While recouperating from my hospital fun and games I started fettling rolling stock again as I can't do much else.....back to the O-16.5 (7mm:ft narrow gauge)
This one is inspired by the North Devon Clay Co. workmen's van conversions (as shown in Messenger, M, 2006 Industrial Railways of the South West
). I just liked the quirkiness - sort of thing that abounds on old run down narrow gauge lines. As you can see, they simply took an open wagon and plonked a wooden upper section on it to create a closed van - the planks that sit on top of the sides of the open wagon act as a bench for the workmen.
As I say, it's 'inspired by' rather than any attempt at an exact copy. The real point of it was that I've never tried scratch building a chassis before. For the open wagon body I used an old Hornby OO open wagon, thinking that it would make things easy because I would be starting with a structure that I knew was perfectly square, alas it wasn't as helpful as I hoped. I still manged to get the W-irons/axle boxes mounted on it slightly skew-whiff, but it does run OK and unless you know that it's crook you don't immediately realise, thus as a test of whether or not I could build a chassis I think that it's a success. I say that the wagon body wasn't helpful because after the initial lash together I realised that the sides were too high to form a comfortable seat - dangling leg time! So had I had to hack a cm off the top of the open wagon without damaging all of my chassis work - got away with it just about.
In future I think that I shall make the W-iron out of a single piece of plastic card, rather than trying to add the outsides of the W to it as separate bits of plastic strip. Also, although it runs OK now, I think that future efforts will benefit from pin-point bearings rather than just using holes in the soft plasticard.
The 'box' section is made from wood - my favoured medium for wagons - with plasticard strapping. The roof is currently card, however, rather than going for the normal canvas look I've decided to cover it with fine sand paper in an attempt to replicate felting - after all, it is just a garden shed nailed to an open wagon.
Anyway, here's the picture. Not sure if I will finish it - although, as a test piece it has turned out better than I hoped so I might detail it and paint it up, and see how it runs 'in anger'.