GWR and BR (WR) Models 16

A 'Duke' Restoration Project


This next series of photos is a 'before and after' sequence, and shows a restoration project of a model purchased on eBay. It demonstrates just what trouble one can find oneself in when buying a second-hand kit-built model on-line, if not careful. Unfortunately, the kit from which this loco was originally made (a Jidenco / Falcon Brassworks example) was no longer available, so my customer had little choice, as he particularly wanted a 'Duke' with narrow cab, round-topped firebox, and small 2500 gallon tender.








As can be seen, she was in a very sorry state. The large X04-type motor took up so much space, that the original builder could not fit the firebox sides, and because the chassis had the drive on the rear axle, with the motor facing forward, neither could he fit a proper cab floor. Along with missing handrails and damaged detail fittings, much was needed to be done.

So, the chassis was rebuilt with a modern 'can' motor, and drive changed to the front axle, which allowed me to rebuild the cab with a proper floor and interior detail. New wheels all round (Mansell type on tender and front bogie), all handrails were replaced with modern fine-scale type, couplings changed to screw versions, and the solid coal raves on the tender were replaced with open coal rails. Extra pick-ups were added to the tender, and ballast weights filled the boiler. All paintwork was chemically stripped off, and the model was repainted in the lovely Indian red-framed livery.



And here you have it - the restored loco. Anybody considering this kind of project should be warned though - this was NOT a cheap job (just ask my customer!), and in my opinion, it should only be contemplated as a last resort - perhaps if, as in this case, a new unmade kit could not be found.


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