Saturday 30 June 2012


I have just painted the tires on my Ford lorry. Now relaxing and resting is on the agenda for the next two weeks. Hopefully I'll be able to sqeeze in a visit at an exiting narrow gauge railway during my vacation - and maybe even find inspiration for the next model?

Your blogger relaxing and reading a very mainstream American model railway magazine. Quite different from my favourite 'Narrow Gauge and Industrial Railway Modelling Review'!
I usually build a small model during my vacation and this year it'll probably be a few Scale Link skips or a tractor. I have a small drawing task as well: preparing a sketch of a closed speeder for Nystrup Gravel.

Wish you all a good vacation!

Thursday 28 June 2012

Ford Progress (1/35)

I'm slowly progressing on the Ford V3000. The first part of the building of the kit can be found on Ford V3000 from Bankes Bakelit.

Before closing up the cab I tried to fit the kit decals for the instrument panel. They fell apart and couldn't be saved. Dry transfers from Archer saved the day. I used Archer's set AR35214 for German vehicles. The dials were given a quick pass with matt varnish before having a drop of Kristall Klear each to simulate glass. Floor, fire wall and door fillings in the cab are 'slate grey' while the rest of the interior is red. Seat cushions are gloss black.

I decided not to use the kit's extremely fiddly exhaust system. Seven parts for an exhaust pipe seems to me a bit over the top! All the piping was replaced with solder wire, the only original part being used was the silencer. Apart from the exhaust I didn't need to worry about replacing parts and I can really recommend this kit. As you can see from the pictures only very limited work with putty and sand paper was needed. Building a civilian vehicle I dind't fit the kit's military fittings like shovel, jerry can holder and convoy lights. Consequently I had to fill a few holes - most of the putty was used at these locations.

Cab ready for primer. Traces of putty and paint used for fault finding can be seen. The red paint makes sure, that the inside of the window frames has the same colour as the exterior. Masking tape is from Tamiya.
The model is now primed with Game Workshop's 'Chaos Black' and painting can commence.

I have finished the designing of decals and an order for transfers will be sent in the coming days. It will probably take some time for the transfers to arrive in my mail box, but this wedensday 8 skip kits arrived from England to make sure I'm not without something to build (as if I hadn't plenty of unbuilt kits on the shelves).

Saturday 23 June 2012

Tenshodo Trouble (1/35)

Those of you who have had expirience with Tenshodo motor bogies will probably have an idea what the title refers to. Known for their low construction the Tenshodos are unfortunately not the best running of motorbogies. My first locos in 1:35 scale were built on Tenshodos that were not too bad. They were of all metal construction and actually ran rather well. I couldn't quite understand why so many modellers were getting so frustrated from operating Tenshodos.

When I turned to DCC the old Tenshodos turned out to be near to impossible to fit with decoders. I had to order new plastic Tenshodos to power my two old locos, no. 14 and no. 5. I used ESU LokPilot-decoders and had great expectations. The ESU-Tenshodo combination has since caused much frustration. The running quality is far worse than the old metal Tenshodos without decoder. As I have had very good results with ESU-decoders in combination with other power units and motors, I suspect the plastic Tenshodos are the cause of my frustrations. Never say never, but I think I have aquired my last Tenshodo.

The 'Tenshodo Terror' has deprived me of motivation to finish the Muir Hill tractor loco as it uses a Tenshodo as power unit. No sense in building a model that will not run properly. The Muir-Hill is now safely tucked away in a box among other unbuilt projects. Railway modelling can't always be fun...
As far as I got before frustration set in. I'll probably get back to the loco in the coming years trying to find a new drive unit. You can see images of the building process on my Flickr-site.
Have any of you ever succeeded in getting decent running from a Tenshodo on DCC and what decoder did you use?

Sunday 17 June 2012

Nystrup in Provence, France? (1/35)

In the most recent newsletter from the Danish Model Railway Union (DMJU) Nystrup Gravel gets a brief mention (on page 16) of it's trip to the Gauge 1 exhibition in april. Although the management of the gravel company has taken every measure to underline that the company is located in Denmark, the DMJU author is nevertheless reminded of Provence in France by the landscape around the little gravel line. Well, Provence wasn't the goal I was striving to reach...

Artignosc-en-Provence. Nice and sunny.
I'm getting back to the work bench and will add more unmistakenly Danish elements to the modules. Now where can I put the mail box from Epokemodeller or should I put up a flag pole with a Danish flag?

Wednesday 13 June 2012

Ford V3000 from 'Bankes Bakelit' (1/35)

On the outskirts of the village of Nystrup a few small industries are squeezed in between LilleĆ„en ('Small stream'), the main road and Nystrup Gravel's 600 mm. track. One of them is 'Bankes Bakelit' that produces casings for electrical components. Visit wikipedia to learn more about bakelite. Bankes Bakelit is reliant on road transport only, but has once or twice (due to flooding) used the flat wagons of Nystrup Gravel to transport boxes of finished products to the nearest servicable road.

One of the company's lorries were a Ford V3000 and when ICM of Ukraine released a model of the V3000S in december 2010, I immediately bought one. See a review of the kit here.

Most of the assembly work is now done and I'm working on the cab interior.

Cab ready for wind screen and windows. Only the dials for the instrument panel from the decal sheet will be used.
The lorries of Bankes Bakelit are painted in a red and blue livery with golden or yellow lettering.

Most of the company's investments must have gone into their lorries, as the factory over the years became quite dilapidated and closed in the early 1960's. Even before things really started to go wrong for the factory it seems like the management weren't exactly over budgeting on maintenance. In 1942 the wooden fence between the factory and Nystrup Gravel's track toppeled over and blocked the line. The old newspaper clipping below documents that a lorry during a parking maneuver leveled 25 m. of fence. (I hope to be forgiven for not translating the article to non-Scandinavians.) The article was kindly given to me by a former employee at Bankes Bakelit.

Monday 11 June 2012

"Where do you keep your models?" (1/35)

... a friend asked me a while ago. "They don't come in boxes I suppose?"

Most railway modellers buying ready to run-models off the shelves from a hobby shop doesn’t have too many problems storing their models when not in use. The models comes in neat boxes that protect the models and some boxes even doubles as fancy display cases. I have yet to buy a ready to run-model in a box so I need to find some other way to store my more or less home built models. Even when a kit is available the box it is supplied in is intended to safely store the kit parts – not the finished model. So my friend was right - I have to find other ways to store my models.
After a lot of searching I found some neat little wooden boxes that fits perfectly for storage and transport of the smallest of my locomotives. I bought them for 7 € for three boxes and they are probably made in the Far East. For larger locos I have found a somewhat larger size of wooden box in a craft store in Denmark 'Panduro Hobby'. The large box can accomodate a quite large loco (or two smaller) and sells for 8 €.

I glue a piece of plastic card in the bottom of the box fitting between the loco’s wheels and fit soft foam material as padding. The foam is cut to fit so close to the loco that the loco is kept in tension between the foam pieces. Combined with foam pieces glued to the lid fitting over the loco this keeps the loco safely in place. The gentle pressure of the foam lining even allows the box to be turned up side down without damage to the model. Painting the number of the loco on the box top allows me to easily pick out the right box when looking for a specific loco.

It probably wouldn't be too difficult to custom build boxes to fit specific locos and wagons, but I really feel I have to draw the line somewhere. I'll still be on the lookout for nice wooden boxes in the coming years, so feel free to share your ideas and suppliers!

Thursday 7 June 2012

Flat for stone transport (1/35)

I started building a new braked skip from Scale Link parts, but ended up with a longer than standard flat wagon for stone transport. Even with planning you never know what you'll get when you start a model!

During building I apparently relaxed so much that I forgot to place the axle boxes in the correct off-set position for a braked skip. Instead of redoing the work, I fitted different wheels from the spares box and a ‘skeleton’ wooden floor to make a flat wagon for stone transport. The 'skeleton' floor is simply four heavy balks bolted to the frame. The balks were distressed with knife, file and wire brush.
Images from the construction and painting proces.
The finished flat with stone block.
The wagon is painted black and the wood grey and red with heavy weathering. Flaked off paint made with the help of Humbrol Maskol. Numbering is old decals from an Accurate Armour military kit. The granite block came out of a heap of ballast at HVB.  
The old stone wagons pulled by loco 8.
The new wagon will add nice variety to my stone train, which has so far consisted of three identical flats. More images of the old flats can be found on Flickr

As I had no more skip kits in stock, I ordered another 8 skips from Scale Link. They will enable me to build that braked skip – and to fit bogies under my two Hudson bogie wagons from David Provan, although it will probably last some time before construction gets underway. The rest of the kits will be assembled as ordinary skips. Expirience has shown me that it is feasible to run trains with as many as 11 skips on my modules without derailments or other difficulties. You can never have too many skips!