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MOC: R Class Single Fairlie (WIP)


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#1 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:07 AM

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Just so you know what I talking about this is what a New Zealand Government Railways 'R' class single Fairlie looks like.  Sorry about the quality of the photo, it's a little difficult to find nice clear 'this is an R class' type photos, but if I find something better I'll replace this photo.  There was a version of the R class with longer side tanks as well and there was also another class of single Fairlie called the 'S' class.  These had the long tanks, a larger cab and were a heavier loco than the R class.  I may build one later, but I chose the R class first because being the more lightweight class it was found on lighter laid branchlines, some local council tramways and even working on the occasional timber tramway.

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And this is my WIP R class Fairlie.  Some of the parts in the picture are placeholders and will be replaced with the correct items when my Bricklink orders arrive.  I have used a degree of foreshortening, but I may yet make the boiler a little longer as these locos always looked low and long as compared with later NZR loco classes.
It didn't take too long to build something that looked like an R class, the fun began when I found that it kept wanting to break in half.  Part of the problem is that I'm short of 8 wide baseplates and once my Bricklink order arrives I should be able to replace the dreadful lashup of joined baseplates that are holding the loco together at the moment.  I ended up being so absorbed with rebuilding the loco body so it was strong enough to handle and bump about that I stayed up far too late and ended up being bleary eyed this morning.  Worth it though :sweet:
After a bit of fiddling I was able to get my loco to go around a standard Lego curve.  Yay for BBB blind drivers because that trailing driving wheel pair really does need to be flangeless.  As I mentioned in another thread this loco is inspired by the MOT locos which is why I've stuck with using the same boiler building method.  A nod in the direction of the source of my inspiration and all that.
Motorising is definitely on my 'to-do' list, but at the moment I'm not so sure how I will achieve that.  I thought it best to try and build something that looks like an R class first and then figure out how to motorise it latter :laugh:
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#2 dr_spock

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Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:15 AM

Looking good.  I think you could use a M-motor to drive it through Technic axles and gears.   Hide motor in boiler or coal box?

#3 zephyr1934

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Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:28 AM

Nice work

#4 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:00 AM

Thanks Zephyr and Dr Spock :sweet:

One thing about building steam locos in Lego though is that it's really hard to get the chimney/funnel/smokestack looking like it should.  Loco chimneys are quite characteristic pieces of kit and in many cases it's possible to identify the builder of a full sized loco just by the shape of the chimney alone.  
R class locos that worked in rural areas were usually fitted with a spark arresting chimney and that is what I've done with my loco.  I guess this is an illegal method, but I cut a piece of black 3mm Technics plastic tubing and forced a round section wooden toothpick inside it.  This expanded the tube enough that it held the cone piece and the round brick together reasonably firmly.  It's still not a good representation, but I can live with it for the moment.
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#5 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 12:46 PM

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Further progress.  I lengthened the boiler by two studs and by using a 12v motorblock and 12v wheel assembles to make a new rear bogie I've now got the loco looking low and long like a 'R' class Fairlie should be.  The ashpan and the safety valve are in placeholder colours and will be replaced once my Bricklink order arrives.
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#6 Hrw-Amen

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 07:34 PM

I have also had trouble with funnels. I usually find the bit I want to use is something like a cone part but it needs to upside down so cannot just go straight on. I have had sometimes to rig up a system of headlight bricks buried in thee boiler to get an upside down connection point. It can be done but is very fiddly and not too strong either.

#7 Daedalus304

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 08:29 PM

Nice Fairlie, Annie! It's coming along looking rather nicely - it's really interesting to see just how many slightly different versions of the prototype there are, too.

I agree too about smokestacks being very important parts of a loco's shape, and they certainly can be a bit of a challenge. With a couple of the posts in here about having trouble getting upside-down cones I thought I'd share a couple of the solutions I tend to use - very simple ones too!

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For the third one I wanted to highlight the 1x1 round stud, because that cone won't connect without it. The Technic part's probably a bit tall for your Fairlie and the first method may not be right for you either, but I thought perhaps they'd be handy references for the future.
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#8 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 09:51 PM

Thanks for those suggestions Daedalus, I will definitely take note of them and tuck them away for later as I want to build other locos from the same time period with similar smokestacks.
Thanks for your comments about my Fairlie.  They have been my favourite NZR loco for a long time now so I wanted to have a go at building at least one and making a reasonable job of it.  One member of the 'R' class has survived as a loco on static display, but there is a vigorous campaign being waged by a preservation group who want to restore it to full working order.
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#9 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 11:32 AM

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Just a progress shot while I had the camera out.
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#10 Axis600

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 03:32 PM

The only real thought I have is that the roof of the cabin is a little too arched. It looks a lot flatter in the pictures. Haha, that being said, I'm not sure how one would go about adjusting that. Its a very well done loco, Annie. I'm sure when it leaves the title of "WIP", it'll be fantastic.
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#11 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 08:27 PM

Yes I've been trying to think of a way to make the cab roof less curved on top, but so far I haven't really come up with anything better.
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#12 Axis600

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 09:36 PM

Hmmm...It appears more flat than curved to me, except on the edges. You could use either of these pieces (in black, of course), then have a flat roof if plain black 2x4 and 2x2 tiles:
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#13 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 09:59 PM

I've just had some of those cheese wedges arrive in my latest Bricklink order so I might give that a go.  Thanks for suggesting this as a possible method :classic:
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#14 Axis600

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 02:08 PM

View PostLocomotive Annie, on 18 November 2012 - 09:59 PM, said:

I've just had some of those cheese wedges arrive in my latest Bricklink order so I might give that a go.  Thanks for suggesting this as a possible method :classic:
Hahaha, you don't have to thank me. All I did was make a suggestion that you were thinking of anyways.
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#15 zephyr1934

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 05:25 AM

If that is an eight wide cab, you could keep the curve but lower it by one plate using 88930:
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#16 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 05:28 AM

Ooooo I must try that Ben, thanks for the suggestion.  I did rebuild the cab with cheese wedges and some other changes and now it's looking a lot more like the prototype.  Picture soon I promise.
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#17 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 06:33 AM

Further WIP picture showing alterations to cab and coal bunker.

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#18 Locomotive Annie

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 05:18 AM

A small improvement the siderods arrived from Bricklink today.

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#19 Axis600

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:39 PM

That looks much better :blush: I like how it's coming along.
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