3D Printing comes to our group.

We have now got 3D printing capabilities within our group after Graham purchased a printer for his birthday. These are early days but its potential looks great for our future bits and pieces, or more.

I must admit after seeing some early 3D printing some 10-15 years ago I was not that impressed, but this new machine is a different world, it is fantastic!

Graham is doing this development in a steady and careful way and I will paint and weather his prototypes as they are produced.

All the below items are O Gauge and unpainted.

Heljan Class 17 – Blue in O Gauge

This is my second and final Heljan Class 17, and I must say again, this is a great model and one of Heljans best ever. Again the packaging was much better than previous models, especially the ill fated Class 31 second runs.

I have numbered the Loco D8503, one of the first built. I can not trace a photo of this Loco with ploughs, so will not be fitted.

Heljan Class 17 in O Gauge

After being delayed because of the bad weather, it has now arrived. The packaging was much better than normal and the Loco arrived in great condition, in fact not a single item was lose or missing – almost a first for me!

After arrival I started to research the Class for a suitable candidate for my livery, Green with Full Warning Panel. My choice was D8608, one of the last into service, it was also a member of the Class that was fitted with Snowploughs, although I have yet to fit them.

It runs very well and the model itself looks excellent and with great heritage from the OO model.

Upgraded Darstead Well Wagon

While looking through various suppliers of O Gauge wagons, I noticed that Ellis Clark had updated a number of the Darstead Well Wagons. It was a run of about 10 wagons that had been repainted and lettered, had been re-wheeled using Peco items and had the floor replaced with an Intentio laser cut offering.

My first reaction was, ‘that will weather well’, followed by placing an order straight away. On arrival, my first thought was what a great wagon and it was a lovely revamp of the original Darstead product.

The first thing I did was to darken the wooden inserts with Coloron Wood Dye, giving it three coats. When dry I did my usual wash and wipe before using the airbrush to complete the main weathering. I then touched up the bogie springs and the chain loops with a touch of dark rust.

Test Shunting on Little Sefton

As the layout is almost finished apart from a little more blending and weathering, I thought some test shunting to prove the layout would be good. I used DY1 Dock Shunter D2950 as the first Loco to run on the new layout. I am using Spratt & Winkle 4mm couplings, not 7mm, see photos. Note how I use the original coupling hook as a ‘stop’ for the ‘Spratts’.

Little Sefton – Nearly There!

Another busy few days on the layout (shunting plank), I have added the lights, people, fixtures and fittings. The only thing to do really is blending with the airbrush, but this will have to wait for a little warmer weather. The cameo scenes are complete, but still waiting for a couple of items to arrive in the post.

So there we are, a very good project that helped me survive the dreaded Covid 19 and associated Lock Downs. It took me about five weeks to make on an already made Baseboard and Fiddle Yard. This is the fourth layout I have made during the Pandemic and thoughts now turn to the fifth, but what will it be? I must admit that if it was a lot warmer them my choice would be more Loco painting and weathering, but working indoors in a very limited space (the kitchen), it is likely be another small layout. My only black thought is whether I will ever be able to Exhibit them in the future, bearing in mind I am in a vulnerable group and my mental health has taken a beating in this very difficult world.

Further work on Little Sefton (7/1)

Almost finished now, just a few more jobs to be done. All scenics have been finished and all buildings have been glued down. The next job to do after adding a few more details, will be a general blending of everything.

Further details include, People/Workers, Bicycles, Lights, Oil Drums and scattered Track bits.

I will do an update when finished in another few days.

Further work on Little Sefton (3/1)

Work continues apace on the scenics. The Coaling Staithes have been completed with a weighing machine, coal sacks and spillages. The first trees have been added to the grassy mounds on both sides of the track – under brush and grasses still to be added. The lever frame and rodding has been completed and glued down. The run of fence posts have been added to the front grassed area. I have ordered a loading gauge, some fencing and some bicycles, hopefully they will be with me next week.

Further work on Little Sefton (1/1)

I had a very busy day on the layout yesterday, All grassed areas have had a base coating, the basic back scene has been painted and the buildings have all been glazed.

I now consider the layout to be about 75% finished but the most important detailing will now start until I feel it is complete.

The layout has come a long way in three weeks or so, but it has kept my mind off he current Covid crisis and restrictions.


Further work on Little Sefton (31/12)

Again I have been quite busy working on the layout. The bridge is now complete and weathered. I have installed the magnets for the Spratt and Winkle couplings. The basic grassing has been started as has the painting of the backgrounds. The Coal Staithes have been glued down and weathered with spills etc. I still have some sacks of coal and a weighing machine to add.