Sunday, 22 February 2015

Gas Generator Citroën and Ford Double Cab

I'm currently waiting for parts for a loco project. For that reason most of what I model just now isn't on flanged steel wheels, but on rubber tires. Besides having finished my gas generator Citroën I'm building an unusual lorry.  I have begun working on the double cab Ford belonging to haulage contractor Hansen. Last summer I bought some resin parts from Brazil and they are now being united with a converted chassis from the ICM-kit of a Ford T917G.

The Citroën ready to receive the upper body. Painted Nemrod-figure and home made sack for fire wood on the back seat glued in place. Meanwhile the Ford lorry is having its Brazilian cab test fitted in the back ground.

After assembling the gas generator with AC-glue it was painted medium grey and given a wash with heavily diluted brown oil paint. That served as foundation for the rest of the weathering. Due to unclear instructions I'm not sure I mounted the gas generator the proper way on the car's rear end. I couldn't find any useful info on this particular type of gas generator in my books or online.

The Citroën painted glossy black with chrome radiator grill and white visibility mud guards.

After fitting the gas generator only the lengthened gas pipe to the engine needs to be fitted before windows are fitted and the model finished.
A snap shot of the finished car. With white mud guards, gas generator but head lights without black out covers the car dates to immediately after the German occupation of Denmark. As such a little out of the time frame I normally model.

Not all roads around Nystrup had a hard surface, so I gave the car some dust on the lower sides and wheels.
A view of the rear mounted gas generator and lengthy gas pipe to the engine. I now have a narrow gauge loco, a tractor and a car mounted with gas generator. It could be fun having a lorry with a gas generator, too.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Fuel Transport to the Pits

In the days before the Gauge 1 exhibition I built a little load for one of my old wooden flat wagons. They are some of the earliest 1:35 scale wagons I built. Nystrup Gravel had two and used them for many different tasks. An archive photo shows one of them loaded with cast iron stoves. On a second image one of the wagons (they were unnumbered, so it's difficult to know which one) is loaded with jerry cans with fuel for the machines in the gravel pits. The cans were loaded in a large low-sided open wooden crate covered with a tarpulin.

Morning train with fuel for the gravel pit machinery. The first rays of the sun are hitting the wood behind the cutting.
I built the crate from plasticard and plastic strip filling it with jerry cans from several sources. I was careful when placing them in the crate, as I wanted only one type of can to show where the tarpulin had been rolled away. The tarpulin was made from thin copper foil cut to fit and modelled over the loaded crate. Easier than rolling out a thin piece of Milliput and using it as a tarpulin and less messy than using a piece of paper towel and thinned white glue.

A view down on the jerry can box.

The load is painted in somewhat bizarre colours; the crate being sligthly pink and the tarpulin light tan. A splash of colour is refreshing among the dark, dusty and rusting skips normally rolling over the tracks at Nystrup Gravel. A nice, quick project!

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Chubby Driver with Funny Hat

A great advantage of modelling in 1:35 is the good quality figures on the market. Even though the majority are military figures some of them can be rebuilt into civilians. The number of true civilian figures in 1:35  is steadily rising, though. A marked contrast between the new railway modelling scale of 1:35 and the traditional of 1:32 is in fact the detailed figures in 1:35 scale. Most of the figures I have seen available in 1:32 looks like toys and not miniature versions of humans compared to the figures in 1:35.

Recently I found a new colourful figure from the Czech company SKP Models which I thought would fit in well on Nystrup Gravel as a lorry or loco driver.

A new driver for a loco at Nystrup Gravel.

Assembled but unpainted figure. Photo from Jadar Hobby's website.
While I think the figure is meant to be from more recent times than the 1950's, I think it will be a believable character on the Nystrup scene. The figure is available directly from SKP-Models, but I bought mine from Jadar Hobby in Poland as I was having a package sent up north anyway.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Traction Avant with Gas Generator

I modelled occasionally on the dinner table over the Christmas holidays. The Citroën is now almost fully assembled and painting is under way.

The Blitz Models' gas generator is a nice little kit in itself. One has to be careful during assembly, though. A lot of dry fitting is advised to get the correct position of a all gas generator parts. If not the gas generator equipment will not fit the car properly. I had to insert a piece of plastic in the gas pipe leading to the engine to achieve a good fit. Beside the need for patience and test fitting the gas generator is very good. The parts are finely cast and very easy to separate from their mould gates. The instructions could be a little clearer, though.

The resin parts for the gas generator, scrubber and pipes. Appropriate for the Christmas season the parts were photographed on a red napkin (unused).

The modifications needed to fit the gas generator: Opening up rear panel and one small hatch in the bonnet. Cutting off the rear bumper and fitting gas generator mounting bracket. 
The gas generator kit is accompanied by replacement wheels for the car. They are not fitted with hubcaps and makes a nice difference to the kit's wheels. I chose to fit the Blitz Models' wheels to make my second Citroën even more different. The kit's axles were shortened a few millimetres to fit the resin wheels. The Tamiya kit of the Citroën is easy to assemble. See a full review of the kit here.

Interior painted and weathered. Not much of this will be visible when the model is finished, so I have kept my ambitions restrained. I will, however, make a sack or two with wood fuel to place on the rear seat. Beside that it's time for the air brush and gloss black paint.
I had bought a set of etched brass from Aber (set PE 35231) to refine the model, but I will use very little from the set. Not much on the fret will make the model look any better in my eyes. Should have been wise enough to have saved my money there.

Monday, 26 January 2015

A Fowler at Nystrup Gravel

Ever since I first heard about Nystrup Gravel there have been persistent rumours about an early British built diesel loco being owned by the company. I have been digging into the binder with old documents from the gravel company and found proof that Nystrup Gravel did buy a Fowler diesel in 1933. Much indicates that it was a loco Fowler failed to sell to the company that originally ordered it.
A preserved narrow gauge Fowler at the Campbelltown Steam and Machinery Museum in Australia. From plans in the Nystrup Gravel company archive it seems that Nystrup's loco looked very much like this loco. Photo: Chris Miller, 2009.
The Fowler at Nystrup was probably meant for a customer in the tropics using Imperial measurements. The gauge on the loco was in fact 2 feet (610 mm) while Nystrup Gravel used 600 mm gauge. The Fowler was consequently slightly 'over gauged'. I have attached a document from the Nystrup Gravel archive showing that the fact was discussed with a local engineering company. They predicted that the standard of Nystrup's tracks could well accommodate a loco with 610 mm. gauge, although they advised careful running through some of the better point work. There is no indication that the loco ever derailed more than any of the company's other locos. Unfortunately there is no images of the loco in the binder from Nystrup Gravel, although an old news paper clipping shows that the arrival of a diesel loco was noticed by the local press.

In Denmark only three other Fowlers are known. Despite a lot of marketing to open up a new market in Denmark, Fowler only succeeded in selling a six coupled 700 mm gauge loco to a sugar factory in 1948 and two standard gauge shunters in 1952 to a railway in northern Jutland.

One of many adverts sent to Nystrup Gravel from Fowler to promote their products. Read about the history of John Fowler & Co, Leeds here.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

New Work Table

Finally I have an operating work table again. Since moving into the new house I've been doing what little modelling I have had time for on the dining table. Suitably well covered with papers and cutting mat preventing any unintended damage.

My new work table is a bit bigger than my previous work table. The old one was small and placed halfway into an open shelf system while the new one is placed in front of a window to allow for lots of natural light. The work table is very simple: a purpose cut piece of plywood fitted to some recycled legs. The work surface is painted white and the rear part of the table is fitted with sides to diminish the number of objects finding their way to the floor. The floor is natural wood so no ‘carpet monster’ here (although parts occasionally do go missing even without a carpet!). The floor immediately under the work table is covered with a protective plastic mat to avoid damage to the floor - both from falling knives, paint spatter and wear from my chair.

Still some things to do before the work table is completely organized. Modelling is already in progress, though.
Despite having a relatively generous amount of light coming in through the window, I have fitted my work station with a number of different lamps. Living in Denmark with rather depressingly dark months in good supply there is no way I can model by natural light here! Generally I have started laying out the work table pretty much like the old one. No need to redo things that have proven their worth. On my left is mini drill, vice and airbrush while on my right steel ruler and calliper are ready for action. Also within easy reach is a collection of the most used profiles in both metal, plastic and wood as well as brushes and glue.

The work bench is still being fitted out as I write, but the first model has already been worked on. No doubt the work table will gradually evolve into a more mature piece of furniture as time passes (read: become messier and messier).
A snap shot of my old work table. Here seen in a messier than usual-mode. Compared to my new surroundings a lot more cave-like!

Monday, 12 January 2015

Lanz Tractor

I'm still without a real worktable for modelling due to my recent move. I still manage a little work on my gasgenerator Citroën now and then. Before I get a post done on that topic here is a few lines on a 10 year old model.

On several occasions I have used parts from Plus Model's comprehensive range of small diorama accessories in 1:35. The Czech company also does a few vehicles, including a pair of tractors. Plus Models supplied my first resin tractor kit - a Lanz Bulldog. Until then all my tractors had been white metal kits.

The Plus Model kit is a very fine kit of the legendary Lanz Bulldog HR 7 with 30 hp. engine. It is a kit that really has more in common with a normal plastic injected kit than with most peoples' idea of a resin kit. This model isn't hard to build. Other modellers besides me must have thought highly of the kit, as it was awarded the title 'Modell des Jahres' by the German modelling magazine Modell Fan in 1999. I finished my kit in 2004, but have recently fitted it with a license plate to make its appearance unmistakeably Danish.

My Plus Models Lanz tractor parked outside the loco shed. The tractor is from one of the farms surrounding Nystrup and the driver may have dropped in for a visit. According to the top digit on the green license plate the tractor is registered in police district 4 encompassing Roskilde and surroundings (Roskilde Købstad, Ramsø-Tune Herreder og Lejre Herred). Nystrup seems to be placed somewhere between Roskilde and Sorø if other license plate observations are to be believed.
The kit is still available as is a very interesting tracked version. At least one tracked Lanz worked on the Danish island of Lolland in the fifties. As the island is well known for its clay rich and heavy soil a tracked tractor would probably be useful there in wet conditions. According to my late grandfather a Lanz Bulldog was capable of running on any relatively flammable fluid thinner than porridge! More info on Lanz tractors on this German website.

An advert on the virtues of the Lanz Bulldog tractor. From a 1940's German farmer's magazine.