BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Richard Oldfield » Thu Dec 09, 2010 3:07 pm

Dear all,

Way back in 2001 David Goodwin and I built a batch of BR Standard brake vans. They've served us very well over the intervening years. We're now starting to run short of brake vans on Mostyn and are contemplating a new batch. Part of this process is to think about what has become available in the last nine years and to make sure we consider other routes to a decent model (especially if they are quicker without compromising standards).

Here's a couple of images of the existing 20T brakes to start with:-

Image

Image

There's a lot of work involved in making the most of the Airfix kit - if anyone wants more details then fire ahead.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby John B » Thu Dec 09, 2010 4:55 pm

Richard -

I think that the vast majority of us have one or more Airfix models in the kit pile. I'd certainly welcome a treatise here on how to make the most of them..
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Neil » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:16 pm

Here's one of mine, done some time ago.

airfix brake.jpg


Gave me no end of grief I can tell you, not because there's lots of work in it, or because it's hard to do, just that the bugger seemed jinxed. Mind you the running number does end 666.
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby iak » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:27 pm

There is a train of thought [DOH!!] about using the Bachmann body on the Dave Bradwell underframe.
Now other persons in the Mostyn crew have raised this option - however, anymore ideas gents?
Yes the Bradwell was designed for the Airfix kit but as Richard may well state, the auld Airfix kit needs a good fettling.
Ach the joys of pedantic tomfoolery :lol:
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Richard Oldfield » Thu Dec 09, 2010 8:17 pm

Hi,

I've just had a quick look at the Dave Bradwell BR Brake van underframe kit - see http://www.scalefour.org/bradwell/rollingstock.html

At £16.00 per kit plus £1.00 post/packing that seems a bit expensive to me (although it does include new inner ends for the cabin). Has anyone here used one?

Perhaps it's not a problem if you're building one van but we might need to build eight.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Richard Oldfield » Fri Dec 10, 2010 11:26 am

Here's the first part of a set of instructions which show our route to getting the most from the Airfix/Dapol kit:-

BR 20T Standard Goods Brake Van – Using the Dapol (Airfix) Kit

(Note : These are the methods that David Goodwin and I used in 2001 whilst building a batch of 14 wagons – new components have become available since then and suggestions for improved techniques picked out in bold. The batch included examples to BR Diagrams 1/500, 1/504, 1/506 and 1/507.)

1. Target Weight
For a vehicle of this wheelbase we would aim at 70g. The kit weighs 30g so added components plus lead weighting would provide the remaining 40g required.

2. Compensation/Springing
For P4 we only use rigid axles on wheelbases of up to 10ft 6in maximum. The 20T Std Brake Van has a wheelbase of 16ft. Appropriate springing units were not available to us in 2001 so we used MJT #2298 compensation units for 1/504, 1/506 and 1/507 vehicles and Colin Waite RCH pattern units for the ex-LNER design 1/500 van.

[We would automatically now use springing units.]

Remember to drill the appropriate horse-hook holes in the w-irons (0.85mm drill) whilst the units are still on the fret – two holes in the later 1/507 vans and one in the earlier diagrams.

A packing piece is needed to maintain the correct buffer height when mounting the MJT #2298 units – 2mm under the fixed w-iron and 1mm under the pivoting w-iron.

3. Floor/Underframe
Cut the underframe at both ends immediately outside the two outer transverse members and file the faces of the transverse members smooth – if you don’t do this then the compensation units cannot be fitted. Cut 1mm off each end of the transverse members – this will enable easy fitting of the brake shoes at a later stage. Glue underframe to floor having first removed the handrail mouldings from the four corners of the floor

4. Solebar preparation
Remove v-hangers except on 1/500 vans. Remove w-irons and axleboxes. Remove all protuberances on inside face of solebars. Relieve the inner face of the solebars and springs in order to maintain the correct spacing and allow the compensation units to fit within them – you need to remove about 0.4 - 0.5mm over a distance of 15mm. You should be left with a plain solebar with just j-hangers and springs.

Add solebars to floor/underframe and mount compensation units so you end up with a running chassis that can be checked for trueness.

5. Headstocks
Remove all detail from headstock apart from drawbar pocket. Drill 2.1mm diameter buffer locating holes. The buffers we used were ABS #F.123 (long Oleo), ABS #F.122 (short Oleo), MJT #2300 (RCH) and ABS #F.120 (BR/RCH fitted). Add headstocks to chassis unit. Check buffer height.

[We do not use ABS or MJT buffers now as the they require too much cleaning up before use. Our preference is the new Dave Franks buffers or those from 51L]

---------------------------------------------------------------------

Please do not hesitate to make comments about alternative techniques.


Cheers,

Richard
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Richard Oldfield » Sat Dec 18, 2010 2:51 pm

The next steps:-
(Remember that suggested changes to the methods used are shown in bold)

6. Roof
Throw the kit roof away. Cut 68mm x 31.5mm rectangle from 0.020” plasticard (this is slightly oversize but aids fitting and can be easily filed when located). Bend to shape – secure to a can and immerse in boiling water. Mark underside of roof with positions of ventilators and chimney. Drill 1.8mm hole for ventilators and 1.5mm hole for chimney. ABS #F.500 LNER coach and van torpedo ventilators were used. Make chimney sealing plate from 3.5mm squares of 0.010” plasticard with a 1.5mm hole drilled centrally and fit this to roof. Leave the fitting of the chimney until the cabin is assembled. Rainstrips come in at least three standard patterns – study prototype and make rainstrips from 0.010” x 0.010” plastic strip. Glue to roof.

7. Couplings
Depending on your prototype these are either screw-link or instanter. We used Roxey components for the links and trunnion/tommy bar with MJT drawhooks (from the compensation unit etch) for screw-link couplings, For instanter couplings it was MJT whitemetal drawhooks, home-made links and Exactoscale instanters. Reduce thickness of drawbar pocket on headstocks, clear pocket hole to accept coupling assembly and araldite in place.

The Roxey screw-link components are a bit ‘heavy’ – I’m going to use Masokits etched screw couplings on the next batch of wagons

8. Sides/Outer Ends/Inner Ends/Cabin Doors

Sides – Remove flash and handrail mouldings. Re-scribe planking where handrails have been removed.
Outer Ends – Remove flash, lamp-iron and handrail mouldings. Re-scribe planking on end-face where lamp-irons were removed.
Inner Ends – Remove handrail mouldings and bottom step (it helps with reducing the window surround thickness which we did by milling). Reduce thickness of window surrounds to 1mm or less as this will make glazing much more realistic.
Doors – Remove circular moulding mark, reduce thickness of window surrounds to 1mm or less, fit cross-pieces to divide windows into 4 panes, fit door handles and paint before glazing. Glaze using a 13mm x 7.5mm piece of lexan.

Then glaze cabin windows using 15mm x 8.5mm lexan pieces, and locate door in inner end. Glaze duckets using 3.7mm x 2mm lexan rectangles ensuring glazing is parallel to ducket sides.

Assemble sides and inner ends on the chassis (but not the outer ends or roof at this stage). Replace door step.

9. Lamp-irons
For the corner stanchions – fabricate from 0.31mm brass wire and 0.6mm wide brass strip. Solder together and locate.
For the verandah ends – there are two designs, either of which can be folded up from thin strip and superglued in place.
Side and tail-lamps come from the Springside range.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Tappa » Wed Dec 22, 2010 1:25 pm

I purchased these a few years back with a view to upgrading the Airfix kit. I **think** they are Bill Bedford components, but can't be for sure - anyone know?

Brakeetch.jpg
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Richard Oldfield » Wed Dec 22, 2010 9:19 pm

Hi Jeff,

I've not seen anything like those before.

They do have a bit of Bill Bedfordness about them.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby dave.k » Thu Dec 23, 2010 11:24 am

Tappa wrote:I purchased these a few years back with a view to upgrading the Airfix kit. I **think** they are Bill Bedford components, but can't be for sure - anyone know?


No they look like original Bernard Weller 'Exacoscale' with those labels and reference numbers.

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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby iak » Thu Dec 23, 2010 5:49 pm

dave.k wrote:
Tappa wrote:I purchased these a few years back with a view to upgrading the Airfix kit. I **think** they are Bill Bedford components, but can't be for sure - anyone know?


No they look like original Bernard Weller 'Exacoscale' with those labels and reference numbers.

Dave Keeler

Hallatrow, an 18.83 Layout Challenge layout


Yup they look Exactoscale to my eyes.
But I have no recollection of such things?
Very interesting :scratch
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby I Fisher » Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:59 pm

They came with an ingenious few extras to aid there setting up ali tubing with silica grips that didnt take solder but did allow people near with a soldering iron or baked ali plate.

I was very fortunate to see the late proff Wellor at S4 North a few years back and his technique was just so leftfield...

Ian

Tappa wrote:I purchased these a few years back with a view to upgrading the Airfix kit. I **think** they are Bill Bedford components, but can't be for sure - anyone know?

Brakeetch.jpg
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby iak » Thu Jan 06, 2011 4:18 pm

aHha...
An answer to the conundrum 8-)

Now of course we will have this new Hornby beastie to examine soon - will it be an answer to the brake van issue?
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Butoxeter » Fri Jan 07, 2011 9:38 am

iak wrote:Now of course we will have this new Hornby beastie to examine soon - will it be an answer to the brake van issue?

Well, I do hope that the new Hornby van will be the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything, but still.... I have enjoyed tinkering with the old Airfix kit as well, and would still like to 'do up/rescue' the partially-build second hand example I have lurking in my box of bits...
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Neil » Fri Jan 07, 2011 10:56 am

Heading wildly off topic, Lima brake van anybody?

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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby MartinWales » Fri Jan 07, 2011 6:31 pm

That setting looks vaugely familiar.......... :scratch
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Richard Oldfield » Tue Jan 11, 2011 3:49 pm

Hi,

The final instalment:-


10. Underframe trussing
This is scratchbuilt from 1mm x 1mm plastic angle mounted onto plasticard rectangles which are glued centrally behind the solebars. Let me know if you would like more detail.

11. Brake shoes/cross-shafts/safety loops
Use brake shoes from kit, chamfer inner edge to minimise potential contact with wheel flange. Drill 0.55mm hole to locate cross-shafts. Locate shoes behind solebars checking for alignment – it is necessary to glue small 0.060” plasticard packing pieces onto the underside of the floor and mount the brake shoes on them otherwise they do not sit at the correct height. Drill 0.6mm locating holes part way through the transverse members about 2mm inside the position of the brake shoes. Fashion safety loops from copper wire. Cut 20.5mm lengths of plastic rod, feed this through the brake-shoe holes and glue in place. Ease the safety loops around the cross-shaft, locate in holes in transverse member, adjust for correct fit and glue in place.

12. Axleboxes
Enlarge the bearing hole in the rear face of oil axleboxes or roller bearing axleboxes as required to ensure there is no fouling of the pin-point bearings at the pivoting end. You may also need to file the top of the axlebox casting in order to allow free movement. Glue in place.

[There’s more work to do here if you use springing units but it is very worthwhile because of the improved running quality]

13. Footboards
There are three patterns of vertical footboard hangers (or four if you include the early LNER design 1/500 vans. Check your chosen prototype. Footboards are made from 3mm x 1mm brass L section with the hangers in 1mm wide thin nickel silver strip. If you let me know the prototypes you are doing I can give you the dimensions needed. The lower footboards need notches cutting out of them to clear the axleboxes.

14. Security Rails
These consist of a hoop mounted to the van (about which the rail rotates), the security rail itself, a latch which holds the rail when not in use and a latch which holds the rail when it is in use. This is all scratchbuilt using 0.3mm dia. brass wire (hoop), 0,45mm dia. flower wire (security rail) and oddments of plastic strip for the latches. It’s fiddly making and fitting these components but they add greatly to the van’s appearance. Dimensions are available if you want them.

Outer ends are glued to the assembled body/underframe.

15. Handrails and grab handles
Plain handrails – bent to shape and superglued in place. 0.4mm nickel silver or brass wire is used.
Cabin side – locating holes drilled using alignment jig. The vertical grab-handles are straightforward but the horizontal handrail is butt-soldered onto two locating rods that are pushed through the cabin side. It is then trimmed to fit exactly between the vertical grab-handles and CAREFULLY soldered into one unit.

The roof is fitted and the chimney (1.5mm OD brass tube) secured to the van.

16. Odds and Ends
Vacuum and air pipes and other visible braking fitments as required.
Repair plating on ends and sides. Ducket repairs.
Security bars on cabin windows. V-hangers on some vehicles.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Neil » Tue Jan 11, 2011 4:54 pm

Richard Oldfield wrote: .... 15. Handrails and grab handles
Plain handrails – bent to shape and superglued in place. 0.4mm nickel silver or brass wire is used.
Cabin side – locating holes drilled using alignment jig. The vertical grab-handles are straightforward but the horizontal handrail is butt-soldered onto two locating rods that are pushed through the cabin side. It is then trimmed to fit exactly between the vertical grab-handles and CAREFULLY soldered into one unit. ....


Ha! you're a braver man than me Richard if you've soldered the rails up in situ. On my Airfix/Dapol brake I fabricated a drilling jig (clear plastic from a CD case) which after I'd used on the van sides I deployed on a piece of MDF. I then built up the rails on this jig, knowing they had a fair chance of fitting the van side. I didn't bother with the two mid way supporting stubs - layout van, couldn't be @rsed, too difficult, lured away by the thought of custard creams - delete as applicable.

To be honest, I've four brake vans, one has wire handrails the other three have the moulded jobbies that they came with out of the factory. Though I'm pleased that I've done them, I'm not sure that I'd bother again (see above range of excuses) as wire handrails are one of my least favourite modelmaking tasks and to my eyes the pain isn't worth the gain. Steam loco boiler handrails definately are worth doing, but close fitting rails against a flat side, hmmm it's a judgement call.

Having said all that and taking a look at your two vans on the op; maximum respectamundo.
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Butoxeter » Tue Jan 11, 2011 8:53 pm

Neil wrote:
Richard Oldfield wrote: .... 15. Handrails and grab handles
Plain handrails – bent to shape and superglued in place. 0.4mm nickel silver or brass wire is used.
Cabin side – locating holes drilled using alignment jig. The vertical grab-handles are straightforward but the horizontal handrail is butt-soldered onto two locating rods that are pushed through the cabin side. It is then trimmed to fit exactly between the vertical grab-handles and CAREFULLY soldered into one unit. ....


Ha! you're a braver man than me Richard if you've soldered the rails up in situ


Ho ho - that's also what I did for the two that I've done so far! It's a bit fraught, it must be admitted. I refer to the practise as 'extreme soldering!'....

I'll probably do the same to that Stanier brake van I've got in the stock box as well.... :o
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Neil » Tue Jan 11, 2011 9:24 pm

Right, so far that's two men that are braver than me, any more?
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Richard Oldfield » Thu Feb 03, 2011 7:53 pm

Hi,

Another couple of BR Std Brake Vans from our collection:-

Image

Image

Both made as per the details given earlier in this topic.

Cheers,

Richard
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby stuartfwlr » Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:42 pm

Hi,

i thought this section of the board would be best to fire some brake van questions which im quite people will be able to help me with.
I have invested a few pounds in a few dapol brake van kits and am looking to making some unique examples rather than painting them all bauxite.
Is there any particular reason why some standard 20t brake vans had grey ends yet the body sides were bauxite?
I.E
http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/brbrak ... #h205021df

Is there any tips available to do the wire handrails?I have realised quite early that its a pain doing these but it does make the model quite decent.For example is there anyway to reduce having to measure each handrail, batch building makes things that bit easier!
cheers
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Clive » Sat Apr 21, 2012 6:38 pm

Hi Stuart

If batch building brake vans how about making a jig for the handrails or use a Bill Bedford handrail jighttp://www.eileensemporium.com/index.php?option=com_virtuemart&page=shop.browse&category_id=286&Itemid=9

Yours

Clive
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby Pennine MC » Sat Apr 21, 2012 9:26 pm

stuartfwlr wrote:Is there any particular reason why some standard 20t brake vans had grey ends yet the body sides were bauxite?
I.E
http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/brbrak ... #h205021df



I cant say I've checked out every example Stuart, but a cursory study suggests that vans like that were ones that had acquired bauxite livery (for whatever reason*) and then had the ends painted grey to signify that they were unfitted. I'm not sure just when it started but it was reasonably common around the mid '70s, and you can also see brown vans with random grey patch painting due to repairs.

* Many unfitted brakes were vac piped in the late '50s, if they were then 'de-fitted' later on, that would give a reason for the ends to be painted grey. That example is one that should have been built unfitted, and in this case I'd suspect it always remained so because it still has the short 1'6 buffers and Instanter couplings.
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Re: BR 20T Standard Brake Van - Airfix/Dapol kit

Postby cloggydog » Tue Sep 09, 2014 10:25 am

Isn't there an issue with the ducket on the Airfix/Dapol kit being too low (1-2mm?) on the bodyside?? Memories of reading that in a variety of articles over the years.

The Shirebeck brake van fleet is a mess of Airfix kits, Hornby and Bachmann RTR, plus one PMK etched one - the older Hornby one isn't bad once the chunky 'wood grain' is pared off.

And there's even the obligatory burnt-out one (Airfix chassis, microstrip/plasticard 'body') to stick down the end of one siding.
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