Ruston and Lister

And there he was, Mr.Toad, bemused and but no less already intoxicated by the vision of…motor cars. I know that feeling and its moment. Yeah, I know. Ruston and now Lister.

That’s the sum of my 16mm scale locomotive fleet. Excepting those models that will remain in my collection as representative of their deep personal value I anticipate a total sum of models not much greater than this and a few wagons (we can talk about that later because…).

The Lister

I think the most recent update on the Lister I’m building from an IP Engineering kit was this one from last week. I simply adore this kit. Trying to be current and cool I look at it, resting in this current state on its shelf, “and I get all the feels”. If it was never more than it is I’d be so very pleased to have it. You know because you’ve been patiently listening to my updates on this project that it’s currently stalled at the chassis. The only thing about the kit I wanted to change the design of was the stock chassis and the way the kit’s sideframes were rendered. In developing various iterations of alternatives I have learned a whole lot and I feel empowered by that experience. In that recent update I think I reached the end of the road for idea one and felt a bit stalled.

The Ruston

I haven’t spoken about the Ruston project since this update way back in April (my sense of time is warped by the pace of my day job so dates that are only a few months ago could have been a lifetime ago by my sense of time the daily urgency.) I was making great progress on this, my first scratchbuilt locomotive, but then stalled at a similar point in chassis development. I had walked across the land but stood at the water’s edge and though had ideas about swimming, and teased by an instinctive attraction to it, wading in’s first steps made my feet feel impossibly heavy. I had always wanted a model Lister and then the idea of buying a kit for one sounded brilliant because I knew it would guarantee a path through success.

While the Lister is ironically stalled at a similar point in terms of its description I do feel like I’ve learned a lot and realised I could go back to work on the Ruston. The chassis design (method) I had developed for the Lister would work brilliantly well for this previous project. So, I built a working chassis for the Ruston and it’s sitting on it now. Last night I glued the radiator and fuel tank parts of the hood end to the frame and it’s on its wheels too.

So what’s next?

I took a break from the Lister to focus on the positive feeling of working on a model and reinvested that energy into the Ruston project. This week I should have a motor in the Ruston and chains out to its axles and it should run, this week, under its own power. I have been fascinated with the Loco Remote controllers and last week ordered one of their Mini B controllers for this model. There’s all kinds of room for this in that hood and room for a battery too. It’s been wonderful working with Chris at Loco Remote and his incredible level of service has been a real joy and I’m grateful.

Not butterflies but bees. It would be easy to move from new project to new project and drink in only the highs from each movement but I’m gathering experience in this cycle alternating between these two locomotive projects. Enthusiasm for 16mm earned in the Ruston made the Lister make sense. Energy developed while working on the Lister was reinvested back into the Ruston and all this feels like forward motion. Already, looking at them now, I feel like I have an idea for the Lister to advance it a little further too. I wanted, from all this, to feel less like I was consuming the hobby and more like I was making the hobby and, more than anything, I feel like that now and it feels really, really good. Thank you for the support to get to here. I have not gotten here on my own and I have been powered by your help along the way. I owe you.

The Ruston chronicles are gathered into this category:

The Lister chronicles are gathered into this category:

Categories: 16mm scale 32mm gauge, 16mm scale IP Engineering Lister, 16mm scale Ruston

Tags: , , ,

2 replies

  1. We’ll need video proof of the movement Chris! I think the iterative approach is one many of us adopt, stall in one project, walk way and build on another. That’s how it works when motivation is high anyway. Look forward to seeing how you progress, I’m not sold on the Wifi remote, unless a Chris comes up with a handset, rather than my phone, but I can see the appeal. Good luck and enjoy yourself.

    • I’m pretty sure that I’ll need to do just that and post a short video to mark this moment of progress–it’s never felt so close or more real!

      I like the phone-based throttles. I use WiiThrottle on the local layouts as a guest operator and like how it also removes one more item of hardware from the kit of dependencies the hobby relies on. That said, I’m equally rooted in small box handheld throttles like the one I bought from Ken Stapleton over a decade ago and have relied on for so many layouts. Here in 16mm I’m a little torn between the streamlined promise of radio/remote/Bluetooth control and the hard to ignore fact that on a small home layout like I need simple DC control would be just fine and the volume of these models is such that they’d run fine no matter how they’re controlled.

      It’ll be nice to have the options. Chris (Loco Remote) has been just fantastic to work with and I’ve enjoyed every moment of that and I’m thrilled to have bought the controller I did even if just to invest in those we work with in the hobby who are putting in the work.


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