7mm Finney7 5972 Olton Hall ( aka )

Discussion in 'WR Action' started by 7mmMick, 17 December 2019.

  1. 7mmMick

    7mmMick Western Thunderer

    Progress to date has been mainly on the Hall body, although I’ve been doing bits and bobs on the cylinders and main frames, more on that later. Looking back at previous picture there doesn’t seem to be loads of progress but there has. The cab is together. The instructions advise fitting the screw reverser housing to the cab front first but I’ve chosen to get all the major etched work out of the way as there’s nothing more annoying than white metal lumps dropping off all over !
    This area is quite time consuming: sanding rod and reversing rod assemblies. Looks the part when complete though

    Right, back to it and a few more hours finishing body details,

    Last edited: 6 February 2020
  2. Threadmark: Frames

    7mmMick Western Thunderer

    Recent weather has meant that photography of progress of the frames has been almost impossible, so that coupled with the fact that I didn’t take any early photographs of the frames sees the first pictures (taken in a very brief sunny spell today) of the frames well advanced. The construction follows the usual Finney method of compensation beams and front rocking axle. The beams needed some adjusting to make sure they assembly sat level. I also found that the front frame profile around the leading bogie wheel needs adjusting to allow the front wheel to pass just underneath the frame on a 6ft radius curve. This probably wouldn’t be required if you used the smallest frame spacers, but I went for the middle option. One important note is the heavy modification to the front area of the frames to accommodate the ATC shoe bracket, which mounts of the rear of the front buffer beam.
    I’ve struggled to find any pictures of the exhaust steam injector assembly so have just followed the instructions, hoping that they’re prototypical. The live steam injector is modelled from pictures online of Hinderton Hall at Didcot. I’ve also used a couple of little brackets to carry the top feed pipes as they will be vulnerable if not secured. These don’t come in the kit per say but because of the different bogie size options there’s more than enough brackets and straps left over to chop up and make what you need;


    The brake gear is also assembled and as the instructions advise I have made this removable. It just sprags slightly and is removed. This lot takes some time as it’s all laminations but does make up into a convincing representation;

    This evening is CPL crank pins and sanding pipes

  3. oldravendale

    oldravendale Western Thunderer

    Mick - I have a selection of photos of Halls and Modified Halls in BR days - including a couple of cab photos. Will these be of any help?

    jonte likes this.
  4. 7mmMick

    7mmMick Western Thunderer

    Hi Brian,

    The cab photos of any original Halls will be a great help thanks,

  5. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Hi Mick

    I’ve been following this build with interest as I’d like eventually to try my hand at a kit (but not on this scale :eek:), and I can’t help but wonder at that nice, neat seam of solder that featured in several pictures of the tender-top in your thread of the 24th January.

    I’ve read of several methods of preventing rogue solder-flow, including: pencil/engineers’ marker/felt tip pen/synthetic lubricant/candle wax lines, drawn either side of the join, so I was wondering how you achieved yours?

    Hope you don’t mind my asking :)


  6. oldravendale

    oldravendale Western Thunderer


    I'm supplying both of the Hall cab photos, although one of them is a Modified Hall.

    Both taken at Swindon Works in May 1959 and my personal copyright. (My first rail trip, 61 years ago, and I remember it like yesterday. Makes me feel bloody old, though). The first is 4931, the second 6930. These are relatively low def but if you want higher def let me know and I'll also lighten the cab interiors a bit if that helps.

    4931.  Swindon.  May 1959.  Copyright B Dale.  1000 dpi.jpg 6930.  Swindon.  May 1959.  Copyright B Dale.  1200dpi..jpg

    David B, Arun, BrushType4 and 11 others like this.
  7. SimonT

    SimonT Western Thunderer

    (Both already in the photo folder!)
  8. oldravendale

    oldravendale Western Thunderer

    True, Simon, but from Mick's comments I'm not certain he's seen these previously.

  9. Scale7JB

    Scale7JB Western Thunderer

    Sorry chaps, my car has been off the road for over a month now, so haven't been able to get up to North Weald. Pitchford has been back up at GC for the Gala for a while too anyway.

    Hope I can get some shots in time to be of some use.

  10. 7mmMick

    7mmMick Western Thunderer

    Cheers Brian,

    I have seen these but I think they’ll be a great help for others looking through the thread.


    No worries pal, I’ve completed the inside motion pal so I’m ok for photos. Sorry to hear about the car:(

  11. 7mmMick

    7mmMick Western Thunderer

    Hi Jonte,

    Thanks for your kind comments :thumbs:

    Neat soldering. To be honest I don’t subscribe to any of the methods mentioned. Like you I looked around threads/websites and spoke to many builders to try and find a system of soldering that worked well for me. I got lots of different answers and tried to apply them. Not all worked for me but here’s what did in bullet point fashion;

    1) ALWAYS take lots of time to make sure parts fit well. You really do need to achieve a butt joint where possible, with no gaps as using solder to fill gaps is a sure way to make a mess. I always take time to remove every bit of etch cusp and have a constant supply of 600 grit wet and dry on the bench to rub up a part edge once I’ve removed the cusp with a file. The wet and dry is held on a glass plate ( because it’s guaranteed truly flat) and the part stroke across at 90 degrees. You then have a lovely clean square edge on your part to solder.

    2) Use a good flux and solder. I mostly use 145 degree solder and safety flux from Christian Creswell.

    3) Once I have a good joint, if the joint can be soldered from the rear and will be unseen I use the iron and watch the solder run in the front as I drag the iron along the back. If the joint is soldered from the front I use a Stanley blade to nip off a small amount of solder, drop this on the joint and then use a micro flame to apply heat so that the parts to be joined heat at the same time ( this is important as if one part isn’t hot enough the solder will just puddle on the hot part and not flash onto the colder part. It’s only ever really an issue if one part is thinner material, thus heats quicker ). On both methods I apply lots of flux with a small brush. If the heat is applied correctly and the parts fit well you will see the solder start to melt under the micro flame then flash to both parts and then using capillary action flash down the seam of the joint. If you chase the solder with the micro flame it will run as long as it can a cross the whole joint.

    The joint, if done correctly will just need a quick run up with a scratch brush.

    I hope this helps? I should really do a video. I can have a look that at some stage if it would help?


  12. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Wow! A most comprehensive reply indeed, Mick; thank you:thumbs:

    Now that you’ve been kind enough to explain the process(es) involved, it’s crystal clear and makes a lot of sense.

    Like most things, it would appear that it’s the preparation that makes the difference, and now I also see the value of using a micro flame. Fascinating.

    Thank you also for offering to go to the trouble of making a video to illustrate all of this, however, you’ve described the process so well, that I doubt it would add any more to your already thorough account.

    Thank you very much indeed once again for sharing, Mick.

    You’re most kind.

    michl080 and Michael Hall like this.
  13. P A D

    P A D Western Thunderer

    Hi Jonte,
    One thing I would add to Mick's excellent comments. You mention giving an etched kit a go, but not in 7mm. Bear in mind in smaller scales you have less space to work with the iron, or the flame and less space to remove the excess solder, so it can be more difficult to achieve the results that Mick does.

    Take your time and remove any excess straight away before moving on to the next joint while you still have the space, and wash the work piece in soapy water and rinse after every session.

    I would suggest you get yourself a "cheap" wagon or van kit to practice on before attempting a loco. Or you may be jumping into Gauge 1 in which case it will be a walk in the park! :D

    Good luck and if you get stuck just shout as there a plenty of knowledgeable and skillful builders on here willing to help.

  14. Michael Hall

    Michael Hall Member

    Peter raises an excellent point about size, I started in 7mm and have no regrets, something around half the size would appear to present difficulties if only from an eyesight point of view. Perhaps I could also add to the remarks Jonte makes regarding the comprehensive response from Mick to his question about soldering. Mick is one of the 'knowledgeable and skilful builders' on WT to whom Peter refers, who freely share their experiences and techniques with us. These contributors (they know who they are !) bring solutions and advice on an almost daily basis on here for which I am hugely grateful.
    I suspect I may not be alone in benefitting from the time they spend at the keyboard so thanks fella's.
    Rob Pulham, David B, Sparky and 10 others like this.
  15. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Wise words, Peter.

    Thank you.

  16. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Hear, hear!
    Graham Bustin likes this.
  17. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    To complement Micks notes, less is more, the more solder you use, the more you'll end up cleaning.

    I never solder outside if you I can solder inside and I almost always use a micro torch, I have to on the current model as the material is so thick not even the ERSA 80 touches it at 400°C


    Front end of the Peppercorn A2, the only cleaning was the initial surface clean once all the cusp was removed, nice large piece of well worn emery cloth, and before the rivets were formed.

    I modified the fold up valance jig to enable the whole front end to be built up nice and square.

    The left hand valve chest cover has not been fitted but if you look at where it narrows you'll see a small sausage of solder (next to the slot at 90° in the footplate), that's all it needs, there will be another one behind the front wall and I'll stick one at the rear where it meets the frame top.

    Even temperature is important and with a flame it is easy to get it too hot, the salmon pink tarnish over the middle cylinder is where the flame was left a little too long, but it'll buff out with a soft burnishing brush, like a fibre brush but much larger and softer.

    Underneath is a different story.


    This is where all the work goes on, despite the solder presence the use of a flame makes sure it's nearly flat and is in effect no more than a tarnish/stain.

    At left is the valance/footplate joint and you can see where the solder sausages were placed, their rough size and the gap between then that easily filled when the solder wicked along.

    One little trick you can try is to use gravity, rather than solder flat I tilt the work a little so that the solder runs downhill, it makes it flow much faster and easier. If you get too much on the outside then place that joint uppermost and heat from below, the solder will then sag and seep through the joint and go to the inside, leaving virtually nothing on the outside.

    Some people use ready fluxed solder (we call it wet at work, as opposed to dry which has no flux), I tend to find that the flux used in these turns a oily brown tar like puddle of :shit:, once it does that solder will not run through it and just puddles in the middle.

    Like Mick, I use dry solder (145°C) and safety flux applied with a small paint brush, I also clean the model regularly, sometimes with soapy water, (however, living in a hard water area that tends to leave water stains) but most of the time I just squirt LimeLite on it and then wash it off with very hot water.

    As Mick notes and I'll vouch for this, the joint preparation is crucial, the better the joint the easier the solder flows, remove the cusp on all parts that touch and need to be soldered.

    Hope that helps.
  18. 7mmMick

    7mmMick Western Thunderer

    Some great comments fellas and I support all really. I reckon if folk follow the collective advice here they won’t go far wrong with soldering.

    An enjoyable day was had yesterday building the inside motion for the Hall before the frames go for paint by @warren haywood . The inside motion kit is mostly etched N/S with some lovely turned brass eccentrics. In all honesty it takes longer to clean up the etch than it does to assemble the thing, or it certainly feels that way :))
    Next time you see this it will be red, not as nice I think but hey ho. Now onto finishing the body and sweeping up little bottom end bits like cylinder taps and balance weights
  19. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer


    A frank and witty account, mickoo, that elaborates on all Mick kindly advised, and which no longer makes me hesitant to face that first challenge. A huge help indeed. Thank you for your time.

    I’m pleased to read that at least with my previous choice of 145* and Carrs’ green, I appear to have got something right for once ;)

    Think I’ll place an order for a Brassmasters tender after all.

    Many thanks once again, mickoo.

  20. 3 LINK

    3 LINK Western Thunderer

    Thanks for all the tips chaps, just goes to show your never to old to learn. Now can we have some recommendations for a good reliable micro torch. Because up to now I haven't really got on with the old torch I have called a " pencil torch " which is not that easy to adjust the flame and I'm sure a electronic lgnition must be better than a balancing act with the torch and a normal cigarette lighter.


    Last edited: 15 February 2020
    jonte likes this.