Loco no 11

Loco no 11

Friday, 8 December 2017

Nystrup's East German 'Twin'

I've been somewhat quiet modelling wise for a few weeks. Some of the time has been spent on going through the papers and photographs of Nystrup Gravel's cheif mechanic Thorleif Petersen. Some of the information made me want to build a model from an East German company - the VEB Klinker- und Ziegelwerke "Ernst Wollweber". Thorleif had a special affiliation with that company and visited it many times during his trips to DDR.




Box top illustration of Balaton Modell kit no BM3545. The Wollweber company had a Soviet built tractor with dozer blade of the DT 74-type.


The resin kit is well designed and cast. A look at the one-piece casting of the tractor's casting should confirm that. 
The parts of the tractor are well cast: no air bubbles and very limited mould lines. The majority of them separate well from their casting sprues. What I find amazing is the fit of the parts. It takes very little work to make the parts ready for assembly. The suspension assemblies fit together with no preparation straight from their sprues - just like a high quality plastic injection kit. Currently I'm ready to fit wheels and suspension units. 

Frames and final drives assembled and ready for suspension units and wheels. Two suspension units to the left.

Individual track links during assembly into track runs. The fit of the links are next to perfect. 

Judging from some of the papers Thorleif's travelling to and from DDR had to do with his memebership of the Danish Communist Party. As a young man Thorleif went to fight in the Spanish civil war as a volunteer. He kept his socialist preferences and was part of a communist resistance group fighting the Germans around Nystrup. He attended several party schools in DDR and took some engineering courses in Karl Marx Stadt as well.  


Among Thorleif's stuff I found this small badge from the 1959 May 1 celebrations in DDR - the communist German Democratic Republic. Inside the same envelope was a letter from the top management of the Baustoffe und Klinker Kombinat wishing him a 'socialist May 1'.

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Trainspotters Spotted Near Loco Shed

Trainspotting was in its infancy in Denmark in the early 1950's. No railway society existed and people (well, men) interested in railways met in model railway clubs. Most railway enthusiasts didn't care much about industrial narrow gauge railways. Some of those early pioneers must have had a particular interest in narrow gauge, though. Below are images of two gentlemen engaged in some intense exploration at the Nystrup Gravel loco shed.
This must be a particular well off enthusiast. Equipped with a 16 mm. film camera (probably a 1940's Maurer) he must have had considerable means to spend on his hobby. Being dressed in sporty plus fours and gloriously striped yellow socks he is well equipped for cross country trainspotting.

Dressed in a rather less dandy-like fashion, the other visiting trainspotter is bringing a classic Rolleiflex and a sturdy bag for notebook, maps and pencils.

Waiting for Nystrup Gravel's steam loco to pass the loco shed? Hopefully the two spotters will get good shots of what they see.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Railway Enthusiasts Visiting Nystrup Gravel.

With all the images from my little gravel railway you'd sure expect it to have been visited by photographing railway enthusiasts. Although the workshop manager Thorleif Petersen was a very active photographer, many images and film sequenses from Nystrup Gravel were shot by some of the first Danish railway enthusiasts. I wanted to have a few of the pioneer trainspotters on my 1:35 railway.


Before painting. I still need to go over both figures with sand paper and file once more before I prime them.
My two trainspotters began as a US military cameraman from Plus Models and a MK35 man in long jacket (figure F176). The cameraman had his trousers carved into a pair of plus fours Tintin style and fitted with a head from a MK35 figure. I removed all military insignias and made some subtle changes on the beret. The figure's arms were positioned to operate the camera. As the camera tripod is quite a flimsy construction in 1:35 scale I placed it on a piece on thin brass sheet together with the figure. After painting camera and figure I will cover the brass sheet with ground cover and a few grass tufts.

A Plus Model's image of a painted cameraman assembled straight from the box.

I'm looking forward to see these guys chase the trains on Nystrup Gravel.
The enthusiast in the long coat took much less work. All I did was to build a simple model of a 1950's Rolleiflex 2.8A. I used a piece of plastic stock and detailed it with a few slices of plastic tube and some spare etched metal. The camera's sling was cut from copper foil.

Before I sat down at the worktable, I cleared the shed from my layouts. It takes only 10 minutes to dismantle the layouts. So while I'm certainly not anywhere near being a good woodworker, I have nevertheless made something that actually works.
The intermediate backdrop (a roll of heavy paper) has been removed and the modules ready for dismantling.
Last module standing. A moment later all four parts of the Nystrup universe were moved out of the garden shed and back on the shelves in my study.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Railway Exhibition and Back Home to Nystrup Gravel

Last week saw me attend a railway exhibition in the Swedish town of Jönköbing. Not a model railway exhibition, but Nordic Rail, the largest railway exhibition in Scandinavia. As part of my responsibilities in the Danish railway contracting company where I work, I took part in the exhibition to present all the good things the company is capable of doing.


New equipment on Hydrema's stand at Nordic Rail.

On my way back home to Copenhagen and a looming deadline I managed to visit the little town of Ohs, where a 600 mm. heritage railway is situated. The railway is a long time favourite of mine and I have visited it several times. This Wedensday morning two volunteers were busy working and I had time to help them a little, chat and watch them do some shunting. Visit the Ohs Bruk railway here.
With a heritage worthy Volvo BM front loader two volunteers from OBJ are getting ready to place a frame on a pair of bogies.


It's half past nine and the Deutz locomotive idles quietly among the tank wagons in Ohs.

OBJ loco 30 (Deutz 57095/1961) shunting in Ohs. The loco worked at the Halmstad steel works before being retired to OBJ.

Back home I have now started dismantling my module set up in the shed and getting the modules back on their shelves in my little study. A major cleaning of my cluttered work table is needed before I can get back to modelling.

Ferguson parked next to the tractor repair shop in Nystrup. Judged the nice condition this tractor is probably waiting to be picked up by its owner after an overhaul. I built the tractor from a White metal kit from The Model Tractor Company.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Autumn Is Here

In Nystrup autumn has arrived. The weather is getting colder and before long the trees will loose their leaves. Some of the last trains with steam traction are now running. Soon loco no. 2 is once again put back into storage as the demand for gravel is back to normal.
Steam loco no. 2 pulling a train of empty skips. On the road in the background you can see a Danish army Scammel recovery vehicle pausing while a soldier watches Nystrup Gravel's little train pass under the viaduct.


A sure sign that autumn is coming are the military manouvers taking place around Nystrup and Skovby. When the farmers had their crops safely harvested from their fields, the army took the opportunity of roaming the Danish countryside at will during an annual exercise. Around Nystrup that meant large numbers of army vehicles on the narrow roads, lorries parked everywhere, squaddies in barns and foxholes and officers checking maps and battle plans.
The recovery lorry have found a place to park. It is one of a few Scammel Pioneer SV/2S lorries that the Danish army acquired from the British after the 2. World War. They served the army into the fifties. My model is built from a 1:35 Accurate Armour resin kit.

Friday, 22 September 2017

O&K Steamed Up For Hard Work

In the early 1950's Nystrup Gravel's steam locos were not used regularly. The locos were stored in a long shed at the lorry loading ramp area. The daily traffic was handled by the company's IC locos. But when demand for gravel was at its peak during summer at least one steam loco was usually steamed up.
Steam loco no. 2 pulling a train of empty skips past Banke's Bakelite on its way to the pits

The extra loco provided an added ressource and enabled a more intense traffic to be kept up. Just a few years later the steam locos were sold as scrap. My model of Nystrup Gravel's steam loco no. 2 was built in 2002 on the basis of a Fleischmann 'Magic Train' steam loco in 1:45 scale. Too bad that the 'Magic Train' range is now out of production. I would love to rebuild one more to accompany no. 2.

Nystrup Gravel's first two locomotives on the same photograph. As the old Alpha E 10 is standing in front of the loco shed, several of the newer locos must have been out of service. Otherwise the one cylinder locomotive would have remained in its shed. It was used only when all other options had failed!

Monday, 18 September 2017

Fowler Pulling A Workers' Transport

Demand for gravel for a wide range of publicly funded construction works meant that Nystrup Gravel in the beginning of the 1930's had to find more effective ways of getting gravel to the customers. One result of the intiatives taken by director Holm was the acquisition of the large Fowler diesel. Another was the sudden appearance of two bogie passenger wagons for the transport of workers to and from the gravel pits.
The comfortable coach being enjoyed by workers on their way to work. Nystrup Gravel's two bogie coaches were unique to Danish industrial railways. No other industrial railway had such luxurious coaches. The state organisation for costal protection had a single bogie coach and a prison railway had a primitive homebuilt coach. Nystrup Gravel certainly was a company with a special railway - no wonder I chose to model it!

I built the two passenger wagons in 2010 from kits made by fellow modeller Daniel Caso fitted with homebuilt frames and bogies from Scale Link. Daniel is one of those modellers that take the extraordinary step to help others fabricating kits or useful pieces.
A coach during construction. The kit body is placed on a test frame made of three pieces of strip wood and half-built bogies.
Apart from the image at the top, I managed to catch the train made up from Fowler-loco and green coach on film as it passed the bridge and the loco shed.