Avalon Line Semi Open Coach Plus Roof

The roof of the coach was one of the easiest things to do. A ready-cut, ready curved roof is supplied with the kit. All I did was spray it with Humbrol primer. I like the grey colour and I will leave it like this.

The roof isn’t glued in place yet. There are a few steps to do before I finish the coach. I want to add some decals, then passengers to the coach. Then I will varnish the coach and, finally, add some windows.

I haven’t used decals for over 30 years and I need some practice before I apply them to the coach. So, the model will go back into the drawer while I experiment with different ways to apply decals.

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Avalon Line 09 Semi Open Coach – The Test Run

I finally plucked up the courage to get my Avalon Line O9 coach out of the drawer. I sanded down the rough paintwork and repainted the outside of the coach as carefully as I could. I’m pleased to say the outside is looking a lot better. This has encouraged me to carry on with the build.

The bogies are very simple. They use Peco wheels and the axles slot in very easily. The underside of the bogie is the perfect mounting height for Greenwich narrow gauge couplings. I ‘tacked’ these lightly in place with a small amount of superglue.

When I mounted the bogies on the chassis I discovered the bottom of the foot wells were very close to the top of the rails.

I found some small washers in ‘bit box’ and placed these between the chassis and the bogies. The washers are too large in diameter really and they are rather ‘sloppy’, but they are the smallest size I had.

The washers increased the gap between the base of the coach and the top of the rails.

I decided to test the coach. Click the image below for a video of the test run.

I was very pleased to see it runs well.

The next job is the roof….

Avalon Line 09 Semi Open Coach

A few months ago I brought two Avalon Line 09 coach kits and I’ve just started to build them. This is the Semi-Open coach. It’s a nice kit, there’s a little bit of flash, but that is very easy to remove with a sharp knife.

The first step was to add the foot wells to the chassis. They have to sit flush with the top of the chassis so I turned the chassis up side down, pushed the foot wells into place until they were touching my cutting mat and glued them from below.

It’s clearer to see when it’s the right way up.

The seats are four separate mouldings, and were very easy to position. I found I had to remove a small part of the seats at each end to enable me to to mount the bolts for the bogies through the chassis.

The next step was to add the body sides and coach ends. The parts aligned well and this was very straightforward. After that I added the truss rods to each side. This was a little more fiddly because the parts are very flexible and I needed lots of fingers to hold all the points of contact in place while the glue dried. I was pleased, after a small number of steps, it definitely looked like a coach!

Next step was the primer. I used Citadel Corax White, which is a very pale grey.

I started to paint the coach. Here it is partly painted. It was then that I realised I had a problem.  The paint looked very rough, rather like a low quality 3 D print. For some reason the primer had created a rough finish and when I applied the paint this magnified the effect and made it very visible.

I was disappointed and I put the coach into a drawer for several weeks while I figured out what to do. I hated to admit it, but there was only one alternative. I had to sand down the paintwork and repaint the coach…

 

7mm Scale Seated Figures

My work took me to Sheffield recently and I took the opportunity to visit Rails of Sheffield. It was really enjoyable to browse around the shop and I was very impressed by the excellent selection of models in all scales and gauges, for all eras, plus scenery and accessories.

I need to populate my 09 coach and I brought these two seated O scale figures. They are lovely figures and they look great in my coach.

However, Bachmann charge over £9 for two figures. At these prices I wont be able to populate a coach, let alone a whole layout! I will need to find a less expensive alternative.

Light Green Open Bogie Coach

The 09 bogie coach has visited the paint shop.

I said I fancied a light green livery and here it is – Moot Green from Citadel to be exact. I think it gives the coach a nice, summery feel. Well, you wouldn’t ride in an open coach in mid-winter would you?

The wood effect is Citadel Karak Stone dry brushed with Zandri Dust and the sole bars are painted with Humbrol Dirty Black.

I haven’t varnished the coach yet because I want to add some transfers for the stock number and perhaps a logo. The catch is that I don’t have any transfers – but I have ordered some.

Colin Peake designed the coach and wrote his article describing how to build it in order to encourage others to get modelling. It worked for me!

 

 

Carry on Coaching

I have continued work on the open bogie coach. I have cut out the side and end panels from 1mm thick plasticard.

Next, I attached them to the coach, and added some seat supports. Then I cut out the seats themselves. Each one has a groove in it to represent planks of wood.

Finally, I added some buffer beams to the ends of the coach and some U channel to represent the sole bars. The underside of the coach isn’t particularly pretty, but it will be hidden from view.

As everything was assembled I decided to add a few coats of primer. I’m always amazed how much better a model looks after the primer.

Now for a nice livery. I fancy a lightish green…..

 

 

Simple O9 Coaches

In the 7mm Narrow Gauge Association handbook ‘Going Minimum Gauge’ Colin Peake wrote a really good ‘step-by-step’ article showing how to build freelance miniature railway coaches. The article describes how to make a four wheel, eight seater coach. At the end Colin included a photo of a 12 seater bogie coach that you can build using the same approach.

I particularly liked the bogie coach and I decided to try to build one. I’ve never made anything with bogies before. I contacted Colin and he gave me some good advice on which bogies to use and how to brace the underside of the carriage. Thanks Colin!

Armed with all this info I could start.

First, I made the floor of the coach from a 88 x 26 mm piece of 1.5mm thick plasticard. I scored the card at 4mm intervals to represent planking.

I decided to mount the bogies on 2mm diameter bolts. These fit nicely through the existing hole in the Parkside Dundas bogies. I made two pieces of plasticard, drilled a 4mm diameter hole in each one, and araldited the heads of the bolts into the holes (see left hand end of chassis).

The flanges of the wheels protrude slightly above the top of the bogies. I made two small spacers from 0.5mm plasticard (see right hand end of chassis). These increase the gap between the plastic mounts and the bogies and stop the flanges catching on the plastic.

The bogies are held in place with small nuts.

As this is my first bogie vehicle, I wanted to test it before I went any further. I tried it on my test track, weighted down with the first piece of lead that came to hand. I was pleased to see it negotiated the 9½ inch (approx. 24cm) radius curves on the test track without any problems (click the image to view the video).

Great 🙂  Now, on with the rest of the build.