To good to be true?

Some time/years ago, I misplaced my 1” drill used to  create the recess for baseboard joining dowels.

Recently, while browsing a large internet retailer’s website, in amongst the plethora of metric sized drills, I found a set of three flat wood drill bits in 1/2”, 3/4” and 1” sizes according to the description. All for the princely sum of £2.53 including postage.The size could be read on the drills, so the order was placed. A couple of days later the order arrived with the packaging proclaiming it included 1/2” (13mm), 3/4” (19mm) and 1” (25mm) drill bits. Not quite so impressed!

Checking with a micrometer didn’t help much either

1/2”.            0.545”.         13.87mm

3/4”.            0.774”.         19.67mm

1”.               0.991”.          25.18mm

In use, the 1” bit produces a recess that is a firm fit for the dowels, with no slop whatsoever.  Impressed again. Whether an 85p drill bit is up to making the 12 recesses required remains to be seen.


Every so often….

I’ve taken bits of Princes St that were work in progress to a few exhibitions previously.  They seem to generate interest, and often result in obtaining information that hasn’t previously been identified from research up to that point. Examples of this include the “beer train”, the repeater signal on the carriage headshunt, and the existence of windows in the rear of the signal box. Such is life, some of the information is gleaned after the Model has been started.

This year at Model Rail Scotland my demonstration included part of the trainshed. I was describing the process to a visitor that had been used to prepare the drawing for the Silhouette cutter to prepare the laminations, and commented that there was a balustrade along the edge of the trainshed, but not having any clear photos of what it looked like, would probably leave it off. I  felt this was a better option rather than invent something then would look wrong or silly.

Trainshed being tested for size

The response to this was completely unexpected. “I think I’ve got a length of it in my garden”.

The gentleman expanded that it had been sold as part of an internal balustrade, but on inspection exhibited signs of external weathering. It matches what little can be identied from photos in three different areas, so I’m pretty confident in its origin. A couple of days later, the following photo arrived

Section of balustrade from end of trainshed

Attempts to trace it’s outline in Inkscape were not particularly successful. The pebble dash was one of the culprits, so an interpretation was drawn up, and after minor tweaking managed to cut to a degree. The short lengths of some of the cuts were insufficient for the blade to penetrate the whole length of the cut. It took longer to remove some of the small bits of plastic than to cut. I was quite please with it.

A very cruel close-up showing further work needed on the ‘C’

Took it it down to check for size and a slight problem – it was twice the  size it should be. I’m now investigating if it could be laser cut to the correct dimensions.  However, this isn’t a failure. I now have a much better idea of the limits you can go down to with a Silhouette cutter.

In the beginning….

It’s strange how dreams can embrace people who are complete strangers.

My dream was to build an interpretation of part of the former Caledonian Railway Station latterly known as Edinburgh Princes Street.

During its early construction a thread was started on the Modellers United forum and work in progress has been shown at the Glasgow and Perth model railway exhibitions, generating an embarrassing amount of interest and enthusiasm. So say nothing of questions asking when it will be finished to an exhibitable standard.

With the news that MU will become “read only” from mid February, this blog has been started in order to continue the story of the build

Let the learning curve of blogging commence!