Thursday, April 21, 2011
Manx G Van
Opening the box on the Branchlines kit for the Isle of Man railways G Van everything looks very promising.
The main component is a very nicely moulded resin body. It's a cracker with lovely modeling and not a hint of distortion. Since the kit has been "maturing" for at least 3 years this is really good news as it shows the material to be very stable. Some of my own efforts in this direction have become static models after a similar length of time !
According to the instructions, the builder just sticks the solebars to the body and then adds the axle boxes. Well, I stared at the instructions for ages. Then I tried a dry-run and it sort of located against the thin lip of resin showing behind the whitemetal solebar.
Nothing ventured, I opened up the superglue and got stuck in. The results were underwhelming. Keeping the solebar straight was tricky and I'm not sure I managed it to a high enough level of precision, not helped by the moulded bolt heads conflicting with some of the bodyside bits that extend below the floor. The location of the axlebox wasn't marvelous either and it definitely didn't feel secure no matter how much glue was involved. The presence of feet that should sit on a floor, but no sign of a floor or anywhere to fit it didn't inspire confidence either.
Finally, some rough tests seemed to show that if I put an axlebox on the other side of the van, the gap left between the bearing cups would be less than that required to fit the axle. I needed another plan.