Loco no 11

Loco no 11

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Ruston & Bucyrus Excavator

In my last blog update in June I showed some new photos of Nystrup Gravel's large Menck excavator. Nystrup Gravel's first excavator (as far as I know) was the Ruston & Bucyrus delivered in 1938. Here are a few images of the machine in one of the gravel company's pits west of Nystrup.
The excavator driver obviously had a hard bicycle ride to the gravel pit. Here he is taking a break before beginning the day's work.

A side view of the Ruston & Bucyrus RB-17.

The R&B excavator is a 1:35 resin kit from Accurate Armour and a brilliant kit. I highly recommend it. Even if the kit is large and looks complicated you don't have to be an expert to put it together and produce an excellent result. I built my excavator in 2003 and made minor changes to the kit parts, primarily to show off some of the detailed interior.
A rear view during construction. I cut out the right rear door to show off the engine and radiator.

The interior during painting. I still haven't fitted wire to the drums.

The finished excavator on a heavy load trailer.

As usual the tracked tractor 'Stalin' was standing in the pit waiting for its next task. The tractor originally belonged to a Soviet Army artillery unit, was captured by the German forces in 1941, brought to Denmark and bought by Nystrup Gravel after the war.
Lovely weather and a robust piece of equipment.

Monday, 3 July 2017

French Artillery Position

I have previously built several 1:35 models of wagons and one loco from the French artillery railways of World War I. As we are currently 100 years away from that historic conflict I had planned to build a WWI model each year between 2014-2018 to commemorate the war. I have been quite unable to keep that promise.
My scratch built 1:35 model of a Campagne petrol loco from the French Army. Here it tows a standard Pechot wagon built from a 13'me Dragon kit in resin and white metal.

Charmed by a Blitz kit of an antique looking French cannon and motivated by a friend in France, I am planning  to at least partially keep my promise. My friend in France gave me the chance to buy a kit from long gone 13'eme Dragon from Paris of a Pechot Citerne wagon. I will be making a little diorama with a gun emplacement, a length of track and some figures. The Pechot Citerne (or any French 600 mm. wagon) can be placed on the track.
Col de la Schlucht: a 120 mm Modele 1878 in position in a wooded area at the foot of the German strongpoint Lingekopf in the Vosges region. Image from the Academie de Strasbourg.

The 'de Bange 120 mm modele 1878' beginning to look like the prototype. I still have to fit the 'shoes' to the belts around the wheels.

The assembly of the gun is progressing well . The parts fit well and the 'shoes' on the wheels took much less effort than I had anticipated. Consequently it may be ready for priming and painting quite soon. The Pechot wagon is next on the schedule together with a base for the diorama.
Unpacking the Pechot kit. The water tank is a heavy lump of resin. Two cross members mounts underneath for bogie mountings. The majority of parts are for the bogies.

Sunday, 25 June 2017

A Visit to the Gravel Pit

As the weather was sunny I took a bike ride to one of Nystrup Gravel's active gravel pits. I wanted to see if I could get a glimpse of some of the equipment Nystrup Gravel used for digging up the precious gravel. There were no problems entering the pit and no one objected to me taking a few photos.

Nystrup Gravel's large Menck M 60 was working in the eastern end of the gravel pit. It looked as if it was preparing to relay the 600 mm. tracks in that part of the pit.

An action shot of the Menck swinging its bucket while working in the pit.
Apart from the new Menck excavator I also located the old Stalinets tracked tractor. The tractor was used to pull equipment in the gravel pits and to pull up trees before removing the topsoil when expanding the pits.
The Soviet tractor in service at Nystrup Gravel. I forgot to remove my bicycle before taking the photograph
I didn't manage to locate the Ruston & Bucyrus excavator, but it could have been working in the western part of the pit or in the other pit. Read about Nystrup Gravel's excavators here.

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Firefighter's Helmet

When I finished my Land Rover fire tender I wanted to display a typical period fire fighter's helmet in the car. I didn't know where to find them in 1:35 scale, though. A few days ago it dawned on me that I had my granddad's helmet in the shed. Examining it, I thought I could make a model of it using a World War 1 French helmet - the M15 Adrian. I had such a helmet from a Scale Link white metal kit and it only took half an hour to turn it into a model resembling my granddad's helmet with the help of files, sand paper, AC-glue and thin plasticcard. It is not an accurate scale model but a resonably approximation.
My granddad's helmet from when he was a volunteer fire fighter in rural Butterup. The helmet is made from a sort of
fiberglass and I doubt it would stand up to much heat.

The tiny 1:35 helmet in front of the real thing. I filed the French helmet flat on the underside and glued a piece of thin plasticcard on. The plasticcard was filed to shape, making the rim wider.

I painted the finished helmet 'Pale Sand' and gave it a covering of gloss varnish. The insignia on the helmet's front was given a drop of copper paint. The helmet is now fitted on the middle seat of the Land Rover.
A cruel enlargement of my little Danish firefighter's helmet in 1:35.

The helmet resting in the Land Rover.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Second Hand Locomotive Jacks for Nystrup Gravel

In the early fifties the management from Nystrup Gravel was on a shopping trip to one of the light standard gauge railways being closed due to competition from road traffic. Among the stuff being brought home over the next weeks was four locomotive jacks. Probably a tad large for the Nystrup locos, they had the benefit of being cheap.
Having just arrived, the jacks are being examined by two of Nystrup Gravel's workers.

In my last post on the 1:35 scale jacks, I was half way through the assembly. I met no obstacles gluing the remaining parts together. I primed the four jacks and the two girders and air brushed the jacks a medium grey. Bolt heads and iron fittings were painted dark brown and black. Before priming the girders needed a little putty and sanding on the top to hide some mould seams.
The four jacks ready for a layer of primer. The jacks are secured to the plywood with a small piece of double sided tape.

Primed and ready for painting.

After the main colours were dry, I gave the moving parts on the jacks a mix of dark grey and black from the air brush. Finally the jacks were given a wash of thinned oil paints, dry brushing with acrylics and picking out oily details with gloss varnish. The parts of the jacks closest to the ground were air brushed with a thin mix of light earth and thinner. I added Roman numerals in red.
The lorry backing into position to unload the jacks in front of the loco shed.

There isn't much space to spare. A worker helps to guide the lorry driver getting into position in front of the loco shed.

Close up of jack no. 2. Solid equipment for a 600 mm. narrow gauge railway

With the jacks ready for action, Nystrup Gravel's chief mechanic is now confident that even the heaviest locos can be lifted for thorough running gear maintenance.

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Land Rover Fire Tender Finished

After a very long production time I have now finished the Series 1 Land Rover fire tender. I really have been tested on my build and paint sequence planning on this kit. A true puzzle. Now the little car is ready to deliver sterling service to the Nystrup community.
The local volunteer fire brigade's Land Rover left all by itself in front of Banke's Bakelite factory?

With the kit building finished enough to start painting, the little Land Rover received a layer of primer before I took up the difficult task of choosing an appropriate red colour for the car. I ended up with a choise of Vallejo 'Ferrari Red' chosen over the obvious 'Fire Red' for its lighter tone.
The little car air brushed red. Detail painting next.

Detail painting was mostly a question of painting tires dark grey, seats a nice contrasting medium green and metal parts in varying metal colours. The license plates and writing on the doors came from 'Skilteskoven' and were applied without any fuss as usually. Dials on the instrument panel and pump control panel were made with dry transfers from Archer. After that I glued hose reel, pump assembly, doors, suction hoses and pump control panel in place. I applied a light covering of matt varnish over the entire model.
Detail painting in progress.

I chipped the cab floor and gear box top lightly with brown and gun metal paint and dirtied up the floor a bit as well. The tires were lightly dusted and painted with light earth in the tire treads. I used dark brown oil paint heavily thinned to give the car a light wash to make it look a little worn and enhance details. A little further wear on exposed parts were added with a soft pencil.

Two volunteer firefighters ready for an exercise one early June evening. Perhaps they wait for a pal to show up for the training?

A view from above showing the general layout of the Land Rover.

The last parts to be added was windscreen glazing, steering wheel and the windscreen wiper. A few rolled up fire hoses were placed in the rear. Now I would like to locate some firefighters' helmets in 1:35 of a typical Danish 1950's model. The volunteer fire brigade must be properly equipped.

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Happy Anniversary!

I had a great time celebrating the 40th anniversary of the heritage Hedelands Veteranbane located 30 km. west of Copenhagen. It's a lot of work to run a heritage railway and adding an anniversary doesn't ease the burden. But getting all locos out, running special trains and giving visitors and passengers something extra will hopefully give an extra boost in PR and produce more passengers during the coming season's traffic. On the modelling side running narrow gauge trains in 1/1 scale surely is inspirational and I picked up several ideas while perching on the brakeman's platform.
A selection of locos outside the shed at Hedehusgård station.

One blog update during May is the consequence of the hours spent planning and helping executing the anniversary. But surely it was worth it. I had a great four day extended weekend with my friends on the railway and chatting with visiting enthusiasts from the Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Norway and Finland.
M 3 awaits M 25 arriving in track 1 with a passenger train.

The extended timetable was seasoned with skip trains, alternating locos and extra train meets at stations. A day's extended timetable filled a full 10 A4 pages when printed out. Everything worked out fine and both traffic control and crews carried out the days' traffic with no panic.
After running around the three skips in its train, M 3 meets another passenger train at Rubjerg station pulled by Da 7 before returning to Hedehusgård 3.5 km away.

At Hedehusgård a 1923 Marshall steam roller worked a stone crusher breaking up stone. The Danish steam roller society visited HVB to celebrate the anniversary.

Steam loco no. 3 with a short train of skips. Fireman poses with coal shovel and oil can.

Now that everything has settled back to normal, I'm having a little time at the work table again. I promise to have some finished modelling projects on the blog in the near future. More images from the anniversary in this Flickr-folder.