Today’s subject was the building of loco kits where David G gave a very extensive and informative talk.
David’s first tip was to read the instructions carefully before doing anything else. The standard of kit instructions varies enormously from the almost worthless to the superb sets of instructions such as those provided by Connoisseur Models and Modern Outline Kits.
David had brought along examples of kits he had built, was in the process of building and will be building when he gets round to them. He discussed the pros and cons of compensating chassis as opposed to fixed frame chassis; how bearings should be as thin as possible to reduce friction and how using ball race bearings would improve free running still further.
The type of pickups used seems to be a matter of personal preference with a majority view in favour of wiper pickups as opposed to plunger pickups. In either case fitting pickups to the tenders of tender locos will greatly improve continuity of running.
On the subject of motors David believes adding a flywheel improves performance as does adding weight to locos. Gear ratios are another subject of debate and Roger pointed out that the Gauge O Guild has recommended ratios on its website
Finally, once the chassis build is completed the wheels should be removed and the chassis painted. The wheels and coupling rods are best then blackened with a chemical blackening agent rather than painted if modelling black or heavily weathered locos.
Throughout David’s talk there were many questions, explanations and much useful discussion. As we ran out of time David was thanked by all concerned for giving us a very interesting and informative talk. Chris M