Reply To: Sticking hornblocks: where to adjust?

Members Forum Kit Building Loco Chassis Sticking hornblocks: where to adjust? Reply To: Sticking hornblocks: where to adjust?

Paul Willis

    Paul, your Y6 post in my “wants” ad. inspired me to make a start on mine. I’m using cast hornguides from London Road Models, and I thought I’d mention that I’m leaving the fettling-to-fit until after I’ve soldered them in, as I find a “sticky” hornblock makes it easier to handle them in the Poppy’s jig (which I find excellent).

    That approach of not fettling until fitted is an interesting one, and not one I’ve ever followed.  The reason for that is once you’ve fixed your hornguides in the frames, the wheelbase is fixed.  If you then drift that wheelbase slight through the act of loosening up the axleboxes in the hornguides, the coupling rods may need to be adjusted to follow.

    A jig, whether Poppy’s or Avonside (or even a one-off, as the 2FS folk tend to use) is an excellent idea, and will always result in an easier road to a smooth running chassis.  Having never used your build sequence, I don’t know if going from “stick” to “slide” will be a major change.  That said, if it works, it works!

    Back in the day, I had some plastic hornguides from Maygib, I think, which had a moulded rim to aid location in the cutout in the mainframe etch. You might just about be able to spot this in the photo below. Are there any like this (pref. metal) still available?

    I can’t stand those plastic hornblocks!  I still have some, in unmade Alan Gibson kits.  When I start the kits, I immediately put the untouched hornblocks on eBay!

    To answer your question, I don’t know of any that now have a “frame” all the way around like those.  The High Level ones I use have a little tab to ensure that they are at the correct height in the frames.

    But fore and aft on most hornblocks would be set by the jig.  Indeed, having a frame around like that may mean that it automatically builds in misalignment between the axleboxes and the coupling rods if there is no means of adjustment.  Like quite a few things still in railway modelling, it’s really a 1980’s product when 21st century tools and techniques have superseded it.

    All the best with your build!  I’ll keep an eye on it, although I only pop in here every week or less.