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Friday, 19 August 2016

Project 16 - East Field Part 1

This is the site for East Field, Clark's Lane and Station Cottage. I thought the land would rise above the track bed level, as it does at West Field, but when I checked Crewkerne's station plan again I found that it is lower than the track bed! I don't think it is a massive drop so I am sticking with the small drop here caused by the cork track underlay.

There are three things I want to achieve here. Firstly, a large open field like West Field, secondly a nicely modelled underused lane/bridleway and thirdly lots of trees and shrubs as I have quite a number available from the previous layout. A large open field and lots of trees in this space will be a challenge to maintain balance.

I have two options where to place the cottage, which incidentally does not exist on the prototype, either here with the lane in front of it or, with the cottage back facing us and the lane on the other side. From the viewers position a rear view of the cottage may be more interesting showing a detailed garden and out buildings but the lane would be insignificantly short cutting across the corner. On the prototype the lane ends with a pedestrian level crossing over the main line.

I have decided to position the cottage as shown and run the lane in front of it.
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Before Layout Rebuild.




To Series Part 1.

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Project 16 - Yard Crane

There is no proprietary scale model of this distinctive hand operated 7.5 ton yard crane that once existed at Crewkerne and cranes in the real world exactly like this do not, as far as I am aware, exist today. Photographs in the public domain are also pretty rare and as for a drawing, well I dare say one exists somewhere on the planet.

I had one image that shows a distant view of the crane, enough to recognise its uniqueness but too distant a view to discern details. I made contact with the 'Friends of Crewkerne Station' who very kindly showed me a close up photo that gave much detail of its mechanical arrangements, without which I could not have made the model. But, being only one viewpoint there were hidden aspects. I started another search and came across a preserved yard crane at Bere Ferrers station (a heritage line near Plymouth) that whilst having a different style of frame did have some remarkably similar components and identical operating mechanics.

There are many photographs of the Bere Ferrers crane on the web viewed from all angles and one of these showed the makers plate with the name 'Stothert and Pitt'. There is no doubt in my mind that the two cranes were made by the same firm.

Stother and Pitt were a renowned crane manufacturer located in Bristol. Their first cranes were hand operated and they exhibited one (don't know which style) at the 1851 Great Exhibition. They went on to make travelling railway cranes and huge dockside cranes.

The model design was scaled (4mm:1ft)  from the photos and then scratch built by myself. It may not be 100% dimensional correct and I believe at least one of  the angles is off but it does capture the character of the crane on its dressed stone plinth.

The plinth is card with stone paper overlay and its railings made from copper wire pieces butt glued together using Superglue (very fragile).

Most of the crane components were designed in CAD and 3D printed. Struts, gear axles, winding drum and cable roller support (half way up the jib) were fabricated from various gauges of copper wire.The chains are two pieces of thin brass wire twisted together.

The crane can be hand turned on its central stanchion but the winding mechanics are static. Just as well because I did not bother to model the ratchet locking mechanism!

It was painted grey and the visible cogs and chains painted black. The lot was then given a light dusting with black pastel dust for a weathering effect.

I enjoyed the challenge posed of making this model from scant information, except handling very small parts and loosing many to the carpet abyss caused some frustration.

The back scene in these photos is placed only for the photographic session. I have yet to model the landscape on this part of the layout.

To Part 34.

To Part 1.

Friday, 5 August 2016

Project 16 - Horse Box

I mentioned previously that Crewkerne Station was noted as a dispatch centre for calves. These were transported in BR Horse Boxes. I needed a rake of these for the new layout. I already had an old Lima Horse Box in Southern Green with 1930s lettering and had the idea to re livery it in BR maroon. What I needed was a reference model to copy.

I have seen photos of different style boxes in use at at Crewkerne, which I assumed to be of LMS (bow side) and GWR (straight side) origin. (The Lima model is based on a GWR design).

On a whim I bought Hornby R6728, a BR Midland box M42367M and latter discovered Hornby once marketed a GWR style box. I found some discontinued stock on eBay and bought  R6561 W643W with the legend 'Calf Box' on the side - very fitting.

On comparing the Lima and Hornby GWR style models I found the bodies of both very similar in levels of detail. Lima has a nice touch of a partially open window but the Hornby chassis has greater detail. One glaring fault on the Lima is the roof vents. There are too many and they are too pointy. It was a simple job to cut off the extra vents and file down the others to match the Hornby box. The Lima model was then given a respray  with Humbrol enamels and HMRS Pressfix decals applied using the Hornby model as a reference.

Next I had to find a correct BR Western number. My research lead me to a document on the web that identified W643W as having been seen at Crewkerne in 1963! I had no idea about this when I bought the Hornby box so was well pleased. The same document identified W676W in use as a calf box in August 1962 so, this was the number chosen for the Lima box.

The refurbished Lima box and the Hornby version sit very well together. If I wanted more I would convert the Limas since second hand Limas are about a quarter the price of a new Hornby.

Left to Right: W676W (Lima conversion), W643W (Hornby), M42367M (Hornby)

To Part 33.
To Part 1.
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