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After a considerable amount of faffing about, the van is now in glorious technicolour. Admittedly the colour in question is mostly grey, but it’s colour; not just blank primer, and thus incredibly exciting.

I probably should get out more.

Actually, now I look at it the green is a bit too light so I’ll have to work on it, or possibly just hit it a bit harder than planned with weathering. The originals are generally rust free but they travel about a fair bit, and don’t seem to be cleaned any more than strictly necessary: these aren’t preserved relics.

This is very useful as it means I can hide the worst of my mistakes learning experiences under ‘weathering’ and no-one will be the wiser…


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Brake wheels: check.

Information panel (paper again, working on transfers at the moment, watch this space): check.

“Wooden” battens (card sanded down to look like they’ve had chunks taken out of them by thumping great tree trunks dropped by unsympathetic crane drivers): check.

Final weathering with pastels: check.

I’m pretty pleased with the overall effect, I just have this feeling something is missing…

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I’m off at an interview…

It looks a nice part of the country.

Also, there are trains. I’ll take some pictures.

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This post is brought to you by a combination of moderately warm spring weather and a complete lack of discipline on my part.

One of my cycling resolutions this year is to ride 160km (100 miles, known as a century) in one go, so when the Easter break came and the weather forecast showed sunshine or at least what cyclists refer to as ‘NAR’ (Not Actually Raining), and I had a break in  work/looking for a job from July, I wasn’t about to spend the week indoors making models, I mean, come on.

So in a desperate attempt to hide a complete lack of progress here’s some photos taken while we were on our travels. This is Dettingen station, on the Teckbahn which runs from Wendlingen on the main Stuttgert-Tübingen line to Oberlenningen in the hills.

It’s one of the best preserved (if badly painted) local examples of a Royal Württemberg Railways standard type II station, much favoured for rural lines built around the turn of the 19th-20th century.


As the Körschtalbahn would have been built at around this time, this is probably the sort of building that would be used for Spitzenwald. Thankfully not all of the buildings had the goods shed attached so I don’t need to model the whole thing: as the model will have to fit on a very small baseboard I’ll probably stick to the station building itself.


Rest assured, it will also be in natural wood or KÖB green: I’m not about to have a pink station on the model…

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Don’t drybrush a model to bring out the highlights…


…before scrubbing the topcoat off to add the rust effects…


Still, I can always drybrush the model again, and the rust worked so it could have been worse.

I’ve got a week off for Easter as well, so maybe I’ll make some progress…

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Model making paused a bit this week while The Elder Son and I progressed on a long-term bike building project turning a rather ugly mountain bike into a beautiful drop handlebar tourer. Last week we dealt with the most important question of the project: what colour should it be?

Unusually for us, we’d decided on red when we first dreamed the project up without spending hours cogitating about it. This was fine until we actually went to get some paint and realised how many shades of red were available.

We got it down to two shades, and to test it dug up my spare set of bicycle forks* to try them out.

We’ll use the darker red closest to the camera.

Now there will be a race to paint the rest of the bike before one of us has another bright idea or changes our mind….

*One difference between model making and cycling: the spares box takes up more space…

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We got the power

Flu, exams and, apparently interminable load of paperwork have taken their toll on model making time and energy of late, so I’ve been working on the rather silly monowheel.

Having decided the Monowheel will be steam powered because, why not? I had to make a boiler and cylinder. It turns out you can make things like this using card and paper and spending a fair amount of time sanding stuff into shape, something I suspect the early pioneers of model making knew all along.

I haven’t yet managed to make really tiny pipes with paper though. The smallest I managed was about 3mm diameter and that was with a certain amount of quiet swearing and several sheets of scrap paper superglued to my fingers.

Now I’m at the detailing stage which essentially means adding all kinds of bits I’ve had kicking about for ages and which I think look interesting. Engineers should probably not look too closely at some of the bits hanging off the boiler. They would probably also suggest that in reality, if the single cylinder managed to turn the wheel the whole contraption would rotate backwards, slamming the ‘boiler’ into the ground in a rather ugly mess and producing no forward movement at all.

Fortunately I have a seemingly infinite capacity to ignore such technicalities…

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