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Card Modelling - Mechanical Horses For Barchester - Scratchbuilding. - More Practical Help - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 06:56 pm
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Robert
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The story goes thus : For the past three years the Barchester Preservation Society has had on it's books the hire of five trucks from a plant hire company to carry out the daily requirements of it's timber, rock crushing, and canal basin commerce. At a meeting of the finance committee it was decided that this was too heavy a financial burden to carry for years on end and in any case the modern truck was totally out of keeping, in both appearance and performance, for the simple and lightweight tasks they were performing. The committee decided that there was no reason why the BPS, with all it's facilities and manpower, could not produce it's own vehicles. This decision was passed on to the planning and engineering group who in turn decided that a mechanical horse type vehicle from the 1930's period should suit admirably. Cheap to produce, cheap to run and the tourists would love them.
So, there we have the ficticious part of the project. Now it's on to the real world of modelling. Fortunately I have been able to aquire good diagrams of the mechanical horse from another kind modeller so I have the general dimensions to work from. I have now started on the modelling and straight away have realised that it has been a long time since I attempted anything this small and that with my aged hands and eyes things are not going to be so easy. Anyway, enough of the excuses.
I have converted the main measurements for 4mm and will keep things as simple as possible using scrap pieces of card and any other bits I could find. I am going to make all five models at once and don't intend buying anything so this will be another real cheapo.
Had a spare hour this morning so made a start on the chassis of the prime movers using 1mm card. You can see the very simple component pieces and then four of the chassis glued together. My favourite white PVA is the adhesive.






Just in case there is anyone not familiar with the mechanical horse then here is a link to the Mechanical Horse Club. I will be following the first picture for the prime mover and the second for the trailer. Bare in mind I am modelling the type, not the prototype.

http://homepage.ntlworld.com/malcolm.ruscoe/mechanical%20horse.htm      Defunct link, replacement needed


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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 06:57 pm
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Robert
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Here's the next stage in the construction. The chassis now has it's front card support for cab and wheel while the cab parts are laid out after being cut from a thinner card than the chassis. We don't need such heavy material anymore. The chassis sides are now running parallel to each other.






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Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 06:58 pm
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Robert
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More progress being made with this interesting little model. The next picture shows that the box for the cab has been put together, the mounting plate for the swivelling trailer fitted and the wheels assembled. I say assembled but in fact the wheels are just buttons with the four thread holes covered by paper circles from a hole punching machine. The wheel at the bottom of the screen has it's mudguard on show. The wheels are the first non card materials to be used. You can get an idea from the photograph of how this is all going to come together, hopefully.






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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 06:59 pm
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Robert
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Bit more done. Cabs assembled with steering wheels added, (one side of press stud fittings), fronts put together with the typical mechanical horse bumper plus door handles. The chassis components have been assembled also. Wheels, brake rods, and swivelling points for trailer attachment. still to come, front lights, air horns and fuel tanks.






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Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 07:00 pm
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Robert
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My photos:
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I have put the prime mover aside for the moment and have got the materials for the five trailers cut out and ready to start assembling. As you can see it's a 'wooden' trailer with 3 plank sides. Wheels as for the prime mover.






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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 07:01 pm
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Robert
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My photos:
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A bit more progress with the trailers. The underneath support girders for the flat bed are in place and you can see the wheel supports which will be glued to the undersides of the flat bed and inside the support girders. These wont be visible when all is assembled. The wheels are also ready to be glued in place. The only things not shown here are the brake rodding, which was in the previous picture, and the mudguards which I will cut out and fix when the time comes. When the underside is complete I just have to add the side, rear and front planked sides. The sides and rear 3 plank and the front 5 plank. The squares of card are for the trailer swivel plate where it attaches to the prime mover. The trailer has to be able to be twisted to various positions for doing different jobs on the layout.







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Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 07:02 pm
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Robert
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My photos:
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Now we are really getting somewhere and the project is begining to look something like I envisaged. The first picture shows the trailers with wheels fitted, front 5 plank trailer boards in place and, obviously, the mounting plates for trailer to prime mover, although you can't see them.
The brake rods are also fitted and you can just see them in a couple of the models. The press stud steering wheels are also a bit more obvious. They are the only things I have had to buy for these models, the rest comes from the wife's sewing box and my scrap card box. For 60 cents I have enough steering wheels for 40 more cabs or similar such use. Cheapskate or what?





This next picture shows the 2 plank side panels fitted, cab door handles and the mudguards in position.



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Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 07:03 pm
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Robert
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My photos:
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Did a quicky on a container type box just to see what the vehicle would look like with a load on it and this was the result. The 'container' is bigger than the normal load that this type of vehicle would carry but this is just for a 'look see'.
Actually it's a good picture for seeing the wheels (buttons) before painting, door handle, steering wheel (press stud) and brake rods on the trailer.






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The time in Spain is :


Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 07:04 pm
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Robert
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Joined: Sat Oct 13th, 2007
Location: Benidorm, Alicante, Spain
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My photos:
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view photos as slides

Here's a picture of three of the trailers finished. The upper wood work has been stained, chassis painted, mudguards fitted, brake rods and rear lights fitted.
Since taking this picture I realise that I have to add support legs for the front of the trailer for when it is disconnected from the prime mover. Ah well, what's one more todo on the never ending list.






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The time in Spain is :


Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 07:05 pm
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Robert
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Joined: Sat Oct 13th, 2007
Location: Benidorm, Alicante, Spain
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My photos:
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view photos as slides

Well here's the trailer with legs, at the second go I might add. The first support posts were where they are now but held only by a security clamp so that when the clamp was released the leg fell to the floor and then the clamp was tightened to hold it in place. Simple but effective. Fine until the first bloke to try it, Charley by name, released the clamp and managed to get his foot underneath the post as it dropped, nasty. Back to the drawing board so now we have the legs held on a ratchet and pawl which is operated by the wheels that you can see. Ten times more expensive but at least the leg comes down slowly and you have to stand in front of the wheel to operate it, hence legs and feet out of the way.






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The time in Spain is :


Barchester
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 Posted: Sun Oct 14th, 2007 07:06 pm
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Robert
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Joined: Sat Oct 13th, 2007
Location: Benidorm, Alicante, Spain
Posts: 12454
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My photos:
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view photos as slides

Well here they are folks, for better or for worse. Four of the five mechanical horses in action on Barchester. Just a couple of things to do to finish them off. The first thing is to make and fit better headlights and the second to buy some drivers and get them installed. At the moment the drivers are out of their cabs assisting with the loading and unloading of goods, or maybe attending to nature. :wink:
The first picture shows work going on in the Goods Yard.






This second picture is noteworthy for the fact that apart from the plastic figures and the crane everything is scratch built. You can see how the Sculpey polymer has been used to make sacks, the card pallets, string coiled ropes, washer life savers, card barge and all it's fittings, card horses cart, paper and card rear warehouses, card doors, plastic windows, the card jetty, everything.
I don't say this in any way to magnify anything I may have achieved but to show those who hesitate about scratchbuilding that if they will just take the first simple steps then they can have a model railway that will be unlike any other. A unique and very satisfying thing in it's own right.






Finally we are back in the timber yard where two of the models are being kept occupied.



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