Monday, May 14, 2012

Working on the roof - The Baldwin Steam Tram Motor

Work on the roof continues...

The following photos illustrate how I've started going about the clerestory section of the roof...

Clear plastic sheet was used as a backing for balsa wood strips cut with a balsa stripper (previously mentioned in another post).

I made a paper template up from the plans, to mark out the balsa roof contours.

The end contours were expoxied in place, prior to the sides.

Finally before continuing it was time to see how it looks...

Monday, April 16, 2012

Making a point

Following some frustration with one set of points in the main yard, it was time for some serious point work to be done.

The points were cut out and stripped off all rail, the stock rails being reused. From the many recycled sleepers I have around the place I got together enough ties to make the new point base. These were glued and nailed to two support timber bearers which can be seen in the photos. The frog was tidied up and soldered to a brass plate, to prevent any creep. 

New switch blades were made from some surplus brass rail, milled to a sharp point then touched up to suit with a file and dremel cut off disc.

As can be seen it's helpful to keep testing you're progress, I do this with a small Bachmann dump car. The small diameter wheels help to show up any faults. 

The point, following all other parts and wiring being carried out was installed in the garden, it just needs to be filled with ballast. 

Meanwhile, heres a few other happenings...

This building is going to come out soon to get some attention.

Tresspassers will be photographed

Around our place, you sometimes get visitors of the four legged kind. They are quiet..but sometimes they meow……

You just have to watch out that they don't hold up your train as it trundles down the track

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Steam Tram Roof

Today I did some work on what will become the tram's roof.

I had pondered whether to make it out of balsa wood, styrene or tinplate. I settled on the later for the main curved section, and balsa for the end sections. The photos show how I went about putting it together. 

First I started with the tin for the main, scribing the edges, folding back inwards underneath for strength, then soldering strip bracing for reinforcement inside. 0.5 mm piano wire was used to make formers at the ends of the roof sections, where the prototype is curved off. This was the trickiest part so far, trying to get the right shape. 

Following soldering of the bracing to the bent wire, balsa strips were cut using the balsa stripper tool I have see here: and here: 

The strips were then interwoven in the frame I had made and glued in place, followed later by application of Squadron putty and Mr Surfacer 1000.

The next part to attack is sanding back the ends to a smooth curvature and fabricating the clestory roof.

Baldwin Steam Motor connecting rods

Following on from my last entry, I have done some more work on my Baldwin Steam Tram Motor, as seen below I have made up the cylinders from aluminium and fabricated slide bars from brass. 

I started with modifying the Bachmann Trolley motor block, making rods to fit the wheels which really only go along for the ride. 

The footplate was cut out to accept the chassis and additional rods.

One of the cylinders turned from aluminium, with slide bar forced into it's locating hole

Showing how the footplate fits over the chassis.

The next images depict making the connecting rods and the crossheads/slide arrangement from brass.

One set of connecting rods installed.

Also I have been making up a small shack to house the isolating switches for my main station's yard. The roof will be able to be taken off during operating sessions.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Baldwin Steam Motor Construction

Recently I have had a bit of time to get back in the garden….

Firstly trains are running again, following a great deal of repair work, with a new set of points being fitted for better running in the main station, Peach Tree.

The most interesting developments have been made in regards to rolling stock:

I'm starting to build a model of a Baldwin Steam Tram Motor, as used by the early NSW tramways, I say NSW because they were used in Sydney, Newcastle and Broken Hill, as well as some other locations. 

Heres a few links to what I'm trying to replicate in model form:

I started construction by obtaining a Bachmann Motor Block for one of their trolley cars (trams), cutting out a footplate from thin ply and starting on the walls of the tram out of styrene. 

Below are some photos that should speak for themselves:

Wall of the tram motor from styrene.

Plans blown up to scale.

Lids from food tins and jars are handy...