Building an 4mm scale E1 from an Albion Models kit

Updated 5 March 1999

Some notes from Dave Searle

I have been slowly building an E1 in P4 since they were released around 1990 and I've only just reached the stage of adding the boiler (a lot of other projects got in the way). I've used a modified Portescap motor with some replacement gearbox sides. This allows the rear axle to be driven without cutting into the cab or backhead details. The P4 chassis
I will eventually do a page on it - in the mean time here are a few notes supplied by Ian White who chose to make an E1 as his first attempt at etched brass loco construction. The body so far
© 1999 by Dave Searle.

Constructional issues

Construction notes and photographs by Ian White.

Just before Christmas 1998, I put the finishing touches to an Albion E1 kit. I varied a few things from the instructions during construction.

Spacer width - I built for 00 and discarded the supplied spacers for two reasons - they were wider than standard (I wanted lots of side play on the wheels for sharp bends) - I also thought this would guarantee a straight chassis. The chassis and body
Soft chassis metal - having used turned spacers to get a well squared-up chassis I found it far from straight (although I did get it straight again). I had failed to allow for the fact that the chassis was soft brass not nickel silver. The brass etches
I used the supplied heavy boiler tube. My soldering iron (25W) was ideal for thin sheet brass but not of a high enough wattage to solder the smoke box wrapper onto the heavy tube. I therefore made rather a mess of this (although I did get it cleaned-up) and would advise others to obtain a far larger iron for this task or to substitute a thinner walled tube. The bodytakes shape
Motor space - In common with other kits for small locomotives there is limited motor space. Elegant engineering solutions are of course possible (see Dave Searle's comments) but I chose the simple solution of moving the backplate further into the cab area (OK on a tank engine but not so good for a tender loco). The body being built on a wooden base
I painted the E1 with Rover Brooklands Green car paint - that being a dark green with a slight olive hue. Lining was applied as wide red first (painted lines on tank sides - Fox wide transfer lines elsewhere) then black lines on top (two widths of Fox's narrow black). [The black line had not been applied over the red on the valence lining when the last photo was taken.] Beginning the painting
The appearance of Hornby coupling loops in the last photo may offend some modellers. However, they are meant to be temporary. In the mean time they allow mixing of varied provenance stock, are a practical solution to tight bends between "scenes", and allow easy shunting operation. The carriage in the photo is from a Smokey Loco Models Billinton Royal Train Brake 1st kit painted with Phoenix "mahogany". The completed model at work
© 1999 by Ian White.

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