Saturday 30 April 2011

Cornish Pump / Model Rail 156

nevard_101015_cornish_pump_IMG_8138_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

The Cornish Engine that's popped up on this blog from time to time now has its full construction revealed in the May issue of Model Rail Mag. In there I go into a lot more detail about the way the various textures and colouring where achieved.

Also in this issue:

  • News section including launch of the exclusive Model Rail Sentinel locomotive.
  • Big Picture x 2!
  • Model of the Month - Heljan 'Lion'
  • Reviews
  • Model Mail
  • Torrington 'OO' layout
  • Carry on Camping
  • Crockherbtown 'OO' layout 
  • Masterplan - ironstone quarry
  • How to solder a wire
  • Cartazzi Upgrade (george)
  • Install telegraph wires
  • Build N gauge canal basin
  • Supertest Track Cleaners
  • Make Buildings - Building a Cornish Engine
  • Make better road vehicles
  • Q&A
  • Show & Tell
  • Model Rail shop
  • Competition
  • Exhibition Diary

The Spaniards Are Coming!

Catcott Burtle is in the May 2011 issue of the Spanish model railway magazine 'Maquetren'.

It would appear that there is a demand in Spain to see models of bucolic English backwaters. This is quite refreshing because I frequently thought like many that Britain is only known for slobbish behavior, deep fried food, bad dress sense and really dreadful football.

So a few months ago it was a very nice surprise when a couple of members of the Maquetren editorial team got in touch wanting to feature an alternative and different view of England -albeit in miniature.

Friday 29 April 2011

"ello ello"

Brewhouse Quay update: "ello, ello, what's goin on 'ere?". What would appear to be a special contract brew for the Black Rat Brewery is under guard courtesy the long arm of the law, or old bill. A few of those casks appear the have already had their liquid bounty racked off if the holes are anything to go by!

Out of curiosity, the type of huge wooden cask on the far left are rumoured to be known as a 'butt', this being correct means that they each carry 108 gallions of intoxicating liquor, or possibly just air in this case!

Wednesday 27 April 2011

Meadow Green & Bungalows

nevard_110427_J94_DSC_2034_web1280, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

Well, I was all set to leave this loco black, then whilst going through one of my colour industrial steam books noticed that very few industrial locos were plain black. By chance in the garage I had this aerosol of Halfords Ford Meadow Green kicking about for scenic work, and after the hasty the application of some masking tape the loco was given a blast of this wishy-washy green colour. I really cannot believe that anyone would have chosen this colour for a new car in the showroom, but there again metallic beige has always been popular with the blue rinse brigade, accountants and people who live in bungalows, so who am I to judge?

Here is the result, after a little weathering and the application of a bespoke etched name plate from Narrow Planet. Why Radstock? Well, the primary reason for doing this loco is for Mendip Colliery and this former industrial town used to be the North Somerset centre of coal mining until the early 1970's.

Tuesday 26 April 2011

Austerity Progress

nevard_110427_j94-hunslet_IMG_9846_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

Here we have the J94 Austerity mid-way through a super detail and repaint (See earlier post here.)
Originally all I was going to keep the lined maroon colour, but due to the amount of filling and filing I have abandoned that move. Currently the loco is in black, and I'm tempted to keep this 'colour' and paint the nameplate red. I don't really go for pretty twee colour schemes.

Alternative angle can be seen here

The slight gap running along the base of the saddle tank will sadly have to stay, filling it would make any future maintenance very tricky - separation being required to access the motor and worm. As usual, such things tend to look worse in photographs.

Work so far has been as follows...
  • Remove the silly moulded handrail loop midway along the base of the boiler.
  • Fill small cutaway below the above.
  • Replace the moulded smokebox door handles with brass.
  • Remove moulded lamp-irons and replace with brass.
  • File away and replace the cab entry grab rails and replace with brass.
  • File away mould lines on the chimney.
  • Remove moulded coal.
  • Repaint the whole loco in matt black.
Work still to do...
  • Replace the moulded pipework below the cab (this can be done at a later stage when I source something suitable - suggestions of a supplier greatfully received).
  • Add 3 link couplings.
  • Add slightly larger diameter buffers. 
  • Blacken wheels - this makes a huge improvement, short of actually replacing them.
  • Add etched bespoke name plate 'RADSTOCK' from Narrow Planet. See earlier post here.
  • Add coal load to bunker. 
  • Weather.
  • Add a crew.

Sunday 24 April 2011

My Palette

nevard_110406_BQ_colours_IMG_9599_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

I frequently get asked what colours I use. The trick I think is to avoid anything too bright and certainly don't use manufactured 'railway colours', they're always too bright and lurid.
Here are the colours used on Brewhouse Quay and Catcott Burtle - they're all Humbrol or Revell matt enamel. I tend to dry brush them onto a grey/brown undercoat (Halfords aerosol primers). You'll notice I also use enamel rather than acrylic, enamel is easier to 'work' and can still be manipulated when almost dry.

Humbrol Matt Enamel
  • 34  White (for window frames)
  • 62  Leather (rust and iron staining and some brickwork)
  • 101 Mid Green (for newish BR Southern Region building green)
  • 120 Light Green (for sun bleached BR Southern Region building green)
  • 121 Pale Stone (for stonework)
  • 147 Light Grey (for stonework)
  • 250 Desert Pink/Sand (for stonework)
Revell Matt Enamel
  • 32116 Sandy Yellow (for stonework)
  • 32174 Gunship Grey (for stonework/cobbles and slate roofs)
  • 32187 Earth Brown (for stonework and general weathering)
  • 32188 Ochre Brown (for stonework, particularly Bath stone) 

The stone colours tend to be blended randomly using the dry-brush technique. Real stone is a mix of many colours, feather the colours rather than use different blocks of solid colour which will tend to create a crappy 'painting by numbers' effect. As with everything, there are no rules, also be sure to look at the real world rather than other people's models for inspiration.

I also have a couple of bottles of emulsion based colour washes, one dark (browny/grey) and one light (sandy/beige), these are used as washes after all other painting. They add further patina, and being water based will not react with the enamel underneath.

Saturday 23 April 2011

Trio or Medley?

 Here we have a 'trio' (gosh, that's so very BBC Masterchef) of wagons posed on the brewery. Of course I could have used 'medley' instead but that sounds more like a microwave meal.

Ok, to the point,  I have a huge collection of second hand wagons that I'm slowly refurbishing. I acquired them about 10 years ago, but they probably date back to the 1970's and 1980's. Most of them I can identify, but these defy me, so I'm turning to you the as ever informed reader.

Armchair modellers will be ideally suited to reply to this post with all their experience of over-analysing and pontification (aka excuse for not doing any model making). I'm only pulling your legs of course (or foot stools in your case), some of my closest friends are armchair modellers.

Wagon 1 (click to enlarge): The sprung plastic suspension would suggest that it might be a Peco 'Wonderful Wagon'. The transfers look like they've been applied to matt paintwork. Tip; always gloss any areas that are going to have waterslide transfers applied (or should I say 'decal', the model makers' version of 'train station') and then apply matt varnish after. I quite like this wagon and if I was a proper modeller I'd replace the ladder with a brass one.

Wagon 2 (click to enlarge): This one is a plastic kit what what would appear to be an LMS 3 plank open (obviously). The beer casks are not part of the wagon.

Wagon (click to enlarge) 3. These delightful of white metal kit built ones defy identification. Do you know who produced them?

Friday 22 April 2011

Get outside - it's a lovely day....

nevard_110422_brewhouseQ_IMG_9812_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

Before I take advantage of the nice weather outside (probably doing dull things like gardening which I hate; Astroturf and plastic shrubs would be ideal - actually full sized static grass would get my vote too), here's another quick snap of the overgrown rails on the wharf after a zap of the Grasmaster. The lightly laid (code 55 flatbottomed) section here being inlaid in ash and clinker between the cobbles, so after a little rain ideal for grass and weeds to propagate. 

Someone who also should really be outside will no doubt want to know about the single wooden cask next to the disused crane, why it's there and what make it is. I have no idea, maybe it was pinched from the pub next to the loco after closing time? I can tell you that it's a pukka wooden one and comes from the Black Rat Brewery in Saltash, but apart from that, can tell you no more I'm afraid - so get out for some sun!

Thursday 21 April 2011

No Buffer stops

nevard_110422_brewhouseQ_IMG_9816_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

Brewhouse Quay Update: Rather than end the sidings here with buffer stops, a gate suggesting the rest of the world and large sliding doors to another warehouse/workshop has made a more interesting 'end'. Hopefully the effect will suggest that this is only a tiny section of a much bigger brewery complex. The temporary lack of casks give the effect of a closed brewery - maybe Whitbreads have bought it out and shut the brewery here as part of the their infamous 'Tour of Destruction'?

This afternoon in the garden I got out the Grasmaster and some static grass to finish off the ground cover. The colour is a blend of various static grasses saved from previous static grass applications on other layouts. I always empty the hoover (or bag-less Dyson in the this case) and save the surplus fibres for re-use. Colour wise I can tell you that here is a blend of winter and autumn 4.5mm and 6mm grasses from Noch and Mini-Natur.  

This shot was taken in natural daylight in the garden shortly after the sun went over the horizon.

Wednesday 20 April 2011

A Fresh Consignment of Casks

nevard_110421_brewhouseQ_IMG_9786_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

Brewhouse Quay: A recent consignment of ales casks litters the end of the yard near the cooperage. Many of these have come from the Black Rat Brewery in Saltash near Plymouth for refurbishment courtesy of Mr Sullivan MD of the brewery. Note the two rather large Hogsheads next to the building on the the right.  

The follow this thread - take this LINK.

Sunday 17 April 2011

Busy Quayside

Brewhouse Quay: Bristol Barrow Road's 'Pug' 51202 propels a few casks along the brewery quay.

For the sceptics who think this malarkey is all cgi - the only addition is the fake smoke.

Saturday 16 April 2011

Neoprene Rubber

Brewhouse Quay: to the right, the latest scratchbuilt warehouse in the BQ saga (think of it as satellite telly, you can tune to another channel if you're as bored as I am).

I had to photograph a rather nice china clay works earlier today for the popular press and needed to dig out a small diesel loco in the form of this Bachmann 03 (or is it an 04?). With hindsight, it actually looks rather good here on the wharf.

I bought this loco about 10 years ago and after seeing a real one at the Bucks Railway Centre decided to repaint and renumber this loco loco to reflect the trip there at the the time.

The shiny blue outfit of the driver is simply down to the fact that he is a tad kinky and decided to get a set of engineer's attire in shiny 99.98% waterproof neoprene rubber. Well, that's my excuse for that fact that I cannot be bothered to repaint or replace the saucy little chap.

If you haven't a clue what this thread is all about, follow this link for the whole story (and select 'older posts') .

Wednesday 13 April 2011

I'm Alright Jack?

Brewhouse Quay: This is what happens when the over ambitious new kid upsets the union shop steward - especially as they have a car, something that few of your working men at the time could afford to buy, suggesting some sucking up to the management or such.

The real reason for this post is that early today I bought out Addlestone Model's entire stock of Peco barrels. They had 2 packs.

These come moulded in some kind of reddy-brown colour, so a quick blast with various Halfords primers make a fix which looks fine from a normal viewing distance. The design looks a little like a modern metal cask, but I'm not going to worry about that for normal viewing. The ends were already painted red, probably by little Chinese person and by hand. I decided to keep the colour on the ends. If my name was Pendon or I was an armchair modeller I'd have the type of ale chalked onto the end of each cask of course. I'm not either.

Get a high backscene to cover those kebab stains

Brewhouse Quay: The stone on the Scenecraft Oak Hill Brewery buildings out of the box is very light and correct for such a building when new. But a 100 or so years on and the Bath stone will have darkened with algae and pollution; to address this, the stonework has been dry brushed with various Humbrol matt enamels and darker washes to help blend theme in with the areas of the scene. Since taking this snap (under hazy sunlight in the garden), I have repainted the slates on the hopstore to a darker, bluer shade and without the skid marks!

Forest in a Box' Sea Moss from Greenscene (though any make will do) has been sprayed and treated with various flocks for the trees. The trees were then sprayed again with some Ford Laurel Green to get rid of the playground colours. A dusting of the wife's hairspray further fixed everything in place once stuck down.

Hopefully this scene illustrates the importance of a high backdrop - essential if the layout is to photograph well without having to resort to 'Photoshopping' a sky in for publication. There is a bonus with this too especially if you take your layout to shows, that high backscene will be very useful on the Sunday to hide beer bellies and doner kebab stained railway monogrammed polo shirts from the the mark of overindulgence the night before whilst checking out the town's Good Beer Guide Pubs and fast food vans.

Tuesday 12 April 2011

Getting there....

Brewhouse Quay: A overall view taken under natural daylight, but Photoshopped to hide my patio and unpainted timber. In due course the diorama/layout shell will be painted black, so the effect in a dark room shouldn't be too different. That is the only computer manipulation - the actual layout is 'as is'.

I am still undecided what to place on the extreme right, but it's likely to be another building. I was rather taken with the listed Bentley Model Railway Group clubroom the other day, its mix of stone and ramshackle timber being ideal for such a wharf scene.

The canal is about to be repainted shortly to a darker colour.....

More recent snaps here!

Tuesday's Old Bull..

nevard_110411_brewhouseQ_IMG_9681_postcard_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

Last night quick dig through Ian Locksmith's print collection revealed another photo of Brewhouse Quay on the edge of Bath.

Judging by the angle, this one appears to have been taken from another canal boat and from the time around 1952 when the brewery had a major rebuild to get rid of the wartime damage - the barge to the left being used as a water-born skip.

Note the wharf side crane, I bet nobody at the time had the faintest idea that there would be a future plastic kit based on it!

Our intrepid photographer also took a rather nice Kodachrome slide at the same time, you can see it here.

Sunday 10 April 2011

Bleadon Lovely!

nevard_110410_bleadon_test_IMG_9666_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

I popped over to the East Grinstead Model Railway Exhibition earlier for a whistle-stop tour. Ever so often one comes across a layout that ticks all the boxes, and with my addiction to bucolic railway backwaters the stunning Bleadon gave immediate and total satisfaction.

Bleadon, delightfully modelled in O gauge, is a portrayal of a little known halt on the Weston, Clevedon & Portishead Light Railway, its creator capturing that North Somerset feel perfectly with rusty, dusty lightly laid rails winding through red-pantiled cottages and a farmyards. 

The layout has been around for many years, but its present custodian Mervin Kendall manages to keep the layout looking as fresh as ever whilst providing excellent entertainment for those that simply want to watch charming little trains trundling to and fro.

Want to see some more snaps? Well of course you do - they're here....

A Right Old Carry On

Brewhouse  Quay: There is still much to do with the layout is still evolving, and  this is an example of spur of the moment model making.

The gate ‘to the  rest of the world’ seen here in its embryonic stage, is the result of  seeing just such a gate in the movie 'Carry On at Your Convenience'  and thinking out loud "that's just what I need". Being able to ‘pause’  live video on a Sky + box allowed me to make a quick sketch of the  various strengthening timbers. When I track down some rather nice PHD  Design spear fencing lurking in my bits box, I'll be incorporating some  of it popping out of the top of the stone wall either side of the gate,  as well as poaching a few spikes to protrude actually out of the gate. 

The spray painted backdrop through paper templates depicting a misty  summer day, can be seen to good effect here. The textured effect is the  result of photographing it under the hard overhead lighting from a  domestic bulb in the dining room. Once proper softer layout lighting is  in place it will look far smoother.

Saturday 9 April 2011

Corner Filler

Brewhouse Quay: I was a little unsure about the corner between the grainstore, the cooperage and the use of a hacked up Hornby Skaledale pithead building. So to address this I decided to link the two together a sort of with a structure to supports a watertank. I'm unsure of its real use, though I imagine one can never have enough water tanks in an industrial complex. Let's just say it's the water supply for the cask sterilising plant, or maybe water to cool the iron in the smithy - the iron rings being forged to hold the wooden casks together.

Modelling time? 2 hours from start to painting.

Friday 8 April 2011

Bespoke Nameplates

Earlier today a bespoke 'RADSTOCK' Narrow Planet nameplate arrived for this Hornby J94 Austerity seen here posed on Brewhouse Quay. This loco has yet to be detailed up, so the plate is only tacked temporarily in place for this snap.

I will do a full review in due course.......

Find out more from here:

Thursday 7 April 2011

Cooperage Services for Harrap, Farmer & Maddocks Devon Brewers

nevard_110406_brewhouseQ_IMG_9620_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

With the weekend ahead, now's the time for a little 'Friday feeling' sillyness.....

Brewhouse Quay: Looking across the canal wharf sidings at the little ex-Midland Railway Johnson 1P 0-4-4 which has just opened up the regulator to blast over the wagon turntable.

In the brewery it was frowned at to run anything bigger than an 0-4-0 over these little turntables, so the unwritten rule was to open the regulator and quickly bounce over the offending item when the foreman popped in for a pint or two of mild and bitter ale. This he did regularly.

With the move over the metal casks at many breweries, many had by the late 1950's lost their traditional cooperages. However the brewery here still was able to perform cooperage services for other breweries, the red LNER van being being loaded up with a consignment of overhauled casks for Farmer, Harrap & Maddocks Brewery in nearby East Devon.

Again, Ivan Locksmith's ancient Austin can be seen parked in shot.

Tuesday 5 April 2011

Old Postcard

nevard_110404_brewhouseQ_IMG_9582_BW_postcard, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

I was shifting through an Ebay purchase of some 10x8 black and white prints recently, and found this shot taken on the real Brewhouse Quay (it's on the Kennet and Avon on the edge Bath by the way). I gather the photo was taken in 1949 by all accounts.

As you can see, it's a very tidy place with little in the way of much going on. Still, 1949 was very much like the present time with everything run down and the country on the verge of bankruptcy, truly austere times indeed - still, the unusual track layout makes a nice shot. The photographer is believed to be Ivan Locksmith (the key being the little Austin which appeared in many of his shots), and as we all know he had an excellent eye!

He also took a Kodachrome slide too

Disclamer:  The layout is far from finished and is subject to  further work and alteration (mainly 100's of casks everywhere).. The sky  has NOT been  Photoshopped, but the clag from the Pug has. It does actually run, and is likely to have  its first  proper public outing at Model Rail Live 17/18 Sept 2011 at  'roll out  the' Barrow Hill Roundhouse where it will be used to showcase  the Model Rail/Dapol Sentinel or whatever else I fancy running. No, it's not DCC, but I might build in a set of hand pumps to dispense ale.

Monday 4 April 2011

Peek a Boo!

Ha! I bet that title got your attention! Remember this is a toy chuff chuff site so you'll have to go elsewhere for your daily dose of smut, tee hee!

This rather wobbly animated GIF file shows off the exit through the backscene from the line that comes off the wagon turntable. In theory (at least) it should be possible to push a wagon through the gates here and swap the wagon for another. The gates here come from the back of a Scenecraft Oakhill Brewery building.  

The Monday Managment Tour

Brewhouse Quay Project: The brewery management (Foster, Dent, Marriott & Jones Celebrated Ales) are captured there having their bi-monthly tour of inspection in their recently purchased ex-LSWR brake van that was found on the Isle of Wight. Well actually, they're in the brewery tap on the right so that's why they're not in shot.

The real reason for this snap is to show off the new aerial walkway and associated building knocked up from the plastic card and foam board. It's been primarily built to serve as an additional scenic break. I've used different material to the brewery buildings because there's no way that I'll be able to match what Messrs Bachmann and Co. and the skilled Chinese workers have produced. Obviously it still needs to be painted.

It's also a chance to show off the lightweight looking hand built track using code 55 flat bottomed rail and DAS (modelling clay) used to replicated ash ballast and cobbles.

The Caboose Hobbies actual working ground throw is showcased nicely here and much much bigger than it is in real life. With hindsight I maybe should have chosen to use the N gauge ones as recommended by Mr Burkin in April 2010 Model Rail instead of the HO scale one here. I'm not going to lose any sleep over that, and in any case not every operator will have tiny fingers.

Sunday 3 April 2011

Simple Lighting

I'm always getting emails requesting information about how I light these work in progress shots.

For proper shoots I use studio lighting, but with record shots like the Brewhouse Quay shot in the right I tend to use what ever is around. The light source in this case being the 60 watt bulb domestic lighting hanging from the ceiling above in our dining room. The large folding silvered reflector resting on the chair bounces some extra light in to what would be dark dense shadows.

Another trick if your camera allows, is to shoot RAW (read your manual), it allow far greater control of white balance, brightness and contrast in the post production stage.

This shot was taken on an inexpensive Canon G9 (the latest incarnation being the G12). It's not what you use, it's how you use it that counts - so never worry if you don't have the latest camera (with apologies to the camera club kitaholic bores), but invest in learning about photography rather than flexing credit cards.

A Slap of Paint....

nevard_110403_brewhQ_store_IMG_9525_web, originally uploaded by nevardmedia.

Just a quick post, I've been too busy modelling rather than surfing the web - here's the quay after a splash of paint. Well to be honest several layers, some dry brushed and some washes to create an effect that looks nothing like tarmac thankfully...

A few more snaps of the above are here....

Night night!