Brassmasters Duchess test build

Discussion in 'EM/S4 & S scale' started by Jim smith-wright, 21 October 2019.

  1. Jim smith-wright

    Jim smith-wright Western Thunderer

    Hi All

    I am currently embarked on building a test build of the forthcoming Brassmasters Coronation or Duchess kit. Way before I got distracted with Brettell Road I always thought that if Brassmasters ever did a Duchess i would have a go at building one as 46235 'City of Birmingham'. Well now they are and so I am!

    Of course its a personal opinion thing but I never really liked streamlined steam locos. While the Duchesses were a little more thoughtfully designed than the god awful GWR efforts I always thought they looked a bit like an upturned bath tub and have to admit the A4's did look a fair bit better. However with the streamlining taken off the Duchesses were 'it'. The steam locomotive version of the Concorde moment. To my eyes, at least, the pinnacle of steam loco perfection.

    Anyway enough hero worship and on to the model. Starting with...

    The main sub-frames. The loco frames come in 3 sub sections related to the wheels. A driving wheel section, a pony truck section and a bogie section.

    The chassis upside down, test fitting the main coupling rods.

    The main frame with the brass overlays fitted.

    The front or bogie area sub-frame.

    More to follow.
  2. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Ooh! A little Big 'Un. :thumbs:
    Terrysvr and Jim smith-wright like this.
  3. Jim smith-wright

    Jim smith-wright Western Thunderer

    So progress continues on my Coronation build.


    The front frame is as far as I can go for the moment. (I don't have the cast bits for the loco yet. If you are wondering about the cylinders they are a separate sub assembly.


    No problems with the pony truck so far. The kit provides for both the earlier and later types. This is the later one.


    The bogie is compensated. As the bogie is the only part of the loco that traps the wheels in place I have used some old/rejected wagon wheels for the moment. I ideally only want to put wheels onto the axle once if I can.


    Without the wheels in the way.


    I couldn't resist a temporary mock up to see get a better feel for the loco. I've used a High Level Road runner + gearbox. The main drivers don't have their springs in place yet so its sitting a little off at the moment.

  4. P A D

    P A D Western Thunderer

    Looks the part Jim, even in 4mm scale.

    What is the purpose of the slanting parts behind the rear driving wheels?

    If you need any detail photos of CoB, let me know as I took pot loads when I was building my 7 mm Gladiator Duchess.

    Jim smith-wright likes this.
  5. Jim smith-wright

    Jim smith-wright Western Thunderer

    Not sure Peter. Some sort of bracket. Haven’t got that far yet
  6. Focalplane

    Focalplane Western Thunderer


    i also have a bunch of photos of 46235 taken earlier this year. My Finney7 build is stalled at the moment but has been a great experience.

    Looking good, Paul
  7. john lewsey

    john lewsey Western Thunderer

    Looking good Jim I always enjoy your work
  8. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Footplate brackets alongside the throatplate.



    The LH one also doubles as the speedometer bracket in BR days.

    What is interesting about this kit is that it is a direct (for the most part) scaled down version of the Finney7 Princess Coronation, both came from the Martin Finney range.
  9. Jim smith-wright

    Jim smith-wright Western Thunderer

    Thanks Mickoo.

    that’s really handy as I haven’t found anything in the instructions about these bits yet.


  10. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    You're welcome, although they're exposed now and at risk of damage, that seems to be exaggerated once they are folded up.

    If they fold up the same way as the 7mm version then the joint between the sloped flange at the top and the frame side is very weak, you can see I've over soldered mine from above to try and strengthen it. If that joint fractures then the bracket has a tendency to fold back and break the main joint with the frames.
    If you take too much cusp of that slanted flange inner joint then the bracket bends to far forward and thus hangs low under the footplate, too little and it sits high and kicks up the footplate; all that messing around getting it right also reduces the strength of the main joint.

    The bracket has to be 90° with the frames, if not it impacts the footplate height or hangs low and leaves a gap.

    These brackets are part of the frame overlays, with hindsight they might have been better as stand alone brackets with a slot and tab arrangement twixt bracket and frames.
    AJC and Rob Pulham like this.