Sunday, 28 June 2020

Borambola Water Tank - pt 1

Borambola Water Tank - construction finally begins

Like most people I know, we often get distracted, and modelling seems to get delayed - often by a lot longer than we had hoped.

An I.K.Whinney photo scanned (with permission) from the small booklet "The Wagga Wagga to Tumbarumba Railway", produced by Tumba Rail and Wagga Wagga Rail Heritage.  It shows a 1965 tour train with C30Ts 3142, and 3020 stopping at Borambola's water tank

Such is the case with the Borambola Water Tank.  I purchased an elevated water tank model from the Mechanical Branch Models stand at the Rosehill exhibition.  It was the last kit that they had in stock at the exhibition, so I rather pleased that I had secured my future Borambola Water tank.

A great construction article of this model appears in the December 2018 Australian Model Railway Magazine (author Cliff Barratt), so I won't bore you by recycling Cliff's article.  I will however concentrate on other  areas.

The kit comes in a solid cardboard box.  I didn't need the alkalinity plant and tank kit that MBM also offers, but I also didn't notice the box marked tension ring, or clamped plate had not been ticked. 

Construction started over a year ago, after I printed off the instructions and placed into an A4 display book.  I built one column, but was not happy with the time it took - as my soldering needed a fair bit of cleanup before the "H" column would slide free of the jig.

One of the jigs provided for making the "H" column girders from the fret

The girder fret contains enough brass for 4 "H" columns

Jig holding the "H" column in position for soldering

It was then I discovered that my kit had too many "H" column girder frets of one size, and not enough "H" column frets of the correct size.  An email to James Dalton of Mechanical Branch explaining the problem, resulted in the missing frets being posted to me within the week.  This is excellent service, and I commend James for his quick action.   (As an aside, this is a timely reminder to check the contents of all your kits, just in case the manufacturer goes out of business prior to building the model)

It was at this point, that I was given the task of rebuilding Bethungra layout - so the water tank was put on the backburner.

And a year passes.....

In the meantime, I thought about the assembly jig issue, and came up with an alternate method, that works for me.

After removing the brass shape from the frets with a sharp knife, I polish off the "burr" with a dremel cut-off disk.  I tried to do that with a file earlier, and it caused distortions.

Then I modified the jig - by using a pair of the "H" profiles, rather than all 5 on the jig. I could hold the girder etches in position with a peg (the spring has been selected for delicate - any stronger crushes the brass), whilst I solder.  That way, I would not have to worry about any solder webs preventing the jigs from being repositioned for the next solder operation - and I was able to slowly work my way from the center of the "H" column to the next location.

Modified jig, and peg

4 completed "H" columns.  The majority of solder is on one side of the girder only, and should clean up fairly well
I have got the time down to roughly 15 minutes per girder.  There are around 30 girders, so I have a bit more time to spend.  Disappointingly, my A4 display book of instructions has managed to get lost, so I might have to reprint it again from the supplied CD unless it turns up in the next week or so.

Another distraction

Yesterday (June 28th 2020), at 4:30am, there was a derailment in Junee of a container train being shunted into the holding sidings.  By the time I got down there at 11am, the big crane from Wagga had arrived, but the wagons were still where they stopped at 4:30am.  Cause of the derailment is under investigation.

How often does this happen on your model layout?  At least you can now say we have a prototype example/  (Picture taken from the level crossing with permission from the railway employees)

The middle platform in Junee has been out of use for decades, but still manages to capture a wagon before it does any more damage to needed infrastructure

May all your trains stay on track.  Until next time

1 comment:

  1. Rob, looks like a very nice kit. It will be great to see how it progresses.