On Heather's Workbench - resurrection

Discussion in 'Area 51' started by Heather Kay, 3 April 2013.

  1. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    As noted in another thread, I have been persuaded by Best Beloved to try and complete an Ivatt 2MT 2-6-2T that he began back in the last century.

    The etches came to us via Dick Bollen, formerly of Shedmaster Models. He'd been planning an Ivatt tank for his range, and we were lucky enough to acquire one of the test etches from him. Sadly, the kit may never appear, though Laurie Griffin - who took over the Shedmaster range - has castings in his extensive range, so you never know.

    Most of the detail parts came from various sources. The chimney and dome were turned for us by Graham Baseden. Home of O Gauge - remember them? Sorely missed - was scoured for stuff like buffers, firebox and cab fittings, lubricators, injectors and so on. Other parts were fabricated from scratch, or plundered from the bits box.

    The loco BB was modelling was a specific member of the class, number 41222. It was a Bletchley loco in the late 1950s, and was found regularly on the Newport Pagnell branch: indeed, it was the loco that pulled the last passenger train on the branch in 1964. The loco ended up in Carlisle as station pilot - which happily provides us with some excellent colour broadside views taken in the mid-1960s. 41222 was motor-fitted, to operate with LMS and BR pull-and-push trains.

    We had got as far as painting the boiler/firebox/smokebox assembly, and the motor-fitting gear had been scratch-built when I made the mistake of persuading BB to acquire the Laurie Griffin castings as they were the right ones for the job. It all kind of went a bit wrong from there.

    I've been assessing the loco, which has languished in its box for over a decade. I've been looking at what needs repair or replacing, and what needs to be acquired to complete the project. I'm dong this while I pluck up the courage to start the JLTRT Mk2 I have to build for Pete Waterman's trade stand, and while I await three white boxes from the same company to begin a commissioned set of coaches.


    Here's the sort of thing I'm trying to sort out. The cylinder wrappers weren't bent properly to shape originally, so they are under tension - and have broken free along the top edges. Of course, I can't simply take them off, reshape and refix. Nothing so simple. The wrappers appear to be integral parts of the cylinder mounting system, so I'm currently trying to find a foolproof method of holding them and resoldering without everything around them dropping off. :mad: I am open to suggestions.


    The bunker ladder collapsed while I was cleaning up solder and flux deposits. I managed to repair it by carefully cleaning everything up, tacking the two verticals together, marking out and drilling new holes for the rungs, and using an ad hoc balsa jig to reconstruct it. It's not perfect, but I think it'll be okay.


    Best Beloved has completed the rat's nest of pipes that come out of the lubricators in front of the side tanks. I think he'd used Evo-Stik to fix them, because they literally fell out as I handled the body. I've cleaned things up, tweaked the pipes a bit and will glue them back on before I begin to assemble the fiddly motor-fitting bits.


    Chunky castings from Laurie Griffin for the motor-fitting bits. I've fitted the copper wire, and drilled the required holes to lose them below the footplate. I tried soldering them together, but it was beyond my skills to get things square. I shall glue the baseplate to the footplate, and most likely glue the upright valve/pump doodad to the smokebox, so the minimum of damage will be done if it's decided to remove the boiler assembly one day. The vac pump arrangement will be fitted once the supports are fitted to the smokebox. All a bit fiddly, but it'll look great once it's done.


    I found a pair of these tank overflow/breather pipes in the box. Presumably they're from Laurie's range, and I guess we bought them at some point.


    There's a little damage to the smokebox wrapper where the original scratch-built fitting gear was removed. Happily it will be hidden by the new gear going on. The dome and chimney were turned up for us many moons ago by our good friend Graham Baseden, a professional modelmaker of some repute, now living in the West Country. The top feed probably came from the Home of O Gauge. The safety valves had been fabricated by Best Beloved, but I felt they were a bit too skinny. I had a pair of turned Ross pops in my Fowler Dock Tank kit (another started kit that may take its place on my workbench through the summer), so I'll replace those when I see Laurie at the S7 meeting in a couple of weeks.

    I actually have a fair shopping list of bits I need, like cabside draught screens and tank top stays. I'm sure a few other bits will be found necessary as well. We'll be bringing the carcass of 41222 along to the show. It might even be persuaded to trundle round the test track for a while.
    Wagonman, AJC, Rob Pulham and 3 others like this.
  2. Locomodels

    Locomodels Western Thunderer

    Brave stuff, keep at it Heather.
  3. richard carr

    richard carr Western Thunderer


    It looks an interesting project and I'm sure you can work your magic on it.

    If you need any wheels reprofiling let me know I'll be very happy to do them for you.

    The RMB kit should arrive next week.

  4. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Paul, thank you. Aside from my erstwhile Fowler tank project, this is my first foray into proper kettles. Thankfully, all I'm doing is fixing the ravages of time, and updating things a little..

    Thanks, Richard. The wheels will remain resolutely finescale, I'm afraid. I did suggest it would be a good time for me to learn to handle the lathe, but BB said the wheels would stay as they were. I no longer try and argue. The back-to-back is correct for S7, and it ought to negotiate most P&C happily. Looking forward to the RMB. I feel I'll break out the RSU to help it along!
  5. richard carr

    richard carr Western Thunderer


    You will find that if you leave the wheels as FS with S7 b to b the distance across the outer faces will be too wide.
    That is why you not only need to reprofile the wheels for S7 you need to thin them too.

  6. Ressaldar

    Ressaldar Western Thunderer

    Hi Heather,

    best of luck with this project, I tried building the Acme version some years ago, I ditched all of the casting that came in the kit and bought everything that Richard Bollen had produced for his planned version, but gave up when I came to try and align the steampipes, cylinders and then fit the vavle gear - no way would that little lot go together, so it went via the Bring & Buy at Telford


    this was as far as I managed - June 2000, after lots of spare time while recovering from my first hip replacement.


  7. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Richard, I am aware of the problem with the wheels. The problem really is that BB built the chassis with the standard Slater's FS wheel in mind, so while the B2B is right, everything else has been subtly adjusted to suit the wider tyre. There's not much I can do about it now, but it was "state of the art" in the days when BB started out in S7 standards. It should cope with most trackwork, though it would clonk over inside keys and may lumber across the occasional crossing. We certainly had the chassis running in on our Linford Shed layout for some time. :)

    Mike, I know what you mean. Even knowing it's Dick's etch design, some of the castings have had to be adjusted to fit. I've had to modify the steam pipe baseplate, and even then it's a bit too far away from the rear of the footplate. It's all a bit of a compromise, sadly. I think, once I have all that fiddly pipework in place, and all those little details fitted, it'll look the part. It'll certainly look smart in BR mixed traffic livery and a subtle bit of dirtying. Pity we sold the LMS driving trailer kit a while back. Might have to see about sourcing a relatively inexpensive replacement. :drool:
  8. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Here's a quick update on progress. I'm fettling away at little jobs, as there's a week to go before I can get the various bits I need to complete the cosmetics. Still, every little step is a step forward.


    I keep test fitting the body and boiler assemblies on the chassis to ensure things still fit properly. Handling is causing some mild twisting to occur, so I have to keep an eye on that - particularly the gap between the front and rear of the cab. I can also see a slight gap in the front frame over the pony truck. :mad:

    So far I've cleaned and tidied things. I've replaced the cab handbrake stand, the tank overflow pipes, added a band and cleat to the firebox, and replaced the safety valves. I've also marked out and drilled pilot holes for the washout plugs. The rear vac and brake pipes came away, so they've been cleaned up and will be reattached later.


    That cleat looks a bit wonky. I'll need to sort that out. You can also see the tank capping strip. The top of the bunker has also had its strip fitted. I have to stop looking at photos, because I became aware that there is a riveted strip that must be the top of the inside face of the tanks that should run along the top edge by the boiler. Things are already tight in there, so I am weighing up whether to file the tank top a little thinner to allow a strip to be fitted - though it won't be riveted. I don't think my riveting skills are up to the density of the real thing. I'm surprised there's any metal left!


    I took on the cylinder covers, and seem to have won this battle. They need a deal of cleaning up along the seems, but I'm leaving that to see if they pop open again during handling. If they remain fixed in place for the next couple of days, I'll tidy things up. I don't know the name for the tap/valve arrangement that appears at the bottom of the cylinder itself, but I have sourced two suitable bits and they'll be fitted before painting.


    I've mocked up the motor fitting gear on one side. The pump support at the front of the smokebox has to be fitted properly, as it's a bit wonky in this shot. Missing in this view is the sandbox filler that lurks just in front of the tank. I'm leaving until a little later.

    I need to create a new roof, as the etched kit one is a tiny bit too small in all directions. I think a new roof will be nicer, as the sliding ventilator can be made, and the prominent rainstrips over the cab doors will be better. I just need some suitable brass sheet, so I guess a search of the upstairs workshop will be in order soon.

    Things are slowly coming together. Once the washout plugs are fitted, the boiler assembly can be given a coat of paint - and even lining out. :thumbs: The chassis will be fitted with a set of Laurie's cast front steps, as the etched ones were fairly fragile. I removed them for safety, but I don't think they're quite up to the job. I'd like to acquire an etched smokebox number plate, and perhaps a tender plate. I may have to enquire of the usual sources of such things.
  9. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Drain cocks is the terminology you need :thumbs:

    Nice project, keep at it, most rewarding to see it progress.
  10. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Isn't that the knitting along the bottom of the cylinder? :))

    There's a large valve or tap-like structure that sticks out the front of the cylinder chest - at least on Stanier and Ivatt locos. That's the one I can't put a name to.
  11. adrian

    adrian Flying Squad

    The snifting valve? Allows air in to the cylinder when there is a vacuum. I was trying to think of some words to illustrate onomatopoeia to my eldest, this would have been a good example.
  12. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    That may well be what it is. I may have to partake of some armchair modelling this evening to get up to speed with the naming of obscure parts. :thumbs:
  13. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Snifting valve LOL, is that the laymans term? :thumbs: I've always called them anti vacuum valves?

    It is these valves that make the chink chink chink sound when locos are coasting, caused by the valve head snapping back shut under the spring pressure once the vacuum has been filled.

    Some locos use a anti vacuum valve for each cylinder, usually LMS, BR types, others use just one attached to the steam header, these tend not to chink as there is always a cylinder face under vacuum so tend to stay open all the time, usually LNER types and mounted on the smokebox just behind the chimney....which is directly above the steam header underneath, or on the A4, in the chimney casing behind the vertical slots in said casing. No idea what GWR and SR practice is.

    Sorry for the egg sucking exercise if y'all knew all this LOL.
  14. Dog Star

    Dog Star Western Thunderer

    There is a possibility that Heather is referring to a cylinder pressure relief valve... generally in the lower half of each front and back cylinder covers.
  15. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Aha! That's probably what it is. It would make sense as it seems to appear when Stanier took the helm, and being a well-trained Swindon man he brought the best practices with him. :thumbs:

    41222 has been moved to the back burner for the rest of the week. A set of wheels arrived for the JLTRT display model, so I ought to throw some glue and paint in the box and give it a shake. :))

    I'll document it in yet another workshop thread. :cool:
  16. Dog Star

    Dog Star Western Thunderer

    "Shaken, not stirred" seems an eminent quote for something which has the potential to be explosive...

    regards, Barking
  17. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    I bought a few detailing bits at the weekend from Mr Griffin to complete the Ivatt.


    I will also be ordering a set of Guilplates, um, plates for the bunker, works, shed and number plates. They seem very reasonable for £12.25 plus delivery.

    Once the JLTRT Mk2 is done, 41222 will be brought back to the front burner for a spell - pending the delivery of the GWR coaches I'm to build. :thumbs:
  18. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    I was out all day yesterday, and was pleased to return home to these on the doormat.


    There's no excuse now. It's definitely the right loco. In the same envelope:


    I guess the little Fowler should move a little further off the back burner.
  19. alcazar

    alcazar Guest

    Has that top shed plate (4A), got a flaw? Or is it the photo? It looks like there is a black line right down it...
  20. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Yeah, I saw that. :( I think it'll weather out, though. ;)