Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Happy Easter


It's been a while since I stepped up to the keyboard and updated this cyberspace soapbox we all call blogger. Not much has really happened apart from almost completing the Austrains FS BS coaches, gluing a TAM back together, trying to finish the layout back scene and also changing my career - again.
The FS BS project is almost complete, well one pack anyway. I still have not pre-dated the end handrails/lamp iron brackets yet. To be honest this is the part I am holding off on. I keep telling myself who cares if they are not in the right spot! They are there! Well the sensible approach most of the time gets overpowered by my annoying rivet counting side. I am afraid this situation will be no different. Now to mix some paint to the right shade, hopefully.

Ready for paint

The seat colour may be a little to maroon. I was going to add a brown wash but once the body is added you can hardly see the seating.

Will had a little weathering to the body once the hand rails are soughted.

The working diaphragms really do work! After a test run on "Waterfall" I am very happy with there operation and will use this method for future projects.

The short shank scale head Kadee has been positioned back towards the bogie so as to close couple the diaphragms. To do this I removed the original threaded spiggot along with the rear two upright coupler lid retainers. The hole for the screw is then elongated towards the bogie and a Kadee coupler box lid trimmed at the back and added. With the round mounting lugs of the Kadee coupler lid pushed up against the front two original coupler lid retainers it provides perfect spacing for the working diaphragms operation. I was not happy with the coach floor sinking into the body so I added a styrene cross brace in the end of each body section. The floor now sits on this styrene brace and allows the 10BA screw holding the coupler to also hold the floor in properly. No more floors dropping out or sinking into the body.

The TAM cars have barely progressed. I decided to mill the crown lights out further, so they would sit proud of the main window. All was going so well. Writing down all the measurements on my white board beside the mill I set off and started the second side. Dialling up the required depth I began to mill the crown light. I can now let you in on some useless information, unless of course you’re milling Lima TAM windows. The sides are not the same thickness! I learnt this as I watched one crown light completely disappear. I have since fixed the missing crown light by making a new styrene frame and gluing it in place.
Still to be cleaned up but you can see the extra milling of the crown lights.

TAM glued back together. Now to make some underframes and fix up the roof.

I have had the last few days at home and I have been trying to finish the layouts curved back scene. I seem to spend a lot of time in the shed but I cannot see much progress. Hopefully one day it will come together.

My real life has been turned on its head again with another career change taking place. For the past 14 months I have been learning to drive freight trains with PN. It was something I had wanted to do for many years and I was most fortunate in being based out of Moss Vale. I still could not tell you much about modern railways or locomotive classes however I found it most enjoyable. On the job I have met many genuine, interesting people ranging from Cootamundra to West Narrabri. Every day was an eye opener particularly heading down the mountain, travelling south to Coota and obviously driving a 3000 ton wheat train through Picton. 

I am back in the Aviation Industry, riding a desk, providing my previous Navy squadron avionics engineering support. I am looking forward to my new role but will always remember the feeling of trying to control 6000 horsepower attached to a loaded wheat train on the Main South.
On my last day I decided to take my first train picture. Heading down the mountain line and while put away in Mt Murrays Loop I took this picture of our export wheat train at around 6.30 in the morning. Lead Loco 8179 looks impressive washed in the red light emitting from the starter.

3922 Mt Murray Loop 31Mar2012

Thanks and have a great Easter break,


  1. "who cares if they aren't in the right spot"!!! The Detail Police now have an active file on you, Towelly! ;) Seriously, if the details like having the lamp irons in the right spot aren't correct, what is the point of adding detail and correcting other things! You may as well have stayed with straight out of the box Trax! To me, having significant details, like the lamp irons, in the wrong place for the period modelled is the equivalent of hauling S trucks with an NR! Now behave! The Detail Police are watching!

  2. Ha ha, yes James I know. I will get onto it and hopefully you can archive my file. NR s with S trucks! You never know! PN does have a wagon shortage problem and I know there are a couple of lonely S trucks sitting in Goulburn loco.