NCB No.1 has started work at Maudetown Colliery.
A couple of hours, grabbed between laying paving flags and tending the vegetable beds, has seen my Knightwing diesel shunter kit completed over the weekend. The weathering still needs a little more work and there's a couple more tiny details to fix in place, but it's more or less finished. The Black Beetle motor bogie has been installed and the loco has made it's first forays into shunting Maudetown's sidings. She's quite a nice runner, helped by the 'ballast' fixed inside the bodyshell and there have been no problems shifting my rake of loaded HAA hoppers. Mind you, as the layout's only small, I only run a maximum of six wagons, so that's unlikely to tax 'No.1'.
I'd been ruminating on what to christen the little engine, as my other industrial locos have been given feminine names. However, in its late-70s/early-80s yellow livery, 'No.1' has more of a masculine air, but I thought putting a guy's name on would be a bit dull. However, after rummaging through my spares box, I came across a solitary Imperial nameplate, salvaged from a Class 37 project of yesteryear - and this seemed as good a name as any. I think it adds a bit of class!
I've probably said it before, but this is a cracking little kit and I'm already planning on building another! A full demo of how I built, motorised and finished the loco is to appear in my next book, more details of which will appear here later in the year.