Diagram V4. PDF version
The Connoisseur NER Brake Van kit is in Jim's pocket money kit range. A nice kit with decent instructions that it pays to study because they are not "step-by-step".
Designed I think for someone with a little expertise and an understanding of how etched brass kits generally go together.
The first picture illustrates many of the parts partially worked on. As many parts as possible should be fitted to the sides and ends while they are "in the flat".
Even so I managed to miss a couple and had an interesting time fitting them after the body was put together.
The Guard's lookout duckets need some care. File the opening and the planked side of the ducket until the ducket will "just" fit in the gap. (Do number your parts when fine tuning their sizes so that the correct parts get fitted together when the time comes.)
Then carefully bend the side to shape and solder the top half to one of the side extension pieces. Leave the lower half because it has to be soldered to the side of the van once fitted.
Solder the other extension piece similarly and then fit from the inside. The tabs at top and bottom locate the part easily.
Carefully solder from the inside, including the overlap at the bottom. The body goes together easily because the parts are accurate, well etched and the tabs fit the slots. Back to Top
Make sure that the whole thing is really square since the under frame is fitted as part of the body. Once the remaining parts are fitted work can start on the under frame.
The compensation, shewn here, (from WEP) went in with relative ease after the axle guards, followed by all the brake rigging. Nothing difficult about it at all. False floors were fitted where the units were to go and the inner bulkhead cut down level with a minidrill and cutting disk. It would have been easier if I had foreseen this and cut the bulkheads down before fitting.
The roof has my usual set of phosphor bronze strip springs to hold it in place. The only departure from instructions apart from, that is, the chimney. The cast one was a bit distorted and I could not be bothered to get Jim to send a new and so made one up from two small pieces of telescoped brass tube. Consequently, it has a hole all the way through.
Another nice little kit that makes up with ease fairly quickly. The only real fiddle is the lamp brackets but they are worth the effort as they look right. The only thing left to do is blacken the couplings and buffer heads then it is ready to be shipped to the customer who is to paint it himself.
Jim McGeown's Comments.
You asked for comments but I don't think there is anything that I can add other than thank you. Pretty much what you said about the kit is exactly what I would say about them myself. As you said, I designed and recommend the brake van for someone with a little expertise and an understanding of etched kits.