Smallbeach loco shed

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Steve Holland
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Smallbeach loco shed

Postby Steve Holland » Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:48 pm

A visit to Snailbeach in the mid 1970s left a deep impression, with the derelict remains of the lead mine and tips. For anyone unfamiliar with Snailbeach, see http://www.shropshiremines.org.uk/snailbeach/. The site has now been cleaned up, the buildings have been conserved and it is possible to take a trip underground in to the mine workings.
My first attempt at making a building in a very long time was inspired by the Snailbeach loco shed. I re-visited the site a few weeks ago and realised that my building has more windows than the one that inspired it and the corners are square. I do not think that any two walls are parallel on the full size Snailbeach loco shed.
I have previously made stone buildings from plaster of Paris, but this can be heavy and is also quite brittle. This model is built from two layers of foam core, separated by 3/8 inch square balsa.
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It is light and very strong. The walls were covered in a layer of Das air drying clay, ready for the stonework to be scribed in.
The stonework is not difficult to carve, but does create a lot of dust. This has made a fine layer all over the lounge, computer, TV etc, and my previously black camera is now several shades lighter after taking the photos. My wife is not amused :oops:
The worst of the lumps and bumps were sanded level after the Das had dried, then the fun began. I started by scribing some parallel lines to keep everything level.
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Then I filled in between the lines.
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I incorporated some of the remaining bumps in to the stonework to give a bit of variety.
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I found that after a couple of hours working on the model I 'ran out of stones' so gave up carving and found something else to do. After what feels like forever I have finally finished carving the walls, so can someone take the carving tools off me before I start on something like the Snailbeach compressor house!
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The roof will be the next thing to be tackled, followed by the windows and doors, all hopefully without making as much dust.
Last edited by Steve Holland on Fri Jan 24, 2014 11:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Artizen » Fri Jan 24, 2014 6:14 am

Nice!
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Postby Gerry Bullock » Fri Jan 24, 2014 10:18 am

The dust is easy to avoid Steve, just wet surface before carving.
So little time, so many ideas!!!!! GerryB.
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Postby Steve Holland » Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:00 pm

I never thought of dampening the surface before I carved the stonework, but I am not sure how 'crisp; the finished result will be. I feel a test piece coming on - more ****** carving!!
I have made a start on the roof, which I intend to leave detachable so that I can get at the inside of the shed to add some extra detailing such as workbenches and junk.
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The large beam to support the ridge is just a tight fit in between the walls and the four rafters which have been glued to the walls. The rest of the roof will be hung off this ridge beam.
I cut the rafters to length and made sure that they had a consistent angle on the ends with a simple jig knocked up from some scrap styrene.
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The first rafters and cross beams (there must be some proper names for all these bits of woodwork) have now been glued to the styrene sheet. Big surprise - it all still fits, I have not managed to glue the roof to the building and it comes off as intended :D
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Postby demaine22 » Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:10 am

Wow, what great work Steve! 8) Your stone work is admirably neat, and the wood work really adds character
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Postby Steve Holland » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:55 pm

A bit more progress on the roof - the rafters are all in place.
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The little pieces on the edges of the roof are the bits of rafter that stick out through the wall, and this is what the outside of the loco shed looks like with the roof on.
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And looking in through one of the door openings.
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Not sure yet whether to add smoke vents to the roof like those on Snailbeach loco shed, or leave them off and force the loco crews to light up the locos outside.
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Postby southpier » Sun Feb 02, 2014 11:34 am

Steve Holland wrote:...rafters and cross beams (there must be some proper names ...) ...


this building is coming along beautifully.

beams & timbers usually are larger than 4" x 10". I've always called the cross beams "collar ties", but I'm sure if you go far in either direction someone will correct you!

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Postby Steve Holland » Mon Feb 03, 2014 8:14 pm

Thanks for the kind comments.
I have added some barge boards and fascia boards to the roof - the Baguley rip-off is contemplating evicting the Bagnalls.
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A tub of slates has also appeared - should be fun keeping the courses straight!
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Before the slates go on I think I will have to add some roof vents to let the fumes out from the infernal commotion engine in the Baguley thingy (must come up with a proper name for it!).
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Postby henrix72se » Fri Feb 07, 2014 9:55 pm

WOW, Looking great !!

Thumbs up !

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Postby Steve Holland » Sat Feb 08, 2014 10:44 pm

If you remember the Fast Show - 'This week Oi 'ave mostly bin cuttin' little bits of wood'.
The little bits of wood, with a few bits of waste etch from a brass kit and some styrene sheet have been glued together to make some smoke vents for the loco shed roof.
The inspiration was Snailbeach loco shed.
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I thought I could remember what they looked like, so carried on cutting and sticking. When I checked the photos to see how the lid is fitted to keep the rain out I realised that I should not have vents on all four sides :oops:

Too late to change now, so here are the finished smoke vents.
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The loco shed roof has had a couple of holes cut in to it, and the smoke vents are currently a push fit with the legs resting on the one of the rafters.
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This is now starting to get scarily close to having to be painted - at least slating the roof will delay that task!
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Postby Mark Goodwin » Sun Feb 09, 2014 2:49 am

Steve,

This is a work of beauty - the stone effect with the uneven surface, the roof rafters and now the vents - all look totally realistic. I can't wait to see how you handle the slate roof and then get round to painting this masterpiece.
Best wishes,
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Postby Thorness » Sun Feb 09, 2014 8:29 am

Beautiful model, looking forward to seeing it finished.

Those vents have obviously been repaired since I took this:
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It was taken in 1977.

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Postby Steve Holland » Sun Feb 09, 2014 9:39 pm

Don,
Your photo certainly brings back some memories. I think it was a year or so earlier that I first visited Snailbeach, and was struck by the atmosphere of the place. It seems to have lost some of that indefinable 'something' since the site has been conserved, but at least the remaining buildings should not deteriorate any further.
On that first visit I stood on some ratty old timbers over a fairly innocent looking hole, and dropped a stone through one of the (rather large) gaps. It seemed to clatter off the sides for a rather long time. It was only when I later got the book on Shropshire lead mines that I found out it was Georges Shaft and is over 750ft deep! This is it today, with the re-created headgear, and before anyone asks, I did not stand over the shaft this time.
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Postby Brack » Sun Feb 09, 2014 9:59 pm

those are some excellent beehives you've modelled there. I know that keepers use smoke to calm the bees a little before opening the hives but positioning them over a loco shed is lateral thinking indeed.

:)

in all seriousness, keep it up, it really does look very good.

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Postby Steve Holland » Sun Feb 09, 2014 10:11 pm

If I get fed up with modelling railways I guess I could use the smoke vents for 1:24 scale weather monitoring stations :lol:
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Postby Steve Holland » Sun Feb 16, 2014 10:11 pm

The contents of the tub of slates has diminished - there is only one left.
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The slates were 18 inches by 12 inches, the size was taken from an old Penrhyn Quarry price list. I thought they would cover the roof fairly quickly, but forgot that each slate is overlapped by two others where it is fixed to the battens. So there is only 8 inches of the slate visible and the other 10 inches is buried. The overlap is only visible from the edges, but at least I know it is there on the rest of the roof.
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I have had to permanently fix the smoke vents so that the flashing could be added from glue soaked paper.
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There are a few slipped slates, but I did not want to overdo this as I want the building to be in a reasonable state of repair, but needing a little attention due to the effects of age.
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Just some ridge tiles to add to complete the roof, but I think I may have to permanently fix the roof to the shed as it has started to curve upwards slightly where it crosses the end walls.
At least I have found some more excuses to delay painting - I still need to make some windows and a floor.
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Postby Steve Holland » Wed Mar 12, 2014 9:04 pm

Thought it was time for an update on Smallbeach.
Life, the Universe and everything seems to have intruded in to hobby time just lately, and the answer was not 42! So I have not got as much done as I would have liked.
I have got the ridge tiles on, and cured the slight twist in the roof by gluing some re-enforcing across the barge board joints at the roof apex while squeezing the joint together. Guess who very nearly had a roof superglued to his fingers - it was a bit painful pulling it off :oops:

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I have also made some smoke hoods to fit inside the roof below the smoke vents.

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Windows have been made, and they are meant to represent cast iron metal frames.

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I got the clear plastic from my local model shop - goodness knows what it is because standard solvents do not seem to touch it. I think the R/C aircraft boys use it for cockpit canopies. Before anyone asks, the open centre frames do not rotate! The windows will be permanently fixed in place after they have been painted - unless you know of a working 1:24 scale painter.

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The Bagnalls are looking quite at home in the shed, but are feeling a bit neglected as I have not done anything to them for quite a while.

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Just some doors to make, and then I can get the paints out.
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Postby More_Cats_Than_Sense » Wed Mar 12, 2014 9:47 pm

Excellent modelling, very inspirational :-) :-)
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Postby Steve Holland » Tue Aug 26, 2014 9:15 pm

Can't believe it was March since I last made some progress on Smallbeach loco shed. At last the doors are made. I used strip wood and decided to put the infill planking (there must be a proper name for it) at 45 degrees for a bit of interest.

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The pair on the left are the outer face, and the pair on the right are the inner face. Now I need to find or make some suitable hinges and figure out how to make them open and close. Must dig out the Dave Rowe mechanical modelling book and read it again.
I have also been putting an Emhar Bedford OSB tipper kit together, and bashing some wagons out.
The GWR (Gas Works Railway??) had Iron Minks, so I have got a Ferrous Ferret.

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It is basically a styrene box on a Peco wagon chassis kit, complete with sprung axle boxes. Some more styrene bashing produced some mine tubs, sized to match Steve Bennett's kits as I would like to use any combination of the tubs in a tippler at some point.

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I knocked 5 tubs out over a couple of weeks of evenings - not rapid progress by some standards, but they are starting to look quite good as a train.

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With a Bagnall on the front it is all starting to look more like Tiphong Colliery in India rather than a lead mine in Shropshire!
I really need to clear some space on the work bench in the garage instead of building more wagons so that I can get the airbrush out and cover all of that naked plastic. Then I need to sort out some baseboards and track and then....
So much to do and work keeps getting in the way :roll:
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Postby Broadoak » Wed Aug 27, 2014 7:28 am

Excellent work. 8)
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Postby Willow Creek Traction » Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:43 am

Steve Holland wrote:and the answer was not 42! .
It's not? I'm going to ask the dolphins for a 2nd opinion. Gotta admit thuogh, the answer is definitely neither 42 stones nor 42 slates - many more of each in this baby!
Interesting comment about the square and parallel, or not, walls. I wonder how many things in real life are less so than we modelers get all OCD about?
later, Forrest Today's scientists have substituted mathematics for experiments, and they wander off through equation after equation, and eventually build a structure which has no relation to reality. -- Nikola Tesla, July, 1934

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Postby henrix72se » Wed Aug 27, 2014 9:57 am

Looking great!!

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Postby Steve Holland » Wed Aug 27, 2014 6:54 pm

Thanks for the kind comments.
Has anyone managed to work out how available modelling time seems to reduce exponentially as enthusiasm for a project picks up? I had all the modelling jobs sorted out in my mind for the three days off work over the last bank holiday weekend but it seemed to disappear in a blur of household jobs, so the only painting that got done was the (full size) front door. My airbrush stayed in its box and the cover stayed on the lathe :(
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Postby Boghopper » Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:15 pm

How true. I was just patting myself on the back as I felt I'd made good progress on the garden design I'm working on and thought I'd have a little modelling time. Then I realised we have to go and choose paint for the newly refitted bathroom tomorrow and as soon as we've got it, I've got to start painting. Ah well..... :wink: :?
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Postby Brack » Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:28 pm

I had about 10 projects lined up over my summer holidays. I've only done 2 of them, but have managed to do several others that weren't even on the radar at the start.

Your locos and stock look fantastic. Between you and Jacky Molinaro I'm getting tempted to make myself another Gn15 Sipat (and keep it this time!)


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