LSWR stone wagon

I’ve always been fascinated by this old photo, which is reproduced in Matthew Bagnet’s “The Railways of Farthing” (not sure about copyright, hope it’s OK).

This enlargement (apologies for the poor quality) shows the presence of some interesting "foreign” wagons at Farthing, including an MSWJR 3-plank open and an LSWR one-plank stone wagon. I’ve already modelled the former, so I thought I’d do the LSWR wagon as well.

So here it is in 4mm scale. I built it using the resin kit from Graham Baker of Gramodels. Below is a description of how it was done.

The kit consists of the body only. The photo above shows a 3-planker that I had also ordered, and the one-planker (with flash cleaned off) below it. As you can see, both wagons sport a graceful curve.

Fortunately the instructions deal with this: Take one bowl of hot water and add the body...

…bend body back to shape on a straight surface, and apply weight until cool.

Serve with a pragmatic state of mind and a healthy dose of modeller’s joy.

The kit gives you the body, and you have to source the other parts yourself. I first had a go at building my own Panther’s axleboxes (above right), using a modified GWR grease box (above left) as a basis. They were a little coarse though, and I’m not sure the LSWR would have approved of their GWR origin!

Instead, I cannibalized the W-irons, axle boxes, brakegear and buffers from a spare ABS kit for an LSWR 5-plank open. The ends will be used for another project, so not too much was wasted.

I used an old MJT unit to align the ABS W-irons. I really do need to get myself a decent jig for this sort of thing.

I’m not 100% sure about the brake arrangements for the wagon. My best guess so far is double block single side brakes, right rod over left.

This is a very light weight body so lots of liquid lead added.

I’ve seen debates about what glue to use for liquid lead, as some glues seem to bring about an expanding reaction. Deluxe materials recommend their own card glue and I have to say it works a treat.

A few rivet transfers from Archer’s to complete the build.

I used to spend a lot of time trying to get the interior of wagons right with multiple shades of paint. To save time I now use a less subtle but quicker method. First step is to paint the interior 1-2 coats of Vallejo pale sand. This looks wrong but provides the necessary light base.

When fully dry, I add a liberal dose of Carr’s dark black weathering powder. Lighter shades won’t work so well at this point, it has to be that rich dark powder that really gives off colour.

After brushing all around the interior with a soft brush, I remove the surplus weathering powder, giving this result.

Ligther shades of grey weathering powder can be used to add shades as appropriate for the type of load. I plan to add a stone load in due course.

There goes the neighbourhood. Wagons from the SDJR, LSWR and MSWJR being shunted outside the goods depot at Farthing.


  1. Looks like an excellent wagon. You should be fine with almost any kind of glue for the liquid gravity in this case. The problem is when you have it in enclosed spaces like a boiler or a dome. It seems that PVA type glues react over time with whatever is in the weights and produces fumes which build up enough pressure to split models. With so much open space under a wagon that can't happen. If in doubt though it seems the consensus is to use superglue as that doesn't react in the same way.

  2. Thanks for that info Mark, I'll keep the superglue tip in mind. The liquid gravity has certainly been effective on this wagon, it feels like a well weighted whitemetal wagon. I keep forgetting to determine a standard weight for my wagons, must see what I can work out.

  3. With the amount of space you had for the liquid gravity I can imagine that the wagon is very heavy. At least you have plenty of space so can adjust the weight of wagons to suit. On the loco I'm currently building there is almost no space and the entire loco with whitemetal driver etc. weighs just 13g! Probably a lot less than your wagon.

  4. Is it the Hudson Hunslet? Those locos are very attractive, so much character despite the simple appearance!

    1. Yes it's the Hudson-Hunslet. With the motor in and a clear cab there is almost no room for any extra weight. I spent hours hollowing out the 3D model so that when it was printed I could add liquid gravity where possible. I even hollowed out the starter battery which takes about 10 of the little balls!

  5. I've heard that Matthew Bagnett is a stickler for chasing down copyright violations, best be careful! The wagon is a delight, as always with your work Mikkel. The Farthing saga does play with the time/space continuum quite a bit, or perhaps you are just throwing shapes- the inclusion of a photograph from which you decided to model the wagon was a richly humourous moment :-)

  6. Hi Iain, yes I keep looking over my shoulder to see if Mr Bagnett has tracked me down!

    I enjoyed building this one. I'm always a little amazed that resin - being so light - can end up looking like it has real bulk and weight.

    Things have been a bit slow with the modelling recently, but I'm nearing the end of an 1854 saddle tank build, will post some photos shortly.


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