Kit Building

Dear All, I have recently acquired my first "kit," a South Eastern Finecast LSWR "H" Class. I thought I would start on something small and simple?

There are allot more parts in there than I anticipated however.

I intend to Araldite most of the kit as per instructions, but what else in the way of tooling is generally needed for kit building? All tips gratefully received.

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I would recommend a copy of "Whitemetal Locos: A Kitbuilder's Guide" by Iain Rice. Your local library can get a copy for you if you don't want to buy it.


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I'm part way through my first engine kit and am finding the following tools etc to be the most useful ...

Snips Selection of files Engineers Square Steel straight edge

(Obviously soldering iron, solder and flux ... no glue used! ... as yet )

Softwood board for assembling parts on ... together with various elastic bands, hair-grips, wooden blocks and pegs used with a coupleof small clamps ... all used to hold items together prior to fixing.

Small sheet of glass ... it's the "flatest" surface I can find ... used for setting various bits "true".

Selection of photos of the prototype of my chosen model (Peckett 060 Swansea harbour/GWR) from all angles.

The only tip I can offer is ***dry fit everything several times*** before fixing to ensure that there's no c*ck ups when you do come to fix and that everything does indeed fit.


Reply to
Chris Wilson

Clamps and work-holding gizmos - see articles on the 2mm website, URL below.

And, if this is your first cast metal kit (as opposed to first loco kit): Put it back in the box, and purchase a cast metal wagon kit of similar quality. Practise on the wagon - its a lot cheaper and less sole-destroying to make beginner mistakes on a relatively cheap wagon.

- Nigel

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In message , piemanlarger writes

Do you mean the SECR H Class (0-4-4T)? If so be aware that they can be difficult to get running well. You may find an 0-6-0T is a better bet for a first attempt (after the whitemetal wagon that Nigel suggests).

As mentioned, Iain Rice's "Whitemetal Locos" will be invaluable but so will his "Locomotive Chassis Kit Construction in 4mm" unless, of course you are adapting a RTR chassis. (both Wild Swan).

Iain Rice was also involved in building the Finecast SECR H Class in MRJ Issues 3 & 4 (Issue 3 discusses in detail the problems with 0-4-4Ts and deals with the painting whilst issue 4 gets down to the construction of body and chassis. It also has a wonderful Tim Watson 0-4-4T in 2mm scale :-) - if you can't get back issues from either Wild Swan or one of the second-hand booksellers let me know.

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Richard Benn

Bother - so not a T9 or an M7 either? Odd - i would have thought linking 3 pairs of wheels would be harder than 2 pairs and 2 uncoupled ones. i really want to do a Std 3 but the shop man advised me against fiddling with walshirts valve gear.

i quite enjoyed soldering a whitemetal van as a prelim. i actually found it much harder than i had been led to believe to actually damage any of the parts with the heat - except the thin brake levers.......


Reply to
Ken Wilson

Walschaerts valve gear is quite practical to assemble but I would have to say it is more difficult than locos with inside motion ;-) If you really want a loco with Walschaerts motion then go for it, but it does require careful assembly with everything in the right place and particularly rivets tightened the correct amount. (put tissue paper between the parts as you assemble and then remove afterwards to get the correct clearance.

While 2 coupled axles is easier than 3, 0-4-4t locos can be difficult to set up as they tend to be built as 0-4-0s with one end extremely long and a little 4 wheel wagon trapped underneath, rather than like a bogie coach - fine for long straight layouts but horrible for normal model railway curves!

The problem on locos is that one usually has a huge mass of white-metal in the boiler/footplate/cabs and relatively small components needing to be attached. If the heat needed to bring the big mass up to soldering temperature inadvertently gets moved to the small component then you get meltdown in a very short time. I cheat and araldite on the small details!

Regards, Greg.P.

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Gregory Procter

Folks, I built several white metal kits, K's and Gem many years ago and didn't solder them, all joints were Araldited. All are still running and nothing has fallen off. And I'd agree, keep away from 0-4-4 tanks, they are frightful things to get the balance right. I have two, both are for display only. Regards, Bill.


Reply to
William Pearce

If you want them to run on normal (say 2' radius) curves then you need to have the driven axle side play minimalized and the other drive axle with several millimeters side play. The rear bogie needs to be treated like a coach bogie with no side play. The added weight needs to be no further back than 2/3rds of the distance between the second driven axle and the bogie center. Weight behind that point will add more load for the loco to haul than it will increase tractive effort. Unfortunately there usually isn't much space in the forward part of the loco for extra weight. Were I to build a 4-4-0t I would use a separate gear box, preferably on the front axle and place the motor right at the rear in the coal bunker with a flexible drive to the gearbox. That would leave almost the entire boiler and water tanks available for weighting. The second axle would be free to move sideways, restricted only by sprung pickups on the backs of the rims. I'm never likely to build one, but I did build a small 4-4-0 tender loco with outside cylinders. In that case I built it the second time as if it were a 2-6-0 without drive to the first two axles and a tender motor driving the third axle. The front swing was far better than it was as a conventional (4)-4-0 and the motor in the tender let me get the maximum weight where it was needed. The first conventionally constructed model could barely move itself.

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Gregory Procter

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