Scratchbuilding Locomotives and Cars in 0 Scale (US and British)

WM183 Mar 2, 2022

  1. WM183

    WM183 TrainBoard Member

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    Hello all.

    Been a while since I posted over here. For the past couple years I was more active on a British train forum, as I switched over to modelling British Railways in the 1950s, due to less shipping and customs-free purchases from the UK, at the time. Now, since Brexit has put an end to that, I have decided to make a couple big changes, being:

    1) I have no economic incentive to avoid US railways as a prototype now, as the benefits of modelling stuff available in the UK have evaporated post-Brexit, and

    2) To scratchbuild as much as I can. I have even purchased a Unimat lathe, and intend to add a Compact 5 soon, so I can use the Unimat as a mill full-time. I also have a 3d printer now.

    I have scratchbuilt a few wagons for British railways in British 0 scale, which is 1:43.5 or 7mm/foot, and have also started a Pennsylvania X29 boxcar in US 0 scale, 1:48. Here's a few photos of my builds:

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    The next goal (After a few more boxcars - a LV truss rod car and a USRA single sheathed car) is to build an Erie H21 2-8-0, or a Lehigh Valley N4 or N5 mikado. Wheels that work pretty well are available from Slater's in the US, and I am also making an assembly jig from aluminum to solder together wheels from brass spokes, centers and rims turned on the lathe, to which a steel tyre - also turned on the lathe - can be attached, and insulated if required.

    I hope to start the frames for the LV mike soon; the nickel silver sheet and strip I require is on the way!

    All the best,

    Amanda
     
  2. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    This is the first time I have ever seen detailing for the underside of a "wagon". Far more hardware than I would have imagined.
     
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  3. WM183

    WM183 TrainBoard Member

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    Hi Boxcab!

    If a British wagon had standard manual-only brakes, the undersides are pretty sparse. Those that are vacuum braked however have a load of undergubbins to make that whole system work. Every one of the Big Four had their own take on automatic vacuum brakes, too, so there's quite a neat variety to be seen! British prototype stock is small - two of those wagons are as long as a US 40' boxcar - and the locos tend to be MUCH smaller than US or German types, so it's a perfect subject for 0 scale even in small spaces.

    As my eyes age (and they're bad) 0 scale has become my port in a storm. I doubt I'll ever go back to smaller scales, sadly.
     
  4. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Wow, that's beautiful work, the sort that invites lengthy study of your photos. (y) I'd forgotten that Britain used vacuum braking.
     
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  5. WM183

    WM183 TrainBoard Member

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    Hi Dan,

    Thank you much for your kind comment. I assure you, not everything I build turns out so well!
     
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  6. kevsmith

    kevsmith TrainBoard Member

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    First lathe I ever had was a Unimat which used to do heroic work on jobs that were really too big for it. That encouraged me to upgrade when finances allowed and I eventually finished up buying a brand new Myford Super 7 ( and putting it though the books on the advice of my accountant and claiming at against tax!) It is the Rolls Royce of model engineer lathes

    There is something very therapeutic about spending an evening just turning Cast iron loco driving wheels

    Kev
     
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  7. WM183

    WM183 TrainBoard Member

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    If I upgrade, I hope to get a Super 7 or a Compact 8. I love the Unimat but it does have limits. If I get a 2nd lathe, I can just use the Unimat as a dedicated mill.
     
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