Modeled on an ex-NER diagram 196 horsebox, it’s been a long time in the making but the project is now finally finished. The project has been dogged with problems and as a result it’s been sat in a box over the winter. It has required several reprints and redesigns. Some of this was down to inadequate strength in the rather too intricate design of the underframe which has resulted in a number if compromises and some was down to poor printing. Most of the prints have had warping or drooping to the body part (but never in the same place). Even the final print has not been without problems with some warping of the end part.
I’m fairly happy with the underframe part now – it’s reasonably robust and has survived some manhandling. The roof also is good, being the only part unaltered from the original print. The problems are mainly with the body. As well as the warping the panel details have proved difficult to clean and sand adequately; a little too much paint has been applied to disguise this.
Most of the holes are preformed and just required re-drilling in places to clear out the wax from printing. Holes were drilled in the communication cord tell-tale equipment and brass handrail wire inserted through here. The curved handrail itself was formed around a tin of modelling paint and fixed at the top with short proprietary handrail knobs. Steps on the end are by my usual method of transparent acetate sheet cut into strips and slid into the preformed slots. The vertical communication cord run was formed from some fibre optic cable I had – any thin metal wire would work equally well. I formed the door handles from thin brass strip but proprietary examples are available such as from Wizard models (Comet Models C6). Lamp mountings are staples cut to suit. Glazing is acetate sheet.
The roof handles are again brass wire and the vents are 3d printed as separate parts with the model. Sprued 3d parts are also provided for the buffers. These have printed very well but I’ve used 51L/Wizard models cast/turned metal ones for additional robustness (51L NERC028). The brakes are a 3d printed separate part (the early examples were part of the main print and kept breaking). These are glued in place with superglue. The wheels are Alan Gibson 14mm 10-spoked (4015) running in brass top-hat bearings. Additional weight has been added in the body compartment on top of the underframe with some lead sheet – plenty of space here. The model runs nice and smoothly.
As far as I’m aware there are no decals for this diagram so I’ve used Modelmaster’s 8085 decals for the Parkside PC83 LNER horsebox, modified to match a photograph of the prototype. Finally, the model is finished off with a groom – actually a ‘gentleman’ from the Dart Castings range.
I’d have to conclude that this has been a step too far for affordable 3d printing. The detail required has compromised strength and is very difficult to clean/sand satisfactorily. I still have the CADs so if another more suitable process/material comes along I can revisit this project for a better outcome. Therefore, for the time being, I will not be releasing this model on my Shapeways store. However, if you really, really do want this model please contact me here to discuss your requirements.