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LARNE CABIN'S GNR(I) P2 Parcel Van Workbench

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LARNE CABIN
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Firstly, I never imagined that I would be posting a topic on the Workbench Forum!  I am constantly amazed by all the masterpieces that appear here, especially those super brass steam engines and Victorian carriages, BUT, having discovered the GNR(I) 'P' Van and it's typical 1960's roster, being taken off the 3pm ex Londonderry at York Road and attached to the 5:30pm ex York Road to Larne Harbour, with mail for Stranraer, I have become intrigued and want to model it's authenticity and unique links with Larne Harbour.

My aim is to model one of the 1934 built P2 Vans (783 - 788),  actually 788 as a tribute to it as it still exists, albeit in a derelict and forlorn state at RPSI, Whitehead.

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I intend to leave one of the doors open and have the van sit in a siding at Larne Harbour with mail bags being unloaded for transfer to the Stranraer Ferry.

Many thanks to MikeO and Leslie McAlister who provided a lot of detailed information and Lambeg Man and airfixfan who posted photos when I asked a question on the Questions and Answers Forum about the 'P' Van. I have also unearthed a few photos in various books.

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After lots searching, I came across a Southern Railway Bogie Parcels Van (Ratio Kit 592). This will help with the chassis, (slightly oversize, but easily adjusted to exact), and bogies, and the body will be entirely scratchbuilt with Slater's 2mm (6 inch) Embossed Planking and plain 1mm and 1.5mm Plastikard.

So here goes, first tentative steps, the first cuts:

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and the four doors and two ends, I wanted to have the planked ends, as per the official GNR(I) drawing, even though some photos seem to show plain smooth steel ends:

 139444714_Phase1cPVan.thumb.JPG.591bcdaed6fd146ccd5906f4c2b85cf5.JPG

 

and the cut for my open door, difficult to get correct, but I'm happy with it!

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More photos of progress to come soon, hopefully............

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Looking well. The main thing is patience, something I struggle with each time I start a new model. Also as has been said in other threads keep checking the next step against your drawings or photos. I have lost count of the times I have proceeded on the basis of memory just to find out it is wrong.

MikeO

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In response to two profound comments above, Galteemore, it's already too late, I am addicted already, addicted to making as accurate a model as possible, and MikeO, yes, I have learnt already that patience is key, one little slip can destroy hours of work.

I decided that the doors weren't right! One layer of Embossed Planking on top of plain 1.5mm Plastikard, so the two layers look wrong, more like a kitchen cupboard door! I decided to take one piece of Plastikard and scribe on the planking. I think this looks better and more realistic. I had to cut 8 or 9 doors to get the two on the near side, the side which will be visible when the model is on the layout, the best two, and the next best two on the other side, so practice makes (well not perfect) but pretty good!

I have marked the positioning of the steel frame bracing to give me the proportioning on each side and assurance that the measurements are correct and cut out the three windows on each side.

Hoping the GNR(I) enthusiasts will recognize the beginnings of a 'P' Van!

 

 1238248796_Phase1fPVan.thumb.JPG.cab9594b51e8becac5c4aaf30de1dc5b.JPG

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Have done some work on the solebars and attached the ends. Side just sitting on top to check fit. Obviously, a lot more work needs done on the sides before they can be glued in, strengthening etc! Have cut the six slots for the vents, not perfect, but hopefully eventually both windows and vents will be brass etch and will be very tidy!

1429390030_Phase1gPVan.thumb.JPG.fe73841eb7e0710c051878eee12fe4b7.JPG

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  • 2 weeks later...

Some more progress. Near side strengthened and glued in.

 

236448313_Phase1hPVan.thumb.JPG.252f6e3c68c4d0689b35d8f11c82fd4f.JPG

 

Have added steel frame bracing and given a coat of paint. (Doors just sitting on for picture, not glued on as need more work, a bit more scribing, weathering, and will probably want to put on 'G' and 'N' letters on doors before gluing on).

 

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@jhb171achill, Jonathan, any advice on livery? The only colour pictures I have seen (page 72 in The UTA in Colour @ Downshire and page 100 in Steam's Last Fling @ Whitehead seem to have a hint of very faded red, as if they had a coat of mahogany at some stage!. Or do you think just a darker brown? That colour I have used on the planking is Humbrol 110, Natural Wood.

 

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Roof sits out enough to allow for 'signature feature' of valence over doors, so am very pleased with that!

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4 hours ago, Galteemore said:

Great stuff. Looking really good. My memory of them is dark brown. 

In your time, Galteemore, I believe the few left were NIR maroon! At least one was. But a THICK coating of brake dust, grime and rust made them look different!

In GNR days they were obviously grey when new, though since the GNR (unlike CIE) started painting fitted vans brown, it is possible this was used. I think the UTA painted them brown but I am uncertain. Certainly I don’t think any got the UTA green. For NIR, brown or maroon. I am unsure of chassis colour - probably black except in GNR days, when it would be largely body colour.

Of the “P” vans which CIE inherited, most were scrapped within a few years without any repaint beyond “CIE” stencilled on the ends. At least one was painted full passenger green, centre line included, though I’m unsure if it had a “snail”. Either this or a different one even managed to be repainted in “black’n’tan” full passenger livery, in which it looked odd but interesting! It doesn’t seem to have lasted long, though, before withdrawal. But they lasted into NIR days just about, in the north.

4 hours ago, LARNE CABIN said:

Some more progress. Near side strengthened and glued in.

 

236448313_Phase1hPVan.thumb.JPG.252f6e3c68c4d0689b35d8f11c82fd4f.JPG

 

Have added steel frame bracing and given a coat of paint. (Doors just sitting on for picture, not glued on as need more work, a bit more scribing, weathering, and will probably want to put on 'G' and 'N' letters on doors before gluing on).

 

1975088559_Phase2aPVan.thumb.JPG.9f8773395df4dae1ceffaaa6ecde2ede.JPG

 

@jhb171achill, Jonathan, any advice on livery? The only colour pictures I have seen (page 72 in The UTA in Colour @ Downshire and page 100 in Steam's Last Fling @ Whitehead seem to have a hint of very faded red, as if they had a coat of mahogany at some stage!. Or do you think just a darker brown? That colour I have used on the planking is Humbrol 110, Natural Wood.

 

535574706_Phase2bPVan.thumb.JPG.d2a7d5272d9382c6393476497e2e51a8.JPG

 

Roof sits out enough to allow for 'signature feature' of valence over doors, so am very pleased with that!

Livery details above! I would go for NIR maroon sides and ends, mid-grey roof, black chassis. Lettering (number) in mid-yellow, no edging; NIR logo was the normal transfer on one I saw (gold, white edging) but it’s possible yellow painted ones were used too.

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Many thanks @jhb171achill for such insight and detailed information. My model of Larne Harbour Station would be late 1960's. My station nameboard is black letters on yellow background and Brunswick Green Swan Neck Lamp, still UTA colouring. I see from some photographs that by June 1969 the nameboard is white letters on maroon background and the Swan Neck Lamp is painted pale grey, so my model would be say 1968 or earlier! I am going to assume then that NIR wouldn't have bothered painting a P Van so I am going with your assumption and @Galteemore 's memory that the UTA had painted them dark brown, and I intend to have 'G' and 'N' lettering. Thanks again to you both.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, LARNE CABIN said:

Many thanks @jhb171achill for such insight and detailed information. My model of Larne Harbour Station would be late 1960's. My station nameboard is black letters on yellow background and Brunswick Green Swan Neck Lamp, still UTA colouring. I see from some photographs that by June 1969 the nameboard is white letters on maroon background and the Swan Neck Lamp is painted pale grey, so my model would be say 1968 or earlier! I am going to assume then that NIR wouldn't have bothered painting a P Van so I am going with your assumption and @Galteemore 's memory that the UTA had painted them dark brown, and I intend to have 'G' and 'N' lettering. Thanks again to you both.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sounds great! It's a superb build. I do think that plastic is nowadays often very underrated!

The "G N", though, would be gone - the UTA put paid to that!  Looking forward to seeing it.....

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  • 2 months later...

A little more progress on the 'P' Van. Reverse side completed and glued in, doors attached, bogies partially complete and more paint experiments! After much experimenting with various browns, have finally decided on this brown/red which is Humbrol 160 German Camouflage Red/Brown.

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Still to complete windows, vents, valence over doors, bogies, couplings, buffers, vacumn pipes, brake wheel, numbering, mail bags piled at open door and probably much more, so probably just over half way there!

A glimpse of the end game, being shunted to a siding at Larne Harbour for unloading of mail bags for Stranraer Ferry.

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Oops.......... hadn't noticed that bogie until I had posted the picture......bogies not properly attached yet!

Edited by LARNE CABIN
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