WT Water Tank

Steam Era Model's combination etch/cast WT kit is an interesting build and has been backdated to the interwar period with the usual mods.

OH Tool Van

This model is of a van that may not have existed. Phil Dunn kindly supplied a 1920 General Arrangement detailing conversion of one of the old style K flat wagons into a Tool Van for one of the overhead trains via adding a box body, peaked roof and working platform. For night work, the plan has an acetylene powered lamp included - hence the small tank on one end, and pipework. This looks convoluted as the lamp is folded down for transit (as is the end roof platform extension). The G.A. was for the conversion of K157 - Peter J Vincent's very helpful records show this K as having been converted to a water tanker or like, however later K's of the same time may have had these changes done, they are listed by PJV as have been converted to Overhead use. So, it may be a "what if" or a prototype model.

The model is built up in bass wood with SEM W irons/axleboxes, wheels (mounted in MJT fold up axleholders given the unusual chassis length), buffers and cut down brake lever workings. Other details are made up from the scrap box.

6 wheel U van

Further to my earlier entry on "Glenburn" U vans, I have recently followed David Foulke's October 1989 AMRM article to produce a much more accurate 6 wheel van than my first attempt. I cheated with styrene modifications for the ends rather than the cut/shut recommended given I had to backdate the ends in any case. I also referenced Philip Dunn's April 2000 AMRM article on the U vans. Wheels are mounted in MJT fold-ups, with Steam Era W iron/axlebox/spring fascias from the new 10'6" chassis kit mounted on a styrene I channel solebar. On SEM's seperate recommendation, I use a Code 88 wheel for the centre wheel and this has worked very well. Decal is from "Signs of All Kinds", cut up to word size and louvre size to help bed it down. Not perfect, but the best I have done with these to date. This van's painting was different each side as shown.

M Livestock Wagon (Early wood/steel)

(Picture above courtesy Public Record Office of Victoria)

 For my first M wagon I tackled one of the mysterious open topped M's. The picture at the top is the only one I have ever seen of these (please let me know if you have seen another!), and Peter J Vincent's site shows them as running largely unmodified until their demise in the late 1920s/early 1930s. Perhaps as they were a small class, they missed the photo limelight. As such I have had to build the ends and top speculatively, and based on the other wooden M's, which may be close. Similarly the roof walks are speculation as they appear to be there, however there is no sign visible of how one would get to the roof! Also, I have left her unroofed, though it is hard to believe they were'nt modified in this way at some stage in their relatively long life. I built the model from wood as it was all I had to hand, wood is great to work with, however, I will be usuing styrene for my next "wooden" M to get the detail crisper. I added representative bolts rather than every one, a close look will show the prototype is prickling with bolts! She is mounted on Steam Era's great new short chassis. My thanks to Philip Dunn for helping with rare details of these wagons.

L Wagon

Steam Era's L wagon is one of the simplest to backdate to the interwar era, just adding a number plate between the levels, and the usual "Glenburn" detailing as listed on the information at right. Another wonderful kit, this would not have been a fun scratchbuild before it was available!

QR Bogie Open

I backdated Steam Era's superb QR wagons to an earlier (not earliest) version via replacement of end bracing, addition of wooden buffer beams, truss rods and the usual buffers/couplings/hoses. QR's were still essential for regular general goods traffic in the period modelled so she's carrying a tarped load. My thanks to Philip Dunn for information regarding the earlier version. Wonderful kit, well done SEM!

Electric Loco - Steeple Cab

I have recently completed scratchbuilding one of VR's pioneering Steeple Cab electric locos. Loco is powered by twin Steam Era Models' Beetles electrically linked as suggested by David Foulkes (and detailed by him in AMRM) via phosphor strips and contacts as shown in the picture above. Chassis plate is from Hollywood Foundry, with the body seperately being built up in layered styrene. The pictures above show the main stages in the progression of the build, from the couple o' Beetles and Hollywood board, through the basic under-body in thick styrene with the Steam Era bogie sides added, through weighting (important for traction and prototype performance) and laminating the outer body layers to form the basic body to detailing, painting and completion.

Pictures of her in service on "Glenburn" are at:

D4 Class

Train Hobby/Precision Scale Models D4, one of around 60 produced in the early 1990s. I have been lucky to find one with good provenance, as they are not essential, but certainly appropriate for a Melbourne suburban layout in Glenburn's era.