Monday, May 09, 2011

Coal rails

Coal RailsThe weather has cooled off a bit so to warm things up again, it's time for the soldering iron to come back out. In other words I've been feeling guilty about the lack of progress with the C15 locomotive.

Looking at the model, the obvious starting point was to put the bunker back in place - easy enough, it just slots in place and just requires a bit of bending to form the curve towards the top. I bent it around a bit of brass rod and wish the metal had been annealed first. Never mind.

Then it was time for the coal rails. The idea is that some half round brass wire is soldered into the half etched grooves at the top of the bunker. An interesting design but that's prototypes for you.

Anyway, the wire fitted nicely and took solder well. I had expected to use the gas torch but the electric iron was man enough for the task. Perhaps its long lay-up has made it keener to put some effort in !

There are only a couple of problems with this job:

The wire is supplied slightly too long for the box so it has to be straightened. Not easy and I still don't think I've nailed it now. It's a good job this model locomotive isn't to be ex-works as I can claim some damage when the fuel was loaded.

An extra length would have been nice. Three are provided and four required. I ended up making up the second rail in from offcuts and leftovers. Had I realised this in advance, I'd have happily (OK, slightly grumpily) paid up for more wire.

The key to this job is plenty of flux, not too  much solder and then lots of work with the fibreglass burnisher to clean off the excess.

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