1/32nd scale Railway Modelling

Starting out...

Should anyone be considering trying modelling in this scale, I can report that it is a most satisying size in which to work. It is small enough to enable you to use all of the materials and modelling techniques you picked up whilst working in 4mm or 7mm, but the finished models have a presence and mass that is simply unachievable in the smaller scales.

It is also much easier, the parts you are constructing are more robust, less prone to getting lost and generally easier to cut out and form, owing to their larger size.

I have an appalling track record for finishing models. I am put off by the smallest of problems and usually run out of enthusiasm and inspiration long before any project I am working on reaches its conclusion. Despite this I managed to complete the 48DS and inspired by this limited success decided to build a wagon for it to haul.

Having long term aspirations to create a pre-grouping Somerset and Dorset scene I chose a 3 plank wagon of that company. I started by blowing up the drawing from "Southern Wagons Vol 1" to 1/32nd scale, and having obtained a pair of Tenmille spoked wagon wheels and axleguards set to work

That's not quite true actually, and the reason was the axleguards from Tenmille. They were far too crudely moulded and mastered for my taste and also required considerable finishing and drilling out in order to make them work, and so work was put on hold.

Not believing that what I had been supplied was the best on offer, I searched through my Gauge One Association newsletter and came across a small ad for whitemetal exleguards and parts from Neil Butcher. I sent off for a selection and was very pleasantly surprised by what arrived in the post. Then costing 4.50 per set as against 6.00 for the Tenmille offering, they were well thought out, well mastered and moulded and were properly researched representations of prototype fittings.

One proviso to this is that they are scaled to 10mm to the foot but I figure that the discrepancy in scale over relatively small dimensions, whilst not ideal, is acceptable. In any event I was not then aware of any source of 1/32nd axleguards except possibly Slaters.


3 plank wagon in 1/32nd scale

Here is my second 1/32nd model, scratchbuilt in plastikard using Tenmille wheels and Neil Butcher's very excellent axleguards and buffer housings.

Again, the sharp eyed may notice that the wheels are not to the "fine" profile, but since this photograph was taken, the wheels have been attacked by a friend's lathe and converted to "finescale", which makes the wagon look a lot better.

1/32nd model of 3 plank wagon

It is not my intention to denigrate any individual or organisation, but equally feel that it is unhelpful not to fairly report what one finds. Tenmille produce a wide range of products, most of which I have not bought or used. From inspection of their stand at exhibitions, much of their range looks to be very good. They also deserve credit for pioneering the commercial production of a wide range of track and parts for Gauge One.
Neil Butcher
46 Hillview Road, Worthing, BN14 0BX. Send an SAE for an illustrated list, highly recommended.

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