7mm On Heather's Workbench - North Western Commuter Power

Discussion in 'Area 51' started by Heather Kay, 3 March 2018.

  1. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    What should I do with several half-started and nearly-completed commissions piled up on the workbench? Why, start a new build, of course!

    I was sure I'd already started a thread for this build, but I can't immediately lay my mouse on it. So, here's the story so far!

    A returning client, which is always a nice thing to have, asked me if I would build a Lancashire & Yorkshire 2-4-2T for him. He handed me a kit (an original George Norton), and instructions as to which loco he wanted. He models post-War LMS, so the livery would be plain black with simple lettering and numbering. A short-bunkered, Belpaire-boilered, motor-fitted example, inside motion and working radial trucks with 10650 being the selected loco.

    On assessing the box contents, it was fairly obvious conversion to the required format would be rather more complex than either of us anticipated. Let's just say I felt it wiser to buy a more up-to-date kit for the type, and happily the client agreed. Knowing my aversion to complex engineering, I commissioned Paul Penn-Sayers (@Locomodels) to make the chassis for me. With his permission, I will share some his progress photos here. Perhaps Paul might offer some pointers to the methods he used, and problems he encountered, in due course.

    The kit, from Lanky Kits, motor, gearbox (ABC), wheels (Slater's) and Laurie Griffin motion parts were purchased at a show, and Paul took them back to France with him.

    Patterns for crank web and motion bracket with items cut on the profile miller.jpg

    It soon transpired that the inside motion parts weren't really quite right. Paul set to and researched, and decided the simplest way forward was to make new parts. This is why I prefer to let people who know what they're doing do this stuff for me! Patterns were made for the motion plate and crank webs, which were then cut on Paul's profile miller.

    Slide bars, pendulum lever and valve linkage 2.jpg

    Slide bars, pendulum and valve linkage.

    Motion plate, slidebars,crossheads and piston rods.jpg

    Motion plate, slide bars, crossheads and piston rods.

    Crank axle and con rods.jpg

    Crank axle and con rods.

    L&Y 2-4-2T 7b.jpg

    Everything being assembled in the chassis.


    The end result of all that work was collected from Paul at Telford in 2016. A splendid piece of model engineering it is, too.


    The reversing lever is currently held in place by a temporary bar fixed to a chassis cross member. I shall have to think carefully about how it gets attached to the reach rod so the body can be removed.


    Paul also constructed the running plate, as it needed some slight modification to accommodate the motion. So, on the face of it, there's not a lot left for me to do!

    Ah, yes, those radial trucks. Let's show you those:


    Well, one of them, anyway. In order to continue the build, I had to remove the rear truck from the chassis in order to access the body retaining bolt under the bunker. The unit is bolted into the chassis using six tiny screws. As you can see, it's quite a work of art. The original plan had been to potentially use LG trucks, but Paul ended up making these from scratch. Under the phosphor bronze spring is an engineered bearing tube that really does slide from side to side radially. Marvellous.


    What was left in the box, as far as etched parts were concerned, amounted to this lot. The boiler tube is rolled. There are some duplicate parts, as the kit can make both long and short bunker variants of the type.


    Castings and things. I will need to find a suitable reference for the cab fittings. It's something not really covered in the instructions in great depth, so I will have to do some rummaging around to see what turns up. There are parts here for the motor-fitting pipework, but not something I can identify as the control unit for the driver's side smokebox. Looking at photos, though, it's not something amazingly complex, so should be relatively easy to fabricate from tube and wire.


    This was where I got to after a day of studying photos, the instructions, and the parts in the box. Cab and bunker floor, bunker front, sides and back. Parts are not identified with numbers on the etch frets (did I mention this kit is entirely nickel silver?) so, as with other builds, I've taken the precaution of writing the part numbers on the etched parts themselves. Apart from the boiler, firebox and roof, all the main parts are nice and square. No fancy flares or rounded edges here, just straight up Northern common sense. This will make the build nice and easy, though a little ingenuity is required to make the joins where no tabs exist.


    So far, so good. With the relatively box-like bodywork, the superstructure ought to come together pretty quickly on this build. Not having to fret over the chassis means the overall build ought not take that long. Famous last words!

    The one thing I seemed to be missing from reference photos was a good rear end view. As I was flicking through one of the reference works, there was a nice clear photo of the backside of 10650 itself! Now I know how the motor-fitted gear was attached to the bunker, so that's brilliant.

    Oddly, I can't find anything in the box about the bunker coal door. There is a preserved 2-4-2T in the national collection, so I hope someone has got a shot in the cab that shows what the front of the bunker looks like in the cab. The firebox backhead fittings might have to be interpreted from similar Belpaire boiler locos of the period, although being an enclosed cab it may be possible to get away with some modeller's licence. The cab door handrails are quite obviously tapered, so I shall investigate Mr Griffin's selection for something suitable. Likewise, I think cast lamp brackets might set the model off nicely.

    Well, the weather seems to be finally warming up, so work on builds in the queue for paint shop action might take precedence over this loco for a while.
  2. lankytank

    lankytank Western Thunderer

    Heather, if you need info. or whatever.... there are a few of us on here that are following the 'one true path' & worship at the church that is the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway Society..... Oh, my Dog, I've gone all relijus..... :)):)):)):))

    Serious though, With my Publication Sales Officer hat on I'm not short of a book or three - that's without going to my own library.... :thumbs:

    Also, got access to 12K photos in the library collection - might come in useful..? (Though that does cover an awful lot of L&Y subjects).

    I also know a man whose personal L&Y photo library is phenomenal & is very helpful with with 'cry's for help'.
    Michael Osborne and Wagonman like this.
  3. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Cor, ta!

    If I may, anything regarding cab layout and fittings would be most useful. Externally, I think I have most things covered. These locos were a relatively simple, robust and fairly long-lived type which exhibited few variations through the years.
  4. lankytank

    lankytank Western Thunderer

    Word's gone out - waiting a reply. Watch this space........
    Heather Kay likes this.
  5. jamiepage

    jamiepage Western Thunderer

    I've always had a soft spot for those locos. Lovely work on the chassis - Are the drivers/ coupled wheels sprung, compensated or rigid?
  6. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    The drivers are sprung, as are the radial trucks. It's a lovely piece of work, to which I still have to add brakes and sanding gear. I hope I don't break anything!
    jamiepage likes this.
  7. Lancastrian

    Lancastrian Western Thunderer


    I'll check the works drawing copies I have either tonight or sometime tomorrow for you.

  8. Lancastrian

    Lancastrian Western Thunderer


  9. Lancastrian

    Lancastrian Western Thunderer

    Copyright NRM

    There's a nice rear 3/4 shot of 10650 in LMS livery in Locomotives Illustrated #113

    Last edited: 4 March 2018
  10. daifly

    daifly Western Thunderer

    A quick search using the keywords 'George Norton' by member 'Heather Kay' found this immediately!
  11. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Well, I'm blessed! Thanks Dave. Now I've started again, I think I'll probably stay on this thread. I'll have to add it to my workbench threads post soon.

    Ian, too. Thank you for that cross section. I shall print it out and try to work out what's going on with the coal door on bunker front sheet. The rear shot of 10650 you mention is exactly the one I meant, and incredibly useful.

    Where would we be without the WT community?
  12. jonte

    jonte Western Thunderer

  13. Rob Pulham

    Rob Pulham Western Thunderer

    What he said, if my attempts at inside motion for the J6 come anywhere near looking like that I will be a very happy bunny.
    jonte likes this.
  14. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    They say a week is a long time in politics. Well, a year has passed since I started this thread!


    The partly-disassembled chassis, with the partly-assembled cab, had lurked on the bench, collecting dust and stray cat fluff. Time to haul it back into focus. A couple of things need attention, one of which is the smokebox saddle. With all the gubbins between the frames, it became painfully obvious the whitemetal casting would not fit. I have resolved that my bodging skills have improved sufficiently that I ought to be able to make one from sheet material that will fit.

    Before that, I decided it made sense to get back in the swing by making up the side tanks and completing the basic cab. I’ve got a little stuck with the rear splashers and tank extensions because they don’t quite fit as expected. I need to perhaps step back a little to ensure I’ve not done something achingly silly. A job for tomorrow.
    Last edited: 12 March 2019
  15. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Things were going fairly swimmingly. The side tanks went together well enough, and I got the overlays on the front spectacle plate and cab sides done.

    Then I started to work on the tank extensions and rear splashers…

    Quite a lot of cross words were used. Three parts per assembly, one of which was folded, one of which was bent to conform to the splasher shape. All three more or less butt-soldered together, somehow square, unsure whether inside or outside edges. The parts were disassembled a couple of times before I was even mildly happy with them. Then came the fun of fitting them inside the cab.

    The floor, at this point, was free to move up and down in space. The cab front acts to hold it in place, but we’re not ready to fit that yet. In the end, I did tack it in place, and there followed some more cross words as I attempted to fit the tank extensions where they were supposed to go.

    Some rare tabs and slots are provided, but it turned out I needed to extend the slots in the floor to allow the assemblies to sit where they were supposed to be. Again, a paucity of information about whether the tops of the tanks were supposed to have a rave around them or not. Let’s just say they do now.


    As with many issues, I find it is often best to leave it well alone and try again with a fresh pair of eyes. The tanks were installed early on, as other parts need them for alignment. Belatedly I realised nothing stopped them waving about, so the temporary bracing strut is now there until the boiler goes in. That may be some time!


    The cab front and sides are joined together, but just plopped in place for the photo. There’s a massive amount of scratch detailing to do on the bunker front, and the rest of the cab will get in the way. Can you see the gap in the base of the nearest splasher? That’s going to need filling somehow.


    It ain’t pretty, but it’s joined up and more or less square.


    There's that gap again. The end part just wasn’t long enough. I really should have thrown them away and scratched replacements that did fit, but when the red mist descends I often just want the damned thing to fit come what may. Perhaps I should extract it and sort it out. I’ll think on that while I work out the bunker detailing.

    It’s beginning to look the right sort of shape, but there’s a whole lot of boiler stuff for me to make a mess of yet!

  16. dibateg

    dibateg Western Thunderer

    Copper wire! It comes in lots of sizes and that's what I use for filling Heather...

    Build is looking good!

  17. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    Cheers Tony! The hard bit's been done - the chassis - so I’ve only to battle the bodywork. I’ve got a fair stock of copper wire, so I’ll do that tomorrow.
  18. Overseer

    Overseer Western Thunderer

    It is very rare for the rear of a tank within a cab to have an upstanding above the tank top. Much more common for the cab rear to stop at the tank top. Quite often the inner corner was rounded off to make it a little less dangerous in the cab.
  19. Heather Kay

    Heather Kay Western Thunderer

    That’s what I’d have thought. Sadly, I don’t have any clear images or drawings that show one way or the other. Perhaps I need to track down the preserved one!

    Thinking about it, I think there’s something else wrong round the cab opening. I’ll have another look in the morning.
  20. Peter Cross

    Peter Cross Western Thunderer

    When this happens to me heather, I solder 0.7 or 1.0 brass or nickel then sand flush either side. Often quicker than making new.