Another lockdown project has been completed. This time it is the Welshpool Sierra Leone No. 85 loco. I first referenced it in one of my October posts. It's been a relatively quick build because that's what I wanted after the length of time it took to complete Triumph.
One of the ways to make it happen quickly was to adopt the plain black livery that the Welshpool & Llanfair adopted for the engine's last year of running in 2009. They put the engine back to it's original Sierra Leone livery and condition which meant reinstating the front coal bunkers and removing the Welshpool plates from the side of the cab panelling.
The engine is sat on my usual Dapol 2-6-2 Ivatt chassis which needed minimal bits cutting off. I made a few changes to the body. The coal bunkers which were just too chunky in whitemetal. The rear ones I fabricated from brass sheet and rod, the front ones are 3D prints I made. I fitted Greenwich couplings which necessitated some modification to the buffer beams. The air cylinder was a 3D print as the original suffered badly from mould lines where the two halves must have been badly aligned. The supplied tool box just didn't fit so that was another quick 3D print though a chunk of plasticard would have done just as well.
Lastly I made a fresh roof out of 10 thou brass. Having bought a set of G. W. Models bending rollers over lockdown I now wonder how I ever managed without them (actually I didn't, I have largely steered clear of brass till recently). I also modelled the open roof vent since every picture I have seen of this engine has it open. I am guessing that like many steam engines it is hot in the cab.
Overall the Dundas Models kit is excellent. For a whitemetal kit the parts are very crisp and fit together well. There was a slight discrepancy on the length of the side tanks but a bit of filler sorted that and I guessed, correctly as it turned out, that it would not be noticeable once painted.
Having done this one I am tempted to build a second one in the blue livery which it carried from 2003 to 2009. To me, the blue livery is much more attractive than the red North Staffordshire livery it carried from 1992 to 2003. The only problem is the lining which is much more complex than the one engine I have done so far.
That said, there are a lot of kits in the stash and it's time to finish the Welshpool coaches that have been in a semi built state for over a year now...