Friday, August 05, 2016

Boiler fitted

As suspected, a great big hole had to be opened out in the bottom of the smokebox to enable the boiler unit to sit down properly. 

Being whitemetal, my getting it in slightly the wrong place at first didn't matter, a sharp knife was enough to carve the hole in the direction required. It's underneath, so no-one will spot it. 

Lashings of C&L 100 degree solder hold everything in place. This includes the pair of triangular supports at the front. The curves are a hopeless match for the boiler and even solder wouldn't bridge them, so there will be filler action later on. 

I am disappointed by just how tarnished the brass is looking. It's being cleaned after every session with Shiny Sinks and has even been doused in Cilit Bank. Can anyone suggest anything else? I'm not going down the Brasso route, I'd like a dip of some sort. 


matt scrutton said...

Get yourself a ultrasonic cleaner. I have two, a great big heated one for car carbs and gauge one bits, and a weeny one for locomotive injectors and boiler fittings.

Stuart said...

Fibreglass brush is the thing, but they can be a bit of a pain. Jif (sorry, Cif) and a toothbrush can work well too. But nothing will stop it tarnishing again in double quick time so I never bother too much until it's time to paint.

Huw Griffiths said...

If you'd prefer a slightly less painful alternative to the fibreglass scratchbrush, you could also try a rubber abrasive block - one brand is "Garryflex" - another is "Sandflex" (also labelled "Schleiffix").

Both makes work - if I get a choice, my personal preference is for "Garryflex".

Both are sold in a variety of grades - the ones to look for are "medium" (120 grit) and particularly "fine" (240 grit).

Gaugemaster track cleaner blocks are pretty much the same thing.

You could also use an ink eraser. Although the size and shape are generally different, these are similar in principle - but often contain more "rubber" (possibly a different type of "rubber") and less abrasive - the abrasive itself often seems to be finer, too.

For information, if you're into electronics, any of these blocks would also work well for cleaning copper clad circuit boards (PCBs, stripboard) wires and solder tags, prior to soldering. As with brass and whitemetal kits, the finer abrasive grades are better here (you probably don't wish to gouge the metal surface).

However, saying all of this, metal surfaces tarnish quickly after they've been cleaned - and each time you polish the surface, you also remove some of the surface. In other words, the suggestion to wait until you're ready to do something with the metal (and not to keep on polishing the surface) definitely strikes me as very sound advice.

Phil Parker said...

You lot are no fun. Where is the magic elixiar to sort this out?

I've just tried kettle descaler and that didn't work either...

Huw Griffiths said...

If you're really looking for fun, I suppose you could always try a sandblaster.

I'm not sure I'd recommend it, though … .