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Modelling the County Donegal

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Hello everyone and my apologies if this is a well documented topic.

I was wondering what the easiest way to get into 00n3 modelling of the CDR is. I know that the Backwoods kits are slowly being re-introduced by N-Drive (I have my eye on the class 5) and I know that Worsley Works makes the 4, 5, 5a locos and lots of stock, however I'm reluctant to buy those locos as they need motors and wheels etc, which can quickly get too expensive for me. The Backwoods kits had all their wheels, motor etc already included in the kit which draws me to them. I must say that I've never built a brass kit before, but I've built plastic and white metal (I'd start with a wagon or a coach before trying a loco).

I'd be really grateful for any opinions/advice on this!

Thanks :)

 

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Although I've not direct experience of Backwood kits, from what I hear they are quite complex and not cheap either, but then there is a reason for this as Donegal steam locos were fairly complex things too.

 Outside frames and cranks, outside cylinders, bogie and pony trucks - there are a lot of skills to learn and indeed tools to acquire for anyone wanting to build a model of these locos. That said, the big side tanks will help hiding the motor gearbox.

 I have built a few Worsley Works items and the thing with them is they are designed as an aid to scratchbuilding. So, as you say, not only no wheels, motor or gears, but no castings or fittings either. What you get are a set of etched and that's it. There are no instructions to help you assemble the model.

 Would say that trying a couple of wagons is certainly a good way to start. A good way of getting into loco building can be to use/adapt a commercial chassis and scratchbuild the body, which plasticard can be great for. However, not sure if there are any 12mm gauge, outside frames chassis available that might suit.

 Definitely think you are right to use 12mm track though. Donegal locos are way too big for 9mm. The same applies if you went to 7mm scale. There are chassis that could be used, notably the 08 shunter, which runs beautifully. Then there is 6mm (quarter inch) scale on 18mm track, but suspect I'm now way off piste!

 However, certainly applaud the idea of wanting to try something more demanding and will certainly look forward to seeing how things develop.

Edited by David Holman
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Its probably best to contact N-Drive Productions directly about their plans for the Backwoods Miniatures CDR & Irish 3' gauge models.

The kits were designed in the early 90s and some re-design and new tooling may be required as some of the parts used to motorise the models (wheels, gears and motors) may no longer be available.

While the standard of the castings and etched parts was quite good with parts fitting accurately using slot and tab construction, the locos and railcars were challenging to motorise mainly because few suitable components were available for OO9 and 12mm Gauge which my no longer be an issue if N-Drive develop suitable 12mm chassis. 

I have no direct experience of assembling a Backwoods Miniatures CDR loco, but I assembled one of the CDR articulated railcars, a pair of C&L 4-4-0T and several C&L wagons.  The railcar was a smooth and reliable runner while I both C&L 4-4-0Ts required considerable work including new gearboxes and bogie modification to achieve reliable running. 

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Goes without saying that Mayner knows his stuff!

 One thought to get you started would be doing Phoenix. Worsley do a set of etchings that are pretty much self explanatory and it ought to be possible to source a 4 wheel motor bogie to go underneath it. That way you could have something up and running to go with any stock you make and Phoenix was known to go on short forays along the main line from time to time. Small shunting layouts have been built around less and could always be incorporated into a larger scheme later.

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Thanks for the replies! I had a thought to start 00n3 with a 3d printed freelance loco body onto an English or German chassis (where TT still seems to be made) and then graduate on to kits and CDR models. I may even be able to make a class 1 or 2 relatively easily. Phoenix is also an excellent idea if I can find a bogie to suit that is more in my price range. 

I have sent Neville at N-Drive an email to ask about the status of the class 5; last September he said that he was sourcing components like motors and wheels. 

I thought about either TTn3 using 9mm track or 55n3 using 16.5mm track but as I have both 00 and 009 I'd really like to keep to 4mm scale (I have dreams of one unified layout someday!). 

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That’ll be my younger brother Jim. He’s the one with the garden railway ! Here’s a Welshpool and Llanfair loco on his old line....with authentic Fermanagh weather.

91F0ECA5-7CCA-4FA1-82D6-A9357AB823AB.jpeg

8B66A175-2D71-44C2-B160-E740A3FC2F06.jpeg

Edited by Galteemore
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That's a nice W&L loco! 

I've decided that my first 00n3 adventure will be a class 3. I've chosen this as it's the easiest to make for me: I can rob a realistic-speed Hornby 0-4-0 for motor, pickups, wheels etc and turn some new axles for it on a lathe, make some trailing and leading wheels on the lathe and 3d print the chassis, dummy outside frames, body and probably some of the linkage/running gear. 

It'll also be a fun challenge, plus then I'll have a loco to pull any wagons and/or carriages I make from brass! 

 

Thanks

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You might want to subscribe to the Groups.io discussion lists for OOn3 and also IrishThreeFoot.  The group has a list of past articles in the "files" section.  Alan Gee has published a good number of articles about his Donegal OOn3 layouts and how he constructed locomotive models.  If you're not already subscribing to New Irish Lines, too, you'll definitely want to.

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Photos of a CDR Class 3 actually pulling a train of any type are as rare as hens teeth! They were intended to be used on the commuter like traffic on the CDR branch from Strabane to Victoria Road. Railway Bylines June edition will have an article by myself on the CDR Derry branch.

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On 26/4/2021 at 1:46 PM, J-Mo Arts said:

Hello everyone and my apologies if this is a well documented topic.

I was wondering what the easiest way to get into 00n3 modelling of the CDR is. I know that the Backwoods kits are slowly being re-introduced by N-Drive (I have my eye on the class 5) and I know that Worsley Works makes the 4, 5, 5a locos and lots of stock, however I'm reluctant to buy those locos as they need motors and wheels etc, which can quickly get too expensive for me. The Backwoods kits had all their wheels, motor etc already included in the kit which draws me to them. I must say that I've never built a brass kit before, but I've built plastic and white metal (I'd start with a wagon or a coach before trying a loco).

I'd be really grateful for any opinions/advice on this!

Thanks :)

 

Hi J-Mo try this group as well for any help https://groups.io/g/00n3modellers we don't bite, but we can help you out, if you have never built a brass kit try to down load the following link and start reading over a large cup of Coffee or Tea https://www.engelsmodelspoor.shop/media/pdfs/Building Coaches the Comet Way.pdf,

This is the advice that Allen give out to anyone who has never built one of his kits

 

Colin Rainsbury

 

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21 hours ago, Colin R said:

Hi J-Mo try this group as well for any help https://groups.io/g/00n3modellers we don't bite, but we can help you out, if you have never built a brass kit try to down load the following link and start reading over a large cup of Coffee or Tea https://www.engelsmodelspoor.shop/media/pdfs/Building Coaches the Comet Way.pdf,

This is the advice that Allen give out to anyone who has never built one of his kits

 

Colin Rainsbury

 

Thanks Colin, I joined the group a few days ago as well as the Irish 3ft modellers .io group. I will read that PDF in due course, thanks for sending it my way. 

Cheers!

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On 10/5/2021 at 2:45 PM, airfixfan said:

This photo may be of some interest to followers of the County Donegal

16206543399067721939403856955177.jpg

Note John that the 2nd vehicle ex DBST No 3 is still in original CDR livery at that stage

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Posted (edited)

Fancy renders of the Class 3:

image.thumb.png.e3cf9263b615a2721c08f5cbe0518866.png

image.thumb.png.eff846f2e9e58a4cdd631203d7079c93.png

image.thumb.png.2d82009528d7844673e0b878c0641126.png

I drew this up using a works photo I found online and the photo and drawing from E.M Patterson's book on the Donegal.

Edited by J-Mo Arts
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3 hours ago, airfixfan said:

Note John that the 2nd vehicle ex DBST No 3 is still in original CDR livery at that stage

I was wondering how it got there, Jimmy! Didn't know that this vehicle had ever been anywhere other than Witham Street or Cultra post-1959........

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4 hours ago, J-Mo Arts said:

Fancy renders of the Class 3:

image.thumb.png.e3cf9263b615a2721c08f5cbe0518866.png

image.thumb.png.eff846f2e9e58a4cdd631203d7079c93.png

image.thumb.png.2d82009528d7844673e0b878c0641126.png

I drew this up using a works photo I found online and the photo and drawing from E.M Patterson's book on the Donegal.

For your information in Modelling the Irish Narrow Gauge the late David Lloyd managed to borrow the drawings of these locos from the late Sam Carse so a drawing of them has appeared in print, if you would like me to send you a copy pm me off group as a private message with your email address and I will send it back to you.

Recently Sam's two sons have donated all of his life time collections of Donegal notes to the heritage center in Donegal, I can't wait to find out just what is in there, I am hoping airfixfan will seriously sit down and think about putting all of Sam's notes into a book format for the rest of us to drool over.

I like the above body shell that you are doing, once the finances are back on track and if you are going to produce them I wouldn't mind getting two of them from your, or if you would like some one to use their printer let me know as I have a contact with a narrow gauge model supplier who makes some very find models on his new 3D printer.

 

Colin 

 

   

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, jhb171achill said:

I was wondering how it got there, Jimmy! Didn't know that this vehicle had ever been anywhere other than Witham Street or Cultra post-1959........

In 1989 whilst Whitla Street was closed and before Cultra was built some ex CDR items were on loan to Foyle Road such as Trailer 3 and Blanche

Witham Street

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Colin R said:

For your information in Modelling the Irish Narrow Gauge the late David Lloyd managed to borrow the drawings of these locos from the late Sam Carse so a drawing of them has appeared in print, if you would like me to send you a copy pm me off group as a private message with your email address and I will send it back to you.

Recently Sam's two sons have donated all of his life time collections of Donegal notes to the heritage center in Donegal, I can't wait to find out just what is in there, I am hoping airfixfan will seriously sit down and think about putting all of Sam's notes into a book format for the rest of us to drool over.

I like the above body shell that you are doing, once the finances are back on track and if you are going to produce them I wouldn't mind getting two of them from your, or if you would like some one to use their printer let me know as I have a contact with a narrow gauge model supplier who makes some very find models on his new 3D printer.

 

Colin we had a meeting yesterday about the kind donations of Barry and David loaning their late fathers CDR model collection. Will be able to post an update on this soon  but do contact myself in private if you wish? Can also recommend highly Roger's book the County Donegal Companion. Finally attach the best photo of a Class 3 I have ever seen in print.

 

   

 

 

 

 

16211865712896864851421912514274.jpg

Edited by airfixfan
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5 hours ago, Colin R said:

I like the above body shell that you are doing, once the finances are back on track and if you are going to produce them I wouldn't mind getting two of them from your, or if you would like some one to use their printer let me know as I have a contact with a narrow gauge model supplier who makes some very find models on his new 3D printer.

 

Colin 

Hi Colin, 

Thanks for the interest! I don't think I intend to 'produce' them as such, but if the test print goes well I'd be happy to sell you two and perhaps make them on demand for people. 

Would you design your own chassis for this? 

Thanks

 

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12 hours ago, J-Mo Arts said:

Fancy renders of the Class 3:

image.thumb.png.e3cf9263b615a2721c08f5cbe0518866.png

image.thumb.png.eff846f2e9e58a4cdd631203d7079c93.png

image.thumb.png.2d82009528d7844673e0b878c0641126.png

I drew this up using a works photo I found online and the photo and drawing from E.M Patterson's book on the Donegal.

Beautiful render, the challenge is finding a printer (business or machine) with similar capabilities.

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5 hours ago, Mayner said:

Beautiful render, the challenge is finding a printer (business or machine) with similar capabilities.

My Elegoo Mars is pretty good, I've used it for lots of 009 gauge bits and bobs, plus the BCDR loco in my workbench thread. I'm slightly nervous of the lubricator details failing to print but that's my only concern. Fingers crossed it'll print well! 

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On 16/5/2021 at 11:06 PM, J-Mo Arts said:

Hi Colin, 

Thanks for the interest! I don't think I intend to 'produce' them as such, but if the test print goes well I'd be happy to sell you two and perhaps make them on demand for people. 

Would you design your own chassis for this? 

Thanks

 

Hi J Mo, sorry for the delay I have problem with the old steam driven computer, I fear I shall be needing a new electronic one very soon.

As to designing the chassis I understand that one exists already from Dr Alan Gee, so I need to contact him first to see how he produced his one and who he got to do it.

I see the 12inches to the ft scale model is coming on very nicely

 

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Yes Colin Drumboe the Real Thing version is coming on well and as you are well aware so are the Bill's! All help welcomed to bring Drumboe back this summer to the Donegal Railway Heritage Centre..

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23 hours ago, Colin R said:

Hi J Mo, sorry for the delay I have problem with the old steam driven computer, I fear I shall be needing a new electronic one very soon.

As to designing the chassis I understand that one exists already from Dr Alan Gee, so I need to contact him first to see how he produced his one and who he got to do it. 

No problem there! I have asked Dr Alan about the building of his class 3s and he's very kindly offered to send me a writeup of how he did it. I'm not sure how the body shell I've designed would fit a pre-existing chassis and I was going to design one for specific parts I have lying around, although I could design a rudimentary set of frames to go with the loco if that is what would be needed...

Also very pleased to see the photo of Drumboe, thanks for sharing! Out of interest, is much of the loco salvageable or is it mostly new? 

Thanks! 

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Good question Drumboe getting a new cab, bunker and side tanks etc.  Severe corrosion due to almost 60 years outside in the rain in the North West. However things such as the frames etc are original and in better condition than expected. 

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For most heritage railways when they take on an old steam locos, the things which need to either be replaced on have a lot of work on tend to be the Boiler and any sheet steel, mostly Cabs and tanks will get replaced with replicas (as I understand it most of the tanks on the class 5's where rotten anyway while they where still working back in the 1950's), some boiler fittings will also need to be replaced due to the current EU wide pressure vessel regulations, you will be lucky if any of the brass/gun metal fitting are still about and the same will go for the brass wheel bearings.,basically anything which could be stolen for scrap and would have been worth a few bob would have gone by now.

Iron or steel castings and the frames, tend to be OK as they have the rest of the loco above to protect them, smoke box, the door and chimney should also be reusable as well, but it will depend on how it has been stored, sometimes the smoke box has also rusted away due to corrosion and what used to go on inside when working.

Most heritage locos end up with a new boiler at some point, but at least it should be OK for another 50 years plus, depending on the grade of steel used in its construction, it would be worth getting someone who knows about boilers to give anyone the advice they are looking for on this.

When the Lynton and Barnstaple Railway build a new Baldwin 2-4-2T the design team produced a list of every part of the new loco, they then produced a sponsorship list with every part having been given a value in Sterling, the idea took off and it was not long before the sponsorship money was coming in.

From start to finish it took 8 years to build, normally such a project could last up to 20 years. 

This is not a how to restore a steam loco, but just pointing out the things I have come across on the locos I have had the privilege to be able to work on. 

 

Colin  

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