Friday, August 26, 2011

Scrubber Car No 15 in "O" scale part 7

It's been a year since my last entry. I managed to break several bones in my writing hand and that put a stop to modelling for a long time. But the Brill side frames came back from the caster and I have managed to finish the two cars that I had under construction. The rest of the time I have put a lot of thought into a layout and structures and every time I decided to start I manage to change my mind. End result to date, a big zero.

Scrubber car No 15 is now finished and sits on a Bull Ant mechanism. The complete unit including the mechanism weighs in at 150 grams (6.5 ounces). Well within the capabilities of the Bull And and as expected it runs very well.

I decided to fit a trolley pole hook to the roof. The original never had one but on a layout it's nice to be able to park the pole away from the overhead. I have used the last of my scratch built trolley poles on these two models so I'll have to make a new batch soon.

The photo shows the car in front of the only two structures I have managed to scratch built so far.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Scrubber Car No 15 in "O" scale part 6

Back to my model of a Brisbane scrubber car for awhile and I am still waiting for the Brill 21E side frames. So I decided to mask off where the side frames are to be glued and press on with the painting regardless.

I had airbrushed the cabins brown as per the prototype by using a fine jet on my airbrush and poking the nozzle in through the windows. There was a certain amount of over spray as is clearly visible in the first photo. I mask up all the openings from the inside and all goes easily in the beginning but as you progress there are fewer and fewer openings to work through. I leave the doorway till last and that masking tape has to be fed in through a hole in the roof. A set of dental picks makes it easier to insure that the tape is sealed well and no paint can get under it. I find it amazing how far an airbrush can force paint into the smallest of gaps.

I wanted to depict the car in a very faded grey. What one would expect from too much exposure to the sun in a subtropical climate. These days I'm using Tamiya Acrylics and I find I have to blend colours to get what I want. My first blend looked good in the bottle but once on the model it was way to light. It could have been almost mistaken for white. So back to mixing and my second attempt came out OK but still not exactly what I was after. The ads have been ready for some time so I have put them on and the result can be seen in the next photo. I am still trying to determine when Coke and Fanta became available in cans in Australia. I believe it was generally available in the US in the early 1960s and this ad was on the car in March 1969 and I don't think it was very old at the time the photo was taken.

I took the opportunity to paint the internal cab fittings shown in the last photo but making most of them may have been a waste of time. With the roof on and the brown colour it is too dark to see well and when the motorman has been fitted it will be even worse. Looking through the door in the centre photo the air cylinders and the air compressor are just visible. The built in toolbox and locker are at the other end. I suppose that at least I will know that they are in there.

Now I have run out of work for the time being so I have no excuse to not get back onto the layout modules.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Advertising Car No 71 in "O" scale part 3

As the trucks for my two 4 wheelers have arrived, I decided to do some more on No 71.

I painted the model by first airbrushing the inside light grey. Then I had the difficult job of masking all the openings from the inside. I was able to do the windows using tweezers and reaching in through the doorways. The doorways were done last by feeding the masking tape in through a hole in the top of each cabin. It probably took two hours to do the masking and two minutes to airbrush the green.

I got a good match with the green and was very pleased with it. The green in all the photos I have has a bleached appearance. Sadly when I over sprayed the model with the clear coat the bleached effect disappeared. So I will have to try to recreate the effect when I weather the model later.

The photo shows my current progress. The truck isn't in place in the photo and all the glazing still has to be done followed by adding the the controls and of course a motorman.

The view through the motorman's door shows the original ten bench bulkhead complete with the original seat back which was still in place on the prototype. Above the door is the flag holder which was made from a piece of brass tube with the centre filed away. The flags will be printed on paper and glued to a piece of brass rod and will be removable.

Still a lot of work to do but I am pleased with the way it is turning out. It is a model of an unusual prototype and I hope it will create some interest when people see it.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A Modular Layout for "O" scale trams Part 3

I've been doing what all modellers do! I've been fiddling with a number of different ideas and consequently I haven't achieved much for awhile. While I have been waiting for the side frames and the trucks for my two 4 wheelers I have been looking at the end boards for my modular layout again.

I didn't realise that it was May the last time I worked on them. How time flies. The tear drop back scenes are in place. These will extend above the roadway the width of a sheet of A4 paper. Space is really restricted on these end boards so I intend to glue photos of Brisbane houses to these boards to make a continuous scene. I'm going to have to go out and photograph some suitable houses very soon.

As I said space is very restricted and the next photo shows the footpaths tapering away to nothing on these end modules . Both boards have been given a thin coat of mat varnish to seal them so I am ready to put down the plaster roadway.

The 1/4" holes are already drilled for the steel rod I have for the span poles. I have created a problem for myself now. The inner row of holes are so close to the back scene that I can't get a drill in to clean them out after I have plastered the roadway. No sure what to do but I have a friend who can weld a 1/4" drill to a rod for me and get it to spin true which is something I can't do. That will let me keep the drill chuck above the back scene.

The end modules are not that far from being finished and I have been thinking about the rest of the modules. They will have full with footpaths so I'm thinking that the next two boards will be a typical 1950s/60s set of suburban strip shops with their false fronts and awnings that came out to the curb. Often the awnings had holes cut in them to fit around the span poles. But I had better finish these two end modules first.

Plus my trucks for the two 4 wheelers have arrived and the truck side frames can't be too far away either. So hopefully I will be back on those models soon.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Scrubber Car No 15 in "O" scale part 5

I have been finishing off what will be the visible interior details on the car. That is the items that go in the two motorman's cabs. They are ready except for painting and in the photo they are from top left, the built in tool box and built in clothes locker which are at one end of the car and in the next row the air compressor and air tanks that are at the other end. Between them are the two controllers and in the bottom row are the goose neck handbrakes, air valves to control the grinders, the valves to turn on the water and finally the air brake valves. Everything is made out of styrene except for the goose necks. As per my usual way of doing things these are only a representation of the real thing. As everything inside the cabs is painted in drab brown none of the items are going to stand out and they should look ok.

The photo in part 1 of this thread was taken in 1965. When you tell people you are building a particular model additional information often turns up unexpectedly and this was the case here. Four photos turned up showing it's transportation to the Tramway Museum in 1968 and the photo below shows No 15 being unloaded at the museum . Here the Coke Cola ad is different from the 1965 photo. Obviously soft drink started to appear in cans sometime after 1965 but before 1968. In Australia at least.

This seemed a more interesting ad for my model so I have been working on the new signage and the result is in the last two photos. One for the sides and the smaller one for the ends. I leave the ads this size and do the final sizing in Paint Shop Pro when I print them.

I really can't do any more on this car and No 71 until I at least get the side frames back from the caster. Hopefully my next post will be back building my layout. I hope!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Advertising Car No 71 in "O" scale part 2

Time for another progress report. The pieces all went together without too many problems. The photos show the progress so far. Now I'm at about the same stage as I am with No 15. I'm waiting on the side frames and the trucks before I can go on with either model. These are great little trams to build as there is a minimum of interior detail so construction goes quite quickly. And not much to go wrong. There is still some work I can do in finishing off especially around the headlights.

The photo in part 1 shows a different ad on the car from the one I intend to use. As the trams were operated by the Brisbane City Council, I thought it appropriate to use a City Council Loan ad. Al Brisbane trams had flag holders above the motorman's door and when a Brisbane City Loan was open the cars flew flags which said just that. The flag photo started off as a photo from an existing one at the museum and like the ad for the car side it has been heavily worked on with Paint Shop Pro.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Advertising Car No 71 in "O" scale part 1

My scrubber car has come to a halt at the moment as I can't finish the body until the power units and side frames arrive. And as I have only sent the Brill side frames off to the caster this morning it could be awhile yet.

I'm still not well enough to get back onto the layout for awhile and as I have ordered two power units I have decided another 4 wheeler is in order. Looking for something that ran in the 1960s and a little different as well I chose to start building Advertising Car No 71 as seen in the first photo. This photo was taken in the mid 1960s.

No 71 started life in 1915 as a "Standard 10 Bench" car No 71 as per the drawings below and was converted to an advertising car in 1954. I have been unable to find any drawings for this car in the museum archives but I have a number of photos of 71 and a set of drawings for the original 10 bench cars. It's obvious that as much as possible of the original car was used in the conversion. The original roof was reused along with the two motorman's bulkheads. The chassis was unchanged and I suspect the central eight seats were left in place as well. The front and rear seats had the horizontal part removed but the backs are still clearly visible attached to the bulkheads in the photos. The frames for the signs were stood out from the original sides, obviously to clear the edge of the roof.

I have developed out all the parts by reference to the photos and using the 10 bench dimensions. If I'm not correct no one is going to be able to prove me wrong.

So now to cut out the pieces and start gluing them together.