Monday, August 07, 2017

Model review.

A while ago I picked up a 3D printed railway house from Trademe. These are available in a variety of scales. Mine was printed in white strong and flexible, which I think is a nylon based plastic, and cost $35. The Shapeways shop shows a variety of other buildings available.
So, what do we get for our money?

A nice touch are the internal walls (even with a fireplace in the front room) attached to the foundation. the windows are separate pieces  and could be replaced by Trackside widows. The front porch is also a nice touch and would be hard to replicate otherwise.

Goes together square.

Theres also the back door.

So, opinion time. With the standard proviso that the standard 3D printing clean up is required, I like it. Its a sizable time saver especially if you require several identical buildings which was typical of the railway settlements seem at every sizable station. The negative is that the standard corrugated iron roof is not modeled, though I think it would have come out very poorly in the WSF plastic. I was going to try to give it a number out of 5, but failed. To my mind a better question is "would I buy another one at the same price". The answer is yes.

Sunday, July 02, 2017

Sunday evening.

After a bit off woodwork I've made a start on the shipboard derricks. These are just a 6mm main mast, with 4mm booms pinned to the mast with short bits of bras rod.

Its looking a bit more boaty.
Now to answer the question in the last posts comments.
I'm not planning to have is visible from the backside as I have a plan to put the point throws in the guts of the ship and run the wire through to under the wharf.

Now, if I could just find a local supplier of 3-4 bags of Pecos track pins (they are useful for so many more things than pinning track).

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Saturday morning.

The ships slow assembly process continues, but I've now got one of the sides on. Rather than use the bits in the kit, I opted for a single large sheet, which seems to have worked OK.

Its starting to look quite impressive. I would have hated to have done it in S scale....

And a view from a bit lower down.....

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Man your knives

I've picked up the other 3 sheets of printing for my steamship.

No idea why it continues to load this way
I wish that the guy who drew this was a bit tighter with his placement of bits as theres a lot of wasted space which, while not important at A4, does grate a bit at A1.

so, just as a running cost for the model, so far I have $15 (or so) for the basic download, 3 80g sheets at $4.50, 2 160g sheets at $5.50 and $7 for the heavy card (glue and knife not taken into account) which give $36.50 which I think is quite cheap for a model of this size. I dread to think what it would be worth in plastic (assuming that there is a market for them).

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Saturday morning

Before I head of into the great outside for my 1:1 projects, here's a progress report on the ships.
Plonking the wharf down on the work bench gives a sense of scale to the whole thing

I had worried that the new ship might be a bit big, but its actually spot on as far as things thrown together can be.
And looking along the wharf
Right, off to get the other 3 A1 sheets printed.

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Wrists of steel

The first job with the kit was to glue it to some 1/16 card stock, as it was printed on the cheapest paper I could get. I took the opportunity to cut some of the pieces out and make more optimal use of the space on the card sheet. Again my other boat for scale.

 Then comes the physically hard bit. All the pieces have to be cut out accurately which was a couple of hours work made hard work by the thickness of the card. I also had to take into account that while I didn't want a full display model, I didn't want a ship at full load either. After a bit of thinking about how much I could cut out of the lower frames of the ship, I came up with a height which would allow part of the propeller out of the water.

I then put it together to check that everything fit OK.

The bends will vanish as more parts are glued together. In think picture I've added a 30cm ruler to give a better idea of just how big this model will be.

Sunday, June 04, 2017

Scaling it up.

Previously on the blog I've discussed paper models as a cheap source of ships for modeling a port.

A long time ago I purchased an online model of the SS Californian (for $10 US), a ship who's main claim to fame was not coming to the aid of the Titanic until it was far too late. Despite this, it is a good example of a turn of the century general cargo steamer. The model scale is 1:400. A bit of calculating gave me an approximate increase from A4 to A1 (283% giving a  scale of 1:140 or thereabouts). Since I don't have ready access to an A1 capable printer I trekked off to the local warehouse stationary. I wasn't sure how much it would cost I opted to print out the 2 sheets with the basic structure (there are 5 total). A couple of hours later (and 1/2 a greenhouse rebuilt) I had them back, for the princely sum of $4.50 a page (about 1/2 of what I was expecting). I was happy to see that the PDF had scaled very well with no pixelation that you would expect to see in a photocopy.

And how big is it? The Californian was ~5000 tons (so not that big) and 136 m long. That is not going to mean much to the blogs readership, so I thought I would show you visually. Here is a
re post of the picture of the ship that's been sitting on the workbench for a long while sitting next to the wharf with some wagons for scale. Its 50 cm long.

Here's the same ship sitting on the printouts.....
It looks as though its going to be about 1m long.

Now some of you will be asking "Isn't this just a bit too big?"

I'll re post this picture of Timaru. Note the large steamer at the back. The wharf at the front is approximately 200m long (judging from google maps) and the steamer at the back is roughly 2/3 of that length (and looks remarkably similar in basic design).

I'm planning to use it as a backscene for the wharf module.

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Welcome to June

Am_Fet writes:

Well, its been a busy wee while sine the last update on Waihao Forks.

A lot of that was taken up with going broke, finding a job, working at said job, hating said job, leaving said job, finding better job, finally having money (Yay!) and getting my life and my health back on track.

One of the things I have learnt is that I have the attention span of a gnat (does it show?) with too many projects vying for my attention.  So what I have done is taken a step back and nominated the 5 projects I really want to make progress on and then devote a month to each one.  So far I've been working on my HO American shelf layout (April) and making progress on the Mini restoration (May).

So this month:  Waihao Forks!

Firstly, I've been having a think about the overall layout plan and decided that the module containing the large truss bridge was going to be too small as well as being on a curve which isnt ideal.

What I've done is redesigned the layout to be more of a triangular shape:

This will allow the large truss bridge to now have a dedicated module of its own (upper left) as well as increasing the amount of room inside the layout for the tame operators.  On the downside, it does mean I'll need a few more endcaps than first thought, and we have yet to come up with an alternative source for these.  (Might need to make that a priority for this month as well!)

Club night next Tuesday is planned for a bit of action, mainly attaching the endcaps onto the layout (and maybe the faschia) and starting to mockup the buildings out of cardboard.  The goods shed should be easy, the pub maybe not so much.  Hopefully 0-4-4-0T will also be on hand to start mocking up some of the ground forms.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Planning a loco roster

While hunting for other things related to Cross creek I came across the Loco planning for Paekakriki.
Somewhere (from Fetler D'amatuer possibly)I had a list of the Steam locos alocated to Palmerston North in 1964, as no locos were allocated as such to Paekakariki. I was interested in having a mix of types, hence breaking it down to trainspotters differences (though why a K funnel is that diferent from a Ka funnel at 2' is beyond me). I would probably include a K as well for something different.

Of the more modern models, only the Ew is not available on Shapeways. I included a Tin hare as they were used for a short time after the closure of the Rimutaka incline. The D/Dm/D sets would have to come up with a mech of some sort.. And while you can buy the tops for the Ka and Ja's the under frames are a different matter (and shall we have a discussion on wheel sizes again?)

I then included a selection of passenger trains to model. Its possible to buy all of these.. Last up was a list of number plates to order from Coln Mcharg. having not seen an obituary anywhere I assume he is still alive.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Saturday Morning

Well, Just.

This morning after a bit of a fossick through the book shelves ( I must find some bindings for my collection of Railfans) I came across my collection of information for the Rimutaka incline.

No sign of a doodle for a complete layout (I'm sure that I did one) but there was a plan for Cross Creek.

The top plan was a test sketch, obviously I thought that the extra passing loop could be done away with. Not sure why I included a second crossover as this was in the days before I made my own track. on closer inspection I've brawn over the top and so I think that the intended orientation is as shown in the first plan. There's also no notes on size and I'm guessing that it would probably fit on 8' if some compromises on train length were to be accepted. depth would ideally be 2'6"to 3' to model the hill behind to get a sense of dwarfing the station.

Thursday, May 18, 2017


Time to start things moving on the workbench again.
I've had a couple of Shapeways 3D prints for a long time now. The had a clean a while ago (several trips through the soncator at work in beakers of Pyroneg (a lab glassware detergent) which seems to have removed the oily support (I can't smell it anyway).

I then primed with Tamiya spray paints . Hull Red for the DF

Up close the vertical lines from the printing process are visible, and I'll have to carefully sand them out.
And a Grey for the Bedford bus.

This has odd unsmoothed areas above the wheel wells which will be challenging to get rid of.

Monday, May 08, 2017

I'm Baaaaacccck

So, what did I miss then?

Its been a while since I've been round. other projects (scale and gaming) have been attracting me, and I have felt that I didn't have much to contribute to the scale for the last year or so. Not being on facebook (by choice) means I'm out of much of the NZR modeling group, though I get some 2nd hand information (ie NZ48 would be the new thing if the finescalers would let other people play, and where have all the S scale kit makers gone?).

So to start up again with something railways related, on Sunday I biked the Rimutaka incline both ways on a $10 mountain bike off Trademe.

Starting at the Wairarapa end, the uphill goat track into Cross creek was a challenge and I was stuffed when we got to Cross creek.

Down hill
Up Hill
 From here it got worse up the 1 in 15. My blood pressure pills did me no favours (a dry hacking cough) and the bike was pushed most of the way. I did query my companions CPR skills at one point.

Towards the top the views get more spectacular.

Onto Summit and after some lunch and a rest I felt much better.
The collection of rusty rubbish at the top was interesting.

 This appears to be the remains of an S class single Fairlie.

No idea about what the 2 small boilers come from (bring on the anorak brigade..). I thought that the larger fireboxes might have been marine ones, but closer inspection revealed that they had identical fitting holes so are more likely to be original A or Ab boilers replaced after WW2 by re-boilering (takes anorak off again).

 The turntable and water tank base.

 Obligatory shot of the summit tunnel.

We then headed down the hill to Kaitoke. 4-5 km down the hill, my bike head tube (the bit that the front forks run through) started making rubbery squeaking noises. 3km further on I thought "maybe I should have a look". On being confronted with a ball race with holes where 1/2 the ball bearings used to be, I thought to myself "this probably isn't good". and the best place to find this is the furtherest point from the car...
Fortunately it wasn't terminal and it turned out that alterations I had made the previous day were a fault (and not the $10 spent on Trademe). Turning round I found that riding up a 1 in 40 hill is far easier than a 1 in 15 hill.
Back down the incline was also entertaining. The bike brakes were not up to much, so the descent was mostly focused on not allowing threbrakes to lock up, while pondering the best way to dismount a bike backwards if it headed off over the edge. I also involved me going far faster than was sensible with everything rattling o a dodgy cheap bike while laughing like an idiot. The trip down took10-15 minutes (and could have been quicker but for waiting to see that my more sensible slower friend was still on the track).

At the bottom, we paid a visit to the loco depot.
Engine shed back left and brake van pit front right
It was only left to ride the goat track back to the car park (with a 40 meter drop on one side with plenty of big rocks on the track) to finish up a 34km day. Padded bike shorts might look silly but are indeed gods gift to your ass.