Sixteenmills 16mm scale brake van build....

tac foley

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Hi there, all. I'm just opening the stout cardboard box containing the first of what hope will be at least three laser-cut models of Welsh NG prototypes from Sixteenmills.co.uk to run on my 45mm gauge track. David Mills, the proprietor and organiser of the whole shebang, it well-known in his locale of North Wales. The quality of his products is nothing less than excellent. He has recently teamed up with Tom Eivers, he of Endon Valley Decals [afternoon, Tom] and now includes his superb decals with his range of passenger coaches for certain lines.

To illustrate the measure of his skills with the laser cutter, here is an example of a model of the original, standard-gauge version, on which the NG version is based, in a raw, unpainted state, cut in what he describes as poor quality 1mm MDF, and to a scale of 5.5mm to the foot. This rather odd scale is based on the use of S Scale track...

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Image used by kind permission of David V. Mills.

Back to the model in hand - here is a sneak preview of the components, as yet unseparated from their surrounding sprues - if that's the right word for them.

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The finely detailed strapping is cunningly reproduced in heavy-duty card of a kind with which I am unfamiliar, but it's very 'scale-looking' dimensionally.

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Anyhow, I'll be posting the build here if anybody is interested in looking in from time to time. I'll say no more except to give you fair warning that Grampian Models' styrene rivets and nuts/bolt/washers will be featuring strongly in the near future - not because they are necessary, but purely because I happen to like 'em. :)
 
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Paul M

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I'm looking forward to seeing your progress
 

Rhinochugger

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GEM used 5.5mm : 1ft for their Ffestiniog model range, so that they could run on 12mm track - this was before n gauge was freely available :nod::nod::nod::nod:

The kits were white metal and included coaches, wagons (including a nice little skip wagon) Prince and a Fairlie.

In those days, the model railway bible was the W&H catalogue - W&H Models, 14 New Cavendish Street :):)

Sorry, a bit early for thread drift - must be the lockdown effect :mask:
 
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tac foley

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Thanks for that, Mr Chugger - I've often wondered why I've still got a white metal FR coach kit in that scale!!

Anyhow, we are getting on like a house afire here - Both ends are done, the 'box' with its doors is done, and a start has been made putting rivets on where there is no actual strapping -

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It really is going together very well - in fact, I can't find anything to criticise. What I HAVE done, and I'm sure that Mr Mills won't mind, is to reinforce the cabin corners with 6mm square wood, just to give the adhesive something more to hold on to -

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Here is the afore-mentioned item -

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...and here is one of the side-brace units - it all interlocks very well - sign of a well-planned model...

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You can see the laser-cut locations for the overlay strapping. OTOH, you could always just paint them in a contrasting colour and save some time, but my view is that you should take your time and savour the build. I'll be using the stick-on detail and enhancing them with Grampian coach bolts and nuts/bolts/washers where indicated.
 
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musket the dog

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Looking good so far Tac, I've built up a couple of Mr. Mills' kits and I have to say they're excellent. I've been looking to get one of those brake vans for a while now, I'm looking forward to seeing how yours turns out :)
 
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dunnyrail

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Have to say I have been taking sneaky looks at their offerings, particularly Gauge 3, a lust wish of mine. They do a small range so I have been tempted to indulge, your showing of what the kits look like is a good add for them Tac. If I do will this mean the end of the LGB Loft Railway before it is finished?
 

mike

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Like it .keep at it...please
 

tac foley

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More pics - inside of ends - note square-head coach bolts - the other side shows round.....
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The build is proceeding nicely. As expected, the parts fit to together with incredible accuracy, given the extremely fine cuts from David's cutter - I measured the width of the cut using a micro-loup and got it to around .25mm - VERY impressive, to say the least. As ever with laser-cut wood or MDF, a slight clean-up to the burnt edges is to be recommended to ensure penetration of whatever adhesive you are using. I'm using a mix of slow-setting CAA/ACC and a very thin aliphatic glue that 'osmosifies' into the slightest gaps, just like MEK does with styrene.

Underside showing excellent representation of the brake gear - I'm using the provided handrail wire material to ensure that it all lines up...
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The sharper-eyed will note that I also used Ozark Miniatures NBW where I think they make a better impression of NBWs - just me - I LIKE 3D rivets and fixings...
Here are the roof beams made up - as usual, a quick pass with a VERY fine emery board will ensure not only an impressively tight fit, but also correct and strong adhesion.
I've also measured the roof up and marked it accordingly to ensure the correct location of the actual roof - ready-grooved on the topside to allow an easier bend-to-fit.
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For those who want to know, it's 170mm long by 95mm wide - mark it up so's you can position the roof beam unit correctly. And in case anybody might be wondering why I've marked up the 'top' of the roof, it's so that I can have the planks showing through the 'tarp' covering. The small amount of 'planking' that is visible inside the balcony ends can be duplicated by cunning application of a pencil.....
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Test fit of roofing frame...
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It really is a joy to build, and right now I'm taking (decent) suggestions for suitably miserable colours, in keeping with the location of the standard gauge prototype on which this NG version is based. Seems I need to do some research on the Mid-Wales Railway....
 
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tac foley

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For those with an interest in Welsh Fallen Flags -

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The Mid-Wales Railway was a railway company intended to make a trunk route through Wales, connecting industrial areas of north west England with sea ports in south west Wales. In fact it was prevented from reaching its goal by competing proposals in Parliament, and it was limited to a line between Llanidloes and a junction with the Brecon and Merthyr Railway five miles east of Brecon. It was seventy miles in length and opened in 1864. It had found it impossible to raise share subscription, but the contractor partnership of Davies and Savin agreed to build the line and take shares in payment,

The line ran through sparsely populated terrain and had steep gradients and sharp curves, so that there was little local traffic and the limited long distance business was costly to operate. Finding continued independence impossible to sustain, the company amalgamated with the Cambrian Railways in 1904.

Use of the line declined in the 1930s and afterwards, and the very limited use of the line resulted in closure after the last day of operation on 30 December 1962.

Bin gone a while, then..........................
 
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tac foley

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More lots of appliqué stuff - Cambrian NBW and bolts and a start being made on the strapping. It's made from some kind of card that doesn't disappear in a puff of smoke when hit with the laser cutter [don't ask how I know that that CAN happen]. The Cambrian coach-bolt heads will be stuck on where necessary, giving the full-bodies 3D look that I prefer in such a comparatively large model.

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This is a preview before the windows get 'glazed' - still LOTS to do.
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For one thing, I have to make a decidement as to the type and style of couplings I'll be fitting. Not necessarily my usual Accucraft choppers, but perhaps something more in keeping with the bucolic nature of the line represented. Remember that the Mid-Wales Railway was NOT any kind of a narrow gauge line, but was standard-gauge all the way. This little BV really is a piece of imagination. It will, of course, need a suitably bucolic locomotive of some kind, maybe not even steam!!!
 
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tac foley

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Them's all the coach-bolt heads and stuff adhered, and a trial run of the roofal thing. All I can say about the kit per se is what a joy it is to assemble - the precision of the interlocking parts makes it all easy.


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dunnyrail

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Them's all the coach-bolt heads and stuff adhered, and a trial run of the roofal thing. All I can say about the kit per se is what a joy it is to assemble - the precision of the interlocking parts makes it all easy.


View attachment 278843
I rather like these kits and have been dabbling with the concept of getting a couple of his Gauge 3 offerings, but his website oh dear. No phone number just an email. How did you manage to get hold of yours at a show? Plus his prices are dated 2018!
 

tac foley

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We are both on the 16mm Association FB pages, plus he is a good friend of a number associates in North Wales. His merchandise really IS worth the wait - and remember that he is literally a one-man-band, like so many other supporters of 16mm in the UK. TBH, we'd be lost without him and others of his ilk. What to do you actually want? I can ask him direct!
 
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dunnyrail

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Jon - you are not reading the messages I'm sending you.
Oh sorry as he quoted for G3 I thought that a thanks message was Ok, yes I am looking for G3 have noted the price and contact so will ring him tomorrow to do the deal, or would this evening be better? Never quite sure with traders as I never want to impinge on private time in the evening.
 

tac foley

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Oh sorry as he quoted for G3 I thought that a thanks message was Ok, yes I am looking for G3 have noted the price and contact so will ring him tomorrow to do the deal, or would this evening be better? Never quite sure with traders as I never want to impinge on private time in the evening.
He lives in the house, and works from the shop.
 

tac foley

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Still to do - fit windows, fit roof, couplings, door handles and maybe use the downloaded Mid-Wales Rlwy Co. emblem, oh, and a final dust over with line-side dwilge.. Went together like a dream, with care. All will be talked of in the article, along with a few short cuts to make it easier.

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tac foley

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Last lap! All it needs are the couplings - on their way from Abbeybach Engineering in Gogledd Cymru as I write this. The door knobs are dressmaking pins with sequins stuck to them, painted 'brass'. The stack is bits of scrap and is actually bolted on for strength. The emblem is downloaded for £2.50 and printed on photo-paper, stuck to double-sided Scotch tape and VERY carefully cut out using an old pair of negative scissors. Lettering is vinyl from 'Permasign Inc.' Oh, and roof is not yet stuck down. I might use rare earth magnets to do that......and put some lamp-irons on it.

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