A new coal lorry Pt. 1


In the mad rush to get things done for Herstmonceux’s first show back in 2014 a AEC Monarch was knocked up from a Coppercraft kit to be the Robins coal lorry. It was mean’t to be a stand in till I got round to making something a lot more suitable. A couple of people at shows had pointed out the AEC wasn’t right.. Sooo four years and seven shows later i’m finally doing something about it!
One of the people that will be happy i’m doing this is Gerry Bixley. I had the pleasure of a long chat with Gerry at Tolworth a couple of years ago and he pointed out the AEC. After some correspondence with him after the show he very kindly send me a spare Classix Austin K2 lorry and some instructions on what to do with it.

First job was to strip it down in to a set of parts. This involved removing the wheels and  drilling out three rivets underneath. You should then have something like this..

Now the Classix K2 isn’t bad but its wheelbase is little long. The 5-ton long wheelbase lorry is 13′ 1 3/4″ which is about 52mm in 4mm scale. This means cutting 5mm out the chassis.

This was glued back together and a small bit of scrap plasticard add for extra strength over the join. I also cut the sides off the rear bed and shorted it by removing the headboard and 2mm. The bed and the Cab were then left in some Dettol for a few days to remove the paint.

The next step is to fill the holes in the cab roof , make up a new headboard, start putting it back together and get it ready for painting.


Paint me a picture

Usually as a modeller when doing research we tend to look at books, photos and if we’re lucky enough some actual 1:1 scale items up close. While researching things for South Heighton cement works I was reminded of some paintings of another cement works up the Ouse Valley.

Eric Ravilious was an English painter, designer, book illustrator and wood engraver. He was born in London in 1903 and studied at Eastbourne School of Art and the Royal College of Art. His early work is mainly of the countryside in the South East with the odd urban london scene. He later went on to do designs for Wedgwood and became an official war artist during World War II. Unfortunately he was killed in 1942 when the RAF sea rescue plane he was aboard crashed near Iceland.
He used to stay at Furlongs near Lewes and painted lots of local scenes, one of those being the cement works at Rodmell. (Also know as Asham or Beddingham works)

Paintings and modelling are both forms of creative expression and I don’t see why you can’t using paintings as reference material. Paintings may not be as accurate as a photo or scale drawing but they can give you ideas. Its down to these paintings thats some Narrow Gauge will be present on South Heighton and a small 009 layout that I have starting drawing up some plans for.
I’m sure there are a fair few paintings and models based on the same subject matter. Modeller and artist Troels Kirk has taken things a step further by painting a couple of pictures of his models.  Here is the painting and Here is the model.


Little and Large

No not Syd and Eddie. I have been working on another two Rustons that are at different ends of the size spectrum in 4mm scale! A Judith Edge Ruston & Hornsby 165DS 0-4-0 DM and a Brian Madge Ruston LB

The Judith Edge kit is intended to build one of the two locos bought by BR in 1956 but you can adapted the kit to do one of the industrial versions and this is what I have done. The Ruston 165’s came in three different varieties. A DS (Mechanical), DE (Electric) and DH (Hydraulic). The later locos had a different cab front but you can build any of the earlier versions from the kit. The main external differences are the jackshaft arrangement, front grill, handrail positions and exhaust position. Some also had different bonnet doors which would mean making your own to add to the kit.
Having decided I wanted to do one of the 165DS’ with the longer coupling rod to the jackshaft from the front axel, I searched for some suitable pictures. Flickr came to the rescue and I settled on basing mine on this loco that was at Thurrock.

The kit goes together well and is pretty straight forward. I fitted the loco with a High Level  Loadhauler+ gearbox and a cheap ebay motor which works well. Clearance for the different jackshaft is tight so I moved the steps out a small amount and reduced the with of the treadplates. You wouldn’t need to do this if building the kit as one of the BR ones. It just needs the lamps and builder plates fitting plus a good coat of weathering now.20180124_210616

So from something large to something small… The Ruston LB is intended for use on South Heighton cement works (when I build it). The kit comes with etches for the body and details, a small chassis block, motor and pulleys.20180117_113411 Its quite fiddly being so small but goes together really well. The motor supplied extends into the cab and i’m working on a way to hide this. You can also fit a smaller motor so you can add more detail and a driver which I might do if I do another one. It doesn’t take long to build and is now waiting on some weathering plus fitting of a hook for Greenwich couplings.

20180124_211709 And I thought the 48DS was small!