Here’s the seventh in a series of posts featuring portraits of the equipment that runs on my S scale model railway, with notes about each model. The equipment is presented in no particular order. Click on each image for a larger view…
This stunning example of the scratch-builder’s art was built for me by my friend Simon Parent, who also did my 2-6-0s and 4-6-0s. If I recall, it is the 3rd of 10 of these locomotives he plans to build – although the number may be less. The model combines brass castings and photo-etched nickel silver. Simon designs his own patterns and makes masters for his own castings: It’s an almost-lost art. Like all of Simon’s work, the 4204 is finished with details specific to the road number and the era. I obviously didn’t need this one – it’s way too big to ever have appeared at Port Rowan – but I love Simon’s work and wanted to support it. This locomotive gets regular workouts as part of the S Scale Workshop Free-mo style exhibition layout.
This is an essential car on my layout – a combine in the solid green CNR scheme, to fill out the mixed train to Port Rowan. The model is a mixed media (brass and wood) kit designed by Andy Malette and sold through his MLW Services company. My friend Pierre Oliver at Elgin Car Shops built the kit for me. I then added finishing details – including the window glass and shades and the diaphragms (which need to be cleaned up and coated with a clear coat so they don’t rust). I also added the conductor in the vestibule and a spare DCC sound decoder with speaker in the baggage section so I can emulate train line signals from the conductor to the engineer. The trucks are American Models six-wheel trucks, which look nice but do not track well, so I enhanced these with special rigid beam compensation subframes designed and laser cut for me by Tim Warris at Fast Tracks, based on a solution sometimes employed by UK modellers. This working suspension made the world of difference.
This is a brass model (as evidenced by the bare brass peeking out around two of the domes), which I painted for a Canadian petroleum company. The lettering – the most important part of this project – came from Al Ferguson at Black Cat Publishing: He offers this set in HO scale, and kindly did a custom run for me in S. This is a great resource for Canadian modellers. Reasonably, he charges twice the price of the HO decals, since it’s a custom run. Also reasonably, this is a lot less than the set-up fee one would expect. Thanks, Al!
I did five of these cars about a year ago. They started as ready to run models by S Helper Service. I replaced the plastic roof walks with real wood, and updated the provided K brakes to AB brake sets using brass kits sold by BTS. I then painted this car (and its four mates) with CNR mineral red #11 from the CNR Historical Association, and lettered them with decals sets from Al Ferguson at Black Cat Publishing.
CNR 52247 and CNR 52274
These two scale test cars are certainly conversation pieces. They are brass imports from Southwind Models, which I painted, lettered and finished as CNR prototypes. The decals are a mix: The road name came from HO scale van (caboose) sets from Al Ferguson at Black Cat Publishing, while the balance of the lettering is from HO scale CNR scale test car sets from Andy W Scale Models. Scale test cars are kept relatively clean since dirt can change their weight, so I was very careful with the weathering. They also typically are used in pairs, so I was fortunate to find two models. Despite being so small and having a two-axle stance, these cars are heavy, being almost solid brass, and the springing is well done in the journals so they track very well. They’ve become my go-to cars for testing track work, appropriately enough…
Eventually, I hope to document all of my S scale equipment in this fashion. We’ll see how that goes. Meantime, see the Portraits category to find all posts in this series. If you’ve read this far, thanks for sticking with it. I hope you enjoyed these equipment portraits and notes.