Lynton & Barnstaple Rolling Stock in
by Bob Barnard
I began constructing L&B rolling stock in
1967, as a teenager, and so some of my models are now older than the
originals ever were! Although the commercially available kits and parts
have changed immeasurably during the intervening period, I tend to stick
to my tried and tested construction methods.
I have finally built all five L&B locos, starting with “Taw” some 40 years
ago and finishing with the completion of “Yeo” in 2007. This latter is the
only kit-built loco – all the others having been scratchbuilt, using TT or
N gauge wheels, proprietary gears and motors (am I the only modeller to
have Triang X500 and K’s motors still in regular use?). My preferred
arrangement involves the motor placed horizontally in the cab, driving an
intermediate shaft through spur reduction gears. A worm gear on this shaft
drives a pinion on the driving axle of the loco.
As “Lyn”, the Baldwin 2-4-2T, has a rather
short coupled wheelbase, the chassis of this engine is fully compensated
to give a smoother ride.
Carriages are mainly scratchbuilt from
polystyrene sheet, the windows being cut out using a steel jig, punches
and needle files. Microstrip panelling is added (a really fun job!), and
the sides and ends are then assembled round a wooden floor. Interior
details are added (in rudimentary form) and painted, before the glazing is
added. I like to leave some of the droplight windows open on my models.
Somehow, I managed to paint “smoking” and “no smoking” signs on the
windows, and I have recently added destination boards and put tail lamps
on certain coaches. I find the overall effect of these coaches is more
pleasing than etched brass kits, although I do have one such coach. Coach
bogie frames are cut from brass sheet, and folded round 6mm disc wheelsets.
All bogie vehicles have “three-point” suspension, with one bogie providing
lateral stability, and the other able to rock from side to side a little
to accommodate my uneven track.
Freight stock is partly scratchbuilt, but
more recently I have used some of the excellent kits available for L&B
rolling stock. My preference is to use whitemetal kits for 4-wheeled stock
(for the weight – although I fit plastic roofs rather than whitemetal
ones), and etched brass kits for bogie stock, although I do have several
plastic kit-built wagons (heavily weighted)
The ex-War Department cranes are built from
an etched brass kit, which saved a huge amount of effort, in research and
Couplers are the correct “Jones-Calthrop” chopper type, with hooks only
fitted at the Lynton end of stock. I originally used K’s couplers, but now
I use Meridian Models ones, with more substantial brass hooks fitted.
There are occasional casualties to couplers in use, and so couplers on
locos are scratch built from nickel silver for extra strength.
The various books about the L&B contain
drawings and photographs of all the L&B rolling stock, although modellers
should beware of differences in lettering of some stock.
I now possess about half the L&B’s total rolling stock fleet. There is
little point in building too much more, as I have no space to store any of