Western Duke

I really had no intention of buying this Loco until a Box Shifter offered it at a very reduced price. There was no need for very much research as this Loco has been researched a lot, mainly about its colour, was this unusual colour used by mistake, a variable undercoat gone wrong or as policy by the Western Region, I think the jury is still out with no definitive answer.

The Heljan O Gauge variety states on the box ‘Cromatic Blue’ , as opposed to ‘Rail Blue’ . I have added Fox Nameplates and Number Plates. I have also started to weather the loco with the grills having a wash of matt black applied by brush . For further weathering it will again go on the pile that awaits finishing.

Y8 Transformation

The transformation of my newly purchased Y8 is just about complete. What was a LNER engine is now a BR Departmental Loco, in fact it is now as the Doncaster Works shunter between 1952 and 1956.

Work carried out was adding the Vacuum brake piping, re-lettering after a partial repaint. There is still a little work to be done with regards to the safety valves, I need to purchase the Ross Poppet system. I have added coal to the tiny hopper with a little spillage on the tank.

I will add a crew later and give it a very light weathering.

I really like this little Loco – one of my favourites of all time.

2nd New Class 37

After backdating D6753 I started on the second Class 37 purchased from the latest batch released by Heljan. This time it was an overall green variety with full yellow ends. Again I researched all possible locos that fitted what I required, I came up with D6749, a loco that came to East Anglia about the same time as it received this interim livery.

There was no need to backdate the head codes this time as they already had the correct type, so just a case of numbering and adding detail parts.

This Loco will now join the list of Loco’s to be varnished and then weathered.

New Class 37 Backdated

I purchased a Blue Split Head Code Class 37 by Heljan. This Loco had Black Head Codes with white marker dots, I therefore had to backdate it for my era of 1967-68.

After some research I decided I would make the Loco D6753, this was a bit different to most early blue 37’s. It had the new BR Logo on each cab side with the number above as opposed to having one on the bodyside.

After carefully removing the bodyside logo all new transfers were added, this included adding new head code numbers and letters.

All add-on accessories were painted and added. The Loco is still to be varnished and weathered, but this is on a large ‘to be done’ list.

It was nice to do something a bit different and by this time it was a local (to me) Engine being based at Ipswich.

Footplate Crew – Jury is out!

Over the years I have added crews to some Steam Loco’s, although it was not a policy I had set in stone.

After buying some cast Railway Staff and some 3D printed ones, I duly painted them and tried a few in some recently weathered Loco’s.






With trains on the move, it is great – still not convinced about having several Loco’s stabled on Shed all populated.

I still have several crews already painted so will post some further samples later.




Departmental Sentinals Weathered

The weathering on the three new Dapol Sentinals is now complete. All will have a crew added later, I am painting them at present, I am also researching whether they carried lamps – if so, what code were they.

The Y1 No. 37 and Y3 No. 38 were both Lowestoft allocated Loco’s, they appear to have worked at the ‘sleeper depot’, in the main goods yard and on the Harbour Works Trains.

The third Loco is Y1 No.4, this was allocated to  Ranskill Wagon Works near Doncaster.

Whether they all ever met is doubtful, but they certainly will on my Mission Road Layout.












Sentinal makeover finished

I have now finished turning the LMS Sentinal into a Lowestoft Class Y3. It is still to be weathered but is essentially finished. The transfers were excellent and worked well, I also added real coal to the bunkers.

While I was finishing the Ex LMS Sentinal, I decided to have another look at my Y1. It was originally as delivered as number 39, after a bit of research I decided to change it to number 37, this gave me a second Lowestoft Loco.

Y3 – No 38.



Y1 – No. 37.



Y1 & Y3 together.




Note the different types of lettering due to the Y3 having side grills, the Y1 has none.

I will post a final few photos when weathered.

Sentinal Make Over

I took advantage of Hattons O Gauge Sale and purchased another Dapol Sentinal for £130, which I thought was a bargain.

This will be a total change of identity and region, and will become a Civil Engineers Loco. I have done a little research and two loco’s match my requirements for a Lowestoft loco, a bit more research still needed.

I have already taken off the vacuum pipework, the next steps will be to remove the LMS and numbers and repaint as necessary. I will also paint the buffer beams red, as they should be.

I have purchased some ‘Old Time Workshop’ suitable transfers that will give both options for my chosen loco.

Updates as I proceed.






Different Weathering Methods – Steam

Today has been extremely hot and Airbrushing was just about out of the question. I was looking through some photos of steam engines, especially weathering on the connecting rods and the motion.

I started to have a look through my enamel paints and see if any colours could replicate the weathering I was seeing. I found a Railmatch Jar marked up ‘oily steel’ and thought that it was worth a try.

I picked a Jinty and a J94 to try the new method on. I will add that I used to just leave the overspray on the connecting rods etc. They looked OK but did not stand scrutiny based on the photos I looked at.

Here are the results – I think its an improvement.