Thursday, March 12, 2015

Clockwork Tamper in BRM

Deadlines were tight for my contributions for the latest issue of British Railway Modelling.

I do my best to plan projects so they are ready well ahead of the deadline days but sometimes, events conspire against me and there's a few late nights required to push everything out of the door. Chuck in an exhibition absorbing a weekend and some illness picked up at that show and it's wonder that some of this was finished at all.

Anyway, this month you'll find me taking a look at baseboards in both ready made and kit form. 

Baseboard kit

Thanks to the good people at White Rose Modelworks, I found myself with three different options to examine on the DVD and in print. Buying in baseboards is something I've never considered so it was fascinating to have a good look at the products.

If you are going to spend money on a layout then a good, solid and flat baseboard is an excellent way of doing it. Too many modellers mess around with terrible woodwork telling themselves they can bodge it later. It doesn't work and you are never satisfied. That's why I get the wood cut for my boards by someone else!

Once you have your boards, you'll be thinking about scenery and so I've built a fairly entry-level cardboard kit for an engine shed.

Engine shed

Me being me, I couldn't help but make a few mods to the basic model and have fitted some basic interior detail. Not a difficult job but when you look through the doors, it certainly improves the model.

Continuing the kit building theme from the last few issues, I've given a quick run-down of the different types of loco kit available along with some pros and cons of each.

Finally, the kit that caused me all the trouble. Clockwork ideas Plasser 08-16 C80RT ballast tamper.

Ballast Tamper

This is a truly astounding kit, The most multi-media model I've ever built. The largest (84 page) instruction manual I've ever followed. Possibly the best designed kit I've encountered.

You'll need to buy the mag to see the whole journey through this project. Looking at the box I'd thought "A couple of days will have it ready for paint.". In the end, I reckon I spent at least 50 hours on the model, plus painting.

And I enjoyed every one of them.

I only wish I'd allowed more time for the build as it was easily one of the most enjoyable I've had for years. There are a lot of steps but most are easy and all seem to advance the project. It's a bit like reading a really good novel - you just want to keep turning the pages.

The plan was for me to hand the completed model back to the supplier for sale. By the time I'd finished it I couldn't bear to let it go and handed over my own cash to keep it. While I have no need for a modern tamper, some models are just a joy to build and to own. If you can justify a vehicle like this, head over to DC Kits and give your credit card a hammering. It's worth it.

Full details of the April BRM.


Anonymous said...

What we want to know is this:

"Have they sent you another one to build, so they can display it / sell it?"

Phil Parker said...

Nope. It's not a cheap kit and so the idea was to keep costs down for everyone so neither BRM or DC Kits would be out of pocket for a kit. It worked - I'm the one out of pocket but in this instance I don't mind.