A while back, roughly two years ago, this 45xx passed through the man cave. It came from an estate sale as a non-runner. The original idea was to rob the chassis from it and place it under a Bachmann 4575 body a friend had found and donated to the cause.
Unfortunately the body swap wasn’t viable, clearances for the motor in particular meant it would take more effort than I felt worth it to do the swap and then additional work with the chimney and the cab to match the two other 45’s in the fleet.
Fortunately the donor had located a suitable early chassis, DC only and a BR livery version with lined cylinders as above, and a wad of cash sorted the deal. I wanted to do something different with this one and cut one of the cab doors into an open position.
This wasn’t as easy as I first thought. Behind the cab door there’s a cast block section, this needs removing to enable the door to be positioned ‘open’. I did this by partially dismantling the body and wedging the cab off the floor to allow a thin file space to work.
Using a 0.5mm thickness blade the door opening can be cut through. Using a scalpel score an inner line at the hinge side of the door to allow the plastic to flex and bend.
The cab roof removal is a key element of making this conversion easier, it also allows the cab vents to be positioned open giving more light into the cab interior.
The glazing is also removed at this stage and replaced with hand cut windows, these make a big difference with virtually no refraction.
Once the detail modification has been done, I prepare the body by pre shading around the raised details using acrylic black prior to using Halfords acrylic black for the base body colour.
The next step was giving the smokebox a separate colour. Due to the heat the area receives I use a black or dark grey a shade or so lighter than the body colour. Having achieved the state above, it obviously ended up sitting on the shelf of doom for the best part of a year as they do!
So today, kicking my heels, I decided having an hour or two to spare to complete it.
With the addition of Fox Transfers large early logo, and BR/WR numbers from 247 Developments. I got the weathering completed not going too hard on that so that the engine looks used, but not abused. Choosing 5538 the allocation is Gloucester up to the late 1959, so a (remote) possibility it might have been seen in or in the vicinity of the Forest. The final element is the smokebox number and couplings, the Masokits Fifteen minute heroes of my choice.
So I’m quite pleased with that, a shelf queen finally terminating its residency. A ‘result’ as the pundits would say!