3d Printing

N1 Final-1087Why 3d Printing?

As part of my Great Hotton project I will require a number of ex-GNR locos. Unfortunately none of them are currently available as ready to run models. Whilst my skills with a soldering iron have improved I wouldn’t describe them as any better than adequate so the thought of building half a dozen brass kits and the cost in tools and the learning curve that would go with it was somewhat daunting. As part of my day job I have been an AutoCAD user for nearly 20 years so the advances and increasing affordability of 3d printing technology offered another approach.

Project 1: Ivatt N1 Bodyshell

My initial project would be the creation of an Ivatt N1 since I needed several of these locos. This would be a basic body shell to utilise the RTR Hornby Gresley N2 chassis (the N2 was a development of the N1 and the chassis is almost identical). After several experiments this was evolved into a kit of parts before returning to a single piece model designed for FUD (frosted ultra detail).

The design and prototyping account can be found on RMWeb here.

After successful prototyping I was happy that the model was usable for my own needs and realising that other modellers might be interested I decided to offer the model for sale on Shapeways website.

AJModels on Shapeways

Further development has included the creation of a set of complementary etches for thin detail parts such as steps, spectacle grills, shed, builders and number plates and guard irons for the chassis. I hope to develop these further. Development of the bodyshell has included variations such as the superheated boiler examples, condensing equipment and other detail differences.

N1 Final-1094

Project 2: Gresley J50 Bodyshell and Chassis

This project has been terminated following Hornby’s announcement of a RTR J50 model. A number of versions were being planned. Firstly J50/3 and J50/4 body shells designed to utilise the current Bachmann pannier chassis. The chassis is not strictly accurate but will give a reasonable representation of a J50. Additionally an experimental 3d printed chassis was being developed along with body shells for J50/2, J50/3 & J50/4. An initial test print proved encouraging and a final development print is awaiting testing. The chassis will require wheels, a motor and a gearbox.

J50 (2 of 9)

Project 3: Aspinall ‘A’ Class 27 Bodyshell & Tender

A L&YR ‘A’ Class was something I had in the back of my mind as a future project. However, Larry Goddard’s (Coachmann’s) use of the Bachmann ‘C’ Class chassis (here) for use with a white metal kit spurred me on to give it a go as a 3d print. Knowledge and technique gained from the other projects has meant that this has been a relatively quick turnaround. The model has now been fully tested and is available for sale.

Aspinall27-4916 stacked - WEB

Project 4: Diagram 196 ex-NER Horsebox

My first foray into coaching stock, this useful horsebox could be found all over the country into the BR-era. The model is now at the test print stage.

NER Diag 196 1a

Future Projects

Another loco that I will require is the Ivatt J6 0-6-0 tender loco. Initial research has been undertaken and it will follow a similar path to the now defunct J50 project. Beyond this I may consider some ex-GNR coaching stock.


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