Saturday, 20 February 2016

Whistles in the hills...

Hi all,
Thought I'd share some of the results from a recent make over I did on one of my Haskell On30 Puffing Billy NA locos.  This loco is one of a pair that have been sitting on the shelf for a while, so I had some time a few weeks back to make a few changes to the model and add a new paint job.
 
A few small modifications had to made, mainly the front buffer...its about 6" short on the loco straight out of the box.  Ian Lindsay Models has cast a replacement buffer to the correct length, but installation can be a bit tricky.  The original buffer needs to be carefully cut off, an extra bit of mounting styrene added to the underside of the footplate, and then the new buffer mounted in place.  A new slot needs to also be milled out for the coupler to be fitted into again.  A note for anyone else doing this same modification, the styrene supplied with the new buffer casting will foul on the lead truck when cornering, so the styrene really needs to be either milled back, exchanged for some angle styrene, or even changed for a bit of brass angle.  Other dress up items included a set of jacks (brass castings), a new tool box and new smaller lights (also all Ian Lindsay Models items). 


 

 

New micro LED's were fitted into the headlight castings, and soldered to the existing lighting boards as supplied with the Haskell NA (boards moved to inside the smoke box and rear bunker, instead of inside the back of the lights as supplied).  The whole loco was given a spray with flat black, and then slowly built up to layers of grime and dirt using a variety of the AK Interactive enamel washes.  Lots of thin washes results in better layered effects that give a subtle finish of a loco that is well used, rather than over abused.  A Loksound decoder with the NA sound project from DCCSound was installed a while back, and provides reliable running with the Keep Alive capacitor that is mounted in the firebox. 
 
One down, but not sure when I'll get around to doing a similar make over with the other NA still on the shelf.  This newest weathered one (now 12A) has had a limited run on my layout on the 6' of track I have installed, where it is great to hear and see some movement across the layout.  One day, these whistles will blow across the tree lined valleys of Upper Gully.
 
Cheers,
Dan

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Nothing but the plug...

Hi all,
Just a fairly brief update to the old blog today.  Haven't had a lot of modelling time lately as I'd been busy preparing the new website for the 13th Australian Narrow Gauge Convention, Geelong, 2017.  Been a few teething issues to iron out with it, but am proud to say it is now up and live to view.

 
 

The new web site has a few new features added to it.  There is a small gallery of images from our past Australian Narrow Gauge Conventions, plenty of links, and also a page dedicated to other narrow gauge related items of interest.  We want this site to be a useful information hub for our narrow gauge community, with the aim to promote all things narrow gauge that happening around this country.  This will include things such as special operating days at some of the preservation railway groups, or modelling exhibitions that will be including some narrow gauge content, so bookmark the address and check back regularly for updates on what else might be happening near you.
 
There will of course be ongoing updates to the Convention plans as they are confirmed, so once again, check in every so often to see what else will be coming up in 2017.  There is already all the information available on the site for the modelling and photography contests, confirmation of some of our supporting traders, and a range of selections for local accommodation and tourism options in and around the Geelong region.  Easter around Geelong can be busy for accommodation, so it is advised if planning on coming to this event to get in early with bookings to secure a good place to stay.  Geelong is a great central hub for exploring the Bellarine Peninsula and The Great Ocean Road, so I recommend if you are going to be travelling considerable distance to attend the Convention, if able, include some spare time either side of Easter 2017 to enjoy some of the other attractions in the area.
 
Don't forget, there is also a Facebook page for the 13th Australian Narrow Gauge Convention which I encourage all the Facebook users to like and share with your other narrow gauge modelling friends.  Spread the word, get on board...looking forward to seeing plenty of you there!

Cheers,
Dan