Background Information  
After leaving school, I spent some years learning the electrical trade as an electricians mate before branching into precision engineering. In 1985 I started my own engineering business and continued in this field until the year 2000, although I continued to do a lot of electrical work during this time. Since returning to electrical work on a full-time basis, I have been back to college to gain or renew my qualifications and now trade as an independant electrician concentrating on domestic installations.
My two main hobbies are model engineering and "00" gauge railway modelling and is generally season-dependant. My loft is fully insulated and I have my layout there so it's my favoured winter hobby.
This diary will record how I am building (one day I will change that to "built") my 5" gauge Britannia locomotive in as much detail as I can. I will describe my methods for making each of the parts but I do not claim that my way is the best way. In fact, I am sure that there are many machinists out there who are far more skilled than me and would know much quicker or better ways of achieving the same result. It all comes down to the equipment available to the machinist and in the early days I had access to a wide range of industrial equipment including CNC lathes and mills. Nowadays, my resources are far fewer - see my workshop page for more info - and consequently a lot more thought has to go into the method of manufacture.
I make no apologies for the level of detail that I include in my diary. I want the absolute novice to be able to visit this website and then leave feeling confident that they could also achieve something similar. For the more practiced model engineer, a large part of this diary will be teaching how to suck eggs but I hope that, even to the most experienced of people, there is something of value to be taken from here. Members of the Proboards model engineering forum will recognise most of this material as I am creating a diary of my build on there. This website is for those people who may wish to follow my progress without all the usual rubbish and sidetracking that invariably happen on forums. There is, however, addition material on this site which is not on any of the forums including many more photographs. The other advantage of this site is that it is laid out in a fairly logical manner and anyone searching for information on a particular part should be able to find it with relative ease.