Sunday, August 26, 2012

Turned Back Time and Have Seen The Light

What a weekend - the weather has been great and I devoted both days to model railways. I was up at 0445 on Saturday morning ready for the drive up to Epping for the Early Days convention. This was my first Early Days convention and overall I thought it was pretty good. While I do not model the period I still found some of lectures and models very interesting. One such lecture focussed on colour schemes utilised by the NSW railways between 1855 - 1955. For me, the colour scheme information discussed was the most definitive to date. It was good to see evidence rather than relying on someones recollections. I can't remember the presenters name but he has to be thanked for putting so much effort into the subject.
While at the convention I noticed that the average age of attendees must have been around 100. I am obviously exaggerating (just a little ha ha) but within a few decades a lot of the Early Day modelling knowledge will be gone. These conventions provide an avenue to pass information on but how far through younger generations will this information propagate?
Another somewhat depressing piece of information I learnt, fairly early on in the day was that I would not be ordering any RH cement hoppers. It seems old bugger kits are a little hard to come by. Back to building my own RHs I guess.
All in all it was a great day. It was good to catch up with a few guys particularly Rob (Picton Blog) and Oscar (the most insane modeller I have ever met!)
Today was spent in the shed. I have almost fully completed one module! Although all five modules are built, it has taken me a long time to put the finishing touches on them.

Wish I owned Irwin shares!

Incorporating the LED lighting has been holding me up. I didn’t want to rely on the 3M sticky backing to secure the strips and have been trying to come up with a simple, light and adjustable method of fixing. I have heard others have had success with the stick on method but in my experience 3M stand for 3 months - 3 months of stickiness. The method I have come up with for securing the strips was to mount them in grooves cut with a 3/8 dovetail router bit. This has worked fairly well so far with the strips simply sliding in place. As the LEDs are quite directional (120 degrees) and no light is emitted behind I have been a little hesitant in trying to build a reflector. Would love to hear from others in regards to this.
I decided to run two rows of lights - 240 LEDS per module. One strip is warm white and the other pure white. During my testing I found if only pure white was used it seemed to create a clinical look and in some cases the weathering applied to rolling stock was no longer visible.
I have included a few pictures; let me know what you think. So far I am happy with it. I guess the real test will be how the scenery looks under it.
I have used hinges so adjustment is possible

Classic 2510 Shunts the, for now, single road yard in Picton

Mini Models MLV with a few extras. I have some new weathering products turning up next week. I think the MLV will end being the guinea pig.
Thanks for looking,


  1. G'day Linton

    The lighting looks good the only thing I was wondering have tried it with a blue background as the white may be a little more reflective.
    Cheers Jon

  2. Hey Jon,

    Yeah I was wondering if it would make difference. I am sure it will! I am planning on having the lower part of the background fairly pale blue darkening towards the top. I am still a little way off painting the back grounds so a test may be in order. If the LED fails I will be able to easily convert it to fluros or something.
    Your CW look really good! I heard you have come up with a new method for painting wheels!


  3. Hi Linton,
    The bench work is looking really good and I like you ideas with the LED lights....and best of all, nice and cheap from what you were saying.


  4. Hey, thanks Rob! Yeah I thought as most of the rolling stock comes from china these days it would obviously require Chinese light ha ha. Each five meter, weather proof strip was delivered to my door for $21. It's even cheaper for the non weather proof stuff. I did originally buy a five meter roll from an Aussie LED distributor and have to admit the quality is a lot better. Although better quality it did cost six times more and I think I will use it in the new house.

    I am going to pull that brass EHO out this week and have a closer look at the roof profile. I was going to detail this model up and paint it but now I am not sure? Thanks Rob ha ha.


  5. Looks Good Towelly. I hope to see some more progress when I get back

  6. Looking very good there. BTW, regarding RH cement hoppers, in research for kitbashing my own, I've found out that there were two arrangements of the rooflids. Those that continued with the NSWGR had a central hatch with a wooden platform on either side, while those sold on to Southern Portland Cement all have a single central platform with a roof hatch either side. For some good photos and measurements, try this page here: Hope this is of use to you. Look forward to seeing the finished items.