Stuart Brewer is a fellow GDNGRS member and is one of the most acomplished model makers I know - this is his first kit and my attempts at building it.
SRB001 Freelance DEUTZ Style 0-4-0DM
Part of the premise for Stuart's kits are that he will only do small runs. That's how he wants to do it and he has gained a great deal of knowledge of his late father and the other members of the GDNGRS who manufacture kits - I am one of the few who don't! So if you see one of these kits running it will probably be a rare sight but also will run really well.
The kit comprises of a nickel silver and a brass etch sheet, and several bags of small parts. The instructions come on a small cd - I had to request a PDF from Stuart as I no longer have a functioning CD reader or one that will work with small format CDs.
So far I am enjoying building this kit. The instructions are very well thought through but you do need to have the right gear to get the best out of it and if you have never soldered a brass kit together before then this shouldn't be your first kit to try it on! The specialist tools you will need are a 16BA tap and a good set of broaches - I have a cheap set and am now on the look out for a much better set of broaches as the cheap plastic handles on mine keep shattering.
I have put a range of images in the gallery below showing my progress. One of the first things I wondered was with the brass sleeve you put on the axle - this could have been 7.3mm in length thus giving the ideal back to back for the wheels though perhaps having room to adjust the wheels might be more important - just a thought as I don't have any prior experience to call on.
The most difficult part was construction of the cranks an the instructions do alert you to this and are clearly written to help you go through this. Soldering the three frameworks with the cranks together before you actually solder the cranks together really helps. I did that and tapped the holes for the crank pins while it was still on the fret. the instructions state you should broach the axle holes in the cranks while on the fret as well but I had no spare rod of the axle size and there isn't room to offer up the the axles in the frame so I did the broaching after the cranks were cut out of the fret.
When I first examined one of Stuart's prototypes for this kit I was pleased with the weight he had managed to pack in. The corner ballast boxes can indeed be bulked up with lead and to achieve this I capped the bottom of each corner with some spare brass sheet cut to size and soldered in. I then filled each with lead shot and covered in epoxy glue. this has provided a good amount of weight into the frame which will give the loco a much smoother ride.
- Axles with sleeve and gears added by Simon Cox - Sun, September 14, 2014
- side frames with bush soldered in - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Side frames with spring details dry fitted - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Wheels fitted on axle with my very useful 7.31mm back to back gauge - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Both wheelsets set up and completed - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Side frames with spring details soldered in place - Sun, September 14, 2014
- mid stretcher bar with nuts soldered on. However these are the wrong nuts. - Sun, September 14, 2014
- and with the correct size nuts - I need to read the instructions more carefully! - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Frame assembly - Sun, September 14, 2014
- It's important to get the frame square at this point - all four wheels should touch the rail together. - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Layshaft ball races in place. i got one of these in the wrong way around and had to unsolder and change around. - Sun, September 14, 2014
- On the fret there is a handy layshaft template for getting the worm gears in the right place - In hindsight i should have added the retaining compound while in the template - would have been easier. - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Layshaft assembly slotted into the frame and tack soldered - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Cranks in their assembly frame - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Crank rods are two parts soldered together - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Tapping the crank shaft holes - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Cranks with rods in place - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Chassis assembly with cranks - not yet fixed - Sun, September 14, 2014
- another view of chassis with loose cranks - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Ensuring the coupling rods fit before i put the cranks in place - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Open framework of the ballast blocks - Sun, September 14, 2014
- I have fitted and soldered floors in each ballast box - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Ballast blocks filled with liquid lead shot - Sun, September 14, 2014
- Ballast blocks led shot retained with epoxy resin - Sun, September 14, 2014