Almost all the advances I had hoped for and wrote about in the last pasting have proved in one way or another a disappointment. Much of the reason for this lies with my growing understanding of the limitations of 3D printing and the present generation of materials used. So this summer has seen much wear on the path back to the drawing board.
Out of the fog of despondency some progress has bee made. I will be upgrading the main website in the next few weeks and add a number of coach etching that have existing production tools. To cut down confusion these will only be available with etched underframes. The long term intension is still to convert many of these to resin kits, and with so many available, and on my wish list, there is much development time to be spent refining my ideas and turning out patterns for models. As a basic principle I want to concentrate on those coaches that have a family affinity so that a single underframe moulding can be used for a number of different carriages.
The guinea-pig for this development work is the MET Dreadnought third. Some of you may have seen a body of this coach done as a one piece 3D print. However having spent a long time playing with it during the summer I reluctantly came to the conclusion that it was impossible to clean the stepping from the lower panels without compromising the beading. I have therefore decided to take a step back and make the patterns for the body by building up the thickness from brass etches. The design allows me to incorporate flanges at both the top and bottom of the sides. Etching drawings for the side and end components are finished and ready for printing.
I’ll be posting photos and graphic of this and other major components at various stages of their development to keep you informed of the progress.