Friday Update: Five Eight Twenty-two…

After a week off we’re back with another Friday update, a collection of news from the workbench here in North Wales…

I never thought I would look at my OO gauge 08 and have the feeling I was looking at an O gauge rendition, but that is the result of me re-working this N gauge model in recent weeks (as seen previously). There is some detail missing that I must look to add, other elements I'm not sure on - for example the front handrails on the steps will be tricky to do in N without them feeling oversize, so I may leave them off - but the front 'angle' between the steps above track level should be represented as should some of the buffer beam pipework and the fuel filler pipework under the cab. Getting the balance of this representation right is, I think, going to be the theme of another book, in time.

It has been my birthday this week so I've had quite a slow one, finishing off a few smaller commissions and indulging in some 'play time' on the layouts here in the workshop. I've also added a little extra texture beyond that shown earlier in the week on Beaverbrook. The next step is to begin to introduce road signs and street lights, and these are something I'm keen to represent but want to do right so some mockups are the order of the day I think, to get a feel for what will work. As Chris suggested, the street lights at least should probably be removable to allow photography. 

The next 7/8ths project is al little larger than previously - the Ruston 40/48 (later becoming the 48DLG) is now undereay with the start of the 3D parts designed. Currently looking at the feasibility of having these cast in resin vs the cost of purchasing them as 3D printed parts, as it's only the cost (not quality) that will suffer with one over the other. Next up, I intend to re-work the chassis design from the LB to the wheelbase of the 40/48, and re-draw the 3D axle boxes I used on the 20DL to work this revised style of chassis mounting. A final price hasn't been confirmed, but is expected to be similar to the LB, so circa £1330. If you're interested in securing a model, and haven't been in touch please do so, as this will be a one time only batch.

The 4mm etched Impetus Manning Wardle kit now moves under it's own power - this has proven to be a real challenge, to fit a drive into this tiny locomotive. The result works well, and my usual back scratcher pick ups are not to obvious from normal viewing angles - in a location where the brake rigging should be really, so your eye expects to see something here anyway.

This week also saw the arrival of another important step on the 'N scale experiment' - these look really promising, I can't wait to put one together. My intent is to do a short video of the experience, and to encourage you all to try, like me, to do something a little out of your normal comfort zone. It sounds silly, for someone who has achieved so much, but track work has always felt like a black art!

If you have seen the latest NR&IRM you will have found my advert - a nice book end to a busy issue, and my love of all things Purbeck narrow gauge is certainly indulged with the contents, thank you John for putting together such a fitting issue for my first advert. If you've got an idea of what locomotive should feature in my second advert, do let me know!

The summer holidays always impact output here, as with the kids of school the house just isn't conducive to work. That said, they do bring the opportunity to rest and relax, and there were some lovely moments in my holiday last week. Alas, it seems a long time ago already, such is life. Mind you, I love my job and as I occasionally fret about where I will find money to pay the bills another kind customer approaches me for a commission so things keep ticking along nicely. Thank you to all of you who read here regularly, those who have commissioned work, and those that are considering it. Have a lovely weekend, until next time, more soon...


  1. Happy birthday James! I always enjoy reading your weekly updates, especially the ones featuring a combination of modeling mixed with "real life" activities. I cannot wait to see these wonderful landscapes myself as my vacation touring around Wales will start on Sunday.

    1. Thank you! I hope you have a good holiday, weather looks ok for next week at the moment - although Wales wouldn't be Wales without some of our famous wet sunshine!


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