On the weekend I got out a project I started earlier this year, and sent back to the pile as other projects passed it by in my motivation to work on list. Now that I’m back at it, I’m up against one of the reasons I set the kit aside, figuring out the etched brass door hinges for the car. There are 18 of these to install (3 per door, 3 doors per side of the car). It’s a lot, and they are, to be kind, tiny.
The door hinges are the oblong parts with the raised bulb in the centre.
The kits instructions, are to be fair, probably sensible to someone whose built etched brass coaches before, but with no diagram explaining how to do what they say, and no previous experience, they are proving to be beyond me. The instructions state “Using the new easy position hinge etch, insert all three hinges into the side from the outside face so that the hinges are just proud of the inside face, solder. Snip off unused portion of etch and dress back to correct length with a file or disk in a mini drill.” Seems to be English, might as well be Russian for all the sence I’ve made of it in months of looking at it, and now an evening of trying to do it. I haven’t even managed to be 100% sure of whether the bulb is supposed to go inwards into the fully etched through opening or not.
That little etch is supposed to go into the three oblong holes on the side of each door.
It’s pretty clear to me that I am not going to make sense of this, and any effort I’ve made to install the hinge has resulted in my dropping the tiny part, or feeling like I’m going to bend/warp the etched car side and do damage I’m not capable of undoing. I’m not above admitting defeat on something, and moving on to Plan B. In this case, Plan B is to use a material I know and create something that looks like I think the hinge is supposed to look like based on a Bachmann Mk1 coach in my collection. I am going to use styrene or brass rod to create the appearance of their being hinges on the doors. I quickly made up some hinge pieces with 0.025″ evergreen styrene rod to see how it looked, and to my eye, it will be passable when painted and detailed, other than being a bit too big. I need some 0.020″ styrene or brass rod, something I am out of at the moment to make my hinges just a bit smaller looking, so I won’t be finishing this until the weekend and my next shopping trip to a hobby shop, but at least I have a path forward that I know I can achieve and be happy with the outcome of.
Door hinges on a ready to run Bachmann M1 on the left, and my first attempt at styrene replacements on the right. The 0.025″ styrene is too big, i think 0.020″ will do better. You can see how tiny the etched hing is to the right of the brass car side.
And yes, in case you were wondering, it was shooting door hinges across the floor that prompted my earlier post this evening about using the Workbench Apron I have to prevent me crawling around beneath my workbench.