This page shows some of the models that have been through the Rhos Helyg Locomotive Works recently.

Latest additions appear at the top of the page.

Please see the Gallery page for more finished models.

You may click on the pictures to see enlarged views.

Roundhouse Engineering Lady Anne 0-6-0T PUFFIN

PUFFIN, a Roundhouse Lady Anne has been here for fitting of a DJB Model Engineering Ltd steam whistle and associated radio control, new rods, lining and de-glossing.

Roundhouse Engineering England 0-4-0ST PRINCE.

Another Roundhouse England, appearing in the guise of PRINCE this time. Festiniog locos in this livery are very much black locos with green panels, and that is exactly how the full-size ones were / are painted. This model was delivered in all-over green so had black added to the tank front, tank top, cab front, cab back and tender front (and interior) followed by lining in red with black edging. Name and four works plates provided by MDC, of course.

Accucraft Fletcher Jennings 0-4-2ST No. 1 TALYLLYN

The owner of this loco wanted a green one but could not find one, so bought a black one and had it repainted and lined.

Swift Sixteen Owain 0-6-0T No. 43 DEMETER

This one is the unusual combination of a Swift Sixteen Owain body, usually seen on an 0-4-0 Accucraft chassis, but mounted on an 0-6-0 Roundhouse Lady Anne chassis instead. It also has a Lady Anne boiler but the smokebox is from a Roundhouse Billy which allows the boiler to be mounted higher and so not causing it to be lost between the side tanks. Many modifications had to be made to the body to make it fit this chassis, particularly around the radio control equipment, and a few to the chassis too. It also had modifications made to the coal bunkers in front of the cab.

Roundhouse Engineering Harrogate Peckett 0-6-0ST SYDNEY LANE

A first for me in a couple of ways... The first Roundhouse Engineering "Harrogate" I have seen, and the first loco I have ever lined without taking it apart. With lots of well-hidden fixings, I just could not work out how the loco came apart, so I spoke to the lovely people at Roundhouse. Their first reaction was "Do you really need to take it apart? Not recommended" followed by the extensive instructions on how to do so. I decided that there really was no need to take it apart and so I lined it "in one piece", the first time I have ever done that.

Roundhouse Engineering Lady Anne 0-6-0T No. 1 MAN OF KENT

MAN OF KENT received one of my personal favourite lining schemes: British Railways Mixed Traffic. The lining is in three colours: grey, cream and red. It was derived, I think, from a much earlier London & North Western Railway scheme and was used by BR on thousands of locomotives during the 1950s and 1960s, but this is only the second model to which I have applied it.

However, during my volunteer days at the Severn Valley Railway I played a part in its application to several full-size loco, including the one shown in the second picture.

Peter Angus 0-4-4-0 Climax No. 74

Another Peter Angus Climax, which came to me for an overhaul (mainly the cylinders which were showing their age) and a full strip and repaint. It is quite cleverly constructed, with the boiler cradle being nothing more than a Roundhouse Jack / Katie 0-4-0 chassis with end extensions for the power unit pivots. The cylinders are mounted in their normal position on the frames, the drive shaft is mounted in the rear axle holes and the front axle holes are unused.

Roundhouse Engineering Silver Lady 0-6-0T No. 3 GLASLYN

GLASLYN came here for the addition of white lining with black edging to its factory paintwork. While here I also filled an unwanted hole in the cab front, upgraded the radio control system and added a servo to control the whistle.

Accucraft Leader 0-4-2ST LEADER

The owner of this Accucraft Leader wanted it to look like the full-size loco so it was modified and repainted to do just that, including a replacement smaller diameter chimney and dummy sliding doors on the cab side.

Graham Duncan-Smith NGG11 2-6-0+0-6-2 Garratt No. 51

The bodywork for this NGG11 Garratt was painted and lined in a scheme carried by the full-size loco.

Unknown builder 0-4-2ST EDWARD THOMAS

It is often a privilege and a pleasure to work on some locos that come to me for attention.

And then there are the others. I had a phone call from a friend of mine telling me that he'd "bought a lovely new loco, built by a skilled model engineer" and asking whether I could get it running and paint it for him. I should have been alerted by the "get it running" request, but I missed it and agreed to take a look. A few days later the proverbial Box Of Bits arrived and I was presented with a chassis, a boiler, some other components and the bodywork. The latter had been stripped to bare brass ready for painting.

I could write pages about what followed. When preparing an invoice I list exactly what I have done as part of the job. The invoice for this loco was my first in over 20 years where the list ran on to a second page. Everything I did to correct one problem seemed to create another problem elsewhere.

Lovely loco? No, definitely not.

Skilled model engineer? Maybe, but whoever it was did so with no thought that future maintenance might be an issue. Why make a smokebox (now modified) that cannot be removed without taking the boiler off the frames? Why provide a gas tank so small (now replaced) that it was impossible to raise 40psi without having to re-fill the tank? Why fit a homemade burner (now replaced) that pumped out excessive amounts of Carbon Monoxide, enough to have my alarm blaring in under three minutes?

As I said, I could write chapter and verse about this one, and perhaps one day I will. For the moment I am just happy that it is all done and no longer on my bench.

This page was last updated on 16th April 2024