touch too

 

These updates are almost making me feel guilty enough to get back on my Pegasus build.  Luckily I have great resolve and can be incredibly stubborn at times.

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19 minutes ago, hendie said:

after seeing your photo's now realise that your E6000 is different from my E6000.  The stuff you are using looks like it behaves very much like PVA glue.  The E6000 I use is a transparent solvent based thick sticky goo - very much like silicone sealant.

 

Very interesting. Yes our stuff here is very much like spray-on PVA and seems to be optimised for use with polystyrene and /or extruded foam. It’s also good for wood but takes a long time to set. I can’t imagine it being much use for constructing helicopters!

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Fill, Sand, Prime, Inspect ... Repeat

 

As the sharp-eyed among you noted the front buffers have gone on and are indeed just - very fortuitously shaped and sized - thumb tacks.  When the universe gives you a gift like this please just accept it! 

 

uWmnTK6.jpg

 

The smoke-box saddle has also gone on. 

LQGfpGW.jpg

 

But that's the end of the exciting construction bits for this post.

 

It's generally true to say that every scratchbuilding project - especially if it uses wood - will end up at this rather ho-hum stage;  Fill, Sand, Prime, Inspect...Repeat. This is unexciting work but it is rather satisfying because at the end we will have our subject all one colour (albeit grey) and it will look much closer to a coherent finished product.  Let's see how it goes on this locomotive.

 

My preferred heavy duty filler is this pink two-part car-body bog filler 'Repco Multi-Purpose Body-Filler'. I think it's very similar to the 'P38' and 'Bondo' that other builders refer to on this forum.  Baby Bandsaw had a go with the stuff but it was sticky and icky and not to her liking  😥 so guess who did most of the first round of filling and getting pink c*#p all over his overalls.  Here is the boiler, firebox and smokebox after the first round of filling and sanding. I'd also used a bit of 'Timber-Mate' at this point - hence the areas of white that can be seen. 

ZwGLStJ.jpg

 

And now I'm hitting it with some thick gluggy 'Repco filler primer'.  Good stuff this; it goes on very thick and levels out beautifully to fill in numerous minor surface imperfections.

AdfELwF.jpg

 

I managed to bully baby bandsaw into spraying the tender - "Goodbye forever Lightning McQueen!" :evil_laugh:

0cxB31X.jpg

 

The primer really highlights the large amount of smoothing off required on the boiler assembly.

HeGHGYt.jpg

 

I know that the paint has good leveling qualities and is quite forgiving - but BB still managed to get it a touch too thick on the tender...  :thumbsup:  It doesn't really matter because it all has to be sanded back anyway.

IZmoiAJ.jpg

 

After a light sand, inspect the work and look for imperfections. Scour a cross-hatch pattern over them where-ever they are found.

RfD0WbV.jpg

 

Yep - surface blemishes are everywhere.

KZSl8tl.jpg

 

Now we use some Vallejo acrylic filler for the detailed work. This is the best model filler I've ever used. has the fine consistency of toothpaste and - when set - the strength of concrete. It also comes in this lovely little tube that allows very small amounts to be applied if required.

4ZVPZfk.jpg

 

Anyway - we got a bit keen and put a lot of this stuff on...

dWyibqW.jpg

 

and then sanded it back and repeated the whole inspect, prime etc process.

j2kY53P.jpg

 

Eventually we ended up with this, a nice smooth uniform finish across the whole locomotive.  I might do one more round of 'fill, sand, prime' yet - but it's looking good at this point.

MGMMFff.jpg

 

The brass cab is still to be primed but I'm hoping to get some etching liquid onto that before I apply any paint.  If anyone can recommend a readily available etching chemical suitable for brass then please sing out.

n7a6v9j.jpg

 

And that's about it.

 

From here we have to add numerous details and finish the paint job.  We are hoping to have this ready for WASMEx at the start of May so time-pressure is starting to build,

 

BB and BSS

 

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That cleaned up rather well! Good effort on the filling/sanding cycle!

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4 hours ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

The brass cab is still to be primed but I'm hoping to get some etching liquid onto that before I apply any paint.  If anyone can recommend a readily available etching chemical suitable for brass then please sing out.

 

Steve I just used Etch primer (rattle can) for autos on my train build.  The brass got a good cleaning with wire wool and IPA before applying the primer.  So far it has stood the test of time. and my handling.

 

That last photo looks great - can't wait to see the coloring in part

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This is coming on very nicely indeed! Great work, both of you!

 

Ian

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Certainly is coming along nicely

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On 10/02/2020 at 12:26, Bandsaw Steve said:

 

The brass cab is still to be primed but I'm hoping to get some etching liquid onto that before I apply any paint.  If anyone can recommend a readily available etching chemical suitable for brass then please sing out.

Vinegar! I used a tub full of  bog standard malt vinegar and dunked the part for a  few minutes, then rinsed and primed. Worked ok, just made me hungry for chips.

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OK folks - Thanks for the input. Seems like the method we’re gonna try is something like...

 

1. Sand brass until surface is shined and just slightly rough or ‘buffed’
2. Thoroughly clean with steel wool and Isopropyl Alcohol.

3. Dunk in vinegar for about three minutes.

4. Rinse vinegar off with water and allow to dry thoroughly 

5. Spray several light coats of metal-etch primer (I watched a you-tube on this and the dude was adamant on multiple light coats)

6. Apply normal primer over the etch primer (in my case this will be ‘Mr hobby 1000’ or perhaps Tamils grey primer)

7.  Apply coloured paints

 

Sound about right? 

 

 

 

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Personally I don’t bother with the vinegar and only spray the etch primer until it just covers- as thin as possible. Then normal vehicle primer. I use Dulux etch primer, you should be able to get it even in the wilds of WA 😎

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9 hours ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

Sound about right? 

Er, you forgot:-

                            8. Go buy fish and chips, due to taste buds activated by smell of vinegar.

Seriously (as much as one can be on Britmodeller) I don't know anything about prepping and painting brass so I'll try to remember this. Regards, Jeff.

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Bits and Pieces and Family Secrets

 

Well folks, it’s been a while but things have been happening on this project. All sorts of stuff in fact, so this post is going to wander over a fair variety of material and will even reveal a trade secret passed down from one Bandsaw generation to the next.

 

When last we spoke we were going on about how to etch prime brass, and the radical suggestion was made to ‘use an etch primer’.  Cripes – hadn’t thunked of that.  Here’s some right here, all the way from Bunnings.

8A4eIB7.jpg

 

Baby Bandsaw cleaned the brass with IPA and just went nuts with some of this stuff – we skipped the vinegar step – and here was the result.

R1wyLLA.jpg

 

Once it dried we sanded the bubbly finish back and hit it with a second round of etch primer. It seems to work very well and stuck to the brass like the proverbial to a blanket. We both agree that there's something extremely satisfying about building out of brass and we can't wait to get this all finished up and finished in its red paint.

 

While that was drying we drilled out some bung holes where the steamy pipe things would link the pistons to the smoke box (I think this where the exhaust steam goes out of the pistons and not where the driving steam goes in but please correct me if I have this backwards) and then we broke out the liquid nails and clamped the boiler onto the running board thingamajigger.

v5pNqJ1.jpg

 

Then we stuck two lengths of knitting needles into the holes where the steamy pipe things go. 

peZKYso.jpg

 

Never underestimate the usefulnesss of knitting needles in model building. They are cheap - at least in second hand stores - widely available, strong and come in all sorts of different diameters. You also generally get a choice of mild steel or plastic.  These ones are steel.

 

Now BB had a go at cutting out some of the cylinder housing type things with the bandsaw.  Sensibly she likes the bandsaw but tends to shun the scroll-saw. You can see here that we have already drilled holes in the housings where the cylinders will sit.

tdT1eAB.jpg

 

This gives you an idea of what we are talking about. The blocks sat in their respective positions beautifully. Oh look - theres's a set of Avro 504 drawings in the background.

pQzmn6k.jpg

 

Now all we had to do was trim the blocks down to size and sort-of carve them into shape so they kind-of wrapped around the cylinders with about 1.5 mm to spare. I did that bit cause 'BB' isn't fully confident with chisels yet, but she'll get there.

 

And now for the family secret... 😱

 

My dad is a dab hand at building model trams and here is his secret technique for building two identical sides of a tram or any other 2D shape that needs to be duplicated for that matter.

 

Take a piece of MDF (‘Customwood’ in NZ parlance) and cut out the shape you want with a scroll-saw (or whatever tool you prefer).  Dad’s a scroll-saw fan through-and-through. I’m still trying to master mine.

NiEzfp9.jpg

 

This gives  you one piece of the correct size and shape.

b4BER6y.jpg

 

Now you could just cut out another one.... or you can be smart and do this…

6SbrUx0.jpg

 

Split the one that you like right down the middle with a craft knife leaving…

At7Q300.jpg

 

Two absolutely identical halves! This really is a top-tip and one that I will use again in future. My dad invented that. Pretty clever eh!

 

Now the main drawback with using MDF in this way is that the cut surfaces tend to be a bit furry. But in this case that’s not a problem because the rough porous surface is ideal for sticking onto the side of the tender where these bits will go. It will actually help the MDF to adhere to the solid block of wood and the finished smooth faces will face outward. Ideal!

 

Meanwhile it’s back to the cab which needs some of that primer scrubbed off and some two-part epoxy applied.

X7ubDQJ.jpg

 

Yes, Both surfaces; front of the cab and back of the boiler…

vX5LhIr.jpg

 

BB used the bench sander (her personal favourite) to make some arches for over the top of wheels and stuck them into place with some ‘weldbond’ adhesive; which is new glue to me and seems to be a sort of ‘super PVA’. It’s pretty damned good too!

htJsH3Q.jpg

 

The smoke box door thing goes on the front. Just a circular disk of plastic that BB told me was too flat as the original was a gentle dome shape. I swear this kid is growing up all twisted and wrong. She's going to end up a rivet counter…😡 I got abrupt with her here and told her to just stick the damned thing on. This is going to come back to haunt me I'm sure. Probably when she chooses my retirement home.

ClrHwqe.jpg

 

Anyhow, here’s where we are up to.

0AOoT2I.jpg

 

And here’s a view from behind where you can see the split MDF side bits on the tender. Still more work to go there, it needs axle boxes, but a good start I think.

oqlNGfb.jpg

 

That’s it for now,

More than enough waffle and dark family secrets I think.

 

Best Regards,

BB and BSS.

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What a great update! You guys are really rocking down there. By the way I think preventing your offspring growing up into rivet-counters should be prevented at whatever peril 😉 

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Preventing it should be prevented? 😳

 

Or do you mean it just should be prevented? 👍

 

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42 minutes ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

Preventing it should be prevented? 😳

 

Or do you mean it just should be prevented? 👍

 

Hm ah yes, that sentence doesn't make much sense at all does it! I think I started it and changed my mind about it halfway through! 

 

Anyway the message is it should be prevented 🙂 

 

The rivet-counting thing... not the preventing 😉 

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Excellent! 
 

I agree and shall send her to bed without supper or internet each time it happens. 🤔

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interesting - I didn't know you could split MDF like that.

 

Looking great so far - adding the details bits is really going to make it pop

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11 minutes ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

Excellent! 
 

I agree and shall send her to bed without supper or internet each time it happens. 🤔

Well... my kids don't care about supper at all... 

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Nope. 'fraid you need to fix that smokebox door, or you will have the ghost of Charles Collett, and the Great Western society after you.

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