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English Electric type 1 locomotives 8074 & 8078 head along the steelworks branch, passing the gasworks on their way back towards the main line with a rake of 24 ton mineral and hopper wagons.

BR Derby Sulzer type 2 number 5233 hauls 3 withdrawn locos, class 43 number 863 (Warrior) & 840 (Resistance), and class 42 number 830 (Majestic) on their way to Swindon Works for dismantling.

Now shorn of their nameplates, this view of 863 shows signs of a sideswipe, and more than likely the reason for its demise.

A sad sight indeed, but justifiable in modelling terms since Bachmann recently introduced the all-new class 43 to their range. These 3 Warships all started life as Mainline products and had been extensively modified and detailed to represent different members of the class, but let down by a poor motor and 2 axle drive. Now de-meshed and free to roll along unpowered, the old girls have at least been able to put in an appearance on the main line once again, rather than be consigned to the bin or display shelf!

On a happier note, there are still a few Warships still in active service. Here is class 42 number 814 Dragon standing light engine on the centre road, whilst class 43 number 841 Roebuck gets ready to depart with a service to Paddington.

At the north end of the station another class 43 number 853 Thruster hauls a short train of HOP21 wagons and a brake van, with 814 visible in the distance.


The mechanisms for the two North British 0-4-0s are now nearing completion. These are built around a couple of Portescap 1219s, with compensation via a rocking front axle.

The bodyshells are also making steady progress, with cab roof and glazing now fitted - the shell of D2774 is pictured.

A new wagon project is this LNER Diagram 123 riveted plate wagon, modelled to a David Larkin picture taken in 1970 at Liverpool Docks.

The hundreds of rivets required by the type have been added to the Parkside kit parts using Archer resin transfers laid onto wet matt varnish. These make the conversion so much more possible than gluing individual plastic rivet heads one-by-one!

An oil storage tank wagon load has been made by adapting parts from the Airfix Esso tank wagon kit. Scalelink etched mesh has been used for the walkways, and the tank is set on a slight angle to stay within the loading gauge.

The five Coil-J steel carriers have now been weathered and are ready for loads to be added. The type were a little unusual for carrying fleet numbers during their early years in South Wales. B747532 was converted from a chalk tippler with early RCH style brakes.

B386077 had been an iron ore tippler with the later clasp brakes. The programme to cut them down into coil carriers was either done in a big hurry, or on a tight budget, as they were never fully re-painted, just patched over the worst rust spots and weld repairs. The superb markings are from the Railtec sheet, and reference photographs for the early 70s were from Paul Bartlettís excellent website.


A few months back this Heljan class 47 was on the work bench having been fitted with a Spanner boiler port from a donor bodyshell, making it more suitable for an ECML allocated loco.

Now providing top link service, Brush 4 number 1516 is seen at Hornsey. The EM conversion follows the usual method of utilising the original 14.80mm diameter wheels by reprofiling the flanges to something less chunky. We have found that using replacement 14.00mm wheels can result in the underslung tanks grounding.

This class 15 was acquired minus traction motor (presumably removed to get another member of the class working), and has been fitted with a replacement Mitsumi motor supplied by Cambridge Custom Transfers. It is seen here on test as part of a trial for alternative motors.

We've experienced a few failures of the Heljan class 15 & 16 motors, as reported on the November update page, with little prospect of any new ones arriving from China in the near future.

This shows the replacement motor which fits into the chassis with little in the way of modification being required - the only difficult bit being the removal of the flywheel couplings.

Showing the motor fitted into its rubber cradle, and a modified means of securing the motor using strapping screwed to the existing threaded holes. The keep plate is put to one side for possible future use, as it can't be fitted easily due to the different profile of the motor casing.

Showing the chassis being tested on the rolling road. The maximum RPM isn't as fast as the Heljan motor, but tests so far have proved reliable, and the locomotive is capable of pulling a reasonable load with over 2 hours continuous running on the Hornsey circuit.


As reported before in these pages, Morfa Bank Sidings has been going through some changes since it moved house. The old section of board used to come out by the freshly cut wood between the quay wall and the rear of the old trawler and the bit just in front of the trawler was once the two struts that formed the scrap yard section. The curved bit of quay wall in the centre was where the corner shop used to sit on the former street scene. Itís changed a bit!

The higher view also shows the new triangular bit at the rear of that board and thatís where the re-sited foundry will live. Between that and the lock is where the scrap yard will be. The front section is all river (the black lines show where the tide line will be, the rest is mud, glorious mud!). The trawler is being broken up at another bit of scrap yard on the other side of the tramway line that cuts through the middle of the scene to a fiddle yard off to the right.


Starting off this section with a few snaps featuring some of the recent Eastwell fleet by Paul James to to enter service. A glimpse of Brush 4 number 1516 stabled at Hornsey Road depot.

Another snap showing the loco passing the front of the depot.

Somewhat a long way from home, Landore's 6607 takes a rest before heading back west. This Lima model started life at Shenston Road, and was then transferred to the Eastwell fleet a few years later. It has recently been double-motored and detailed to include sandpipes and other chassis enhancements.

6802 & 6831 (Lima) now back in service with the same level of equipment and detail as 6607.

A real treat for Western fans - D1022 Western Sentinel hauls a rake of empty 21 ton hopper wagons, whilst D1033 Western Trooper is seen on the branch line beyond with a rake of vans, both carrying out inter-regional duties in the North London area. D1022 is the latest Dapol Western to hit the rails as one of the Shenston Road fleet by Greg Brookes, which includes the change of profile to the front end (ignore the cobweb!).

As well as taking a few pictures, there's been some activity on the work bench too. The ex-Oldshaw 21 ton hoppers have had a makeover, backdating them to an early '70s appearance. Some of the wagons had suffered bowing of the torsion bars between the axleguards, and these have been replaced and await painting.

The loaded hoppers are now in service, and were spotted from the footbridge heading towards Temple Mills....

..... with a re-bodied unfitted hopper at the back. The load is made from real coal glued onto a former, and was expertly carried out by Andy Bartlett.

A class 501 EMU crosses the fly-over on the approaches to Hornsey Broadway station, where it will terminate before heading back to Broad Street, with the driver having taken the initiative to change the blinds ready for its return journey. The Down Slow line is occupied by a 6-car Cravens heading for Welwyn Garden City I think..... its real destination would no doubt be clarified had the unit been somewhat less grubby! This image shows some maintenance is required on the second compartment of the centre coach on the class 501, to replace a missing window bar, and for someone attend to the bufferbeam anomalies on the Cravens when it gets back to the depot.

November 2015    January 2016
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