This short project started as a need to cost effectively add a few more wagons to the Ashprington Road fleet, however, I wanted to do something slightly different.
Everyone models vans with their doors closed, however, when being loaded and unloaded, vans were frequently seen in goods yards with their doors open.
How would I model open doors ?
Way back in the last century, Airfix introduced a kit of the BR Standard meat van. The kits is actually manufactured to have opening doors, although when I have built these kits in the past, I always sealed the doors shut. This time, I thought I would build them to open.
The 'door hinges' are slightly overscale in order to give them some strength. It is necessary to use a round file to open up the insides of the hinges a little to enable the doors to open. Although the doors can be made to open and close, my suggestion is that due to the fragility of the hinges, I wouldn't recommend opening and closing the doors too often.
When building this model with fixed closed doors, the doors can be used as part of the structural integrity and squaring of the body, however, when building with opening doors, the side panels need to be aligned correctly to the frames and the roof used to hold it all square.
I also took the opportunity to lay a strip of lead weight in both ends of the vans to give some weight - this can just about be seen in the second picture below.
Paint is Railmatch 323 BR Early Freight Stock Bauxite for the body sides, Humbrol 67 matt tank grey for the roof and a mixture of Humber 113 matt rust and Tamiya XF1 matt black for the chassis. A light dusting of Carrs modelling powders has been applied to tone down the body and give it a more matt effect.
Couplings are Smiths Instanters and vacuum pipes are my standard wire and thread method.
The decals are those supplied with the Dapol kits. Personally, I don't think the font is quite right and when compared with those supplied on RTR models and other kits, I think the Dapol decals are too big with wider spacing than necessary but they are identical to those on the meat van kits I built in the 1970's. They will do for now.
When used with other Ready to Run and kit wagons, I think these wagons fit in nicely and add an interesting difference. Now to model something to load them with and some people and equipment to do the loading...
The Completed Model
Graham Plowman (14/11/2019)
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