Sunday, 14 April 2013

Train of thought

The recent debut of my Anglophobian armoured train created quite a bit of interest, so I thought a post showcasing it was in order.  Above can be seen the complete mighty ensemble. 
The train began life as a Hornby Thomas the Tank Engine set bought in a sale.  It had occurred to me that while trains in a scale closer to that of the toy soldiers are hideously expensive, it would be possible to adapt an HO gauge train to look like a narrow gauge affair.  To adapt the loco above I built up the cab with foamboard sides and a new balsa roof.  A new taller funnel was cut from plastic tube.  I managed (only just!) to resist leaving on the smiley face and replaced it instead with a rather more sober front end.  I left the wheels bright blue to cause annoyance in certain quarters.
The gun (what's the point of an armoured train without one?) is a battered Britains WOMBAT.
The crew are converted Armies in Plastic figures
The open wagon carries a dismountable infantry company
The two wagons are based on the train set's originals.  The superstructures were removed and replaced by new work in balsa.
After a bit of fiddling about the gun was fixed in place
Given the overhangs and the top heavy nature of (particularly) the gun wagon anything other than straight track needs treating with care - and very low speeds!


18 comments:

Brian Carrick said...

An excellent toy, it's just the job for narrow guage railways as used in the colonies. The blue wheels betray the engine's origin and I would have painted them out but leaving them blue to cause annoyance is entirely understandable.

Best wishes, Brian

Mosstrooper said...

Brilliant conversion job !

Stephen Beat said...

So many good ideas Tim, I find it hard to keep up with you! Every time I read your blog I think 'Oh, I must try that!' only for you to come up with something else.

Above all - it's all jolly good fun! :)

Tim Gow said...

Brian Carrick
The blue wheels serve as a reminder that all we're doing is cocking about with toys. And I couldn't be bothered painting them....

Tim Gow said...

Mosstrooper
Steady on old chap! I wanted to reflect the spirit of cheapskate bodgery which FLW encourages.

Tim Gow said...

Stephen Beat
'Jolly good fun' is the primary objective. Remember that my FLW project is two years further on than yours, so be encouraged rather than intimidated!

Conrad Kinch said...

A wonderful display! Though I'm now thinking of what a FLW "Thomas" style engine would look like - a bit like Corporal Jones from DA I think.

Peter Douglas said...

Brilliant

The smiley face would have been tempting...

Cheers
Pd

Sean said...

Great use of Thomas! I also like the gunner conversions.

Tim Gow said...

Conrad Kinch
I'll leave that one to you!

Tim Gow said...

Peter Douglas
Oh it was tempting, but then you know how seriously I take all this stuff....

Tim Gow said...

Sean
The gunner conversions are really easy, especially with Armies in Plastic figures. It's just a matter of carefully carving away the rifle and in some cases replacing it with a shell made from a bamboo skewer. I've now converted over 20 such figures and only suffered one 'fatality'.

SAROE said...

So, we can call this 'The Tommy Gun', then?

Paul said...

Looking good but I do feel sorry for the wombat on a conservation side.

Archduke Piccolo said...

It might be interesting to compare the track gauge to the height of the figures. New Zealand runs on a 3' 6" gauge, one of the world's narrowest ((though if someone were to point out a narrower, I'd believe them). Aotearoa being mostly hill and mountain the narrow gauge made rail possible, though even then some rather tall engineering had to go into the construction.

Possibly the most remarkable is the Raurimu spiral. To negotiate some very difficult terrain, the line loops back on itself 180deg then completes a concentric spiral of 540deg (over two bridges and two short tunnels) before crossing itself above the first of the two tunnels and continuing south. I don't think it would have been feasible with a wider gauge railroad.
Cheers,
Ion

Tim Gow said...

SAROE
As sharp as ever I see!

Tim Gow said...

Paul
The generally sad state of the WOMBAT can be seen in the last photo - it was missing wheels and most of it's paint when I acquired it. It was the WOMBAT on one of my gunboats which had to have it's wheels ripped off.....

Tim Gow said...

Archduke Piccolo
That's damned impressive! Possibly a bit beyone my small box of track though...