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Hi All.   I am purchasing kits quicker than than I am building them, mostly plastic, but I have an Etched Brass kit or two, one being a Semaphore Signal and one a Brakevan.  I purchased the brakevan as a precursor to a rake of LSWR carriages from Roxey Mouldings, thinking that if all goes well with the brakevan?  Then I could start on the carriages as there aren't any RTR models available. I have been considering either getting an engineers surface plate, but that is a serious bit of kit. Then I thought about "folding bars" or even using a smooth jaw vice, but everything seems "ott"? As for the posh etch mates et al, they seem a bit pricey. Two lengths of aluminium angle bolted together seems the best idea yet? As even the shorter carriages in OO are too long for a "single fold" operation with the posh etch mates. If anyone out there has experience of my ideas? Please leave an answer.  Kevin

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Kevin at the risk of blowing my own trumpet, I suggest you have a look at this thread:

http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=10043&forum_id=62

I touch on a host of things from plastic to brass wagons and coaches.  You may not agree with everything I did and others may have even better ideas.

John

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Hi John.  Thank you for your reply. Very good nay, excellent work all round, I am not certain on how many LSWR carriages my Hornby M7 can manage, but I think two was a suggested maximum (a brake and a composite) unless I work on the Loco, something to do with the weight distribution? But I digress, back to the thread.Bending bars and 4mm carriages? or the posh Etch Mate? The bending bars that I have seen advertised look like 
"Two odd bits of steel bolted together or in some cases? they have Allen screws and of course a key, but are they machined or just " as the come, off the steel rack"? The LSWR carriages of the era seem to be shorter than modern carriages but, would still require either a one go fold or if you are careful? You may get away with two folds. But as I haven't tried this technique I am only guessing. Where even the largest "Etch Mate"only seems capable of much shorter lengths. Which as I said is why I went for a brakevan kit for starters. But I don't think my work could match the standard that you have set, sometimes I feel like giving up kits and "buying off the shelf" but that is defeatist talk.       All the best. Kevin

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Hi John.  More from me, I forgot to ask about your problem with the Roxey Moudings LSWR Carriages and having to add two washers to adjust the "Riding Height", and the size of washers that you used. And did you use bending bars pliers, or what? Maybe just a straight edge?   All the best. Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

Also see  http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=14715&forum_id=19

You don't actually need expensive bits of kit for bending, but it's good to practice with an easy and cheaper kit before something more complex and expensive (or even bend some thin brass sheet with scribed lines on it). 

Bill

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Passed Driver wrote: Hi John.  More from me, I forgot to ask about your problem with the Roxey Moudings LSWR Carriages and having to add two washers to adjust the "Riding Height", and the size of washers that you used. And did you use bending bars pliers, or what? Maybe just a straight edge?   All the best. Kevin
Kevin they were just standard washers used as shims, a common practice.  (I have collected a motley assortment of bits and bobs over the years.)  Size dictated by the bolt used as a pivot.  As Bill says, you don't really need fancy or expensive kit.  In post 2 of Bills link, I show my method of bending coach flanges on LSWR coaches.  Two C clamps and a stiff, straight piece of steel, in this case a file with a dead edge.

If you want metal (strip, washers, nuts, bolt et al)  then I recommend you have a look at Eileens Emporium:

https://eileensemporium.com/

BTW, do you think my first attempt to build a brass kit went well?   Uh uh, a disaster :brickwall, but we learn.

John

Last edited on Mon Jan 23rd, 2017 08:38 pm by Brossard

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Hi Bill.  Thank you for your reply, unfortunately I don't have a trunk like that. My main concern is the length of the Carriage against any bought device ? Or any homemade/cobbled together contraption for a better word .But which ever way I go(providvng) that it is I do:???: a good job then there is the painting and lining issue?
Anyhow I will press ahead.  All the best. Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

The method outlined by John avoids the need for commercial benders and also bends long coach sides . . . ''In post 2 of Bills link, I show my method of bending coach flanges on LSWR coaches.  Two C clamps and a stiff, straight piece of steel, in this case a file with a dead edge.'' Nigel (BCDR) also uses the same method with his engineers' squares. 

No brainer, job done!

:)

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Hi Kevin,
As long as you use either a stanley knife or a triangular file to deepen the half etched line until a witness mark shows on the face side you should be able to clamp a couple of steel rules together or grip them in a vice and make the bend successfully without much effort.

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Agree Rob, that should work if you are VERY careful.  These LSWR etched sides are very thin and fragile because the beading is half etched into them.  They are easy to cockle and if you do that you are toast.

John

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Hi John.   Thank you for your reply, you might just have "weighed the scales" in favour of the expensive option?Until now the only cockle that I had heard of , were the ones you eat, I have just looked at the Dictinary definition.
Bearing in mind the price and fragility of the Roxey mouldings kits , I would rather investigate(the reason for the existence of this thread) the most suitable "Etch Mate" or "Hold and Fold" or whatever you name them? Then I would rather purchase the most expensive bit of kit available , within reason i.e. Not from the likes of gaugemaster, than
 "Cockle Up" a brand new Roxey mouldings kit.    Kevin

Last edited on Tue Jan 24th, 2017 03:31 am by Passed Driver

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Hi Rob.  Thank you for your reply, but after reading how fine and fragile John said the Roxey mouldings kits are.I could easily spoil more kits than I make, so I am torn here, either go for the posh option or give up the idea.
All the best. Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

Get some brass sheet (5 thou' and 10 thou') and a tungsten scribe (or a dart) and start scoring and bending. The only way to do it is proficiently to develop some experience. Those expensive "folding aids" aren't really meant for things like carriage sides, which can be up to 12" long in OO and 18"-24" long in O (and often in 18 thou' brass or nickel silver). For that you need a straight edge and clamps and an engineer's square. And a small hammer to take out any kinks.

I never score pre-existing half-etches, which in the case of a 5 thou' etch are 2.5 thou' thick (should be thin I suppose). The trick is to put the edge of the bar/rule at the edge of the etch, not in the middle. If you want razor sharp edges then cut through and solder the pieces together using right-angle brass strip inside (and different solder melt temperatures).

Nigel

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Hi Nigel Thank you for your reply, I have found one Brass Sheet supplier, "Gas Cupboard Models"", the next day postage costs more than product ( the 2 nd class isn't much cheaper). The kit that I have already, a " Hurst Nelson Brakevan", has on the instruction sheet a note about the need to extend some of the etches because of an error?
That kit does have some very small and fragile parts, which is another reason for "Holding Back"on the build,
these parts include running board/ step brackets etc, which going against your better judgement, may make the purchase of one of the "Posh" folding gadgets worthwhile ??:oops: . But would mean using your proven methods for folding the carriage sides and other long components. All the best. Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

Brass sheet, half hard, £3.00-4.00 a sheet depending on the size from Eileens Emporium.

The etch needs "extending"? Goof-up, measure once, get it wrong. What bits need extending? How? I would send it back and demand a refund. No excuse. Is this an RT Models Kit? If so for that price they should get it right first time.

It doesn't look like a starter kit, there are fiddly bits such as the the ducket and the stanchions for the foot plates. Plus the buffer  look to be a white metal casing, for that you need a temperature controlled iron capable of at least 230° and preferably 200°. Is the roof already curved? If not you need some rollers.

Small folds you can do with your fingers or smooth faced pliers, just as accurate as the gadgets. Just check the angle with the engineers square.

Nigel

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Hi Kevin,
I hadn't realised that the sheets were half etched. In terms of a hold and fold I have the 5" version that I bought from the US in about 2008 for £50

It's helped with a fair few etched kit's since then and I wouldn't be without it. I also have a pair of 20" bending bars but I only use them for very long folds (about twice a year...).

If you plan on doing a few etched kit's then some good tools are a worthwhile investment. 

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Photo etch bend-it - nearer $60-$80 depending on the size (4", 8"). The 2" one is designed for those fine etches you find in high-end 1:500 model ship kits (and is around $30).

Micro-Mark over here do a useful bender for up to 6.5" for $50.00. Longer if a steel ruler is used. Couple of C clamps and a straight edge is a lot cheaper for the occasional kit (most of use I suspect).

The investment in tools once you start is significant.

Nigel


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Hi Nigel. Thank you for your reply.I agree with you entirely, when I purchased my first ( and only ) etched kit, the next item on my shopping list was a combination square, but, there is a matter of the hard surface, I do have a Black and Decker workmate and the 
"G Clamps" that I require, But I am uncertain whether or not that is an adequate surface to work on? But if it works for you okay then it must de good enough.  All the best. Kevin

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Hi Rob thank you for your reply.That was my point, if I modelled in N gauge, God forbid? The posh bend and fold type tool would be excellent, but, with OO I think one would have to be careful to avoid getting a kink/ s in the Etch, and the longer bars are essential
All the best. Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

More than I've got. You really do need a flat and hard surface for getting the frame level and square. I prefer a polished granite surface (floor tile) to a glass one. Most of the time I hold the etch down with one hand and the steel ruler, bend up with a heavy duty metal blade. Small etches I just use the engineers square or a 3-2-1 block and a blade. There are times when you just have to user the Mk1 pinkies. A lot of the aggravation goes away if the kit was well designed. Which unfortunately is often not the case (especially with older ones).

Nigel

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Hi Nigel Since I purchased a "Dutch Oven" to bake my sourdough on, I have a redundant granite (Reconstituted) baking stone, which is fairly flat, but most definitely hard. I have been considering using this to square up or bend etched brass on. But it is the clamping that would be a problem.  Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

I find a Mk1 hand is useful for holding things (the palm side thereof).

Nigel

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Hi Nigel. Thank you, that sure is possible, but, maybe after building several kits. Experience counts for a lot! As I am a novice kit builder and having problems with " Run of the Mill" plastic kits, I will take a pass on the Palm Clamp.
All the best. Kevin

Last edited on Thu Jan 26th, 2017 11:47 am by Passed Driver

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Hi Kevin,
I know what you are saying. When I returned to railway modelling I really struggled with plastic kits and when I tried a brass kit I took to it like the proverbial duck. It wasn't until I had a few brass kits under my belt that I had a further go at plastic with success.

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Hi RobThank you for your reply. One kit in particular kit is the GWR 6 ton crane, which has so many parts. But I must persist.
All the best  Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

Rob's right - brass is a lot more forgiving than plastic (if designed and etched properly). Solder is usually undoable, solvent welds usually not.

Lochgorm Kits do a beginners fret of an LMS or LNER wagon, at £7 it's worthwhile getting one to start practicing on (the intention). That said, it doesn't hurt to tackle a simple plastic kit from Ratio or Cambrian so you know what goes where before you enter the wonderful world of etches and step soldering. Whatever you do, I would steer clear of white metal kits and the black art of low temperature soldering until you have done a few brass ones.

Nigel

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Hi Nigel
Speaking of Ratio , I purchased their kit 575 "P/ Way Wagons, the first two "plank wagons" I glued the sides and ends on okay, "W" irons too but the wheels seem loose, indeed very and falling out? I phoned them and they put me in to their technical support, I told him about the wheels and he recommended "Bearings "(which I had from H&A Models for the Cambrian Kit,) but to be certain I purchased a packet of fifty, but, they don't want to go in.I will have to put on my thinking cap. Maybe I should finish off the Bogie B Passenger Van first?   Kevin

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Passed Driver wrote: Hi Nigel
Speaking of Ratio , I purchased their kit 575 "P/ Way Wagons, the first two "plank wagons" I glued the sides and ends on okay, "W" irons too but the wheels seem loose, indeed very and falling out? I phoned them and they put me in to their technical support, I told him about the wheels and he recommended "Bearings "(which I had from H&A Models for the Cambrian Kit,) but to be certain I purchased a packet of fifty, but, they don't want to go in.I will have to put on my thinking cap. Maybe I should finish off the Bogie B Passenger Van first?   Kevin

You could try the following.
Put the bearing in the bearing hole & hold a soldering iron to the bearing.
The bearing will heat up & melt itself into the plastic.
Try it on a waste piece of plastic if you're not sure.

Tony

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Hi Kevin,

Tony's method works, but as he says, a bit of practice beforehand. You could open the holes up with an appropriately sized drill bit before you assemble the sides. You can also get one of those reamers for cleaning plastic pinpoint holes to enlarge it. An alternate method is a drop of plastic cement in the hole, wait until the plastic softens, then push the pinpoint bearing in. A dry fit before hand to determine where the sides and brakes go while still allowing free rotation and axle/wheel removal is essential.

Older kits are often better than new ones for bearing fit - the injection molding get worn with time and precision goes through the window.

Nigel

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Hi Tony.
Thank you for your reply. I had better be very careful , it does seem a good idea, with practice . All the best. Kevin

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Hi Nigel.  
Thank You for your reply . I had better go through any "Spare/ Scrap Plastic" I have and try drilling the  ear to the? Correct size holes( obviously guess work) and trying out the ideas.  Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

Use a drill bit with a diameter slightly smaller than the diameter of the axle. You need a bit with angled cutters on the end, don't use a flat end one (Forstner-type). The depth should just be slightly longer than the brass bearing. Bit of practice and you'll soon be having a nice friction fit that you can lock in place with either styrene cement or plastic CA.

Nigel

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Nigel had some good ideas here.

"You could open the holes up with an appropriately sized drill bit before you assemble the sides. You can also get one of those reamers for cleaning plastic pinpoint holes to enlarge it."

If you're using a drill bit be careful & don't drill all the way through.
I remember I heard about those reamers before, however I couldn't find anyone who stocked them on this side of the pond.

Tony.

 

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Hi Kevin and Tony

Mine came from Ultrascale as a freebie for spending a large fortune on wheels. Not currently stocked. Over here they're called "Truck Tuners". MicroMark does one for $19.95. DCC Concepts do a pair for around £8.50. Calls them "Axle Tuners".

My pinpoint brass bearings are from Romford, 2mm diameter, 2mm long (cylindrical shape, not cone). A 5/64" inch drill (1.98mm) works fine. I use a jig to drill just over 2mm deep using a split-point bit. If you put the bit in a pin vice you can easily do it by hand. Bit of masking tape on the bit 2mm from the end so you know when you're there.

Nigel

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Hi Nigel.
Thank you, you have raised my hopes? the bearings from Peco are Romford measuring 2 mm x 2 mm.
But that is a worry? Knowing Peco have recommended these bearings for the Wills kit and they just do not push in.
That is a bit of a downer .Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

The tooling is cream crackered with age, that's why it's difficult to get the bearing into what is now an undersized hole. Just use the drill bit to open it up. Of course, if Wills used a decent hard plastic such as Delrin rather than styrene for the side frames we wouldn't need bearings (none of my kit built NA stock has them but they're all bogie freight and passenger). My Tichy Train Group crane kit (styrene) has bearings, but they are an exact fit (and nylon). That's because Don Tichy looks after his toolings.

Nigel

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Hi Nigel.   
Thank you for your reply, the trouble being if you require a certain Loco, Carriage , or Van, especially for the 
Southern or pre grouping Southern area you have to build your own. Every modeller? Or so it would seem?
models the "Glory Boys". The GWR, or the LNWR, until recently that is.
Then some eminent person? came up with building Southern EMU's and DEMU's with a certain amount of inspiration from the likes of Kernow, hip pip hooray. Bachmann had a rush of blood to the head I'm glad to say, and Hornby had a renaissance with EMU's (harking back to the "Two Car" tinplate? version(which I had along with the Tri- Ang model) with the 2BIL and 2HAL units, three cheers for them too. Up until now the only Southern favourite had been the Bogie B Passenger Van, in Southern, then along came the iconic electric Loco and both Bachmann and Hornby  are producing the same model. Common sense prevails. All the best. Kevin

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Hi Nigel
In London if you miss a bus? You wait ten minutes and three come together . Well here is another reply.
In my previous foray into model railways, I purchased some Airfix kits, Now under the Dapol brand(40 odd years later)
they seem to have suffered the same fate as Wills kits. I have been considering the "Soldering Iron solution "
and with my limited experience at kit building I could really "Make a hash of it":oops: but I will have a go.
All the best. Kevin

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Hi Kevin,

"Make a hash of it"? No such thing in this hobby, it's always a learning experience. I've tried the soldering iron method and drilling out a proper hole for the bearing, it's a personal choice. I find the drill more precise than melting the styrene. One thing you have to watch with kits with styrene frames is to make sure the distance between them is correct so that the axle fit is Goldilocks. Too far apart and putting in brass bearings won't change a thing.

Those old Airfix kits go together a lot better than the recent Dapol re-releases, cream-crackered tooling.Same for recent releases of the old Ratio 4-wheel GWR carriages. Flash everywhere from leaking dies. Why waste money repairing the dies when punters will still buy them?

Nigel

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Hi Nigel.
Too true, but, as I said, if like me and a few others on YMRC you are dedicated to Southern outline? Then you don't have much choice. But the kits have guides to where the parts have to be stuck, so to speak.  Kevin


                 

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