Whilst many when asked about Southampton Docks will generally immediately think of the ex LSWR / Southern Railway docks with ex LSWR B4 0-4-0 tanks and later SR USA tanks, however there were a myriad of rail served private docks and wharves in the area including inner and outer docks and those along the River Itchen such as Dibles Wharf, Notham, Britannia and Victoria wharf, many of which had their own locomotives.
The recent advent of ready to run industrial tanks, that it has to be said are pretty cute really, such as the Hatton’s Andrew Barclay 14″ 0-6-0t and Hornby W4 Peckett 0-4-0t has opened up a few quick win options for use on Canute Road Quay. One thing I like about many of the locomotives used in such private wharves and quaysides is their use of dumb, usually basic wooden blocks, buffers.
The process for fitting the dumb buffers is to remove the model buffers which are either one piece inserted into the buffer beam or heads and moulded shanks, as per the Hornby Peckett and cutting off the shanks. In both cases any raised detailing on the buffer beam such as rivets etc is filed smooth to enable the replacement wooden dumb buffers that comprise of shaped plastic rectangular section to be glued in place. These are then painted with a grey weathered wood colour paint.
With the Hornby W4 Peckett I went one stage further than just replacing the buffers but modifying to one of the open cab versions of the W8 and as per a picture I have seen of such a locomotive at Dibles Wharf in Southampton (I can not post this photograph as I do not own the copyright).
The cab rear on the Hornby model is a separate moulding, so perhaps an open cab version is on the cards in due course, and I carefully cut the top half away just above the strengthening bar. You can choose to keep the original plastic handrails that extend to the underside of the cab roof but I chose for strength purposes to replace with 0.45mm brass rod. I then added using think plastic micro-strip a top ledge to the now lower cab rear panel. A crew member has also been fitted.
Both models have been weathered in this case using dry brushing techniques, rather than airbrush or weathering powders, and then in many places the weathering rubbed off using a cotton bud. The colours used include: weathered wood on the dumb buffers, brake block dust on the brake blocks, dark rust, roof dirt (essentially dark grey). Area such as the tank and cab sides have the dry brushing removed more than for the example the boiler top where more of a build up of soot etc builds up.
The modifications I feel give an added dimension and alternative to the out of the box model, and the open cab Hornby W4 Peckett shows off very well the amount of details that Hornby have incorporated within the cab itself.
These industrials and the usual Southern Railway locomotives can be seen at Canute Road Quay’s forthcoming exhibitions appearances: firstly, the Worthing Model Railway Club exhibition at Durrington High School, The Boulevard, Worthing, West Sussex, BN13 1LA. that is taking place on the weekend of 29th and 30th September 2018; and Secondly, Saturday 3rd November 2018 at Wycrail 18 organised by my own model railway society the High Wycombe and District MRS, being held at Cressex Community School, Cressex Road, High Wycombe, HP12 4UD . If you are attending either show please drop by and say hello.