Monthly Archives: February 2016

Gresley Buffet – Part 4 Finished!

…..but, before it was counted as finished, it needs to be doing the job it was designed for – buffeting.  And that means it needs to be populated with people.

Regrettably few modellers, even finescale modellers, actually put people in thier coaches (and sometimes in contrast to platforms which are stuffed with them!).  This is a shame as they do make a difference to even a fairly casual viewer.  At a show recently, a dad and his son who were probably not modellers spotted the people in my coaches instantly.  I’ll take that as proof of the point!

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As is common with rtr coaches, the seats are moulded in place such that there is no room for the little peoples legs, so some severe amupation is required!  In the case of Hornby’s buffet, the seats are also modelled pushed tightly underneath the tables – which has meant that the backs to the seats or the lip of the table also needs to be hacked away a bit.  As all of this surgery occurs below the waistline of the coach, it is not visible from outside so your Dr Crippins’ tendancies will go unnoticed!!

Next up was to paint the exterior where the new plastic was cut in and here I had some problems.  I was warned by Brian of Shawplan that I should paint the whole side when I repainted the new sections but I decided not to follow this advice – something I now regret!! So having masked up theadjacent areas and sprayed in only the affected sections i found that the grey that Hornby used was notably bluer than that provided by Precision Paints.  The first attempt at repainting had the colours sticking out like a sore thumb and even on the second attempt, with a dab of blue in the mix is not perfect but is just ok underneath the grime.  So, if you are proposing to do follow this build follow Brian’s advice, not mine!

Once a couple of new windows were cut into the reshaped windows in the kitchen area of the buffet car, it was necessary to weather the vehicle.  These buffet cars were notorious for being  really tatty by the 1970’s; partly because the paint supposedly was prone to debonding from the underlying teak but also because the automatic washers were not good at getting into the corners of the panelling.  After an overall spray of dirt to tone down the colours and another to represent the brake dust and track muck, I used two techniques to represent the weathering on the panelling.  The first was to spray the whole coach with a mist and once it had started to dry a stiff artist’s brush was dipped in thinners was used to remove the bulk of the paint.  The areas that it does not come away from are the nooks and crannies around the panelling; the same areas that would have retained the dirt in the real things.  I to find, however, that the margine between where the paint has been removed and not can be a bit stark, so I used a second technique to both hramonise this and also acceptuate the effect.  Using a heavily thinned dirty black paint, run a brush over the whole of the sides – the paint runs to the corners and achieves the same effect.  It pays to be brave with this as the wetting effect of the thinners makes this initially look much darker until the thinners have dried off.

And this is what the finished article looks like………

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So thanks Hornby for supplying the model in the first place and the inspiration to do some plastic surgery.  Whilst this write up may have lasted some months, actually this was quite a quick conversion – the basic surgery on the side was only 4 hours – so why not have a go?

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