A Bescot Celebrity Class 47

One loco that has always been on my radar to do is 47 238 ‘Bescot Yard’. In fact, I’ve had the nameplates for this loco for a number of years, buying them at a Wolverhampton model railway club show from the orignal Shawplan owner, Graham Shaw.

The Bachmann Class 47 as supplied

The donor loco for this project is a Bachmann 31-663 Class 47, 47 209 in Railfreight livery. The first job was to remove the windows, which is usually a simple job, but not this time. Some of the windows were well and truely glued in, and on being a little too heavy handed, one of the cab doors cracked and came off with the window. I don’t know what they used in the factory when this loco was assembled, but its good stuff! As a precausion, the remaining glazing was removed with Glue Buster.

The broken cab door.

At this point, I decided to cut out the rest of the cab door so the loco could be modelled with the cab door open. It is the summer of 1990 afterall. Part of the chassis needed to be cut out to allow the door to be open, and the wiring for the lights was rerouted to the other side of the cab. The cab and bulkhead also needed modification with the razor saw, and a new cab floor and brace was fabricated with some plastikard. All these were painted after they were fixed in place. A rumage through the parts box found a suitable cab door from a Hornby class 56. Although not identical to a class 47 cab door, it looked fine inside the cab. You can’t see enough of it to notice it’s different. A kick plate was made and glued to the bottom of the door, covering the lower door handle which is found on the class 56. I then made a plastic bracket and located the cab door in place.

Part of the chassis removed.

Next, the loco numbers, nameplates and BR arrows were removed. The new numbers, etched nameplates, depot plaques and arrows were secured in place with some varnish. Attention could then turn to painting the window surrounds white, with a good quality brush and a steady hand. The same was done for the bufferbeam before fitting screwlink couplings and appropriate pipework. The glazing was then reinstalled using liquid poly, and the fuel tanks were also swapped to suit. The bogies were also swapped from another Bachmann model that already had the details painted in white. Yellow stripes were painted on the fuel tanks, and the buffer heads painted silver, as per the prototype.

BR arrows offset and painted window surrounds.
The finished loco.

Weathering Heljan BOC Tankers

The Heljan BOC tanker is an expensive wagon, but when they were offered at half price I was keen to get them added into the Farkham roster.

Shortly after receiving the seven tankers I purchased, and after looking at Paul Bartlett’s photographs of the prototype, I got started on the weathering. Using Railmatch acrylic Frame Dirt in the airbrush, I blew over the bogies, chassis and lower bodyside.

On the prototype, the top half of the tanks seem to rust far more than the half below the identification band. In fact, the lower part of the tank remains almost rust free. After the frame dirt was dry I gave the wagons a coat of matt varnish, which is an essential part to the next step, the washes. Using a flat brush and the Flory Models Rust and Sand washes, I applied a generous amount to the upper bodysides and left it to dry. Then, with a damp sponge, and using a downward motion, the wash was manipulated to give the desired effect.

Airbrushed chassis and wash applied

I’ll clean the handwheels before I consider them finished, but otherwise I’m quite pleased with them. A short blog post today, for what has been a time consuming but simple job.

The finished BOC tank wagons

47 971 ‘Robin Hood’

I recently purchased a model of MENTOR from a friend and realised I didn’t have any suitable traction for it. With a quick look through my collection of Bachmann Class 47’s, and some research time spent on class47.co.uk, a suitable doner loco was found.

The base model for this project

The base model for this project was Bachmann 31-660A 47 444 ‘University of Nottingham’, and once the body was seperated from the chassis, work began on removing the numbers.

This model has a round boiler plate cover, so that was shaved off using a sharp scalpel, and a replacement square etched brass boiler plate was fitted. This was supplied by Shawplan, part number EEDP47-15.

New etch boiler blanking plate fitted and primed.

47 971 has a non standard darker colour grey roof, so the next job was to mask up and respray it. I sprayed the etched roof details with white Etch Primer first, and after studying further photos of the prototype, I decided to paint the roof with Games Workshop Dawnstone Grey.

I then turned my attention to the cab fronts. While sorting through the spares box, I found a pack of Shawplan white metal MU fittings. I don’t think they are available anymore, and I think I bought them of Graham Shaw many years ago at Wolverhampton Model Railway Club’s exhibition. Anyway, a pilot hole was drilled and the MU fitting was painted before fitting using Games Workshop Jokaero Orange. The bufferbeam details were then added, with Romford screw link couplings and the fuel tank was swapped for the correct one for this loco.

The loco now received an acrylic gloss varnish, ready for Railtec Transfers. I used left over parts from other transfer sheets, but Railtec do a complete sheet for this loco. Note the numbers on the prototype are wonky and spaced further apart than normal! Once left to dry over night, a coat of acrylic matt varnish was applied. The loco just requires weathering to finish, but I’ll leave that for another day.

The finished 47 971 ‘Robin Hood’

Recreating 47 363 ‘Billingham Enterprise’

This week I’ve finished the iconic Railfreight class 47 workhorse, and it’s ready to enter service on Farkham.

The base model for this loco project is a Bachmann 47301, part number 31-655. The loco is already in Railfreight Red Stripe, but there are some differences that needed to be addressed first.

Bachmann 31-655 was the base for this project

Once the body was separated from the chassis, I removed the orange cantrail stripe, white body side stripe, numbers and the BR double arrows. I do this by placing the body in an old baking tray, and spraying oven cleaner onto the unwanted livery details. After 20 minutes, I repeat the process and after a further 20 minutes I rinse the oven cleaner off the model. Under warm water, the printed details can be easily scratched of with a thumbnail without affecting the paint work. It basically softens the factory printed details.

Factory printed details removed

The red stripe on 47 363 was only present on the grey bodyside, so I set to removing it from the yellow cabsides with a cotton bud and T-Cut.

Red stripe removed from the cab ends

One of the initial attractions to modelling this class 47, was the black faded numbers present on the body sides. Plenty of thought went into how I would recreate this feature, but I decided to use a sign writing vinyl cutter to make a stencil and spray the numbers. I then used a fine sanding stick to flat the painted numbers back, fading them like the prototype. The windows and cab interiors were then removed and a coat of acrylic gloss varnish was airbrushed over the model ready for transfers.

I used Railtec Transfers, which I highly recommend when using acrylic paints and varnishes. The numbers, BR double arrows, kingfishers and white cantrail stripes were all applied before a coat of matt varnish.

The transfers applied

The glazing and cab interiors were refitted to the body. Smiths screw link couplings and bufferbeam detailing were added before the body was reunited with the chassis. The marker light panels were flooded with thinned matt black paint before my thoughts turned to weathering.

47 363 ready for weathering

I usually like to combine a range of techniques, depending on the look of the prototype. Starting with the airbrush, a dusting of Railmatch Frame Dirt was applied to the chassis and lower bodysides. The roof had a coat of Railmatch Roof Dirt and the exhaust port received some matt black.

Next I applied Flory Models washes, starting with Dark Dirt to the roof. Using a flat brush in a downward direction and wiping the excess off with a damp sponge, again in a downward motion. To fade the bodysides, I used the white wash in the same way. Dark Dirt was then applied again where the oily deposits run down the body.

47 363 ‘Billingham Enterprise’ arrives at Farkham ready for its next Speedlink train.

Overall, I’m quite pleased with how this project has turned out, and 47 363 is now ready to be put into revenue earning service on Farkham.