Sunday 28 March 2010

The Fawley Light Railway - A scratch-built railcar

Last year I started building a railcar from a grounded carriage body I found in the bits box. I have recently found it in one of the stock boxes and wondered what I could do to improve it. At the moment, apart from the chassis it looks nothing like a railcar, and more like a motorised push-pull carriage! It has been plonked on an American diesel I bought for about £21 and runs very nicely indeed.

It is a freelance project so I welcome suggestions as to what I could do to improve it. First thoughts include an exhaust and some sort of cab windows? Some form of prototype images of various railcars would be appreciated too.

Something tells me that making alterations to the body will be difficult. It's quite solidly built with metal roof vents glued into the roof. The main assembly seems to be with metal lugs twisted, the sides seem to be glued to the ends. It would seem to be easier to start afresh, but I really like body.

One thing I can think of is blocking off some of the windows at the rear, and then refabricating both the ends? That way it requires less drastic surgery. I guess the exhaust(s) could go on the engine end. The motor really does intrude a significant amount, as you can see from the photos.

I'm open to suggestions...

Wednesday 24 March 2010

A tiny bit more done...

Not really worth the update, but I did promise...
Getting there now, but still a lot to do. I think I might need to shorten it though, it looks too long to me. Oh yeah, and I have also improved the textures on it so the beach looks more, well, beach like.

I have done the halt as well, but it looks contrived at the moment so I'll need to work out a way to include it. What I might do is move the left hand side (where the disused seaplane is) to the right a tad and put the halt on the extreme left. This is the joy of mock ups and 3D sketches - you can move things around before you make a mistake on the real thing!

As always, don't hesitate to make suggestions - I am open to criticism!

Tuesday 23 March 2010

Progress, and whetting the appetite!

Just a quick entry today with time enough to show you how I am progressing with the layout plan. It has taken me many hours to get to this stage on the 3D model, the textures aren't brilliant though. The main shell of the layout is shown, awaiting track, buildings, vegetation and the odd bits such as groynes and a jetty...
Hope it whets the appetite enough, I should be able to get most of it done by tomorrow night! I appreciate there isn't much to see at the moment, but it should all become clearer soon.


Sunday 21 March 2010

I've been given the go ahead - Calshot Mk II

Today I am very happy! As the title suggests, I have had permission to build Calshot Mk II.
This decision was reached probably due to sudden brainwave this morning - when not in use, I could store Calshot Mk II in a movable unit with castors on the bottom. The unit would be 1m long by about 0.75m tall and 0.5m wide. There would be three spaces - the top space for the fiddle yard board(s) (because in theory it will be the lightest) followed by two spaces for the scenic boards.

This means I can have a layout larger than the current Calshot. Now I know how much space I can have - I can start designing the layout. Now, one thing I must state is that the layout will not be rectangular, no way! It will have a nice 'flowing' feel to it to draw your eye from one scene to the next. I lose baseboard, but I gain design.

I still don't know how to plan this layout, nor what it will look like - but that's all the fun! Any track layout suggestions will be most welcome - I'd ideally like to get in a small halt, hangar and slipway, standard gauge line and narrow gauge line.