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Rob P's coach workbench

33063 Views 127 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  Rob Pulham
Having taken the plunge in stripping the cab of the A3 prior to making the roof removable did I continue with the F8?

Nah! I am sure that it will come as no surprise that it didn't take much encouragement from Chris for me to start on one of the coach kits that she bought me for my birthday.

This is some of what's in the box - for this particular coach I am still waiting for the underframe and bogie etches.

Having had a read of the quite comprehensive instructions available for download from the kemilway site it reckons about a hundred and fifty hours to build a coach depending on experience. Having had some of these kits in 4mm some years ago I had an idea what to expect and this is where I got to after 4 hours yesterday.

The floor pan folded up and the inner ends curved with the formers soldered in.

Both sides have their separate bottom panels soldered in.

Even though I had filed of the etching cusps I struggled with the first side to get the panels in flat etc. with a couple needing to be dropped out and repositioned. On the second side I made doubly sure that I had removed the cusps and I put a slight chamfer on the edges of each panel. This meant that they snapped into place with ease and I soldered up the second side in half the time it took for the first - a lesson learned for the next one.
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Those dreaded cusps! This hobby is all about learning lessons and hopefully not doing any fatal damage in the meantime.

Lovely looking kit. I'd love to have a go one day.

I moved on a little with this last night.

The next step or rather the previous step (it should have been done before fitting the panels to the sides) was to fit the bulkheads/toilet partitions. This is where reading all the instructions first pays off. The instructions for the body would have you fit the bulkheads/toilet partitions while building the body but then when you get to the interior the instructions have you fitting doors and the very nice cast door knobs. This would have been a much bigger and messier job to have done when the coach body was assembled so I chose to add the doors and door knobs in the flat.

The detail on the inside of the toilet compartment its quite something - the only thing missing is that there isn't quite enough door knobs provided to add them on the inside of the toilet door.

Above is the inside of the toilet compartment at one end - I didn't get the last partition in last night.

The inside of the vestibule showing the door knobs on both sides of the door.

One side of the door - the additional etch.

And the other side which is etched as part of the bulkhead.

Lastly a close up of the other toilet partition show the door knob in all it's glory!
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Things are coming together nicely but up to yesterday there wasn't much to show.

First I folded down the inside section of the top half on the sides and soldered it in place to and bottom.

Then I drilled out all the holes for the door handles, bump stops etc.

Next was the task that many dread, creating the tumble home or turn under. My method for doing this makes it quite simple (or I think so).

I get a strip of 2" masking tape a bit longer than the coach side and stick it to the outside of the coach, level with the bottom of the windows. I have a length of 28mm diameter tube that is about 18" long (a left over from fitting a curtain rail).

I placed the coach side outside face down on the sheet of plate glass that covers most of my work bench top with the remainder of the sticky side of the masking tape facing upwards.

Next I placed the tube on the sticky tape adjacent to the bottom edge of the coach side. I wrapped the rest of the tape around the tube.

Then grasp the tube at each end where there was no tape I rolled the tube towards the centre of the coach gently but firmly. The masking tape pulls the coach edge around the tube and the tumblehome is formed.

On the first side I went a little too far and had to bring some of the curve back out by laying the back of the side on the glass and gently pressing along it. The second side came out perfectly first time. If there is interest in the method I will do a step by step as I do the next one.

Next I soldered in the bump stops. These are not provided in the kit - the instructions suggest that you solder in 0.45mm wire. These are I believe from Laurie Griffin but I got them in with a lot of other spares and I think that I have enough to do another couple of coaches after this one. I have made them from scrap etch and rod before but to be honest having seen how nice these are I will buy some more in the future when I need them.

The T handles are very nicely cast and are included in the kit. There are also some nicely etched grab handles that I was a bit dubious about initially - initially went to the trouble of soldering a piece of 0.5mm wire to the back of one to beef it up but it was the very devil to bend. So I went back to trying the etch as supplied and they are more substantial than I first guessed. What I do like about this kit is that there are loads of spares of a lot of the pieces. So far I have spare T handles/grab handles/hinges and drop lights.

The hinges are a really nice touch, they come as three fingers that go through the coach side which once you have soldered them solid there is a half etched line which allows them to be snapped off leaving behind differing hinges for the various points on the coach side - some care is needed to get them all the right way up before soldering them in. The etched slits for these needed opening out a little with a .5mm drill.

Once all these were in place you need to snip off the ends that protrude inside and clean/file back so that the drop lights can be fitted. I did this with a diamond coated ball bit in my Dremell.

Next up is fitting the drop lights and then the cornice strip. The cornice strips are handed so once again double check to make that you have the right one with the rain strips above the doors.

Once all this was done I gave everything a good clean up and made sure that all the stubs on the inside face were ground/filed off (I had missed a few earlier).

I had decided that on this coach I would represent the end windows as having been filled in with a solid panel - blanks are provided for this so I bent them to shape and soldered them in before starting to add the sides

Then came soldering the first side on, I started with the compartment side - this being the one that the tumble home had gone perfectly. I initially sat the floor pan on my sheet of glass and placed the side up to it. When I was satisfied that it was all sat level, I tacked the top of the bulkheads leaving the ends free. Once I was happy that it was all going into position where it should I tacked the bottoms of the bulkheads, then I worked my way down the sides of the bulkheads and across the bottom seams finally ding the ends last.

Here are a few shots of what it looks like at this point.

I couldn't resist a glimpse through the window….

A couple of shots of the drop lights and the "chrome" handrail - this wasn't supplied I just reasoned that nickel would represent the handrail better and I have just restocked various sizes.

Regards Rob
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Very nice

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The next items on the agenda are the interiors. This coach is a little different in that there is a unit that makes up into twin first class compartments, a second unit that makes up into a twin open third bay and a third unit that makes up into a two and half third bay. The generic instructions cover the make-up of the compartments but not the semi open bays so I had to do a bit of head scratching to see what was what and where it went.

This is another area where you get a few spares this time in the form of open partitions without luggage racks. I elected to use those with luggage racks and once I had worked out which went where I had to think about the fact that luggage racks are etched flat so they needed to be twisted into position. I almost did one of them wrong in the single seat bay - I was planning on bending them over the wood panelled area but then I remembered Chris saying that Peter Dawson had told her that the luggage racks screwed on after painting. As I was thinking about it I noticed that at the out end of the full height partitions there are two holes - light bulb moment, to screw the luggage racks to. Once I realised this it was easy to work out which partition went where and which way to twist the low luggage racks to orientate them.

I also found an etch containing some small latches for the sliding doors to the compartments so I added them.

The rest of the luggage racks and the nets for these are to follow with the rest of the bits that are missing.
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I love those luggage racks. It's almost enough to make me want to trade up to 7mm scale

Will you be fitting some kind of netting?

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QUOTE (dwb @ 28 Oct 2013, 19:41) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I love those luggage racks. It's almost enough to make me want to trade up to 7mm scale

Will you be fitting some kind of netting?


I sincerely hope so David. I am waiting for some of the parts for both kits to come - underframe for one, bogies for both and the luggage rack and mirrors for both - which should include the netting (unless I find anything else that's missing along the way).
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Looking fantastic Rob!

Bit of a basic question, but what do you use to hold part when you solder them?

It's a magnificent model, and all the details are beginning to look very familiar. Would that carriage have been found on the Kings Cross - Cambridge locals in the late 50s and early 60s? Perhaps something similar. I have memories of often leaning on those handrails across the corridor windows when the compartments were full. The handrails were needed - they could be rough riders.

QUOTE (andrew @ 29 Oct 2013, 13:17) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>It's a magnificent model, and all the details are beginning to look very familiar. Would that carriage have been found on the Kings Cross - Cambridge locals in the late 50s and early 60s? Perhaps something similar. I have memories of often leaning on those handrails across the corridor windows when the compartments were full. The handrails were needed - they could be rough riders.


I wouldn't be surprised Andrew they were quite long lived!
QUOTE (Jack P @ 29 Oct 2013, 09:12) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Looking fantastic Rob!

Bit of a basic question, but what do you use to hold part when you solder them?


Hi Jack,

Not a basic question at all. I have a selection of things that I use:

6 sets of self locking tweezers - Like these

a set of Aluminium hair grips from Eileens Emporium Similar to these but mine have two prongs/legs

6 pairs Self locking forceps - Like these although I didn't pay so much for them

some small blocks of wood and various coffee stirrer type sticks
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What a few of you have been waiting for - The Roof.

I made up the formers exactly as per the instructions and rolled the roof - half etched side inwards. This I really struggled with and contrary to the instruction I had to solder the roof formers to the roof in order to stop coming out of the locating holes while trying to fit some etched wedges. The idea if you can make it work is quite ingenious and I suspect that I didn't get the roof rolled tight enough and I hope to do better on the next one.

Then last night completely contrary to the instructions (they suggest liquid metal or body filler) I filled the end with 100 degree solder. On the second end I also dropped in some .45mm wire to fill a couple of the wider gaps. This was quite successful when I rubbed it down so I will probably do a lot more of that when I do the next one.

I didn't take any photos before I started to rub it down but here are a few as at bedtime last night. Both ends still need more work but I think that on one end at least it will be a bit of Squadron putty to finish it off. I will decide on the other once I have rubbed it down some more

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I don't feel to have made much progress in the last few days but I have done a bit.

Firstly I discovered a gaff! - I had soldered the cornice onto the coach side not the cornice spacer

The offending cornice marked in red

It should have been a plain strip....

Before I plucked up the courage to take the cornice off I spent an hour or so making this.

What on earth is that I can hear you muttering.. well it's a jig to do this

You just place it on the coach end and run solder along the underside edge and all the roof fingers solder down without having to worry about any springing off. The blackening stops the jig from being soldered to the roof. I made it from the scrap etch that the formers came out of. It's only good for the Great Northern roof profile coaches but when I get some of the LNER coaches I will make another. When I get to the next roof I will take photos to demonstrate it in action.
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I like the jig

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While I haven't posted much with my laptop dying I have made further progress.

I have taken the D114 as far as I wanted to without the other bits from Kemilway. They duly arrived last week (all apart from some wire and some bolts).

Here's where I got to. I also started the second coach and I have the floor pan folded up and the sides ready for the tumble home forming - I haven't taken pictures because it's more of the same.

The roof is just resting on at the moment because it's the long roof bolts that I am still waiting for.

I soldered some tabs on the back of the gangway board so that it's removable if I want to have the coach in the middle of a rake.

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A recent Ebay buy was a Bill Bedford kit for a NBR/LNER D71 BG, I say "kit" but it's more sides ends and underframe. One evening I needed a bit of a distraction from rolling the tumblehome for the second Kemilway so I thuoght I would see how well the BB kit went together.

The sides are in two halves that are lap jointed a bit like Comet 4mm LNER coach sides if anyone has ever made them. I have to say that they go together very positively and were a joy to solder up. The sides themselves are nicely etched but the one thing that all the parts suffer from is that where there are holes for slots/tabs or door handles etch they are all etched too big.

In order to support the solebars I made up some brackets shaped like this

There are some etched battery boxes included but the details was a bit 2D so I made up some hinge detail from scrap etch and 0.5mm wire.

Next up I created the tumblehome. back up the thread I offered to detail how I do this so I took the opportunity to take step by step photos while doing it.

First stick a strip of 2" masking tape to just below the windows.

Place your piece of rod on the remaining strip of masking tape and roll it around until it's stuck to the rod and up against the bottom of your side.

Then continue to roll gently but firmly and the tape pulls the side into a curve.

And there you have it.
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