Friday, 16 December 2016

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: Build Part 5, Texturing

The dreaded unwrap is complete so the next task is to layer on some colour.
Before we started we gave the parts some simple colours in the 3D modelling programme to help visualise the parts that could be coloured together.

This is the A1

and the A1X in it's mostly unmodified layout.

Then it's a case of texturing the parts and building up the engine piece by piece

It's starting to look like something now. We should mention at this point that the green and "yellow" of the Improved Engine Green livery in these images are just place holders. We needed to do more research as to the correct original colours before we committed - as it turns out nobody is 100% sure of the colours but after reading a lot we're happy we've come up with one of the accepted variations which we'll show you when model is finished.

Next came the Improved Engine Green lining - which is complicated to say the least! But after quite a few experiments we came up with a set of parts to build the lining textures and it started to come together.

Again, the green and yellow are temporary colours - this was all about getting the lining detail correct. Once we were happy with the side panel it was time to complete the rest of the lining which covers most of the flat panels on the engine as well as the rear of the bunker and the A1's rear mounted toolbox.

And just as this is all getting exciting.. it's time to break for Christmas!
We'll try and make a post next week with the progress that has happened since these pictures, or at the very least our traditional Christmas screenshot and best wishes.

Monday, 5 December 2016

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: Build Part 4, Cab

Now the outside is complete it's time to turn to the cab.
We didn't take any WIP pictures of the cab as it's not particularly interesting until it's complete.. so here it is, complete!

Firstly, much the same as the outside, the clean and simple looking A1 cab

And once the conversion to the A1X had occurred with a vacuum brake added for good measure then it got a lot more cluttered.

Some more comparison shots for various angles
Drivers view

The fireman's side

Looking in from the driver's side

And looking in from the fireman's side

And finally for today, adding them quickly to the outer loco model


And A1X

And that's about it for modelling. Time for the unwrapping - which is a lot less exciting than the unwrapping that's due in 20 days time for many of us!
Then it will be on to the texturing. First up will be Stroudley's very complex "Improved Engine Green"... we're not looking forward to doing that one!

Friday, 25 November 2016

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: Build Part 3, Options

Last week we looked at the completed outer model for the A1 and A1X variants of the Terrier. This week we show some of the modifications and options that will be included with the pack.

We start with bunkers. The only real failing in the design of  the the Terrier was it's very limited coal capacity. As seen below the original bunker could just about carry a 1/2 ton of coal.

Various modifications were made over the years to increase this capacity up to 3/4 ton or even 1 ton in some cases.
The simplest was a set of bars above the existing bunker to allow the coal to be stacked much higher. All of the bunkers that were extended upwards to allow a higher stack of coal also required the adding of bars over the rear windows to stop them being smashed by wayward coal lumps.
Open bars were used..

.. but with smaller coal lumps often falling out of those, the enclosed bars become popular.

The K&ESR chose to extend the bunker upwards to add extra capacity..

.. but even that wasn't enough and bars were added to that as well.

The IOW Terriers were given the largest capacity by removing the rear toolbox and extending the bunker back as far as the buffers.

All of these bunkers will be available for the Terriers and the following will also be included as options or replacement parts:
Front steps (fitted to some Isle of Wight - IOW - engines)
Lubricator oil boxes on tank fronts
Handles on tank fronts
4 different types of chimney with optional spark arrestors
Stroudley, Marsh and Drummond domes
Toolbox in front of dome
Original whistle and IOW hooter
Brighton or IOW front splashers (A1X)
Extra wheel weights (IOW engines)

All of these (along with the liveries) should allow you to create hundreds of different arrangements as used on the 50 Terriers throughout their long lives.

Below is an example of an Isle of  Wight set up which uses the following modifications:
Front steps, IOW cast chimney, IOW front splashers, tank front lubricator oil boxes and handles, IOW hooter and IOW rearwards extended bunker.

It is worth comparing it to the "default" A1X in the final picture in the previous blog post

Next time we'll take a look inside the cab of the A1 and A1X versions and see how they changed over the years.

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Steam Thanksgiving Sale

It's Thanksgiving! Which can only mean one thing if you're not American - a Steam Sale! And if you are American then you get a day off, some lovely food AND a Steam Sale!

All of our Steam DLC is included and for the first time there is a discount on our recently released GWR Saint and Travelling Post Office. So if you've had your eye on any of our add-ons for a while then now is the time to grab a bargain or two... or three... or nine!

Click this link to see all of our DLC on Steam or click on an image below to view a particular DLC.

GWR Saint Class & Travelling Post Office - 30% off

BR Saint & TPO Livery Pack - 50% off (Note: Requires the GWR Saint & TPO add-on)

USATC S160 - 30% off

GWR 14xx - 30% off

LNER Peppercorn K1 - 30% off

GWR Small Prairies - 30% off

GWR 56xx - 30% off

GT3 Gas Turbine Prototype - 30% off

GWR Steam Railmotor - 30% off

Southern Bulleid Q1 *** 60% off ***

Friday, 18 November 2016

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: Build Part 2

As promised we return for our Friday update with progress on the Terriers.

The A1 version is now completely modelled (on the outside) and can be seen below in all it's Victorian splendour.

The off-side is fitted with the Westinghouse air brake and knowing how much you all love integrated cab head out views we needed to make the Westinghouse detailed enough for close inspection.
We may have gotten a little carried away!

With the A1 complete it was time to rebuild and replace the parts needed to make the A1X version. There are quite a few changes but the most obvious is the new boiler and smokebox which also meant moving the sanding boxes as these were built into the A1 front wheel splashers. Interestingly the Isle of Wight modified A1X's (as opposed to those modified at Brighton) retained a version of the combined splasher/sandbox but still had the updated smokebox and saddle.

The A1 as built is a very fine looking engine and has very clean lines to it. However once they upgraded the boiler to the Marsh version for the A1X and started to add additional pipes we think it lost some of that Victorian style and started to look more like a contemporary engine. Seen here in the completed A1X model which has the replacement boiler and smokebox, new sanding equipment and the new injectors and vacuum brake that have created so much additional pipework on the top of the boiler and tanks.

So that's the external A1X model completed as well. Next week we'll be looking at some of the many options and alterations that were made including the aforementioned IOW splashers and a whole bunch of modified bunkers.

Friday, 11 November 2016

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: Let's get started

If you haven't already seen our not so subtle hints recently then we are delighted to confirm that our next locomotive(s) are the LB&SCR Terriers; the original A1 version and the later A1X rebuild.
These plucky little underdogs had a long life being originally built between 1872 and 1880, 50 of them found use on standard passenger services on the London, Brighton and South Coast railway.
They had a rapid acceleration and were ideal for the frequent start/stop commuter services around the London suburbs however as passenger traffic increased and more coaches were added to trains they started to suffer from a lack of power. However this didn't stop them from finding use on branch lines as short passenger services or for freight shunting.
Between 1898 and 1905 23 of the 50 members of the class were withdrawn and many were sold to other railways resulting in the Terriers carrying a bewildering array of liveries. In the early 20th century some of them were re-boilered with an increase in weight and boiler pressure and became the somewhat less Victorian looking A1X class.
Making it into the Southern grouping in 1923 the engines continued to find uses and appeared on two of their most iconic routes; Hayling Island and the Isle of Wight. By 1948 when British Railways took over the "Big Four" there was still one A1 and fourteen A1X locomotives in service and they continued to be used on the Kent & East Sussex Railway and the Hayling Island branch. Eventually these lines closed and the final operational A1X (No. 32678) was removed from service on 10 August 1963, over 90 years after the first Terrier had been built.

But this was far from the end of the story and No. 55 Stepney became the first standard gauge preserved locomotive on the newly established Bluebell Railway in 1960. Ten of the Terriers still exist in preservation in various modified states and some are still running today, being rescued from such obscure fates as being static displays at Butlin's holiday camps. That means that one fifth of the entire class still exists after nearly 140 years!

To this day Terriers hold a special place in many enthusiast's hearts - not as awe inspiring Kings, A4s, Merchant Navy's or locomotives that pull a dozen coaches at dizzying speeds - but as the plucky pocket sized underdog that made it from the height of Victorian locomotive engineering all the way to the end of British Railways and right into our hearts in preservation. Stepney even appeared as itself in a one of the Railway Series books by Rev. W. Awdry.

Building the Terriers is an exciting prospect. It's also quite daunting despite the engine being quite small!

We will reveal more as the weeks go on, however for now hopefully this will answer a few of the more expected questions:
We will be building the A1 and A1X versions to represent all 50 members of the class.
We will be providing some of the more common modifications as options (anyone who has any of our other locomotives knows what to expect from our long modification lists)
Liveries will include the original Stroudley Improved Engine Green (that odd livery that's mostly yellow/mustard/ochre), Marsh Umber (the two tone "brown" livery), Southern Green and BR Lined Black. We also have a list of over a dozen other liveries which we hope to poll you all on at a later date to help decide which others should be included.
If any livery includes names then they will be editable so you can name the locomotives as you see fit.
Additional stock is undecided as yet but a set of Stroudley coaches seems most likely.
Which publisher we will use is not yet decided.

Modelling started a couple of weeks ago and we are pleased to show the following images of how much we have completed to date.
As ever, we started with the wheels.

Then the frames and footplate were added. A rough representation of the inner gear was added, this would be rescaled and rebuilt as needed later.

Adding the boiler, tanks and cab and she's starting to take on that Terrier look

The smokebox, chimney and dome complete the familiar silhouette.

Start of the work to fit everything in between the frames. The gear still needs some remodelling but the dimensions are good.

Buffers, brakes, tank filler caps and other details and the A1 is well under way.

It is our intention to return to our weekly Friday blog updates and next week we hope to show the A1 completed and the start of the work on the A1X.

Friday, 4 November 2016

GWR 4200/5205 and GWR 7200 Out Now!

We are delighted to announce that the GWR 4200/5205...

..and the GWR 7200 add-on for them are now available from Steam Sounds Supreme

Some early model renders

Details on Steam Sounds Supreme page as to what is included (it's a lot!)

Videos showing the loco in action as well as liveries and a specific video on the custom sounds

This is our most feature packed locomotive to date with great realism details including improved "by the shovel" stoking and brand new second valve regulator effects as well as all the usual effects you expect from us and some all new AI behaviour as well. The sounds from Steam Sounds Supreme are superb, recorded from members of the actual class running in preservation and to top it all off a list of period freight stock is included for working these beasts as hard as possible.
  • 7 plank Private Owner wagons with Coal or Pit Prop loads 
    • 10 liveries from South Wales companies 1 livery from Cornish company
  • 5 plank Private Owner wagon Limestone
    • 1 livery from South Wales company
  • Tar Wagon
    • Liveries from Bristol and Plymouth companies
  • GWR 65t Crocodile H
    • Trolley Empty and Cable loads
  • BR 65t Weltrol H
    • Trolley Empty and Cable load
  • GWR 20 ton coal wagon, diagram N2
    • 2 GWR liveries and 1 BR livery
  • GWR 20t Toad brake van
    • GWR and BR liveries

The 7200 also includes 2 bonus loads for the Crocodile and Weltrol trolleys; new and used Swindon boilers.

Buy them both now over at Steam Sounds Supreme 

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

GWR 4200/5205 and GWR 7200 Pre-orders now available!

Pre-orders for the GWR 4200/5205 DLC and GWR 7200 add-on are now open over at Steam Sounds Supreme.

Some early model renders

Details on Steam Sounds Supreme page as to what is included (it's a lot!)

Videos showing the loco in action as well as liveries and a specific video on the custom sounds

GWR 7200 2-8-2 coming soon!

GWR 7200 Add-on Coming Soon!

We're delighted to announce that the mighty GWR 7200 2-8-2 tank will be released alongside the 4200/5205 add-on, coming soon via our friends at Steam Sounds Supreme.
This will be released as a low-priced add-on which will only work if you own the 4200/5205 and have it installed. The 7200 Pack shares sounds and other features from the 4200 and so will not work without it.

The following variants and liveries are included with the 7200 add-on

GWR 7200 Square frame, 19" cylinders, 6t coal, 2500gal water
[7200] GWR 7200 (Square), 1934-42
[7200] GWR 7200 (Square), 1942-47
[7200] GWR (worn) 7200 (Square), 1934-42
[7200] GWR (worn) 7200 (Square), 1942-47
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Square), 1948-49
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Square), 1950-56
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Square), 1956-65
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Square), 1948-49
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Square), 1950-56
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Square), 1956-65

GWR 7200 Curved frame, 19" cylinders, 6t coal, 2500gal water
[7200] GWR 7200 (Curved), 1934-42
[7200] GWR 7200 (Curved), 1942-47
[7200] GWR (worn) 7200 (Curved), 1934-42
[7200] GWR (worn) 7200 (Curved), 1942-47
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Curved), 1948-49
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Curved), 1950-56
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Curved), 1956-65
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Curved), 1948-49
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Curved), 1950-56
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Curved), 1956-65

GWR 7200 Curved frame, 19" cylinders, "Scuttle Bunker" 5t coal, 2700gal water
[7200] GWR 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1934-42
[7200] GWR 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1942-47
[7200] GWR (worn) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1934-42
[7200] GWR (worn) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1942-47
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1948-49
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1950-56
[7200] BR(W) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1956-65
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1948-49
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1950-56
[7200] BR(W) (worn) 7200 (Curved, Scuttle), 1956-65

Monday, 3 October 2016

Bulleid Q1 on Sale!

It is sale time for the Southern Bullied Q1, with 30% off until 14 October 1pm (UK time).

Built to a cost with the minimum of frills during WW2, these work horses continued to be used until the end of steam under British Railways and performed duties all over the Southern network.
Nicknamed "Ugly Ducklings", "Coffee Pots" and "Charlies" they became loved by their crews for their pure strength and were the most powerful 0-6-0 steam locomotive ever to run on Britain's railways and had very distinct driving characteristics with their tendency to wheel slip at any opportunity and being fitted with a steam powered reverser.

The Train Simulator DLC has been built using original plans and reference and was overseen by an ex-Southern driver who was able to give us details of not only technical information but also on how they actually felt to drive all of which has been included in the advanced simulation features which place the Bulleid Q1 in the TS Pro Range of products.
But fear not, she can also be driven in simple and standard modes and even using an X-box controller.
The DLC comes with the Q1 in it's original Southern livery as well as British Railways clean and dirty versions and with numerous optional parts to re-create all 40 members of the class.

Also included are a selection of World War II era wagons, including SR single conflats with containers, SR double conflats with loads including Spitfire fuselage, gun barrels, tree trunks and planks, Howitzer Railgun and SR Warwell with Cromwell tank.
Six scenarios for the Somerset & Dorset Railway route complete this extensive pack.

Grab it now with 30% off and take charge of these charming Ugly Ducklings.

Link to Bulleid Q1 on Steam

Monday, 19 September 2016

GWR 4200/5205: The beginnings

As we announced last week our next locomotive add-on will be the GWR 4200 2-8-0 tank engine and it's more powerful variant, the 5205.

In the early 1900's With the rapidly increasing requirement to move large amounts of coal, especially in the valleys of Wales, Chief Engineer Churchward of the Great Western Railway took the basic design of his 2800 Class and adapted it to be the UK's first 2-8-0 Tank engine.
Using 18 1/2 inch cylinders and boasting an impressive 31,450 lbf of tractive effort (GWR power class D) the 4200 was put into production in 1912. They were quickly nicknamed “Water Carts” because of their heavy water consumption and proportionally limited tank capacity.
In 1919 they recieved an upgrade to 19 inch cylinders increasing the tractive effort to 33,170 lbf (GWR power class E) and creating the 5205 class variant.
In later years many of the remaining 4200's were upgraded to 5205 specification with outside steam pipes, the larger cylinders and some were given curved frames at the front end.

We'll be announcing everything that will be included with the add-on later this month via our partners at Steam Sounds Supreme but for today we wanted to show the modelling progress that lead us to the pictures we released last week.

As always we started with the wheels and cylinders. Being sure that these are totally accurate makes sure that the rest of the locomotive scales correctly and it's vital that the motion reflects the real locomotive as this is an iconic part of any steam engine.

Next we worked on the main body shape, initially building the square framed front end. There will be 4 front ends in total; square and curved, each with or without outside steam pipes.

Once this was complete it was a case of working around each part of the locomotive systematically and adding the detailed components. Unlike some of our other locomotives, such as the GT3 Gas Turbine and  certain variants of the USATC S160 where there are no preserved locomotives to visit, we have been able to take detailed measurements, pictures and notes from 4247, 4270 and 5224.

As well as modelling the different front ends we also needed to model changes made to the 4200/5205's under British Railways and these can be seen on the images of the 5205 below.

Noticeably absent in the above images is the cab which was built afterwards and can be seen in it's completed form here (because we forgot to take any renders while we were building it!)
A cosy place to be in the winter, a sauna in the summer!

That's it for today's update. We'll be sharing more information about the add-on soon and there will also be updates from Steam Sounds Supreme so stay tuned.