Ian_C's workbench - P4 and S7 allsorts

Discussion in 'Workbenches, including workshop techniques.' started by Ian_C, 21 May 2017.

  1. Ian_C

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    I modelled happily for years in 4mm without any power tools or machine tools. You just go about things in a way that suits your capabilities. I've been a relatively late adopter. Started with an old Hobbycraft lathe which wasn't much used. It was the urge to have a go at 7mm that really steered me to machine tools. It seems to me that 7mm is a cross over point between model making and model engineering and there's more value in having such tools at that scale and bigger. And once you have lathe or a mill/drill you find it enables you to do stuff you'd never have contemplated before. If you've been thinking about it I'd encourage you to have a go.
    D G Williams, Rob Pulham and Dog Star like this.
  2. Threadmark: The Silvertown lubricators

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    There were two Silvertown lubricators on the RH framing of most 8Fs, the exceptions being the LNER built locos which were fitted with Wakefield lubricators. The forward lubricator had 6 outlets each side for cylinder lubrication and the rearmost had 4 outlets each side for axle box lubrication. Brass castings for the appropriate Silvertown lubricators are supplied in the MOK kit. They're not bad castings and with a bit of work they clean up OK. The small pipe unions are represented on the castings but they're very close together and get a little unresolved during the casting process. All overcome with optimism I tried to drill the unions to take 0.3mm wire, but nothing doing. The cast brass is dead hard and the shape and spacing of the cast unions was a bit statistical.

    The unions were filed off the castings and 0.8mm holes were drilled though in their place.
    castings drilled.jpg

    The outside diameter of the unions scaled to about 0.8mm and I intend to use 0.3mm copper wire (from cutting up a short length of electrical flex) for the pipes. Microbore brass tube from Albion alloys was used in two sizes to make new pipe unions. One tube was 0.8mm x 0.4mm, the other 0.5mm x 0.3mm.
    small tubes.jpg

    By drilling out short lengths of the 0.8mm x 0.4mm to a diameter of 0.5mm it was possible to insert a corresponding length of 0.5mm x 0.3mm tube to make a tube effectively 0.8mm x 0.3mm. The tubes were silver soldered together, taking care not to bung up the 0.3mm hole with solder, and trimmed to a length that left enough sticking out of each side of the lubricator casting.
    more tubes.jpg

    Approximate hexagons were filed on each end of the tubes to represent the pipe fittings before they were silver soldered into the castings. A casting is shown here on a ceramic honeycomb plate. The casting is held steady by stainless steel tapered pins dropped into holes in the plate. It's a jewellery making thing that I came across when I was buying silver solder a few posts ago. I find it very useful.
    set up to solder.jpg

    0.3mm wire is passed through the tubes to represent the oil pipes. A couple of tubes needed easing open with a 0.35mm drill before the wire would pass through. I do wonder if using the two tube diameters was worth the trouble, and possibly just the 0.8m x 0.4mm tube would have done the job without the wire looking to wonky. The cast priming handles are a bit chunky and I thinned the ends a little - still too thick, but I didn't fancy making any finer ones from strips of brass. The wire was soldered in with tiny slivers of 145 solder. lubricators and pipes.jpg

    The arrangement of the pipes varies between locos. On some locos the pipes remain at the height of the unions as they turn inboard towards the inside edge of the framing before dropping down to the framing and over the edge between the mainframes. On other locos the pipes drop from the unions down to the framing first before turning inboard. The earlier locos seemed to have all the pipes high initially. Some later locos had all the pipes low. From photos most locos seem to have a mixture of the two styles- the pipes between the two lubricators dropping down first and the pipes on the front of the front lubricator and the rear of the rear lubricator staying high before dropping down. I imagine that it all got a bit mixed up as locos were overhauled and some pipes replaced. The photo of 48142 seems to show the inside pipes low and outsides high, so that's what I've attempted to model. The pipes were arranged and trimmed on the bench before the lubricators were sweated onto the footplate with 145 solder.
    lubricators assembled 2.jpg
    lubricators assembled 1.jpg

    They're not perfect and I've seen them done better in 7mm, but they'll do for me. And in the end this is a 1966 8F (Paint it black , Rolling Stones was in the charts - seems appropriate for an 8F) so there'll be plenty of crud on the framing from spilled oil and sand.

    Attached Files:

    PMP, 3 LINK, P A D and 13 others like this.
  3. adrian

    adrian Flying Squad

    That does look like a useful help for silver soldering. Do you have a link? - I've tried and failed to find anything similar on my usual suppliers.
  4. Nick Rogers

    Nick Rogers Active Member

    Hi Ian,

    I have thoroughly enjoyed reading through your thread. Your work is brilliant! Proper modelling. It puts mine to shame!

    Best wishes,

  5. Brian McKenzie

    Brian McKenzie Western Thunderer

    Googling "ceramic honeycomb soldering block" brings up a good selection.

    Also refer michl080's thread, Michaels 7mm LMS 13ton mineral wagon (MMP kit), messages 5 and 24.

    -Brian McK.

    edit: correct spelling "michl080"
    Last edited: 19 April 2019
  6. Ian_C

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    Osgood, chrisb and adrian like this.
  7. P A D

    P A D Western Thunderer

    Hi Ian,
    Love the work on the lubricators and all the other parts you have scratched up earlier in the thread. The Stanier 2 6 4 has two big Silvertown lubricators so I'll be doing something similar with the pipes and unions.
  8. LarryG

    LarryG Western Thunderer

    Very well done. I'm an admirer of good modelling and engineering as displayed on this and other WT threads. Fine 'plumbing' can be shown off to advantage and when I painted locos with such detail, I made sure it was kept bright and free of paint. Sadly in reality, it was so often the case in steam days that all that good work would be a blob of muck.
  9. Phil O

    Phil O Western Thunderer

    It could do with an agree button.

    That's the thing with steam engines, oil and grease attracts all the other crud, which sticks to it.
  10. Threadmark: Endless boiler - atomiser steam cock cover

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    Here's another part that really needs something better than the supplied casting. This is the odd shaped cover that is fitted over the atomiser steam supply cock up on the LH side of the smoke box. At first sight you'd think it's a half teardrop, but it's not. It's hard to describe the shape, sort of a truncated cone with tapered tail. The shape and size can be worked out from the supremely useful C32522 Pipe & Rod arrangement drawing in the Wild Swan book. Worth noting that the early straight throat plate boilers had a different cover here, quite a bit longer and a very different in shape. I can't see what they bothered to fit a cover at all. Both ends of the valve are exposed by cutouts in the cover so it's practically offering no protection to the only parts that are likely to need protection. And why streamlined? Obviously improves the airflow in the critical chimney flange area - or something. Here's a way of making one...

    atomiser cover.jpg

    1. Machine a strip of 1/8" brass to the required thickness , 2.46 mm as it happens. Mark out the basic outline, scribing quite deeply because the marks will need to survive some silver soldering.
    2. Partly drill through the blank diameter 2 mm. Saw around the blank leaving plenty of spare material, and silver solder a length of 2mm brass rod in the hole. The rod is a very handy way of holding the part to work on it, and once shortened it's a useful spigot for locating the finished part on the model.
    3. Held in a vice and basic facets filed on.
    4. Filed up to the marked lines to form the basic outline.
    5. Bit of a scruffy photo, but here the chamfer for the truncated cone shape and the tapered tail is marked on, having blacked it all over with marker pen first.
    6. More filing of facets, taking care not to nibble away at the bottom edge. Here's where the black marker helps. If you leave a tiny sliver of black on the lower edge you know that you've not altered the basic shape when you file the chamfer.
    7. The whole lot is blended together. Getting there now.
    8. The tapered tail and the top edges are blended now. For comparison the cast cover is shown alongside. It's much smaller and not close to the correct shape.
    9. Here's a tricky part, making a representation of the cut outs. The 2mm rod is held in a tiny toolmakers vice which is held in a much bigger machine vice. The cutout scales to about 1.3mm wide. The nearest milling cutter I have is 1.5mm diameter so that'll have to do. The milling machine usually carries an ER32 collet chuck, but so I can actually see what I'm doing on this job I'm using an ER11 chuck that runs very true, which is a blessing when using small cutters.
    10. Positioned by eyeball and DRO the first cut out is made to the correct height. Tiny depth of cut, slow feed rate and plenty of patience get the job done.
    11. Now we have a flat surface and the spindle is on centre a 0.9 mm hole can be drilled right through. The cover is turned over, repositioned and the opposite cut out is made the same way.
    12. A small fitting was turned to represent the steam cock, or at least the bits that are visible through the cutouts in the cover. One end is drilled 0.6mm to accept the steam pipe.
    13. To make things more difficult there's a flange on the cover. I wondered whether to attempt the flange, but decided to got for it. the centre of the fitting was marked on the smoke box and drilled 2.0mm. A piece of brass shim was cut and curved to sit neatly on the smoke box. When it all sat down without big gaps the shim and the cover were removed and silver soldered together along with the valve turning.
    14. The excess shim was snipped off and carefully filed to shape around the cover. An attempt was made to represent the fixing screw heads by poking the flange from behind with a scriber. Partially successful. The flange is nicely annealed after silver soldering so it's very easy to put the fitting in place on the smoke box and gently press the flange down with the end of a cocktail stick to make it sit down tight.
    15. The completed cover was sweated to the smokebox with 145 solder and the steam pipe added from 0.6mm wire.
    We're not done with the boiler fittings yet...
    Len Cattley, 3 LINK, simond and 14 others like this.
  11. Scale7JB

    Scale7JB Western Thunderer

    Serious amount of skill and experience there!

  12. paulc

    paulc Western Thunderer

    Ian , honeycomb plate is a great idea but did you make the pins as i cant find them on any jewellery supplys website .
    Terrific modelling , you just need a block of wood full of holes and you will be as good as Nick .
    Cheers Paul
  13. michl080

    michl080 Western Thunderer


    if you don't find a better source, you can get them from the German site Steel pins - Buy now » fohrmann.com . Shipping to the UK is not cheap, but they have a lot of nice goodies for toolaholics, so you may find some other things you always wanted to have.

  14. paulc

    paulc Western Thunderer

    Shipping to Australia is probably a bit more . I can buy the honeycomb block here so could turn up the pins , I was just being lazy .
    Thanks Michael , cheers Paul
  15. Ian_C

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    I do have a wood block full of holes, but it hasn't made me anything like as good as Nick! Maybe needs more holes?
  16. Ian_C

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    Same place I got the honeycomb plate - although it's often not easy to find what you want on that website.
  17. Threadmark: Postscript to the atomiser cover!

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    Having done all that I found another drawing showing the cover in more detail. It shows that my confident assumption about the cut out on the upper edge of the cover is wrong! Where the end of the valve projects through the cover the cutout is simply a round hole. Oh well, it's staying like that. Next time...
    Rob Pulham likes this.
  18. Threadmark: Tube cleaning steam cock - and a new toy

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    At this stage in its career 48142 had had the steam supply for the tube cleaning cock moved high up on the smokebox with the steam cock itself on a small bracket lower down near the front of the smokebox. Parts made from scratch apart from the cock itself, for which there was a useable brass casting, although it needed a bracket making to mount it to the smokebox.
    tube cleaning cock.jpg

    The new toy is a 6 litre ultrasonic cleaning tank. It's large enough to take the whole loco with a bit of room to spare. Previously I've used a budget 2 litre tank and I never could get it all in at once. Hitherto uncleanable parts are now squeaky clean.
    6 litre ultrasonic tank.jpg
  19. Threadmark: AWS parts

    Ian_C Western Thunderer

    Surprisingly I couldn't find many decent brass castings for the BR AWS equipment. Ragstone Models do have a brass casting for the AWS receiver that hangs under the pony truck, and that's pretty good. There are whitemetal castings for the vacuum tanks but they lack detail such as mounting brackets, dished ends, pipe unions etc. Scratch building once again. No drawings to be found so the main dimensions were estimated from photos. Modelled them on CAD and compared until the proportions looked right. Although at this size some compromises have to be made to accommodate convenient material thickness and the fiddliness of manufacture.
    AWS batt box CAD 1.jpg

    Brass and nickel silver scraps, some turning, soldering and cursing. The battery box was difficult to get right and I had to have two goes at it. The main vacuum reservoir sits on two tiny brackets, which were a pain to make. Also worth noting that the pipe from there main reservoir exits form a boss on the back of the tank, not the end as I'd originally assumed. I've no idea how the smaller timing reservoir is attached to the loco, but it's tucked away behind the ejector pipe so not very visible.

    AWS parts made.jpg
    The main reservoir looks a bit fat in this photo. I'll see how it looks on the loco before making a decision.

    Interesting diversion. I was looking for information on turning small parts using a graver steel, watch and clockmaker fashion. One thing leads to another on YouTube and I ended up watching a video by a chap called Roger Smith showing how he designs and makes a watch case. Not really what I was looking for but fascinating nonetheless. That in turn led me to a watchmaker called George Daniels. Both remarkable characters and supreme craftsmen. Regrettably neither of them were railway modellers! One has to wonder what they'd make of a 7mm locomotive. Something to aspire to then... Roger W Smith rwsmithwatches
    LarryG, chrisb, Rob Pulham and 2 others like this.
  20. Peter Cross

    Peter Cross Western Thunderer

    One assumes that if you need to ask the price you can't afford one. In my day it was a guy called Whitlock who made the top range clocks.