“32 or 45mm gauge”
That’s a note in the IP Engineering website and their instructions advertising that the kit has been designed to suit either gauge track. Pretty cool.
When I read that I pictured somehow that 13mm difference was absorbed by just longer frame rails. Well, sort of…studying through some other parts I see they did what I would have done if I was designing to interpret a compromise like these two very different gauges. Proportionately increasing the major parts softens how obvious the difference would look without being too dramatic. But in my head I had scripted a different plan. One in which none of those decisions had been made and I’d just waltz in here, cut the frame back, and rock on. Nope. Life has another plan for me and for my little Lister.
“The parts range around twenty percent over size.”
“Get over it.”
That first thought was one from earlier today when I was bummed out that the kit hadn’t anticipated my big plan for it. I ran through the parts and compared them to my drawing and even wondered if this was my invitation to think about 7/8” scale models but I’m not sure this is that moment. 1/19 feels right and that’s the story I’m chasing through this. About twenty percent too big isn’t “too big” enough for 7/8’s anyway.
When I set out on this path my “plan” was build the kit making only minor changes. To make “build the kit” my priority because I want a 16mm scale Lister and because I haven’t made a model in an embarrassing amount of time and, more than anything, I want to do this. I had this great awakening of discovery and wisdom several weeks ago when I realised I could make the whole kit then gradually go back and remake it over and over again, gradually making each iteration a little better, like dialing in the focus on a camera lense. One Lister, gradually becoming a living record of what I’ve learned so far. This morning I was in a mood that was probably disappointment and a few equally immature emotions. I’m glad I’m learning to be patient here. I will get back to making this tomorrow and I will still narrow the frame rails like I always planned to but maybe not quite as much.
The kit includes all the parts necessary to make it up and that’s wonderful. My kit actually includes two sets of wheels and two sets of axles. In the above drawing the kit’s wheels are B. They’re really big, in every way, but this kit is intended for use on outdoor layouts so would suit that just fine. I have several other wheel options here and, this evening, I thought I’d measure each:
IP Engineering wheels from the kit (B)
- Diameter wheel inside tread: 0.883”
- Flange depth: 0.085”
- Tread width: 0.185”
Slaters Hudson skip wheels (C)
- Diameter wheel inside tread: 0.625”
- Flange depth: 0.060”
- Tread width: 0.155”
Slaters 1/43.5 scale “Lowmac” wheels (A)
- Diameter wheel inside tread: 0.740”
- Flange depth: 0.040”
- Tread width: 0.115”
I measured diameter across the tread. The Merioneth (Roy Link) drawing indicates a 12” diameter wheel so the Slaters Hudson wheel would be ideal. They’re still quite wide but still narrower than the IP Engineering wheel and a smaller diameter. The Lowmac wheel is a little too large diameter but a very attractive narrow width. The Lowmac’s a very, very attractive option. The Lowmac wheel is too large a diameter but feels right considering everything else in the kit is about twenty percent too big anyway.
No actual building progress to share tonight but I wanted to share a moment of attitude adjustment (change). The most important thing to talk about tonight is a huge thank you to James. Without his amazing help and patient support I wouldn’t have any of these parts or the feeling this can be done.