Saturday, 31 October 2020

Purple Patch

Himself has decided it is finally time to start painting Welsh Pony.

As you can see, we've bowed to the inevitable and decided to finish our model in the present day 'temporary' livery, which it seems will be a little more permanent.

I'm not entirely surprised, but I will admit to being a little disappointed because I quite liked the idea of the 'Garraway Green' as a glimpse of what might have been.

But in recent decades the default preference for the FR and its supporters has been for Victoriana and Spoonerism - the stand-out example of that being the decision to build the new Double Fairlie James Spooner rather than a rebuild of Earl of Merioneth, which represented the high point of 'Back to Blaenau' revivalism. 

As an FR supporter who is interested in the whole of its 184 year history I believe there is room for both, but I believe this imbalance will be corrected by changing demographics in support base in the decades to come.

Sunday, 25 October 2020

Upper Quadrant

I'm not sure I've ever gone so long without posting in more than 10 years of blogging.

The gap has been due to a perfect storm of events - an hiatus in progress updates on prototype locomotives we're part-way through building, still waiting on the delivery of etched brass kits which were ordered in the middle of the year, and Himself spending a week volunteering with the repainting of Tan y Bwlch footbridge.

At my end of the operation I've spend the last week or so resin casting to meet orders for wagon kits or carriage interiors.

Himself has now sent me an image of the one project he has been working on - making up a Model Signal Engineering kit for an LMS upper quadrant signal for the Greenock club's new layout, Kirkconnel.

He reports that it was rather fiddly.

Given some of his previous work posted on this blog you may wish to read that as an example of classic British understatement and draw your own conclusions....

Saturday, 17 October 2020

New Kits

After a couple of months in development it's great to be able to send the first batch of MOD flat wagon kits off to their new home.

This first run was produced for the modeller who requested the design, and now they've been sorted out I'm able to take orders for anyone else who'd like to have some.

They come supplied with the Dundas Hudson bogie frames and are £30 per wagon.

Send us an email to reserve yours.

Thursday, 15 October 2020

How Long Can We Wait?

The FR has a long and noble tradition of the temporary becoming the almost-permanent.

Consider the New Moelwyn Tunnel portals as one of the more recent and high profile examples of this.

Now the rumours are growing stronger that Welsh Pony is heading down this road.

The 'chocolate box' lining revealed at the Bygones event has been met with rave reviews and we're hearing suggestions from usually reliable sources that it could be a couple of years before this 'running in' colour scheme is replaced with the intended Garraway Green.

All of which begs the question:  what should we do with our model which is still clothed only in primer?

We had intended to turn it out in green, but only after the real one appeared in that livery to make sure we don't get caught out.

But how long should we wait?

With other models such as 87 and Lyd, we turned ours out in the liveries in which they first ran - namely light grey and spoof BR black.

Should Pony follow this tradition?

Saturday, 10 October 2020

It's A Drag

Given the lack of any other project to make progress on Himself has been overhauling more of the Stefco collection.

The latest to get re-strung and teased back into life is the dragline excavator.

This lowers a bucket into the sand pit, before hauling it up and turning to drop it into a lorry.

The short video doesn't show the full sequence which includes the loaded lorry driving off and reversing to dump its load, which is returned to the pit by a secret screw.

The challenge for Himself with these models has not just been replacing the fishing lines but also getting the sequencing of the whole mechanism coordinated again.

One day, when I'm able to, I shall shoot a video showing how these work in full.

Tuesday, 6 October 2020

Just Casting

Nothing very exciting to report this time except that I've been busy casting the first batch of MOD flat wagons.

This is an initial run for the person who commissioned the kit.

Once that's out of the way I will open up an order book for anyone who fancies having some.


Saturday, 3 October 2020


At first glance this doesn't appear like a significant update, but look closely and you'll see there is a brake lever appeared on the bogie of the MOD flat.

This is quite a nifty bit of casting, if I say so myself.

It started out as a master piece which was taken from an offcut of an old brass fret in my rubbish pile (I'm dreadful for never throwing anything out) and then carefully shaped with a file to include the 90 degree bend at the end.

This was then used to cast a prototype piece and recast twice to make a production master, with the addition of a small piece of styrene at each end to represent the pivot bolt and to beef up the small handle and make it more reliable to cast.

In an ideal world this would be best done as an etched brass fret, but 2020 is very far from an ideal world and I think there would a very long lead time on procuring a part like that, so hopefully a resin casting will satisfy most modellers.

If not there's nothing to stop you scratch building your own levers.

Thursday, 1 October 2020


The MOD wagon is really starting to take shape now.

I've tried out a first casting of the braked bogie - without its brake lever - and they're being tried out under the flat bed body.

Since the last post I have redesigned the casting for the wooden decking after feedback that it looked a little too thick.

The last major job remaining is to design something to replicate the brake lever and prepare some masters to made production moulds.