Monday 29 September 2014

More Loco Shed Work (1/35)

After the large front doors were fitted, I thought the rear door in the loco shed didn't quite match. I made a new from plastic card. The door is a tight push fit in the door opening. In that way I can remove the door if I need to take photos from that angle. I think some good shots could be made through the door and into the shed.
A rear view of the loco shed. The light indicates that the sun is setting over Nystrup  - and earlier and earlier now fall is approaching in Denmark. The door is new, as is the water tap to the right, I have been planting more grass and some Noch plants to the far left. The bike is from Scale Link.

The sides of the roof received a new layer of light green paint and a little weathering to match the new doors. The underside of the roof was painted black. While I worked on the shed, I drilled a hole for wires and LEDs for the welding light unit through the workbench (a resin part from a work shop set from Verlinden).

I added a bit of grass and plants around the shed. Being several years old now, some of the old grass was in for replacement (some tends to loosen and get lost during vacuum cleaning and general use of the module) and here and there a little more 'green' was needed. I used a few laser cut plants from Noch. Some of them are fine (the yellow and red/blue flowers) while others are not that good. I have placed them accordingly around the modules.
Laser cut paper flowers from Noch. A fast way to get some planting done, but not exactly cheap. At the current rate the amount on the price tag in Danish kroner corresponds to 10 €.

Friday 26 September 2014

French Track Panels at Nystrup Gravel (1/35)

Two weeks ago I received some of the Blitz Models French army track panels. I have now built a few of them. Building went smooth and while the resin rails in the kit are in the correct length for a standard 5 m. track panel I replaced the resin rails with standard code 100 rail, primarily to get more structural strength. I drilled holes in the rail ends and fitted the sleepers. They slided on quite easily, but two of the eight sleepers had to be worked a bit with a scalpel, to enable a PECO code 100 rail to slide between the rail clips.

To fit the sleepers in the correct position, I made a sketch from a Cenac-drawing of French army track and assembled my track panels on it. I used AC glue to fix the sleepers in place. I'm building some 2,5 m. panels later so both lengths are marked out on my scrap of paper.
From Blitz Models I also received a small wagon turntable. The casting is well done, but there is noticable shrinking of the resin in the middle of the turntable. I don't think it will be very visible after painting. All the work I did was some minor flash removal with file and sandpaper as well as drilling holes in the rail ends. 

The single turntable casting right out of the small zip lock bag. The centre shrinking does show on the image.
Both track panels and the turntable was primed and then given an air brushing of light brown. A layer of Vallejo light rust was applied with variation so the rust appear as full covering in places and lighter in other. The turntable received a light spray of blue grey on the turning plate. Turntable and track panels were then painted with burnt umber oil paint heavily diluted in turpentine. In places it was supplanted with a little black oil paint. I used a soft pencil to add the look of worn running surfaces on one track panel and on the turntable.

The track is used by Nystrup Gravel on occasions where a temporary track is necessary. Track from the western front in World War 1 did come to Denmark, as the track panels on Hedelands Veteranbane testifies.

Old French army track at Nystrup Gravel. It probably came from the German airfield at Mellemaaen where Nystrup Gravel acquired both locos and machines after the war. It looks like the turntable has been in use recently judging from the worn running surfaces. Notice the immaculate track standard on Nystrup Gravel's line on this spot.

For those who wonder how a turntable looks on the inside, here is a photo. With the turning plate lifted the steel balls that makes turning easy can be seen. Other types of turntables used rollers while the most primitive had neither. Photo from the closed and abandoned Holzwollefabrik und S├Ągewerk in Hammerunterwiesenthal, 2013. More images on this Flickr album.

Sunday 21 September 2014

Loco Shed Doors - Finally Finished (1/35)

For a long time my loco shed has been unable to provide much shelter from the Danish weather. With no doors the autumn storms would have easy access to play havoc with both employees and machines. The doors have been on my to do-list for several years.

The basic doors I made in the beginning of the summer were fitted with a frame structure of wooden balks on the rear side. I made hinges from brass rod and nickle silver strips. The rods were drilled and glued into the walls of the shed and the doors hung in place. I left a gap below the doors to make them clear the uneven ground outside the shed.

One door fitted to the shed. I will have to fit a 'hat' to the chimney on the roof.
To hold the doors open I drilled holes for two lengths of rail to be solidly burried in the ground. They work as anchor points for the doors when open and make sure a sudden gust of wind doesn't slam them shut.

The doors were primed with 'Chaos Black' from Games Workshop and painted the same green as the roof sides and windows. Fortunately the light green Humbrol paint had survived the many years in storage (it was probably last used in 2007).

Both doors built and fitted on the shed. The photos proves that I have actually made them work. More mechanically adept modellers would probably have made them DCC controlled and servo driven. Beyond me. At the moment, at least. Carpenters might shake their heads from the way the doors are framed, but that is how the guys at Nystrup do it.
When I was at work around the shed I fitted two water taps outside the building. They are included in the 'German Fuel Drum Set' from Tamiya. I recently got a set from a friend who didn't need it, thanks a lot!

Nystrup Gravel's loco shed with doors. I my eyes the building has gained much in realism by having doors fitted. Sometimes a little work can make a considerable difference. The Jung ZL-114 is a resin kit from French U-Models fitted on a BlackBeetle.
With the doors in place I'm now in the process of fitting a Micro-Mark welding light unit. The rear door of the shed will be replaced and the roof's sides could use some fresh paint as well. A model railway is never finished!

Friday 12 September 2014

Blitz Models: Track from the Great War (1/35)

The anniversaries of World War 1 are here. The war that started in 1914 was know as the Great War before the new global conflict from 1939-1945 gave the war the name it is best known by today: World War 1. In the next 4 years we will probably be exposed to much 'celebrating' and ceremonial remembering of the huge battles taking place during the 1. World War. I hope to build a World War 1 inspired model each year for the next four years. As I have a rather full programme for most of this year, the first one will be very modest - a few track panels with steel sleepers and a wagon turntable from Blitz Models of France. 

Through the years I have built a few models of WW1 subjects - of both narrow gauge and non railway subjects. Here is my model of a long wooden wagon built in French army workshops behind the front line. The model was built from drawings in Christian Cenac's "La Voie de 60 Militaire de la Guerre de 14-18 en France". The French officer is in white metal from Scale Link.
As track panels from The Great War actually found their way to Denmark it was only too obvious that Nystrup Gravel should have some as well. Recently Blitz Models have brought out some 1:35 track elements and a Campagne loco tracteur. More models have been announced on their web site. As I have already built a Campagne from scratch I only ordered a little track to test the quality.

Plastic bag and a printed label constitutes packaging and information. A single pack is 6,5 € from the Blitz Models' web site.

Contents of one bag laid out on my cutting mat. The flimsy resin rails are destined for my waste basket.

A single steel sleeper close up. It fits the 1:35 drawings in the Cenac books.

A length of PECO code 100 rail fitted on three Blitz Models sleepers.
The Blitz Models resin is flexible and with heat from boiling water or a hair drier I suppose you could straighten the warped resin rails. As the sleepers fit standard code 100 rail I will simply slide the sleepers on some PECO rail and super glue them in place. The metal rails will add strength to the assembly. Something I think the resin rails will not be able to. I will use my sleepers primarily for a few loose track panels. For working track on the Nystrup Gravel line I'd rather use the Coldicott track panels as they are designed to take the strain of running trains.

I hope to finish some French track panels in the coming weeks - not forgetting my mission to finish the doors for the Nystrup Gravel loco shed.

Wednesday 10 September 2014

Delivery Van from Hein & Hein (1/35)

To run a railway with most of the locos and rolling stock being well used and of a considerably age a well-equipped work shop is needed. At least if you wish to avoid paying the local garage or blacksmith for the tasks.

The Ford van from Hein & Hein at the Nystrup Gravel loco shed. The driver has probably just handed over some spare parts and is now enjoying a beer with employees from the gravel company on the other side of the building.
Many of the tools and spare parts needed were supplied by the local hardware dealer Hein & Hein. Deliveries from Hein & Hein were normally carried out with the large Ford van. It was a regular guest at Nystrup Gravel. It sometimes even ventured down one of the small farming paths that crossed the 600 mm. line to pass urgently needed tools or spares for further transport by Nystrup's little speeder.

Chassis done and ready for primer. The one-piece upper body still needs some sanding and a few parts glued on, but the end is in sight. Seats are from the kit while the steering wheel is from the spares box.
In the last post on this little car I mentioned that I had been busy sanding. Well, I continued the process of applying putty and sanding - not until I was completely satisfied, but until I had exhausted my patience. I guess I will have to say the car is a model of a vehicle that has seen some hard use by its drivers.
Upper body ready for primer. The chassis has already been primed. I have fitted the head lights from the kit and a bumper I filed and soldered up from brass. License plate in plastic card. This must count among the poorest pictures I have shown on the blog.
With all major parts glued in place and sanding done, I primed the upper body and the interior was airbrushed Vallejo 6114 'Sky', a light blueish grey, with seats and steering wheel picked out in the appropriate colours. The exterior received a coat of Vallejo 70883 'Silver Grey'. Of course I spotted a bad moulding defect after having sprayed the silver grey and had to resand the area and paint again. Mudguards were painted black and I brush painted the red lining. The upper body was then covered with gloss varnish. The underside was kept in black primer while the wheels are gloss black with dark grey tires.
The driver is back and is now turning the car round on the small parking area in front of the shed. Not the easiest of task with a heavy van long before power steering.  
After decal application (from my usual supplier of costum decals; 'Skilteskoven') I toned down the glossy finish with some satin varnish and a little weathering. I fitted windows from clear plastic card - the side windows weren't as hard as expected. With windows in place I glued upper body and chassis together. I used slow setting two component epoxy glue as I wanted to have time to adjust the fit of upper body on the chassis.

This kit produced in very limited numbers by a fellow modeller in Brazil is more demanding than the usual kit you can get your hands on in the local hobby shop or online. Not only is it not advertised, the building is also a bit trickier than with a more standard resin or plastic kit. But I like a challenge and I think I made a rather decent model from the parts. Another unique car is ready for service on Nystrup Gravel. Visitors to the Gauge 1 exhibition in November will be able to see the car together with other road vehicles.

My only model from Brazil so far fitted with a left over chassis from a Ukrainian made kit, painted with Spanish paints (with a German airbrush) and custom made Danish decals. These days it's a wonder nothing Chinese went into the model! 
The name of the hardware dealer Hein & Hein is a tribute to a family that has produced two good narrow gauge friends with whom I have had lots of fun - not forgetting all the good times I've had with the rest of the Hein family.