A first kit-build: 3500 Gallon Churchward Tender - 4mm Scale.

Discussion in 'Workbenches, including workshop techniques.' started by jonte, 28 May 2020.

  1. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Hi Steph

    Thank you for your kind concern and willingness to help. I concur that I am indeed in good hands here.

    I look forward to the peg reveal ;)

  2. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Well, sadly yet another waste of time fellow Westerners, trying to put right the ‘rising’ tender side from yesterday; indeed in doing so I’ve just added to the list of things to put right :(

    Making sure the piece was firmly clamped I thought I’d give it some heat:


    Please note the tub of sand in the background if it all got a bit out of hand.

    The Proxxon certainly did the trick as solder slid lava like off the surface. With the ‘stick’ I was able to draw the part down onto the footplate, in essence closing the gap:


    But as you can see, the top pinged away from the frame:


    So I revisited the top, initially with the iron, bit having no joy reached again for the Proxxon. It worked, but in the process the bottom resumed its Titanic-like position. However, to add to my woes, the pressure exerted trying to manipulate the variables involved caused the side inwards at the front. The flare on that side was also a casualty:


    Now a load of work just to get back to where I started.

    Still, I learned that @Overseer was dead right (not that I ever doubted him, of course): if I’d got this amount of heat to the part when I started, all this heartache could have been avoided.


    Perhaps I should just remove the whole lot, clean up and try again....

  3. Mike Garwood

    Mike Garwood Western Thunderer


    I feel for you.

    As I remember at this stage of the build the tender is an open box. Why not push the side that's come adrift (lolipop stick would do nicely) and solder from the inside to join it back to the side? Just a thought...

    jonte likes this.
  4. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Fair to say that I’m past the point of no return on this one, fellow Westerners, so the wrapper stays and it’s damage limitation time in the form of a bead along the footplate to try and hide a multitude of sins:


    If you look closely, you can see the damage I caused elsewhere in this damage limitation exercise i e to the flare on the far side. I literally flattened a section of it and what a fiddle to try and rectify it - it still shows :(

    282FD067-E99B-4CEA-8C64-334D53B31E54.jpeg 4D1FF151-E355-4E4C-BF37-7434DD23B7FE.jpeg

    With clamping it down, the rear of the footplate had pulled away from the wrapper opening up a gap. I’ve tried repairing it but I think the only solution is to run a bead of solder all round.

    So there we go. Disappointing, but I expected problems along the way, so we go on.


    michl080 and Duncan Chandler like this.
  5. freelance7

    freelance7 Western Thunderer

    Great idea about the peg reversal, I have just been through my modelling box and done all mine!..:)

    Deano747 likes this.
  6. oldravendale

    oldravendale Western Thunderer

    Hello again Jonte.

    I've just had a message from a chemical supplier I used recently offering IPA at 25% off. 25% off what I'm unsure, and you'll have to pay shipping but you may want to try these people. Isopropanol 99.9% ACS From APC Pure Ltd | Solvents | APC Pure

    They were very efficient with my order (for hydrochloric acid used for testing rocks before they go in a pond).

    jonte likes this.
  7. Steph Dale

    Steph Dale Western Thunderer

    I got the message too, Dad, but the stock had gone when I tried to order!!! They're the company I usually order IPA and distilled water from.

    jonte likes this.
  8. Steph Dale

    Steph Dale Western Thunderer

    You're welcome. As has been said more than once, my effect is subtle but far-reaching. No, I'm not sure it was a compliment either...

  9. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Hi Mike and apologies for the late response as I must have overlooked it earlier.

    That’s a great idea and wish I’d thought of it, but as you’ll have read from my posts since then, I’ve decided to take it on the chin and learned to live with it.

    Quite honestly felt like binning it as it’s becoming a bit of a chore, but then I suppose nothing worth doing is ever easy, so I’ll just learn from it and move on. At least next time I’ll be a little wiser with all the kind input I’m getting.

    Thanks for your interest and empathy, Mike.


  10. Phil O

    Phil O Western Thunderer


    I would urge you te persevere, even if it turns out to be a complete disaster and you end up binning it, you can at least get a replacement from Brassmasters and you will have learnt a lot from the exercise. Soldering is something of a black art and building the tender first gives you some expierience before you attack a loco.
    jonte likes this.
  11. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Just my tup'th worth, if your sweating the sides on why is the solder on the outside, I'd of thought it would of been inside.

    Second, I never sweat laminates on, basically because I'm :shit: at it :)) I just seam solder the edges and then a few spot joints inside in the middle of the former.

    I think the former or shell on this had oblong holes, I'd solder a free places where you can see the outer skin through them. If there are no openings, then I make some, one or two mm holes are fine, solder will wick through from the inside easily.

    Third, in my limited experience, tank top laminate first, seam solder around the edge and a couple of spot joints in the middle. Then the outer wrapper.

    Finally don't fret about slots that are too short and waste time opening them out, just make the corresponding tab smaller in length, fits every time. Too narrow is a different matter and it's rather more complicated in the etch process.
    Last edited: 17 June 2020
    michl080 and jonte like this.
  12. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Wise words, Phil.

    In a lucid moment, I remembered why I started it ;)

    And of course, I’ve yet to face the test of forming the flared corners....

    All good stuff though, hey?


  13. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Thanks for sharing this, Mick. It will be noted for future reference ;)

    Even I don’t know why I do the things I do..... All I can say about the solder on the outside is that I couldn’t get the iron or the glassfibre brush into the backs of the laminates, nor could I see whether the wrapper was seated or not so I went for it, safe in the knowledge that the wick would be my Saviour.

    Oh, and I’ve convinced myself that the patina of spread out solder on brass vaguely resembles the wavy effect of wrought iron. ‘Always look on the bri......’ Sniff.

    Cheers, Mick.

  14. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Rather than sit licking my wounds, fellow Westerners, I decided to get back into the saddle and run a matching bead round the base of the wrapper.

    At least it can’t make it any worse:

    57CE1D15-CB73-4F30-A9B8-32B39FDEA341.jpeg 34EB6178-C5AB-43C1-96EA-87ED5FE16A95.jpeg E83D67F5-7F3D-42E5-BB32-7173ABD34136.jpeg 2BD5126A-E105-44A7-B2D6-BD9C767218D3.jpeg FE9C53C8-3AEF-423D-B8F8-26AFDC752A49.jpeg

    ‘night All.

    Duncan Chandler likes this.
  15. michl080

    michl080 Western Thunderer


    if slots are too narrow, they can be opened with a loose piercing saw blade of matching size. The trick is to pull it through so that the teeth do not cut, but just rub through the slot. Twisting the blade carefully helps. If necessary, repeat with a larger size. This works nicely if the slots have a cusp that needs to be removed.

    jonte likes this.
  16. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    I’ve plenty of those, too.

    Great idea, Michael.

    Thank you

  17. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    It will come as no surprise to learn, fellow Westerners, that I’m really not happy at all with this latter part of the build, so much so, that I wrote to Brassmaster’s to enquire whether it would be possible to purchase two of the etches separately and go again. Despite my gratitude for a prompt reply, it would unfortunately appear that only the riveted overlay is available separately, so rebuilding with my newly acquired advice and experience is not on the cards.

    It’s difficult to disguise my disappointment. Consequently, I just can’t muster the enthusiasm to continue with the build in its current state, which leaves two options:

    1. Take the torch to it and remove the overlay, hopefully without damage. Then clean up an try and reattach from rear using @Steph Dale ’s reverse peg and @mickoo ’s stick-it-to-tank-former-from-inside. This of course depends on the darned thing coming off without causing further damage.

    2. Call it a day, use this as a practice-piece on which to get my hand in on forming the flares corners, and save up for a replacement kit.

    As it’s belting and there’s not much else I can do for the next couple of hours, I’m going to take it back out into the garage and try option 1.

    I’ll let you know how it goes.

  18. Lyndhurstman

    Lyndhurstman Western Thunderer

    Hello Jonte
    I’m sorry to hear that you’re having issues. But I heartily applaud the keeping on keeping on. When it comes to clamping, sometimes a simple loop of wire can work wonders. I have wooden pegs - but I’d not considered the peg reversal technique, so I’ll give that a go. My other use of pegs is for taking gears off motors:
    I hope your afternoon wasn’t a complete washout.

    I’d like to close by acknowledging the wonderful dimensions (both breadth and depth) that others have passed across. Lovely to experience.


    Last edited: 18 June 2020
    Peter Cross and jonte like this.
  19. Phil O

    Phil O Western Thunderer


    Rather than take use a torch, I use a paint stripping gun, which gives a more even heat across the whole job. Mine's an old Black and Decker, other makes are available.

    Best of luck.
    jonte likes this.
  20. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

    Well it’s off:


    It’s a bit crusty and the rear frame will need reattaching to the footplate after a thorough cleaning. The footplate no longer sits flat, but I think it’s due to leaked solder from the tabs that I’d previously filed down.

    The top tank overlay has partially separated and one of the nuts from the rear is a casualty but I think I can get the iron in to reattach.

    I tried to ‘swill’ the excess solder from the edges of the foot plate with out much success but I think I might have a sucker-upper somewhere or other (although I’ve never used one before).

    Thankfully the wrapper didn’t sustain any damage but will of course require a lot of cleaning up, including the tank former.

    Overall, I’d call it a successful outcome (at least it’s off), and if I take it all slowly and chronologically, I think I might just stand a chance of rescuing it.

    Fingers crossed.