Railroad Line Forums - The Little Ann stamp mill in two scales
Railroad Line Forums
Save Password

Forgot Password?
  Home   Forums   Events Calendar   Sponsors   Support the RRLine   Guestbook   FAQ     Register
Active Topics | Active Polls | Resources | Members | Online Users | Live Chat | Avatar Legend | Search | Statistics
Photo Album | File Lister | File Library
[ Active Members: 3 | Anonymous Members: 0 | Guests: 66 ]  [ Total: 69 ]  [ Newest Member: Faire to Midland ]
 All Forums
 Model Railroad Forums
 Mike Chambers' Craftsman's Corner
 The Little Ann stamp mill in two scales
Next Page
 New Topic |   New Poll New Poll |   Reply to Topic | 
Author Previous Topic: Blue Sky (No Frills ) - SWSM construction thread Topic Next Topic: Water Tower Build
Page: of 3

Frederic Testard

Premium Member

Posted - 11/01/2009 :  7:07:57 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This topic will be devoted to the building of two stamp mills, in HO and S scale, by Kris (hon3_rr) and me. As you've certainly guessed, Kris will make the HO one and I'll build the S one.
We both have accumulated enough castings from Western Scale Models to model very detailed - if not too big - mills. These will be 'dry' mills, without the big tanks one could see for instance in a recent issue of the Gazette.
On my side, the name 'Little Ann' comes from two origins. First, Anne is the name of my niece and when I planned my layout many years ago, I had decided that she would have her place on the layout (not too far in fact, from the Bush and Bernie mining company, named after her parents...). Second, besides the great model manufactured by WSM, the main source of inspiration for this model is John Hitzeman's 'Little Helen' stamp mill, which was featured in the Narrow Gauge Gazette in 1983, and which was the seed for a very informative series of articles in 1984 and 1985 about various aspects in the building of a stamp mill. I plan to try to imitate John's very detailed 10 stamp mill, and the 'Little' in the name is a way to remind me of this origin.
So, this is a fall with lots of projects, all of them involving many details, a lot of scratchbuilding and scratchheading. This thread will certainly not fly as a rocket, but we want to share with the crew our pleasure to build models as nice as possible.

Country: France | Posts: 17652


Premium Member

Posted - 11/01/2009 :  7:26:10 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sounds like a great project, with added interest from the dual gauge build.

Country: USA | Posts: 31535 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 11/01/2009 :  7:38:55 PM  Show Profile  Visit UKGuy's Homepage  Send UKGuy a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
Two great modellers with the same theme, a treat indeed. Will you both be building from the same plans? or just a general idea?

Looking forward to yet another build of yours Frederic, I hope you have a 'modelling tray system' to keep all of these 'current' builds separated on your bench space, you certainly are loading your work-plate quite full it seems.

As a side note, I keep seeing 'stamp mill' builds/models and reading the phrase, just exactly what the he....ck exactly IS a stamp mill?? Do they supply the post office???

I'll be looking forward also to tomorrow, to see which new project you will be starting then......


Country: USA | Posts: 6276 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 11/01/2009 :  7:47:36 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Frederic and Kris, sounds like an exciting project.

Since this will be a scratch build and in two different scales it will be interesting to see what you both come up with.

Karl, I think he may jump in on the engine house build too. At least I hope he will at some point.

Country: USA | Posts: 23102 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 11/01/2009 :  8:26:35 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Frederic, The Little Ann stamp mill being done in both scales sounds great. I will be looking forward to these builds by yourself and Kris.

Pacific Northwest Logging in the East Coast
Post count: 2000 posts added to below count.

Country: USA | Posts: 17738 Go to Top of Page

Tim Kerkhoff

Posted - 11/01/2009 :  8:45:13 PM  Show Profile  Send Tim Kerkhoff a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
This will be funto follow along. Neat idea to build in different scales. You have my permission to photo us to death

Country: USA | Posts: 5879 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 11/01/2009 :  10:32:08 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'll add a little additional background information. This idea came about a year ago and Frederic and I have exchanged a few e-mails on the idea over the past year. Due to our involvment in other projects, in addition to our lives outside of modeling, we delayed the start of the project until now. We are still in the process of exchanging information, so please bear with us.

As most of you know, Frederic has at least 3 builds currently going which I am aware of, and I also have two here on the forum. For myself, the Blue Sky build was never intended to be completed as an individual diorama as it will be included in a larger diorama of Sierra West Scale Models which I have planned for my home layout. The Blue Sky build is on hold pending other structures being completed for the larger diorama. The second build, The Silverado Mine, is for a club module. I will continue to work on that structure as time permits. This structure and the Silverado Mine will be included on the club module currently under construction.

I am going to try to follow Frederics lead, so we'll see how this goes as we get into the project. As Frederic noted, we are not going to hurry to complete the builds, but we do hope to have highly detailed structures when we reach the end of the project. I think I speak for Frederic also, but if you want to jump in with us, feel free. Should make for a good winter modeling project.

To answer Karl's question:
A "stamp mill" is a building which housed the machinery to 'dress ore'. Ore dressing is the process of mechanically separating the valuable minerals from the waste ore/rock. The waste is called 'tailings' or 'gangue'. An ore dressing plant is called a mill. There are many types of mills dependent on the process used to dress the ore, the type of ore and the mineral(s) sought. One of the most common mills is a stamp mill which used crushing and an amalgamation process to separate the gold (or other mineral(s) from the ore. Mills were very common in the western mining areas. If I recall correctly, there were over 100 mills in the Clear Creek area of Colorado alone. (Please correct me if I'm wrong on the number of mills in Clear Creek.) Our models will not be of a specific mill, but will capture the flavor of a common mill and it's workings as used around the turn of the century.

We will probably be doing '10 stamp' mills. A 'stamp' is the actual piece of machinery which is used to crush the ore. Think of a 'stamp' as a hammer which is beating on small pieces of rock to crush & pulverize the rock for chemical processing. The 'stamp' itself is gravity powered. It was standard for stamps to be built in units of 5 individual stamps. This unit is called a 'battery'. Thus, a common small mill may have only 10 or 20 stamps. (2 or 4 stamp batteries.) Some mid sized stamp mills had 40 or more stamps. Big mills could have 150 or more stamps.

In following Frederics lead, I'll try to keep my mill to the same plan as much as possible for you to follow along. We may need to vary the mills somewhat due to space and the angle of the hill on which the individual mills will be located. Also, I may not be able to detail my build as much due to the nature of the portable module on which the structure will be located, and the need to fasten items down a little more. In addition, further structure modifications may be necessary to the roof to allow for interior viewing of the models in different venues. (Hummm... and this is the same plan set??)

Anyway, this post is getting long... so I hope that you will enjoy this project as much as we will.

-- KP --
Life is to short to build all of the models I want to.

Country: USA | Posts: 7214 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 11/01/2009 :  10:38:14 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wow, guys! This should be a really fascinating build thread to follow. I'm looking forward to the installments from each of you.

Country: USA | Posts: 21584 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 11/02/2009 :  09:55:54 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Now we can have dueling threads too


Country: USA | Posts: 4394 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 11/02/2009 :  10:36:46 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Exiting!! I'm looking forward to these builds!

Troels Kirk
Näsum, Sweden

Country: Sweden | Posts: 4927 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 11/02/2009 :  5:44:33 PM  Show Profile  Visit Peterpools's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Spectacular idea. Eagerly looking forward to the first of many construction posts.

Country: USA | Posts: 12335 Go to Top of Page

Frederic Testard

Premium Member

Posted - 11/02/2009 :  7:13:01 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I think I speak for Frederic also, but if you want to jump in with us, feel free. Should make for a good winter modeling project.

I totally agree. These mills are fascinating structures, and if they obey a few common rules, there's also some variation in design that could provide enough matter for several distinct mills. Besides, these are certainly some of the best documented industries, in particular in the Gazette where there has been quite a number of articles describing, often with a lot of details, their building.

For those wishing to see some pictures of the real thing, don't forget this thread where Kris posted a few pics of the 'museum mill', located at the Western Museum of Mining & Industry near Central City, Colorado.


Country: France | Posts: 17652 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 11/02/2009 :  8:06:43 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
If I may, the Museum of Mining & Industry is actually located in Colorado Springs, just east about 1/2 mile or so from the Air Force Academy or about 2 hours from Central City. I live about 30 minutes from Central City... But remember... Frederic lives in France....

As many of you may have noted, we will be using products from Western Scale Models(WSM) to detail our mills. In John Hitzeman's 'Little Helen' stamp mill series referenced above, the scratch building of the machinery is described in detail should you want or need to do so.

I want to bring everyone's attention to the fact that WSM will be discontinuing the production of their mill interior products in HO and S scales at the end of this year. Per a note on the WSM homepage:
"...I will be unable to continue production of HO and S scale kits. As of December 31, 2009, Western Scale Models will no longer sell these kits. Our plans for the future include continuing the production of O and 1:20.3 scale kits, as well as the publication of our line of Western Scale Models books...."

If you are considering building a mill, even from a kit by any mfg., I very strongly recommend the books written by Dr. William (Bill) Gustafson. These are detailed books about the mining and ore dressing industry and written with the modeler in mind.

You may want to look at the WSM website at: http://www.westernscalemodels.com/

I'll include the standard disclamer here that I have no business relationship with Western Scale Models(WSM), but I'm just a really happy customer. I also want to thank Dr. Gustafson for his writings with the modeler's needs in mind. I'm sure that his PhD in Geology came in useful as he researched the information presented in his books.

-- KP --
Life is to short to build all of the models I want to.

Country: USA | Posts: 7214 Go to Top of Page

Mario Rapinett

Posted - 11/02/2009 :  8:18:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mining must be the flavour of the month ( at last )

The photos by Kris will help me with my current project's.

The Saratogo Stamp Mill in O scale..
I'll start a thread on this as I develop further..

Frederick & Kris...Sorry to cut in on your thread..

cheers guys


Download Attachment: xMining 027.jpg
74.83 KB

Download Attachment: xMining 030.jpg
52.77 KB

Download Attachment: xMining 031.jpg
53.49 KB

Country: Australia | Posts: 5846 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 11/02/2009 :  8:43:41 PM  Show Profile  Visit wvrr's Homepage  Reply with Quote
This will be interesting to follow.

I'm glad I got my hoist and engine kits from WSM when I did! Great kits and it is sad to see they will no longer be in production.


Country: | Posts: 6494 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 11/02/2009 :  9:02:51 PM  Show Profile  Visit UKGuy's Homepage  Send UKGuy a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
Many thanks for your detailed explanations of the process Kris, very informative and enlightening. I also found 'the other thread' first, some great shots.

I'll be looking forward to watching both of your models progress.


Country: USA | Posts: 6276 Go to Top of Page
Page: of 3 Previous Topic: Blue Sky (No Frills ) - SWSM construction thread Topic Next Topic: Water Tower Build  
 New Topic |   New Poll New Poll |   Reply to Topic | 
Next Page
Jump To:
Railroad Line Forums © 2000-19 Railroad Line Co. Go To Top Of Page
Steam was generated in 0.48 seconds. Powered By: Snitz Forums 2000