New Year Madness

For discussion of the issues faced when building a model or layout - how to replicate wood, what glues to use, exactly how much weathering can a Gnat take, a good source of detailing accessories - you get the picture, I'm sure.

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Postby Bilco » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:59 pm

When Steve posted this item about the Solva loco I immediately thought " Underground Ernie Inspection Car" :roll: -
Steve Bennett wrote:Image
-

The idea haunted me during the Christmas jollifications. As Oscar Wilde said, the best way to be rid of temptation is to give in to it. I must be mad - I'm still working on the reconfiguring of On the Drawing Board :shock:

I finally gave in and started work on it 3 days ago. I have a few UEs sitting around doing nothing, so I grabbed one and tore the body off, picked up the razor saw, and started the butchery.

Image

UE body as Mr Bachmann intended.



Image

UE body after removing everything that doesn't look like the Solva critter. It's at this stage you begin to wonder if it wouldn't be easier to scratch-build - ah, but where is the challenge in that, and it is supposed to be an Ernie conversion.



Image

Welsh Ernie from the front. A similar view to the one Steve posted. The open wheel arch didn't seem appropriate, given the much narrower gauge, but I may put a thin semi-circle of card in place to suggest that it's been plated over.



Image

Welsh Ernie from the back. I've reinstated the tail gate that seems to be missing in the prototype photo - you can see the fastening for it, and it doesn't seem to be hanging down.

Still lots to do, including making those curved roof supports :shock: I also have to build a driver to fit into the cab, but I presently have one of the figures from the Italeri Truck Accessories kit under the knife, screaming.

Motive power will probably be a Bachmann Gandy Dancer - something small so I won't have to cut a large hole in the underside to fit it. The small wheels will help, as the bodywork will come down very close to the rail tops.
Last edited by Bilco on Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:34 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Postby foswaldy13 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:48 pm

Bill, Your progress so far looks great. The real one almost looks like something Dieselwater would dream up.
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Postby joe gilmartin » Sat Jan 02, 2010 5:17 pm

Bill ...
Great work wonderful interpretation
can't wait to see it finished
To bad those are sooooo...... hard to get over here!

again great
Cheers
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Postby Bilco » Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:01 pm

The enforced period at home due to the snow also gave a chance for some more work on Welsh Ernie. The curved bars over the cab were made from slices of PVC pipe of a slightly smaller radius, softened with boiling water and stretched to fit.

There was then a break in work while I waited for the Bachmann Gandy Dancer to arrive. I ordered it from Hattons, and thought it would take several weeks to appear, but the gallant Postie fought his way through the drifts 4 days later, and there it was. I had had one many years ago, when I was working in 7mm narrow gauge, and couldn't get decent running out of it, but the new one runs well out of the box with the Gaugemaster HH controller, and is a decent slow runner.


Image


After a couple of days concentrated work to remove the dancing men and associated mechanism, and to fit the mech into the body, I now have a running unit. Still lots to do, but it looks like I might have intended it to resemble the Solva critter slightly - and there are still some yellow bits to show the UE ancestry.

The driver is a real Frankenstein's creation. The lower part is from a farming figure bought at an ELC some years ago, with the legs cut at thigh, knee and ankle to bend them to fit in the cab. The upper body is from a Preiser figure - I think he had a shovel in his hands at some stage - and still needs some repositioning of the left arm. He is another member of the Ekerslyke clan. His dad married an Egyptian lady, who insisted on calling their first-born son Abdulaziz - known as Azzi to his friends. He looks remarkably calm for a man with an electric motor stuffed up his fundament :shock:

I hope the picture is OK - after the posting about photo sizes I downloaded the Image Resizer Powertool and made the images 800x600, as instructed.
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Postby dieselwater » Fri Jan 15, 2010 11:06 pm

Welsh Ernie is looking great. Fit's Gnicely on the layout Bill. The pic is perfect.
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Postby Glen A » Sat Jan 16, 2010 6:48 am

I love it Bill!
Somehow I missed the first post.
What are you using for the headlights?
Are they out of a car kit or something?
They really give it the right character to top it off.

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Postby Bilco » Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:07 pm

Many thanks for the comments chaps. Glen, the headlights are from the Italeri Truck Accessories kit - the most useful items in the kit, so far, apart from using the checkerplate for the stairs on the layout! Ernieplex used one as well.

The prototype is battery powered, so I'm having to make up controls and a recharging point. After that it will be time to ruin it with paint :roll:
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Postby Kevin » Wed Jan 20, 2010 1:19 pm

I've been trying to decide on the loco for my 7mm NG works layout. I have had a copy of that picture of the Solva loco for ages but for some reason forgot about it. Your model has made up my mind for me. The finished loco will probably look nothing like yours but it's a good place to start.
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Postby Bilco » Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:52 pm

Just a quick up-date on Welsh Ernie. Again, I seem to have been fiddling around with little bits of plasticard for ages, with not much to show for it. However, things have got to the stage where I had to get it into the paint shop, and a coat of primer has been applied with only a modicum of bad language.


Image


From the front. As can be seen, the mesh 'roof' hasn't been stuck down yet, and won't be until the painting is finished and Azzi is fixed in place. He's a tight fit, and I can't get him in with the mesh in place! I don't seem to have had too much difficulty in replicating the rough-welded joints in the framework over the cab :roll:


Image


From the rear. The tail gate is a bit of invention, based on pick-up trucks I've seen around. The cover over the charging point is also pure invention. A set of controls is in the pipeline.

Kevin - the Solva critter gives lots of inspiration. I look forward to seeing your version of it!
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Postby Jes » Fri Feb 05, 2010 5:34 pm

Thats coming together nicely Bilco! This little thing has so much character, can't wait to see it finished. Are there any more pics of this vehicle? (the prototype I mean)

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Postby Korschtal » Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:52 pm

How did you make the hinges and the catches for the tailgate?
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Postby Bilco » Sat Feb 06, 2010 11:56 am

Hi Andy - a pic and a few words should cover your query.

The hinges are little lengths of plastic rod, 2 per hinge, glued along the bottom edge of the tailgate.

The catches took up most of the cutting up of little bits of plasticard. I put a little rectangle of plasticard on the side of the body, with a sliver of plastic hex rod as a bolt, and another piece of card with a hole in on the side of the tailgate. The catch mechanism is an L-shaped piece of a staple put through the hole and held in place with CA. Crude but reasonably effective.

You can also see my idea of the charging point - made from one of the buffer heads off UE, a piece of plastic rod and a sliver of plasticard.


Image


It all seemed to be a lot of fiddly work for not much result, but I suppose it adds a bit of detail.
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Postby Adrian » Sun Feb 07, 2010 12:27 am

G'day Bill

You wrote:
It all seemed to be a lot of fiddly work for not much result,


Well it may be a lot of work but it is the thing that lifts your critter from a 'nice model' into a 'masterpiece'.

Don't stop doing the 'fiddly bits' they are much appreciated.

Cheers
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Postby Little Andi. » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:08 am

Hey Bill,..............

Regards:- ............
It all seemed to be a lot of fiddly work for not much result,



If the fiddly bits were easy the place would be full of them, they are I suspect supposed to be hard, difficult, irritating, annoying, exasperating and "fiddly".

But I guess you could also put "Groovy, sexy, admirable, inspiring, or just simply - Smile inducing.......that's got to be the winner surely?


If I haven't said it already................. Great Job, I may yet "borrow it"!!!!
KBO .......................... Andi.

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Postby Bilco » Sun Feb 07, 2010 4:21 pm

Little Andi. wrote:..... they are I suspect supposed to be hard, difficult, irritating, annoying, exasperating and "fiddly"


Well, Andi and Adrian, they certainly were that - my original comment was a little tongue in cheek, as I remembered the hours of cutting and filing tiny bits of plastic and wire, only to see them fall off the workbench to disappear for ever in the pile of the carpet!

I do want to make a good job of Welsh Ernie, so thank you for your kind comments. I'm particularly proud of the charging point cover, as it introduces another small piece of the original UE Inspection Car, which otherwise seems to have vanished beneath all the additions.

The primer - matt grey car undercoat out of a spray can - seems to have gone on quite well. I expect the next steps will follow the usual trajectory - http://forum.gn15.info/viewtopic.php?t= ... sc&start=0 refers :roll:
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Postby Bilco » Tue Feb 16, 2010 7:47 pm

Corser's Eighth Law of Modelling came into force this afternoon - once you have started painting the model, a new source will reveal details you haven't included! I found this page on the INGR web site:

http://www.ingr.co.uk/vids_dig22.html - down near the bottom. A rear view of the Solva critter, showing where the tailgate should go, and the front of the cargo area. It looks like the right hinge for the tailgate has broken off together with the back rail, hence no tailgate. Also, it had 2 red tail-lights - I wonder why? I can understand headlights so that you can see where you are going, but tail-lights can only warn someone behind you that you are there, and this critter is the only one on the line. I wonder if it was a road vehicle originally, hence the cut-outs for the rear wheels. It's also got a rear hitch point.

Anyway, just before I found this photo I started spraying Welsh Ernie with a can of BR Warning Panel Yellow enamel I found in Howes of Oxford this morning. It is a bit worrying, reading all the health warnings on the can, and seeing the skull and crossbones! I nearly forgot that enamel doesn't dry as quickly as acrylic paint - just as well I left it for a while before checking progress :roll:

Azzi is painted and ready to be fitted, but I can't get a decent photo of him. Every one I've taken so far shows something that needs to be corrected.

From my recent posts on the Forum it might seem that I was spending all my time looking at YouTube - I did have a couple of long sessions, as I had a streaming cold and got fed up, seeing more of my painstakingly-fettled fiddly pieces get blasted into oblivion every time I sneezed. At least when sitting in front of the computer I just needed to wipe the snot off the screen :shock:
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Postby Adrian » Thu Feb 25, 2010 5:19 am

G'day Bill

After veiwing the picture of the critter at http://www.ingr.co.uk/vids_dig22.html I decided to take the plunge and ordered the video. It arrived this morning.

The video shows the critter coming out of the tunnel, which is where it gets recharged, and then travelling down the tunnel to the water treatment plant.

It has, at the time of filming, no tailgate, although looking at the state of the metalwork where the hinges should go there is nowhere for the right hand hinge to go ! (rust)

The rear lights are also there but at no time on the video did they light up !

There was a spot light mounted near the right hand rear upright (viewed from the back) that the driver used to illuminate the tunnel when travelling backwards. Not sure why any lights are required as the tunnel is VERY wel lit.

The speed control is a long (about 18'/24") rod from the right side of the floor that the driver moves with his hand.

By the way I would recommend the DVD as it not only contains good information on the Solva line but is infested with many other 'critters'. In fact the largest loco was on 2'6" track and that was in only one short sequence. There are many scienes that cry-out to be modelled and quite a few that would be impossible to model. (working that is)

Hope this information is of some use......
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Postby Bilco » Thu Feb 25, 2010 4:30 pm

Hi Adrian - many thanks for the info on the Solva critter. I thought about what I needed to change (after getting the painting under way) and decided that, as I'm not in the business of making an accurate scale model of the critter, but a 15" gauge 'might-have-been' version, I won't change what I've done! I do have a lever on the right side of the cab, but it's the brake lever, and speed control is by a standard battery loco rheostat controller.

Looking at the photo again, I can convince myself that there is a space for a DVLA registration number plate between the rear lights!

Many thanks again,
Bill

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Postby Bilco » Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:12 pm

Well, as predicted, my efforts to paint Welsh Ernie followed the path I've outlined elsewhere on this Forum. However, I can recommend 'Model Strip' from Howes Models, which fetched off the offending coats of enamel very cleanly, while leaving the acrylic undercoat untouched, so I can start again.

I put the failure down to the wrong colour undercoat - grey just doesn't help a yellow top coat - and faulty spraying technique. Even using enamel paint of the same make from a jar rather than the spray can didn't work - I used to be able to get respectable results with Humbrol enamels, but that was a long time ago, and the Railmatch paint is a different consistency, so bad technique again.

Anyway, I found a spray can of yellow acrylic paint in the back of the garage which I used for the early stages of painting Wot the Deutz, so we'll see how that works out.

Hours of fun :roll:
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Postby Bilco » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:18 pm

Well, my New Year project has been on the go for about 2 and a half months, so I think it's well past time to call it finished. The second attempt at painting went a little better than the first, in my usual style, and there haven't been too many disasters, apart from the front framework falling apart when I cleaned the first lot of paint off.

The original shows some pretty heavy-duty weathering which I have tried not to follow absolutely. Some of the more subtle effects of MiG weathering powders were lost when oversprayed with Dullcote - where has that happened before? The paint is Railmatch - Faded Yellow enamel and Weathered Black acrylic.

Image

Azzi holding on tightly as Welsh Ernie swings around the bend at an eye-watering 10mph.


Image

A close-up front view, showing that Azzi has caught the terrible smoking habit from his Ekerslyke relatives.

Image

Right rear view showing the controls

Image

Left rear view showing the rear spotlight.

Now perhaps I can get on with making a receptacle into which the tippers can tip whatever it is they are going to tip :roll:
Last edited by Bilco on Tue Mar 16, 2010 12:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby dieselwater » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:36 pm

Bill, I love it. Fantastic modelling of a critter full of personality. The photos look great.
Little old lines to somewhere.

David.

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Postby Jes » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:39 pm

Wow that looks great! Love it :) Do the lights work?
I wonder if something like this can work in G9... :wink:

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Postby Steve Bennett » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:44 pm

Not sure about 10mph Bill, half that is more likely :lol:
Great model and it does capture the character of the original really well.
Now you can enjoy filling the back of it with all sorts of junk, that should be fun.
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Postby Bilco » Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:58 am

Many thanks for your kind comments, chaps. I'm glad that this project has come to a reasonably satisfactory conclusion, even if it's taken me about 30 times longer to produce a critter than you take, David!

Jez - the lights don't work, although they look as if there is a bulb there. The headlights and small spotlight are from the Italeri Truck Accessories kit, and the mouldings have the bulb cast in. I tried using Humbrol Satin Cote varnish to fix the glass in - just a couple of tiny spots around the inside of the rim - and it seems to have worked without affecting the glazing.

I've got a couple of white metal jerry-cans that you might recognize, Steve - they will add some useful weight in the back. You'll also have spotted the tool box and oil can, as well as the brake lever, although that's been a bit messed about. The rheostat controller is based on yours, and Azzi is wearing one of your hard hats - I must visit your stall soon and get a resupply!
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Postby Steve Bennett » Wed Mar 17, 2010 11:22 am

:lol: Guess I will be seeing you in May then, dont forget to bring this along :wink:
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