Post by robgreenwood2018 on Apr 1, 2018 9:42:24 GMT
I have been in and out of this hobby for 20 years now, i started to build a 5" gauge Britannia around 15 years go unfortunately due to ill health i had to sell my model, milling machine and lathe. I'm now 30 and ready to start again, I still want to build a Britt and have been looking at all the parts you can now get from MEL.
What do you think about the laser cut parts? I have the Norman Spink plans for the Britt, would laser cut parts match the plans?
Last time i started with 3mm flat stock and started cutting them out, chain drilling etc. Shall i do the same again?
Welcome to the forums. I have also had ongoing health problems over the last couple of years (a type of peripheral neuropathy), but somehow I now feel myself somewhat better and little by little I’m working again on my build. I hope your health issues improve or resolve completely. This is a great hobby to be in, which allows you to get progress at any pace that suits you.
About laser cut parts, there will be some that will regard them as not appropriate or not necessary, but to me they are great time savers. I don’t know about the particular accuracy or cost of laser cut parts from model engineer suppliers. However, if you are able to draw the frames in CAD you will be able to order them to any local laser cut service. Prices are incredibly cheap if you provide the plans, and even if you missed a hole or a feature on your plans, you can just order the parts again given their low cost. To my experience, position accuracy and repeatability is really good, much much better than their specified nominal tolerances, you only need to consider that the cut finish is rougher than machined parts, but not anything that can’t be improved where needed, or ignored for the most part if we are talking of locomotive frames.
Today laser cut parts are more or less the norm for most builders in one shape or another, time is precious and laser cuttings saves many hours. Some still hack and saw and good on them, I use laser as much as possible in my own build as I would like to get it finished one day. I highly recommend Malcolm of MEL, his work is very accurate and he has done a lot of work using drawings drawn up by fellow ME's for me to then give to him. hH's a busy man these days so not likely to have time to do the drawings himself, supply him with the files and he'll get the metal cut, I would guess that he already has a lot of files on the Brit's
Good luck with the build and please think about starting a build thread to show how you are progressing, we like lot's of pictures here...
I am with you 100%. spent a fair bit of time as a customer with the NHS,so much that i now get invited to the staff Xmas parties I was told to look after, in order, me,family work, hobbies. Thats one of the reasons instead of it being a runner,,it has taken sooo much longer. Coupled with finding MEL and seeing what Peter is doing, i am now back tracking on a lot of stuff to get the thing more full size like. At present doing Autocad for the frame stretchers instead of the H section beams that have been suggested
Highly recommend Malcolm for any cut pieces and his fabrication techniques are worth looking into. There are several Brit builds on here. Dont hesitate to ask. Regards
Welcome aboard. I too am a Brit builder and find the support and encouragement on this forum invaluable, if at times it gets a bit invigorating. One thing about working to the Spink/Perrier drawings is it can produce a solid model but somewhat lacking in prototype detail. Obviously you can take the detailing as far as you want and laser cut parts are all a part of this. And we all like a good build thread with lots of photos don't we chaps.