The prototype of this loco is very real, however in my history it took a bit of a parallel path. It was the first Garratt, one of a pair built in 1909 by Beyer Peacock for the 2’ gauge NE Dundas Tramway in Tasmania. In 1947 Beyer Peacock repatriated it, and after refurbishment sold it to the PLR mainly for use on the extension ‘up the bottoms’ into the Cornish china clay district. There remarkably it survived well into the period when most such railways had either switched to internal combustion or closed. This is the period I am modelling, i.e. very filthy and neglected. When the PLR did finally close in the 1960s, K1 was rescued for display in the National Railway Museum. Most will be aware of it’s more recent restoration to full working order on the revived WHR.
The model itself is 7mm scale 14mm gauge based on a Backwoods Miniatures kit. Construction took all my modelling effort between 2004 and 2008. Modifications included wheel re-profiling (with Scale 7 tool), rebuilding much of the motion, replacing all the tank overlays, the cab, cab fittings, and adding a coal bunker (the kit was oil fired). Each engine unit has a Faulhaber gearhead motor controlled by a dedicated CT Elektronik DCC chip mapped to the same address. One of the chips also controls sound with synchronised chuffs, lights and direction controlled reversing gear operated via memory wire (I confess this was the least successful aspect).
Details on it's construction were published in Narrow Gauge & Industrial Railway Modelling Review issues 72 & 75.
More pictures on construction and a video can be found on the O14 Group website at: