Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Thu Dec 02, 2010 7:02 pm

Dear all,

Despite being 8 years on the exhibition circuit, Mostyn is still missing some of its most identifiable traffic flows and wagons. We are in the process of building the largest single wagon type, ex-ironstone hoppers, and plan to have an eventual fleet of 69 vehicles.

The ex-ironstone hoppers were used for two flows on the North Wales coast main line in the late 1970s:-

Imported sulphur powder from Mostyn Dock to Associated Octel at Amlwch, Anglesey for use in fuel additives. You can see this traffic at :-
http://www.penmorfa.com/Archive/two.html

Stone from Penmaenmawr to terminals at Manchester and Liverpool.

So, how do you go about a project of this size? The first step is to get an understanding of the exact wagon types we require.

More to follow.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Sun Dec 05, 2010 4:21 pm

It doesn't seem too onerous a task to identify which types of a wagon you ought to build for your layout but, in the case of ironstone hoppers, it is quite a complicated story.

British Railways built 3 types in the two years following Nationalisation:
Dia. 1/160
Dia. 1/161
Dia. 1/162

They followed this up with a further five types in the period 1955-59
Dia. 1/163
Dia. 1/164
Dia. 1/165
Dia. 1/166
Dia. 1/167

As time went by various wagons were up-graded (heavier journals and roller-bearings to up-rate the tonnage load and/or conversion to vacuum-braked) and/or modified (to carry different traffic as their intended flow diminished). This produced two further diagrams:-

Dia. 1/168
Dia. 1/175

It is also resulted in some wagons that had been converted but not given a new Diagram number.

You can see all these Diagrams on our club's website. The file is big so be patient. Each Diagram is on the page of the same number.
See:- http://www.barrowmoremrg.co.uk/BRBDocum ... 1Issue.pdf

That's probably enough numbers for now. The only thing I'll add at this stage is a reading list for those who want to accompany the project in detail.

Ironstone Hopper Bibliography

1. Working Wagons Volume 1 1968-1973 by David Larkin. Published by Santona 1998. ISBN 0-9507960-6-9. Frontispiece and pages 28-29.

2. Working Wagons Volume 2 1974-1979 by David Larkin. Published by Santona 1999. ISBN 0-9507960-7-7. Pages 30-31.

3. Working Wagons Volume 3 1980-1984 by David Larkin. Published by Santona 2001. ISBN 0-9538448-2-X. Pages 18-19.

4. Rolling Stock Recognition: 2. BR and Private Owner Wagons by Colin Marsden. Published by Ian Allan 1984. ISBN 0-7110-1403-5. Pages 29-30.

5. BR Standard Freight Wagons by David Larkin. Published by Bradford Barton 1979. ISBN 0-85153-240-3. Pages 13-14.

6. Wagons of the Middle British Railways Era by David Larkin. Published by Kestrel 2007. ISBN 978-1-905505-06-7. Pages 48-49.

7. Wagons of the Final Years of British Railways by David Larkin. Published by Kestrel 2008. ISBN 978-1-905505-08-1. Pages 42-43.

8. British Railway Wagons No.1 Opens and Hoppers compiled by G.Gamble. Published by Cheona 1998. ISBN 1-900298-01-5. Pages 46-47 and 53.

9. British Railway Goods Wagons in Colour by Robert Hendry. Published by Midland 1999. ISBN 1-85780-094-X. Pages 37-38.

10. British Railway Goods Wagons in Colour 1960-2003 by Robert Hendry. Published by Midland 2003. ISBN 1-85780-170-9. Pages 52-53.

11. British Railways Wagons – the first half million by Don Rowland. Published by Leopard 1996. ISBN 0-7529-0378-0. Pages 55-57.

12. Model Railway Journal - Issue 176 - Article by Geoff Kent

Cheers,

Richard

(revised 5/12 to add item 12 to book list)
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Tappa » Sun Dec 05, 2010 5:53 pm

Hi Richard - can I also offer Model Railway Journal issue 176 - part one of a series by Geoff Kent. This issue deals with building the 51L/Wizard Models kit.
Jeff Taylor
East Riding Finescale Group

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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Sun Dec 05, 2010 6:15 pm

Tappa wrote:Hi Richard - can I also offer Model Railway Journal issue 176 - part one of a series by Geoff Kent. This issue deals with building the 51L/Wizard Models kit.


Hi Jeff,

Thanks - obvious omission on my part - I'll add it to the list. The picture on the 51L/Wizard kit packaging is a wagon built by Geoff Kent. As this thread develops the link between the existence of the kit and our desire to model them will become very clear !

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Tue Dec 07, 2010 6:44 pm

The next step in the process of identifying the wagons we need to build for our sulphur and stone flows is to consider what happened between the construction of the wagons and Mostyn's time period of 1977.

Firstly, the early designs Dia. 1/160, Dia. 1/161 and Dia. 1/162 had been withdrawn and can be ignored.

Secondly, the Dia. 1/164 specially-designed longer wheelbase and longer underframe hoppers for Ravenscraig traffic became surplus to requirements when replaced by air-braked vehicles around 1976 but did not reach general traffic until much later. They can be ignored and this is a real bonus for us since all the other Diagrams share the same basic underframe and hopper design.

So, having simplified the picture, let's link the remaining Diagrams into a family tree:-

Dia. 1/163
Standard unfitted design
1500 built
B438000 - B438899 under Lot 2733
B438900 - B439499 under Lot 3001


Dia. 1/163 was developed on to produce two vacuum-fitted designs:-

Dia. 1/165
Vacuum-fitted version of Dia. 1/163
200 built
B439500 - B439699 under Lot 3142


and

Dia. 1/167
Higher Tonnage, vacuum-fitted development of Dia. 1/163
400 built
B437500 - B47899 under Lot 3002


The final new-build marked a retrograde step when an unfitted version of Dia. 1/165 arrived:-

Dia. 1/166
Unfitted (some through-piped) version of Dia. 1/165
350 built
B439700 - B440049 under Lot 3189


The two conversions which were given new Diagram numbers fit into the family tree as follows:-

Dia. 1/168
Vacuum-fitted modifications of Dia. 1/163 vehicles
82 vehicles converted


and

Dia. 1/175
Conversions of 1/163 and 1/165 vehicles for clinker traffic
83 vehicles converted


Finally there were three further types of conversions which were not given separate Diagram numbers:-

- early modifications for limestone traffic from 1/163 and 1/166
- modifications for salt traffic from 1/163 and 1/166
- later modifications for limestone traffic from 1/165 and 1/166

The final twist is that a large number of the originally through-piped 1/166 vehicles were converted to vacuum-braked. So in 1977 a 1/166 vehicle could be either unfitted, through-piped or vacuum-braked. (and these differences are modellable).

I'm going to pause for breath now. If anyone is unclear about the terminology used then please fire ahead.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:03 am

Onwards with the ex-ironstone hopper story…………….

It may seem that rather a lot of words have already been posted and there’s no sight yet of a modelling knife but this is typically how we work as a group. It’s all very well picking an attractive prototype if you’re just building a one-off or a few but, if you’re building numerous examples, then you need to understand what the overall fleet looked like to ensure that your models are representative of what was out there.

From the previous posting we can now exclude from our build the two types of conversion that resulted in clearly visible differences which would show up in any photographs. These are the 1/175 Clinker conversions and the salt conversions (see Paul Bartlett’s site http://gallery6801.fotopic.net/c1508121.html for images - by the way, I notice as I type this that Paul is our newest member on Fred and hope he gets pleasure from seeing how much his site is used as essential reference material).

The limestone conversions appear to have drifted back into general traffic but since the ‘conversion’ seemed to have consisted of nothing more ambitious than welding tie-down cleats onto the body support stanchions there is not a lot of modellable difference to consider.

We’re therefore left with the following vehicles from which to assemble our sulphur and stone fleets:-

Unfitted 1/163 25.5T
Fitted 1/165 25.5T
Fitted 1/165 33.5T (uprated tonnage when changed to roller bearings)
Through-piped 1/166 24T (rare)
Fitted 1/166 24T (conversions from through-piped)
Unfitted 1/166 25.5T
Fitted 1/167 33.5T
Fitted 1/168 25.5T (conversions from 1/163)

For those familiar with TOPS parlance the unfitted vehicles are HJO, the through-piped are HJP, the fitted lower tonnage are HJV and the fitted higher tonnage rated are HKV.

We now need to separate out the two different traffics because of their different physical characteristics. Stone is dense and will benefit from higher rated vehicles whereas sulphur powder is less dense and there are no advantages in using the higher tonnage hoppers. From now on Dave Millward will talk about the stone traffic whereas my attention will be on the sulphur flow.

The sulphur traffic could potentially use HJO, HJP and HJV vehicles in 1977. BR was rapidly scrapping unfitted vehicles at this time but there were not enough fitted vehicles to handle all the traffic for these hoppers. We know that sulphur was shipped in ‘campaigns’ – a ship came in, and was offloaded as quick as possible directly into hoppers for onward transit to Anglesey. In between ships the hoppers lay idle. These vehicles were limited to 35mph (ie. they could not travel in freights timed for Class 7) so could either travel as part of a Class 8 partially-fitted or class 9 unfitted train. With the North Wales Coast main line being very busy, especially in the summer months a 35mph max.Class 8 freight is much more attractive for the planners than a 25mph max. unfitted freight. You would expect the sulphur pool to contain sufficient fitted wagons (HJV) in order that a fitted head could always be formed to enable a block train to run Class 8.

Therefore our modelling specification will need to reflect this.

More to follow.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Dave Millward » Wed Dec 15, 2010 9:09 pm

North Wales coast stone traffic of the mid-late 70s

During the latter part of the 1970s the Kingston minerals quarry at Penmaenmawr despatched regular trains of crushed granite for use as railway ballast, as well as for roadstone. The majority of that for railway use, as well as occasional consignments of boulder sized rock for sea defence work was carried in the Engineers own wagon fleet, whilst that for use as roadstone was mainly conveyed in ex iron-ore tipplers or hoppers. For the purposes of this article relating to our current build of ex-ironstone hoppers I shall focus on the roadstone traffic, adding to the text as work on the build progresses.

During 1977 the longer term roadstone flows to Sandhills, Liverpool and Hope St, Salford featured within the pages of the LMR Section CS Conditional Working Timetable (also available on Dave Plimmer's 2D53 website), whilst other shorter term contracts were dealt with on a weekly basis by Special Traffic Notices (STNs). Locations/terminals lacking hopper discharge facilities, such as Sandhills, were served by the dedicated pool of tipplers based at the quarry, whilst terminals equipped with hopper discharge facilities such as Hope St (Staveley lime products) received deliveries in ex-ironstone hoppers. Note: a second customer on the Hope St site (Thrutchley & Co (Cawood)) received Penmaenmawr granite in tipplers and apparently used the wagons as a form of open storage. The quarry lacked a dedicated pool of ex-ironstone hoppers but we are fortunate to have seen period TOPS printouts from as early as 1973, giving some of the wagon numbers involved, supported by the eye-witness accounts of an enthusiast and accomplished railway freight author. The hoppers involved appear to have been part of a North-west common user pool.

A period view of the yard/loading facilities at Penmaenmawr can be see here http://www.2d53.co.uk/penmaenmawr/Class%2024s.htm

A view of the hopper discharge point at Hope St, Salford can be seen here http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5285263543/ This mid-eighties picture was taken around the time that the ex-ironstone hoppers were replaced on the Penmaenmawr - Hope St workings by air braked RMC bogie hoppers hauled by pairs of class 37s.

The period Working Timetables (WTTs) also assisted with the likely make-up of these services due to the need for each to reverse en-route. The initial headcode from Penmaenmawr would be class 8 but at the point of reversal it became class 9, this indicated a reduction in available brake force and the likely provision of a 'fitted head' of vacuum braked hoppers.
In 1977 there was still a substantial amount of unfitted tipplers and hoppers around and it was rare to see a 'fully fitted' rake of either. The heavy nature of stone traffic and the increasing need for freight trains to travel relatively quickly, in order to make 'pathing' between faster trains easier, meant that the driver needed as much brake force at his disposal as possible. Thus, the normal method of working these trains was to run with a 'fitted head' of braked wagons at the front and an 'unfitted' or unbraked portion to the rear. The partially fitted nature of the consist also meaning that a guard's brakevan was required at the rear of the train. This worked well until it was time to run-round or reverse the train and suddenly the whole consist became unfitted, with the brakevan at the wrong end of the train, therefore one was provided at each end. We have various photographs of these formations and although the all rust/dirt livery of many seventies wagons makes it difficult to distinguish between the fitted and unfitted vehicles at a distance, the original bauxite and grey colours provide clues by 'weathering' into different tones/shades.

The ex-ironstone hopper variants best suited to the heavy demands of this work were those fitted with the heavier journals, however, the 1/165s and 1/167s were supplemented by the lighter duty 1/163s and 1/166s. The North-West 'common user' pool from which they were drawn contained wagons of various origin and this allows us to prototypically include a good cross-section of sub-types in our consist for Mostyn:

1/163 HJO 25.5T unfitted, 1/165 HKV 33.5T fitted, 1/166 HJO 25.5T unfitted, 1/166 HJV 24T fitted, 1/167 HKV 33.5T fitted

The unfitted and fitted versions of the 51L etched brass, white metal and resin kit are designed to build into the 1/163, 1/166 unfitted and 1/166 fitted variants respectively, the other sub-types will require significant scratchbuilding of parts: the 1/167s will require different body struts whilst both the 1/167s and 1/165s will need modified brake components and rigging. We are fortunate to have a wide selection of close-up pictures of the important details of each type and the ICRS 'preserved wagon' datafile will come in handy if we need to track down a preserved example in order to take more measurements/pictures.

Our prototype 1/163 HJO was completed for the Wigan 2009 exhibition and can be viewed at http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5231311308/

This is a picture of the train passing Helsby in 1984 http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5100107796/ The consist was made up entirely of 'fitted' hoppers by this time and the brakevans weren't required.

A period view of the type of consist that we are recreating can be seen at (image not available at the moment) The picture was taken in Chester station and is likely to be a Sandhills or Hope St (Thrutchley & Co) to Penmaenmawr rake of tippler empties. The unfitted portion of the train will be nearest the loco on this return journey which means that the train is running class 9, 25mph 'unfitted' or unbraked as per the period WTT. The brake rate/timing switch on the loco will be set to 'unbraked' for vacuum only locos or 'vacuum goods' for dual braked locos. Note: In the 'goods/unbraked' position the loco brakes apply more slowly, giving the 'fitted head' (on the outbound from Penmaenmawr leg with this train) time to begin to slow the train and reduce the severity of buffer impact along the train. This 'in turn' improves the ride for the guard in his brakevan at the rear. A number of vacuum only braked locos had their 'unbraked' application and release timings modified in the 1960/70s and were re-classified as 'EQ' fitted on their loco data panel. The success of these slower application and release timings resulted in their adoption as standard 'goods' timings on dual-braked locos.

The level of 'weathering' required for the unfitted hoppers can be seen at http://www.flickr.com/photos/robertcwp/2427674811/ This is a 1973 picture on the Blodwell quarry line but the same 'North West' common user hopper pool is likely to be involved. Similar is this 1975 picture of a short rake in sand traffic at Stoke http://www.flickr.com/photos/34487875@N ... 157008540/

Although the stone traffic was a little kinder to the paintwork than the sulphur an idea of the weathering challenge for individual wagons can be seen at http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/briron ... #h2eedc84e

The heavier duty 1/165 with roller bearing axle boxes and revised brake rigging can be seen at http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/briron ... 89#hed8f89

An unfitted 1/166 example can be seen at http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/briron ... #h1834eb76 . Fitted 1/166 are also 'fair game' for our stone train, more commonly 'ex limestone' examples. There are several 'modellable' detail differences that 1/166s tend to have e.g. the number of holes in the W irons for shunting/capstan work are often 4 wherehas the 1/163s often have 2 or 3, also, 1/166s are often missing the small U shaped piece on the bottom of the solebar, in the middle of the V hanger that 1/163s usually have. The axlebox and buffer combination is often different for 1/166s too.

The heavier duty 1/167s were fitted with oil axle boxes http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/briron ... d6#h7f33d6 and had a revised/uprated arrangement of body struts and brake rigging.


Building the kits

Shopping list of parts/materials/hardware used additional to the kit: 11 thou guitar string, well etched bearing carriers from other brass kits, ultrasonic bath and cleaning fluid, Carrs red label flux, 60/40 tin/lead solder from Squires, waisted bearings from Nairnshire modelling supplies, buffers and drawbar hooks from Lanarkshire modelling supplies, instanter coupling links from Ambis, coupling links from Smiths, Araldite rapide, superglue, polystyrene for false load, PVA, wooden lollypop stick/stirrer for the body strut, Phoenix paints grey and white enamel primers, PQ8 thinners, P976 matt white, P128 freight grey, P904/905/950/951 rust shades, P963/975/978/981/982 black/dirt shades, matt varnish, transfers were created on our ALPS printer, Woodland scenics fine ballast, light grey for the stone load with Carrs weathering powders (white and pale grey) for giving the correct stone tone to the load, Ultrascale 3 hole disc Nickel silver wheelsets, Colin Craig etched ladders, Rail Exclusive wagon plates/label clips (some David Geen too), 0.15mm brass sheet for scrawking the scratchbuilt levers/mounts from, Antex soldering irons, glass fibre brushes and a wide range of hand tools, minidrill

There are ample close-up pictures (both B&W and colour) of each hopper type on Paul Bartlett's superb wagon website. The Working wagons series of books by David Larkin contain some useful images too. I would grade it as essential to have close up pictures of the diagram of wagon that you have chosen.

My approach for building the prototype hopper (seen via the link above) is almost unchanged for the batch build of 19 unfitted and fitted kits which will produce our Penmaenmawr to Hope St 'block' or company train. A slight error on the prototype is the overloading i.e. I've modelled a granite load suitable for the 1/165, 1/167 variants in a lighter duty 1/163. This wasn't a rare event on 1970s BR and serves as a cautionary reminder of one of the pitfalls when similar wagons are loaded with varying tonnages within the same consist.

An early consideration with these kits is the 'all up' weight of a completed hopper. At 75g each, even with largely polystyrene loads, a typical rake of just 20 wagons is a sizeable task for many model locos. For aesthetic as well as weight considerations I ordered each kit with etched sideframes instead of white-metal.

There is a significant amount of soldering work required for each kit. My workbench has an Antex 660 temperature controlled unit with a choice of 3 irons (fine, medium and large tips). I find that being able to simply plug in the right iron/tip combination for the job in hand is a big advantage. Carrs red label is my flux of choice. Each underframe is immersed into our ultrasound bath between jobs to ensure that all soldering is done on clean, shiny etched-brass. You would be amazed by the amount of crap that is 'fetched off'. An unexpected bonus is that any poorly attached components are shaken loose in the bath and are easily found in the bottom of the tub rather than 'going missing' as soon as the wagon takes to the rails. Glass fibre brushes need careful handling/disposal of the residue but are excellent for removing excess solder and 'cleaning up' the brass between stages.


A worthwhile stage whilst parts are still being cut from the fret etc is to label what will be the underside of the chassis of each kit with the diagram number and wagon identity that you have chosen for it, with a permanent marker as there are various diagram specific features. It is much better to do jobs such as opening the additional half etched shunting/capstan holes on the W irons before the etch is folded. Another good one once the brake rigging is folded and the brakeblocks are soldered in, is to file the blocks towards minimum. This gives better clearances, reduces the risk of a 'short' and minimises awkward filing/repositioning later when suspension travel is hampered by close fitting blocks. Ultrascale wheelsets are our choice, for their excellent uniform standards and consequent running qualities. Two sets are kept on the bench just for the regular checking/positioning of parts during construction. Guitar string/wire is our suspension medium of choice (11 thou' for a wagon of this weight), for its uniform quality/straightness and springiness characteristics as well as availability in various diameters to help achieve the correct ride height for each wagon. The suspension wire supplied with this kit corrodes relatively quickly and is best put to a less important use. The supplied bearing carriers are often poorly etched and I chose to bin most of them and use spares from other brass kits. The reliable operation of the suspension depends on the quality of the sliding relationship between the w-iron and the bearing carrier and their interaction with the guitar string/locating tabs on the body etch so it isn't worth using poorly produced components. The waisted bearings came from Nairnshire modelling supplies. Note: when folding the tabs down for the suspension wire to locate into beware that the wire can settle into any gaps between the frame and the tab and cause the suspension to have little travel (wagon sits low on one corner when on its wheels). I had this happen on a couple of the unfitted hoppers and used a tiny amount of superglue to fill any gap but this obviously had to be done once all soldering was finished to avoid the release of noxious fumes. Once the waisted bearings were soldered into place on the carriers I filed the bottom of the bearing cup flat to reduce the need to remove as much material from the inside of the axle box, in which the bearing needs to move freely. Several of the w-irons were mis-etched too and a gentle filing of the bearing slot was needed to allow free and easy vertical movement but obviously not to the extent where sideplay could take place.

All brass-etch construction and soldering work was carried out first because there are resin and white-metal stages, involving super-glue, later in the build for which the introduction of a heat source, is simply not an option.

The early stages of assembling the underframe simply followed the instructions, with careful checking for 'squareness' at regular intervals. The large Antex tip easily dealing with the extra heat required when soldering the deck to the subframe. I found that cutting off the foldover tie-bar, tinning and carefully soldering into place gave a neat result consistently and once done made it easy to handle the assembly without distorting the tie bar. The positioning of the 'V' hangers was a critical stage in ensuring the central location of the cross-shaft. I misused the jaws of my vernier calipers at this stage to scribe the exact centre point of the deck side into the softer brass, aiding the centreing process.

Positioning of the etched label clips and builders plates was checked against various pictures of the prototype before they were soldered into place.

An unfortunate complication was the mis-etching of the handbrake levers on our 'unfitted' etches. The method of construction is to solder the two sides back to back to create a rigid lever, which requires the two sides to be 'handed'. Unfortunately, all four sides on each etch were etched the same way round and our request for replacement parts led to some over-etched replacements (much too thin) being sent, these went straight into the bin. My solution has been to snip off the detailed cross-shaft end of one lever side (which 'unhands' the lever) and solder the large remaining part of the lever 'back to back' with its other side.
A worthwhile point concerns the profile of the handbrake lever relative to the type of axlebox fitted, it pays to have close up pics of the wagon that you are modelling because the lever shape varies.

As the etched components to be soldered/fitted get smaller and the postions into which they are destined become more cluttered with other parts/less accessible, so the need to raise the work piece to a height 'just under ones nose' becomes more urgent. It took a couple of frustrating sessions before common sense 'kicked in'. This clip shows the new raised workbench http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5333409476/ . The brasswork is now almost complete on each of the 'unfitted' hoppers and they are allocated positions in the stockboxes that will contain 8J22, see the following clip
http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5333335674/ . The last soldered component will be the scratchbuilt door release lever and support, visible to the right above the hand-brake lever on the picture of the prototype. I found that .5mm strips 'scrawked' from the thinnest brass sheet were flat and straight enough to work into the required dimensions.

During our latest conservatory session yesterday http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5385141671/ more handbrake levers were fashioned and fitted. Colin checked out the 'trueness' of the resin bodies http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5385220107/ and found that two thirds required reshaping in some form. He used hot tap water and various clamping arrangements to bring the bodies into an acceptable and usable state. We now have 16 bodies primed/waiting for a second 'thinned' coat once the paint has hardened, the remaining three bodies will need more remedial work before heading for the paintshop.

A productive telephone conversation with Dave Franks of Lanarkshire Models & supplies, re his superb new range of white metal buffers, has resulted in solutions for replicating each of the various types fitted to the ex ironstone fleet. Dave is sending quantities of 3 types immediately, along with drawhooks and will contact us as the others roll off his production line.

Our latest session at the club yesterday saw the first whitemetal component 'araldited' into place. A cautionary note is to ensure that the hopper door release mechanism casting is just long enough to be bonded to the underside of the chassis without intruding into the space where the working suspension operates. This casting required a small amount of improvement due to poor definition at the non-lever end. Close examination of prototype pictures reveals that this should appear as a curved channel but the thin walls of this channel are absent. I filed back the sides of the whitemetal in this area and used thin-plasticard super-glued into place to replicate the curved walls. The positioning of this component then allows the scratchbuilt release lever, supports and linkage to be soldered into place. The lever and supports were formed from .5mm wide thin brass strip which had been 'scrawked' from brass sheet, again closely observing pictures of the prototype. This clip gives two angles on the progress by the end of the day http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NJlOJUdw-s the scratchbuilt parts of the assembly require cleaning up, the plasticard channel sides a little profiling and the wire linkage from the back of the release lever to the mechanism is yet to be fitted. Experimenting with grinder/router/former dental attachments for the minidrill http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5499022268/

Todays session started with a thorough cleaning up of soldered areas and a complete glass fibre brushing of the chassis to remove any deposits. The door release lever linkage was completed and the whitemetal headstocks sanded/filed to square ready for fitting. Unfortunately, the headstocks are too shallow for the etched sideframes and it was necessary to add a .5mm plasticard strip across the bottom of each to improve the appearance and allow the profiling of the headstock - sideframe detail http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JELCBtE5EcM . A set of 2 rib Dave Franks fabricated buffers/drawhook with Smiths links/instanter have now been fitted, note: some of the prototype 2 rib buffers have a step atop the housing but this can easily be replicated with thin brass strip. Diagram 1/166 B439956 is leading the charge just now http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5442303438/

During our latest 2 day session Colin shaped and fitted the polystyrene 'weight saving' part of the wagon load and sealed it in place with PVA to prevent the dilute PVA that will be used to bond the stone into place from seeping into the bottom of the body and adding to the weight http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXSUM0I6QQU The 1/163 and 1/166 'lighter loads' will require more profiling yet and each will need the insertion of a bodyside prop to keep the sides slightly bowed out.

Careful study of the many 'unfitted' images that we have access to has produced detail differences for each of the 10 unfitted hoppers. It was a challenge to come up with the 'hybox' axleboxes for the last 1/163 but thanks to some spares on a Parkside Dundas tippler sprue and a productive conversation with Dave Franks re Oleo buffers, the sourcing of parts is in hand.

Assembly and fitting of the handwheel operated door release mechanism was relatively straightforward. I rounded off the head of a nail to act as the 'former' for the dished handwheel.

The first three of the new hoppers are now at the body fitting stage. I find that marking the mid-point of the body at the top and on the base of the hopper before fitting a central body support on one side first, works best. This is followed by the four corner supports. These require some filing at the point where they bond to the chassis and time taken here ensures a level fit, with each support perpendicular. With practice the initial filing flat of this contact point is best done before fitting to the body. Bonding just the corner supports to the chassis allows slight adjustment/movement of the body relative to the chassis to ensure alignment in each plane. I double checked the measurement from the floor of the wagon to the top of the body on each corner regularly as supports were bonded into place just to make sure that the measurements were consistent. The body is them araldited to the chassis beneath the hopper http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5465404325/

Several hours work was required to finish fitting the bodyside supports. Profiling of the polystyrene false load for the 1/163s and 1/166s followed before each body had the wooden strut fitted between the bodysides to stop the incorrect bowing in of the resin bodysides and instead for them to take on a slightly bowed out appearance. The whitemetal body supports could then be filed 'in situ', this stage massively improves the side profile of the hopper. Once the excess superglue around the supports had been sanded off, the bodies were washed off ready for a second primer coat to seal the resin from damaging UV light.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/43564631@N08/5468670616/

Positive exchanges with staff at the East Anglian Railway Museum recently should lead to a May visit to Chappel & Wakes Colne to take detailed pictures and measurements of their 1/167 hopper in preparation for the build of the fitted batch.

Our latest 2 day mega-session at Bidston/Barrowmore has produced a rake of 5 'bodied' hoppers http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsqyDscgo28
fitting of the remaining uprights and 'making up'/fitting of the etched ladders will follow. Once several hoppers are coupled together it is very easy to spot alignment problems simply by looking along the rake e.g. the body not fitted 'level' or 'squarely' and the advantages of only bonding enough points to hold the chassis/hopper 'loosely' together become loudly apparent. I needed to separate one body from its chassis before refitting the two together again. These 5 will be finished through to the painting and lettering stage before the next 5 are progressed.

The creation of the etched ladders for the hopper ends from the Colin Craig kit employed a brass frame jig which allowed the two etches to be located precisely over each other at the correct stay spacing and the straightened rung wire to be passed through/soldered relatively quickly http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mMPdXEJoZkA . Some fettling is required once the ladders are snipped from the jig but it is a reasonably quick way of producing a number of ladders. The most useful tool involved in this stage is a modified set of flat nosed jewellers pliers http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qp9PdzZ67yg The slot in the jaws was created using a slitting disc and fits around a rung in the ladder whilst it is being shaped etc, otherwise the stresses start to damage its delicate construction. The off centre cut provides for different spacings when it comes to gripping the ladder whilst the stay is twisted through 90 degrees to provide the mount to the body etc.

Our latest 2 day session in Leek has drawn to a close with more body supports, etched ladders and footsteps prepared/fitted. Colin Calverley has fashioned stone loads for a good number of the hoppers with both the heavier and lighter versions covered, see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1HyYkZuE1d8
whilst Richard Oldfield has made good progress with the fitting of brakegear to various 21T opens. An unfortunate casting error on the resin body of the ex-ironstone hoppers was discovered. The angle iron cross-piece between the 2 main body end supports was the reverse of the prototype and could only be removed with a scalpel prior to the fitting of a replacement brass section, this can also be seen on the camcorder clip.

During our latest 2 day session 1/166 B439956 moved onto the paintshop stage following the fitting of the leaf springs, hooded Timken axleboxes (reworked from an Airfix presflo kit) and mountings for the overhead electrification flashes. Note: the supplied white metal leaf spring castings are too thick for fitting behind the handbrake lever guide initially and require significant thinning by sanding/filing the rear surface. The main reason for fitting the springs and axleboxes so late in the build is due to the need to fit and remove the wheelsets which is impeded if these parts are in place too early. Typical 1/166 footsteps were also fitted by modifying the supplied white metal castings, video clip to follow. 1/163 B438127 will be the subject of todays modelling, moving on to 1/166 B440004 as time permits http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_PX2EvL9Vo

A further cautionary note for those intending to build several of these kits involves the spacing of the main body end supports which are part of the resin moulding, this varies by up to 1mm which becomes very noticeable when the ladders and whitemetal supports are in place. The work required to change this is considerable and we have chosen to accept the inaccuracy. The main consideration was that this train runs it is in block train formation with brakevans at each end and the ends of the hoppers are concealed.

The four that will travel to Bracknell with us are now in the final stages of detailing and painting and I'll be happy to chat with anyone interested in our build.

Hope to see you there.


More to follow

Dave
Last edited by Dave Millward on Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:06 pm, edited 55 times in total.
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Penrhos1920 » Mon Feb 07, 2011 10:04 pm

Dave,

At last, someone else about to model a 1-167 hopper!
I've asked Andrew Hartshorne if he intends to produce the 1-167 as a kit, but the answer was not very positive. So I've started converting the unfitted kit. The changes above the solebar are fairly easy, even if the BR diagram is misleading - the end reinforcement is different to the photos.

How do you plan to do the unusual clasp brake gear? I haven't found anyone who does it as a detailing part, although Mike Edge did a kit of an Anhydrite wagons which had the same brake gear & Dave Bradwell on his detailing kit for Dapol 21t hoppers. Which of Dave Frank's buffers is the correct one? Is it BO14?

It's interesting that Paul Bartlett calls them Llanwern yet they were built in 1957, yet Llanwern opened in 1962, five years later. Their first use appears to have been taking ore from the docks to various other South Wales steel plants.

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Davef » Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:16 am

Penrhos asked:- How do you plan to do the unusual clasp brake gear? I haven't found anyone who does it as a detailing part, although Mike Edge did a kit of an Anhydrite wagons which had the same brake gear & Dave Bradwell on his detailing kit for Dapol 21t hoppers. Which of Dave Frank's buffers is the correct one? Is it BO14?

Hi Richard, the B014 buffer is not unlike the correct buffer but is not chunky enough! The good news is I've done the correct one for the Mostyn guys and it will be available to all soon. Casting in quantity should start next week for six new buffers.

Not numbered yet but called Iron stone wagon buffer, sic.
Iron stone buffer comp..jpg

Other buffers seen on these wagons are standard Oleo hydraulic buffers of various lengths, these are being researched now.
Hope that helps.
Dave F.
Him of the buffers. :)

The new Lanarkshire Models & Supplies website will be up in a few weeks and will as requested have decent sized photos of each buffer, the website is going to be Ecommerce so you can purchase any of the featured products by credit card. In the mean time I still take cheques by snail mail.
LMS, 9 Nairn Avenue, Blantyre, G72 9NF
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby iak » Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:30 am

Image
Last edited by iak on Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Davef » Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:43 am

iak wrote:Image


Hi Iain, so what's in the picture, can't seem to open it, just a we red cross.... :?

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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby iak » Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:51 am

This better :lol:
Perfection is impossible.
But I may choose to serve perfection....
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Davef » Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:25 pm

Oh please..... Whilst adulation is appreciated it's not craved.... :?

Honest,

Dave F.

Just buy me a pint sometime, I'm told I'm a tail gunner cause I drink lager with a touch of lime, RAF talk... ;)
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Tue Feb 08, 2011 3:00 pm

Penrhos1920 wrote:Dave,

At last, someone else about to model a 1-167 hopper!
I've asked Andrew Hartshorne if he intends to produce the 1-167 as a kit, but the answer was not very positive. So I've started converting the unfitted kit. The changes above the solebar are fairly easy, even if the BR diagram is misleading - the end reinforcement is different to the photos.

How do you plan to do the unusual clasp brake gear? I haven't found anyone who does it as a detailing part, although Mike Edge did a kit of an Anhydrite wagons which had the same brake gear & Dave Bradwell on his detailing kit for Dapol 21t hoppers. Which of Dave Frank's buffers is the correct one? Is it BO14?

Richard


Hi Richard,

Sadly, I cannot justify a 1/167 hopper for the Mostyn Dock sulphur flow (the higher tonnage-rated HKVs were not needed for less dense traffic like sulphur powder) but I can run 1/165 hoppers that had not been uprated. The 1/165s also need the LNER-designed (? BR modifed) clasp brake gear. I know of no other source than the Dave Bradwell kit you mention but it does seem a bit wasteful of the rest of the components it contains.

The 1/165 is a much easier conversion from the 51L kits since the bodyside supports are the same.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Penrhos1920 » Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:51 pm

Richard Oldfield wrote:Sadly, I cannot justify a 1/167 hopper for the Mostyn Dock sulphur flow (the higher tonnage-rated HKVs were not needed for less dense traffic like sulphur powder) but I can run 1/165 hoppers that had not been uprated. The 1/165s also need the LNER-designed (? BR modifed) clasp brake gear. I know of no other source than the Dave Bradwell kit you mention but it does seem a bit wasteful of the rest of the components it contains.

The 1/165 is a much easier conversion from the 51L kits since the bodyside supports are the same.

Cheers,

Richard


But Dave M can, wagons 1,2 & 4 of the Helsby photo quoted are 1/167s.

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:04 pm

Penrhos1920 wrote:But Dave M can, wagons 1,2 & 4 of the Helsby photo quoted are 1/167s.

Richard


Hi,

Absolutely :) I think that, between the sulphur flow from Mostyn Dock and the stone flow from Penmaenmawr we can justify every version of later BR ironstone hopper except the 1/164 (thank goodness as it would be a complete scratchbuild) and specialist conversions like those for salt and clinker.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Dave Millward » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:10 pm

'Evenin' guys,

I'm waist deep in 1/163s, 1/166s and Associated Octel tank drawings at the mo but will happily involve anyone with a passion for 1/167s once I've completed the unfitted hoppers.

Thanks for the interest

Dave
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Sat Sep 27, 2014 9:55 pm

Hi,

Time to resurrect this long-term project, having finally engaged brain - and determination not be side-tracked with other matters. Looking at our project file, David Goodwin and I first wrote to Peter Heald (who then owned 51L Models) in 1998/9 about these wagons which then lacked a model version. So, it's a mere 15 years from project initiation to our first batch (12 out of the 48 for which I have built underframes).

Here are some images from the first few wagons ready to go into the paint shop:-


Image
This is hopper #751 (Mostyn stock number) which is a dia. 1/166 with hooded roller bearings, spindle buffers, split footsteps

Image
This is hopper #598 which is a dia. 1/163 with plate axleboxes (horizontal rivets), self contained buffers and solid footsteps

Image
A view of #751 from the 'contro wheel' end

Image
A view of #596's 'release lever' end (which is like #598 apart from having LNE-designed axleboxes)

[url=http://s306.photobucket.com/user/rdobidston/media/DSC_1589sm1024_zps6e5c0701.jpg.html][img]http://i306.photobucket.com/albums/nn265
/rdobidston/DSC_1589sm1024_zps6e5c0701.jpg[/img][/url]
Close-up of the release lever on #596

All hoppers will be built unloaded to start with and I'll choose any which develop inward bodyside warping for eventual loading with sulphur.
Questions welcome. (All images by David Faulkner)

Cheers,
Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Thu Oct 02, 2014 9:21 pm

Hi,

There are now 12 hoppers (11 x dia. 1/163 and 1 x dia. 1/166) that have been in the ultrasonic bath and will be primed this weekend.

Time to start thinking about the lettering requirements......

Cheers,
Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Tue Oct 07, 2014 11:35 am

Hi,

The 12 ex-ironstone hoppers in the first batch have now been primed and received a faded grey top-coat (not that too much of this will be visible post-weathering).

Cheers,
Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby iak » Tue Oct 07, 2014 2:51 pm

Drool... Dribble... :drool
Better get that van for sheets done then? :lol:
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Sun Oct 19, 2014 11:00 am

Hi,

The first batch of 12 ex-ironstone hoppers are now effectively split into two groups. Five are basically faded grey with rusting and discolouration in places, Seven are heavily rusted with grey patching on some surfaces - some even appear to have been lettered directly onto the rust.

Yesterday David Faulkner and I designed the lettering artwork, hopefully to be applied to the faded grey examples early this next week. I'm not too sure how many will be ready for Taunton show next weekend but it will be nice to see a few in action for the first time, given the extremely long gestation time for these wagons.

Cheers,
Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Thu Oct 23, 2014 10:12 pm

Hi,

All 12 hoppers now finished and ready to make their debuts at Taunton exhibition this weekend. Hope to return from the exhibition with some images....

Cheers,
Richard
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby PeteT » Tue Jun 02, 2015 11:43 am

Hi Richard,

Promising looking wagons, would be good to see photos if they were taken?

Also, I'm in the process of procuring an ultrasonic bath. Did you put the wagons through for the final run including wheelsets? Or see any reason why not to?

In a lot of builds they can readily be removed, but there are instances where they need to be left in (e.g. Brassmasters bogie frames) or where the wheels have been in situe for aligning brakeblocks etc, and so giving them a clean would be useful.

Cheers,
Pete
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Re: Ex-Ironstone Hoppers - a finescale approach

Postby Richard Oldfield » Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:01 pm

Hi,

I have only recently managed to get a few images of these wagons on the layout and here is one:-

Image

Courtesy of Paul Bartlett's site you can see that these vehicles got themselves into all manner of conditions. For the time being I will leave these hoppers unloaded and eventually select those for loading based on how the resin cast body settles down over time (in other words, any sign of warping and they WILL be loaded).

In answer to PeteT's query - these wagons went into the ultrasonic bath with wheelsets. The only issue is that the ends of the pinpoints can go rusty but I try to avoid this by drying them quickly in a warm cabinet. A bit of graphite powder soons get them free-running again. The other consideration is protecting the tyre faces from paint but making (or buying) thin low-tack masking tape does the trick. A quick visit from a brass brush in a mini-drill deals with any paint that seeps under the tape.

Cheers,

Richard
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