Hi guys and girls. So after 25 years away from model engineering I've found myself back in the thick of it being in lockdown. My late father and I were continuing the building of a very nicely part built firefly we bought about 50% done. Rather too well engineered in places like valve's to tight to ever seat. Then we got given a 50% done Doris which is at the other end of the spectrum in terms of engineering. My late father and I used to machine stuff of an 1880's Colchester treadle lathe but I thought it would be prudent to buy a smaller and more modern lathe so I bought a myford 7b and bought dial gauge replaceable tip carbide tools quick change tool post and a decent light. The lathe came with a milling angle plate so contemplating ordering a set of er40 milling bits and attachment as I don't have space for a separate milling machine. A little about me. I for a hobby and job restore and maintain classic London buses. Any advice is most welcome. Hope everyone is safe and well. Regards. Tim.
Hi Tim and welcome, as Pete states good to see new projects, I have recently completed a 3 1/2" Juliet which is awaiting Hydraulic and Steam tests when the " Lockdown" is eased. Interested to hear you are into London Buses an ex boss of mine was involved in maintaining and running a London Routemaster, he lived in the Northampton area. Good luck with your projects Paul.
Hi guys. I am indeed in London UK. I own four ex London buses. Two Routemaster's an RT which is what Cliff Richard drove in summer holiday and a single decker from the same period which is an RF. At the moment I am concentrating on the black five as by far needs the most work due to questionable engineering to say the least. It would bind up badly on rotation which once stripped the cause was obvious. The builder had drilled so deeply for the live steam pipe screws that when a screw was fitted it pushed the thin remains of the metal down in to the path of the valve. I now have a valve with a slot in it. Needless to say I then decided given the quality of the whole job that the easiest thing to do was order a cylinder and valve sleeve casting and start again. I may manage to reuse to the piston but that will be about it. Once I work out how to upload photos I happily will. As an aside I really like 3.1/2" gauge as very practical in my eyes. Thank you for the replies and look for to seeing everyone's progress and sharing mine Regards. Tim.
I own a couple of 7.25 engines and they need some pretty hefty workshop facilities, which I don't have. I therefore pay to get major work done on them and struggle with the minor stuff. I am building 2 engines in 3.5. Relatively cheap so errors are not catastrophic in cost terms and my facilities can handle them. I have the boilers for these 2 and they are commercial jobs with all the CE marks etc, so just the rest to make!
The big locos are without doubt terrific fun to drive and some of the big tracks take you well out into the country, but every other aspect is a challenge. Some clubs have some pretty impressive raised tracks so if you get to the right place there is some great fun to be had in the smaller gauges too.
My intention is to learn in building my Juliet and then, with luck, make a decent(ish) job of Mona, which has a much bigger boiler and should be a lot of fun.
Of all the classic vehicles out there I must say old buses are my favourite.
Hello Tim, good to see another Londoner on here (I am South East myself), with an excellent taste in LT products!
I wonder if 3 1/2" is having a bit of a resurgence due to the ease of handling. Certainly find it ok to move my Grandad's Britannia around. Regardless, those are two popular models you have there so should be plenty of helpful advice and guidance available.
Thank you for the positive and helpful words. A few friends have locos and rolling stock tight up to 4 foot 8.1/2 and everything is big awkward and expensive so that's why we originally opted for 3.1/2" gauge and my local tracks are at both ends of the scale with Harlington and Malden both being in easy reach. If someone would be so kind as to guide me with uploading pictures I'd be more that happy to. Regards. Tim
Hi Paul. Sounds good and I look forward to sharing our progress. I am going for more detail so using the drawings more as a guide. Tempted to make 2 of everything and build a second properly. Got any pics? Regards. Tim.