Friday, June 29, 2012

Baby W

This is the most recent locomotive to join our fleet in the fairly diminutive shape of Dapol's new Class 22 diesel hydraulic.
We chose D6319 because this was the one that was selected for preservation. However, despite a purchase price being agreed with BR, it was, for some unknown reason, cut up by staff at Swindon Works.
We purchased our model through Rails of Sheffield but, when it first came, one of the side windows had fallen out and, even worse, the cab windows at one end had been pushed in.
Naturally I sent it straight back to Rails and, within a week or so, we had received a replacement - well done Rails! However, this replacement also had a side window that had fallen out - so is this an inherent fault with this model or are all Dapol locos poorly built? Anyway, rather than send it back again I managed to restick the window and, so far, no more have come out!
As for the prototypes, there were 58 of these Type 2's built by the North British Locomotive Company who also built 58 Class 21, as well as 20 re-engined versions of the Class 21, designated Class 29. These two classes were very similar to the Class 22, albeit slightly longer, and they were fitted with diesel electric engines rather than diesel hydraulic.
None of the locos produced by NBL proved to be very reliable and they were not in revenue-earning service for very long. Sadly all of these distinctive looking locos succumbed to the cutters torch meaning that none survived into preservation.
Our model is fitted with Howes sound which, of course, has had to be recreated from the sound files available to them and, to be honest, I think they have done a very good job.
We have also had the loco weathered at Mikron Models and the results are truly amazing.
She really is a lovely model and has proved va ery popular little work-horse on the layout, even helping to remove dismantled rails from the northern section of the layou, prior to its remodelling.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Baby D

As Petersfield was featured in my previous posting, I thought that it was wholly appropriate to include it again, here. 
This time we see it during a busy period with one of the latest locos to join our ever-growing fleet, namely Heljan's Class 23 'Baby Deltic' NÂș: D5909, at the head of a rake of vans for the nearby brewery.
This particular loco was acquired a few weeks ago and has, since then, been weathered by Alex at Mikron Models and, also, had sound added, courtesy of Olivia's Trains.
Now, followers of this blog might know that I am not the biggest fan of Olivia's sounds since I believe that what Howes and SWD produce is, on the whole, rather better. 
However, having said that, I must confess that they have done an excellent job with the Baby Deltic and have captured the sound of the prototype very well. 
Not that I ever saw any members of this small fleet of locos but, having seen the videos on YouTube of the T9-29 engine, posted by the Baby Deltic Project, I think our little model sounds very realistic. 
Of course, it was from this sole-surviving engine that Olivias produced their sound files and, so far, they are the only ones to do so. 
It will be interesting to see how it compeares to Howes, if when they get around to doing their own version.

Better Lit Than Never

After an unforgivably long gap after my previous post, due to a variety of reasons with which I shall not bore you here, I am hopefully back on track now (pun intended) and should be able to publish a few updates over the coming days.
Not that there has been too much progress over recent weeks and this is due, in most part, to the fact that we have been planning how the northern end of the line will look when it is revamped. However, more of that in a later posting.
For now I just wanted to post an update on the latest progress that has been made in adding lights to the layout and, to this end, here is a photo of Petersfield station resplendent with lights along both platforms. This station used to have a Hornby canopy on each platform but these had to be removed to allow the lights to be fitted and, to be honest, I think it looks better without them.
We now have lighting in four locations around the southern half of the layout - at Sueston, Petersfield, the Coal Depot and the Diesel Depot and they certainly do help to bring it all to life. We still need to add lights to the town area and inside some of the buildings and this is something that we should be addressing in the near future.