Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Coal tank valance

Coal tank valance
Originally uploaded by Phil_Parker

Some things look stand out like a sore thumb on a model if you don't get them just right. One of them is a wobbly valance or footplate.

To get the model footplate flat in this kit, a pair of valances are supplied. These are to be folded into an L shape and soldered in place. Now maybe it's me but the result of putting in the fold was a very wobbly L shaped piece of metal. Perhaps I should have deepened the half etched line with a scrawker, Perhaps bending bars rather than a "hold n fold" would have been better. Whatever the reason, I needed to deviate from the kit or end up with something that looked terrible.

My first thought was a quick trip to the K&S Metals rack at the local model shop. Some L section from there would work much better then the etched version anyway. Of course I have several lengths suitable for OO models but more than bit small for O. Strangely it wasn't a Sunday when I found this out, that's the day traditionally to need a shopping trip...

Unfortunately, the L section holes in the rack were empty of the sizes I needed so in desperation I bought box section instead. This was dressed on one side with a big file to make the face nice and flat, then soldered in place. Result, a nice flat and strong footplate.

Now if this were my locomotive I'd stop here. However valances are not boxes but vertical metal. I had to remove half the box section using a mini drill fitted with a cutting disk. A bit of grinding followed and the result is presentable. You'll have to turn the locomotive upside down and have a good peer to spot what I've done. If you do this either you are the owner or he's about to remonstrate with you for fiddling around with his model.

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