Custom Number Plates in 4mm

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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby NCB » Tue Feb 07, 2017 1:34 pm

Think the problem anybody has for small bits is the minimum size an etcher will accept. I use PPD, and the minimum size around 300mm x 150mm. That's fine for the bigger items, but even with them something smaller wouldn't go amiss; in 3mm scale I can get 3 locomotive chasses on that size, but don't always want to do that number. With number plates then filling a whole sheet that size is a bit of a problem. So, are there etchers who will do less?

I use Turbocad and like it; it thinks the way I think. I've tried others like Solid Edge and Draftsight but not enthusiastic. I'm currently doing artwork for some transfers and using Inkscape; usable but could be better. I'm using it because my stuff is a contribution to somebody else's project, and he uses Inkscape. I'm thinking about Coreldraw for more transfers; there's a home and student version which doesn't cost too much. Wessex Transfers, who potentially do very fine waterslide transfers at not too high a cost, prefer Coreldraw input.
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby Sedge » Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:49 pm

I also use PPD since they are the cheapest that I have found and they are very helpful. They have produced A5 and smaller for me but as part of a larger order. A possible cost effective solution would be to determine the small items required, prepare the artworks and then when the next person is ready to order include them in the "dead areas" of the main design. Sounds simple but if it is a goer, how do we go about it? Or, in trying to be helpful, would it be too involved for the bother?
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby NCB » Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:20 am

One problem in my case is that virtually all my stuff is nickel silver, so no good for brass plates. But if somebody's getting some brass done it's certainly worth bearing in mind.
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby Newport_rod » Thu Feb 16, 2017 11:15 am

Chaps

I'd be willing to assemble the artwork and get it etched for a joint venture if people want to send me their artwork (in .dwg format, metric, full model size, for 0.25 mm thick brass). Costs to be split pro-rata by area. Who might be interested?

R
Visit the website of Llanastr, my Layout http://llanastr.webs.com/, my club http://www.newportmrs.co.uk and the local area group of the Scalefour Society http://www.freewebs.com/nagnag/
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby Robert Wigley » Sun Mar 12, 2017 1:38 pm

Folks
Rather at the eleventh hour, I have read with interest the comments on sourcing etched number plates in 4mm and visited the "Coastlines" website and seen the message there which doesn't appear to be too encouraging, other than for Cambrian devotees.
Although I work in 7mm, in recent years I have become reasonably skilled at producing artwork and etches produced by PPD.
My most recent adventure has been to produce a series of wagon number plates which I have had successfully etched on 0.2mm nickel silver. Without checking I imagine a 7mm wagon plate is very similar in size to a 4mm loco cab side plate.
As one contributor commented, drawings are almost non-existent but from a "broadside" photograph and one dimension I usually produce a fairly convincing representation which the "experts" are welcome to fine tune - if it looks right, it probably is right.
If anyone wants bespoke plates, even in 4mm, supplied with some base information I am more than willing to attempt to "fill the gap", although delivery is very much dependant on filling a sheet, 12" x 4" which takes quite few plates.
Feel free to email me - Robert Wigley - email - "davidwigley115@btinternet.com"
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby Sedge » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:29 pm

I am compiling a number of items, on 0.4mm brass, that I require to incorporate into my model of Ogilvie Colliery, which is now about 75% complete, but the minimum size sheet is 12" x 9" much larger than I require, so will have lots of spare room. The cost of the finished sheet is £60. Is there anyone who requires any items, if so, please let me know. Individual cost will be pro-rata to the space used plus postage, and I would be prepared to do the artwork if detailed sketches are provided. For those who are making a colliery, and the dram rails are other than the 3 ft gauge that I use, I could provide drams, diesel shunters, cable drum carriers similar to those for my model, in the gauge you require. Just a thought.

Ifor
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby Robert Wigley » Wed Mar 22, 2017 3:12 pm

Folks
In "Sedges" most recent posting, a 12" x 9" sheet is quoted as the smallest format available. Although there is no details of the supplier, I have been using PPD for several years with excellent results and service. I have checked with "Craig", my usual contact, and he confirmed that PPD will process a 12" x 4" drawing area in any of the materials listed on their website. Another experience I will share, is adopting 0.2mm thick material for number plates which virtually eliminates having to allow for "undercutting" reducing the size of the finished text" - maybe a but underscale thicknesswise but an additional backing plate on the same etch usually answers.
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby Sedge » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:09 am

The supplier that I use is also PPD with whom I have worked with for 15 years. My contact with them is also Craig. If I gave the impression that a 12" x 9" sheet was the minimum size they will produce, then I apologise, since this size is the minimum that will accommodate my requirements, thus providing space for other items. So, to avoid paying for blank space, or filling it up with items that I do not really require, I have offered the space, at cost and the artwork at no cost, to other members who may require items that cannot be obtained by proprietary means. Roberts experience with number plates is different to mine since I have had good results with 0.4mm brass and half-etching around the numbers which then are etched in relief as seen on GWR cab sides. I will admit, however, that some filing of the base to reduce overall thickness to emulate somewhere near an aesthetic plate in proportion with the engine may be needed.
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby NCB » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:11 pm

The minimum size which PPD quote on their stock metals info pdf is 300mm x 150mm, roughly 12" x 6". They expect you to have a 10mm minimum unused border around your artwork (they say 10-15mm but I've gone to the limit with only 10mm and had no problems), so the usable area is 280mm x 130mm. I think the 300m is absolute as it reflects the sheets they use, but can see that something less than 150mm should be possible if you ask nicely.
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Re: Custom Number Plates in 4mm

Postby Talerddig » Thu Apr 13, 2017 10:37 pm

I've recently been looking for a source of etched worksplates and cabside numberplates for a 4mm scale Mid Wales Railway Sharps 0-6-0, and found a company called Narrow Planet who could help me. They have a large range of works plates available, plus various cabside numberplates and loco nameplates; which can be customised to your requirements and produced in various scales. I could specify the correct works number and build year for the works plates, and the appropriate style of plate. Quality is excellent - lettering is VERY small, but they are legible under a strong light.

I also got them to do the MWR cabside numberplates for me, based on the design for some LYR plates already in their range.

Their main focus is on narrow gauge prototypes, but they do lots of standard gauge plates as well, including some Welsh prototypes - WM&CQ cabside number plates are listed, for example.

Their website is at www.narrowplanet.co.uk, and well worth a look.
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