Claptowte Railway - Yard Crane

David1226

David1226

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Some time ago, more or less on a whim, I bought a Modeltown Easy Build Kit of a yard crane, at an exhibition. I thought it would make an interesting scenic item but I had no real thoughts on where to place it and it was put aside as a future project. When I redrew the trackplan for the Claptowte Railway, there was an obvious location for the crane on the midpoint of the goods loop at Gernise End Station. I opened the plastic bag that the kit came in and found that not only did the kit live up to its ‘easy build’ name tag, but it was pretty much assembled already. I actually had to dismantle the kit in order to paint the various component parts prior to final assembly. The following photo shows the kit in its dismantled state.

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The only two parts that had to be glued together, initially, were the main body and the rear counterweight. The counterweight itself was moulded in a mottled grey resin that looked exactly like weathered concrete, I decided that this must be left unpainted. I carefully masked up the counterweight before giving the rest of the assembly, and any other components that required painting, a spray of grey plastic primer. The components were painted in the Claptowte Railway corporate colours of British Rail maroon and cream. After painting the main body i removed the masking from the ‘concrete’ block. I added a moderate amount of weathering where I thought appropriate. As I already stated, the kit was really easy to assemble into an attractive model.

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David
 
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David1226

David1226

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Having completed the crane it was immediately apparent that, with the fixed angle of the jib, it was going to be necessary to mount the crane on a platform or a raised plinth in order to gain sufficient height to raise a load from base level to the load bed of a rail mounted wagon. I pondered long and hard before coming up with a plinth of suitable dimensions. I decided that the top surface would be of 3.0mm thick plasticard. Not having any to hand I laminated a piece of 2.0mm on top of a piece of 1.0mm. I scribed paving stones into the top surface, incorporating a few with cracks in them.

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Having painted the top of the plinth I decided to add some wooden battens to act as foot braces to push against when manually rotating the crane. I used pieces of cut down wooden coffee stirrers stained with diluted black paint. Bolt heads were added using self adhesive 1.0mm pearl gems. A couple of the battens were ‘broken’ to add to the weathered appearance. The isolated bolt by one of the broken battens is a dress making pin head. The base of the crane was then glued in the centre of the plinth.

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The walls of the plinth were constructed from 3.0mm plywood reinforced with ½” square wood.

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The plasticard top was then glued onto the top of the plinth.

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There is a need for some means for the crane operator to get from ground level to the top of the plinth. I concluded that wherever a flight of steps could be placed, they would potentially foul loads being raised and interfere with the operation of the crane. To get around this issue I opted for access ladders. When I had earlier constructed semaphore signals for the Claptowte Railway, I had made my own ladders by cutting strips from a sheet of ½” wire mesh. I filed the sides and cut the strips to a suitable length. In the event these strips were too long and had to be shortened further. I kept the offcuts which was fortunate as I found that they where the perfect length to create access ladders for the crane. All that had to be done was to bend the tops and bottoms at right angles so that, once painted, they could be glued into locating holes drilled in the plinth walls.

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The plinth walls were covered with textured embossed brick paper purchased from ebay. Once this was done, holes were drilled and the painted access ladders were glued on. The final addition was to add a few tufts of 4mm grass growing out of cracks and crevices.

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David
 
Northsider

Northsider

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I like the thought you have put into this: the ladders instead of steps, and that broken timber (what are those slats called? They must have a name!); and beautifully modelled, of course. :)
 
P

Paul M

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Another piece of great modelling
 
JimmyB

JimmyB

Semi-Retired; more time for trains.
David, as already mentioned ;) Health and Safety, where are the hand rails guards, and railings to prevent falls, as well as the previously mentioned trips.
Seriously though, nice build, with superb scratch built finishing touches :)
 
David1226

David1226

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David, as already mentioned ;) Health and Safety, where are the hand rails guards, and railings to prevent falls, as well as the previously mentioned trips.
Seriously though, nice build, with superb scratch built finishing touches :)

You have to remember my railway is set in the middle of the last centaury before 'Elf and Safe Tea had been invented. I did consider painting a white line around the edge of the plinth but then dismissed that as too modern and new fangled.

David
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

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You have to remember my railway is set in the middle of the last centaury before 'Elf and Safe Tea had been invented. I did consider painting a white line around the edge of the plinth but then dismissed that as too modern and new fangled.

David
Yep, while the Factories Acts were the principle legislation concerning safety at work - enforceable by the Factory Inspector who was the only person allowed to enter, uninvited, to a place of work - the 1974 Health & Safety Act brought with it a more serious attempt to reduce accidents in the work place and introduced the concept of criminal prosecution.

To this day, prosecution under the Health & Safety at Work Act is the only court in Britain where a person is presumed guilty and has to prove their innocence.

As from October 1974, it was indeed possible that a person could be prosecuted for causing an accident to themselves, and I know of one case where that occurred.

While the safety elves have been frequently derided (and I'm not getting at David) usually for reasons not directly relating to safety, the concerted efforts of various regulations both before and since 1974, have greatly reduced the number of workplace injuries and fatalities. Nationally, the construction industry still manages to kill about 40 people each year - serious enough for the Health & Safety Executive to be kept on their toes.

This figure does not include incidents such as the Grenfell Tower disaster, which fall into a slightly different area, but for which there is already new legislation to manage the safety aspects of the built environment as opposed to the construction activity.

Apologies for being boring, but it's important stuff, and David's model correctly and appropriately highlights the point :nerd: :nerd: :nerd: :nerd:
 
PhilP

PhilP

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A HSE publication "Reducing Risks, Protecting People (R2 P2) has the "permissible" amount of deaths by occupation per year, fascinating reading obviously :)
If an occupation reaches the permissible figure.. Does it have to be shut-down, for the rest of the year? :wondering::(


InOtherNews:
Clocks go back this weekend..

An extra-hour of 2020... Great! :(:( Just what we all want! :shake:
 
David1226

David1226

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Gentlemen please, this was supposed to be a thread about building a G Scale yard crane for a model railway, not a discussion on the merits or otherwise of Health & Safety legislation, perhaps that could be saved for another thread.

David
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
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To bring things back to David's model:

I thought it wise there were no railings, or even handrails at the top of the ladders... - They could foul operations, on longer-loads, if they were to move around when being manoeuvred? :)
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

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Gentlemen please, this was supposed to be a thread about building a G Scale yard crane for a model railway, not a discussion on the merits or otherwise of Health & Safety legislation, perhaps that could be saved for another thread.

David
Sorry - it's a cracking model, and absolutely redolent of the age :clap::clap::clap::clap:
 
Brixham

Brixham

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27 Aug 2010
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A very uplifting* build. I'm hooked*. I can't (counter) 'weight' for the next one

Malcolm

*other puns available
 
David1226

David1226

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Chris Vernell

Chris Vernell

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I must try to get myself one of those.
Thank you, David, for more inspiration.
 
Paul2727

Paul2727

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David, as already mentioned ;) Health and Safety, where are the hand rails guards, and railings to prevent falls, as well as the previously mentioned trips.
Seriously though, nice build, with superb scratch built finishing touches :)
Not to mention all those exposed gears. (Trapping, entanglement and crushing hazard.) Let's face it in today's bubble wrapped nanny state it would be condemned and replaced with something far less elegant, ten times as expensive and probably not up to the job.
I'm a firm believer that while mitigating risk is a good thing, removing all risk leads to an increase of complacency and carelessness.
Which is probably why I'm no longer a health and safety consultant. ;)