The 22s were regular run-abouts in West London in the 60s and were used heavily on trip freights and the like. With my layout being broadly based on Basingstoke (but strangely closer to both London and Southampton!) I can run a plethora of inter-regional trains that bring unusual locos to the yard & station. I have a scrap-line of weathered, de-rodded, permanently coupled, black steam locos (topped & tailed by guards vans) in one corner of the yard and I need something to turn up from the WR periodically and disappear with them westwards to Barry. This will be D6345's duty - among others.

Only just got the etches (and jolly nice & fine they look too!). It is not a standard build-in-an-hour body shell. I am really looking forward to building this one as it is a big departure from the white metal kits and resin all-in-one shells. It's gonna hurt, but I am keen. Just to peke your appettite, below is a finished item on a Farish 20 chassis from WW's site

OK... made a start on this last night and went at it hammer 'n' tongs (6 hours+ just to get this far). Let me say that while the production is near perfect, this is the first "scratch aid" kit I have built. The premise is a little different to the usual kits in that you have all the bits, but you have to assemble *everything*. It is all etched from nickel silver sheet and I must say that the small bits tested my skills to the limit and is probably as close to scratch building that I would like to come. This is also the first kit I have assemble that I chose to solder so I had a massive curve to take on this one. Well, six hours later I am pretty happy with the results. It is by no means perfect and rivet-counters would probably have a pink-fit but it definately captures the charm and look of a class 22 - unmistakable as anything else. Mine is nowhere near the quality of that above, but I am a crap scratcher :o(

Here is D6345 just after completion. It is still a little rough in places but I need to put a first coat of primer on to show the bad bits now - gone blind trying to make sense of the intricate light patterns reflecting off the solder and bright NS... it now being 04:10 doesn't help :o)

... and here she is again after two coats of primer (red to seal the metal, coat of grey to make it easier to see the rough bits). Those rough bits are now more evident and I have already started to cut away the highs. The lows are shown now as dark against the grey (check over the top of the bonnet) where I need to fill 'n' file. Gotta source some nice oval buffers - prolly from BHE as I need to pester them about class 74 production - or the lack thereof. Need two of these - but that's another story. It is 04:35 and I am off to bed.

!!! STOP PRESS !!! I think Allen of Worsley Works, might be considering an etched class 74!!! (squeals of delight) Anyone interested, go the site and request what you like - he is willing to entertain anything if the demand is good. And they do 2mm, 3mm & 4mm as well as N, so just because you might not be an 'N' modeller shouldn't stop you requesting stuff.

More pics as the beast progresses... my donor 20 gave up it's chassis last night (bless!) - 20s were only visitors to the Southern in the very early 1960s and I really haven't got the guts to push the licence so far as to have a 20 "resident" in 1968.

So... fill 'n' file complete and a final coat of red primer - ah! isn't she quisn't?

The red primer is better for a green top-coat. Once this is done and weathered (gotta look faded) I'll put the hand rails on and mount on the chassis. Got a while to wait for the aerosols to arrive so I am going to make a start on D602 "Bulldog" here.

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