My Projects

My name is Chris Bird and although I spend a huge amount of time on the design and marketing of the Summerlands Chuffer, I am a garden railway enthusiast, first and foremost. And if I am honest, it is live steam locos that come at the top of the garden railway list!


Over the past few years, I have taken on many projects and usually write them up, either in the garden railway magazines or on the Garden Railway Club (GRC). Atlantic Publishers have kindly allowed me to include scans of my articles on here and the links below will take you to those pages. Where they are on the GRC, the link will take you there. Please note that the GRC ones are more of a blog and are not as 'polished' as some of the magazine articles! There is also lots of other interesting stuff to read on the GRC site, but please remember that the GRC links will take you off this site.


I will also occasionally add pages to give more photos or videos of the projects.


You can contact me on coxhillcottage (at) for more information if you need it.



SMT cover shot

The Summerlands Light Railway


Garden Rail 172 - feature on the SLR


More on the Summerlands Light Railway (GRC)


Train Crew

Building Busybodies from Modelearth (GRC)



Brian Wilson's "Jack" build blog with over 300 photos


Brian Wilson's "Jack" - re-edited articles on line (work in progress)


Roundhouse Bertie - running and modifying.


The Small Steam Performance Slomo (new 5th August 2014)


The 7/8ths SSP Slomo coal wagon (new 26th August 2014)


Accucraft steam and gas valve replacement


Accucraft 7/8ths Quarry Hunslet (GRC)


Restoring a merlin Major  (GRC)


Edrig's Tender - using the tanks of an Accucraft Edrig to make a tender.


Roundhouse L&B "Yeo" - the story of importing it from Australia


John Shawe L&B "Ace" - buying a famous, coal fired loco in auction and making it run.


An introduction to the Accucraft  L&B Lew with simple mods


7/8ths scale "Betty" - the story of a Roundhouse Bertie/Katie hybrid


7/8ths  scale Roundhouse Millie - a simple conversion


Charles Pooter - doing up a wreck (GRC)


Roundhouse Argyll - the story of my loco (GRC)


An old Mamod - a tender and radio control (GRC)


Painting locos the easy way - what I have learned over the years (I'm still learning!) (GRC)


Accucraft Leader - adding radio control etc. (GRC)


1983 Roundhouse Lady Anne - running and restoration (GRC)


PPS De Winton (now RWM Steam) - modifying a second hand loco for 7/8ths (GRC)


Cheddar Samson - just a few modifications (GRC)


Cheddar Hercules - just a few modifications (GRC)


Locobox Sophie - just a few modifications to this rare loco. (GRC)


A Regner 7/8ths Vincent Conversion(GRC)


Wagons and rolling stock


Building Cheddar coach kits (GRC)


A simple crate for your wagons (GRC)


Simple 7/8ths scale rolling stock - very cheap to build


Raif Copley's 7/8ths RMC "One Plank" open wagon (GRC) 


Acme 7/8ths Slate Wagon Kits  (GRC)


Acme 7/8ths Penrhyn open workmens' coach (GRC)


Raif Copley's 7/8ths Penrhyn Coal Wagon (GRC)


Raif Copley's 7/8ths Freelance brake van (GRC)


Raif Copley's 7/8ths Festiniog Type 2 Quarrymens' Carriage (GRC)


The Jurassic 7/8ths Models Quarrymens' Coach (GRC)


The Summerlands GP Wagon - 7/8ths or 16mm - flat bed, slab carrier or log bolster - and simple to make from DIY store materials


Summerlands 7/8ths GP Wagons built from bamboo plant labels! (GRC)


The Summerlands 7/8ths quarry runner/tender wagon


Summerlands 7/8ths Bamboo Pen Pot coal wagons (GRC)  NEW


Summerlands Pen Pot Inspection Car  (GRC) NEW


Swift Sixteen Coach (GRC)











This photo of Watercombe station on the SLR is on the cover of the latest 16mm Associatrion Modellers Guide.


The latest Busybody figures from Modelearth that I have recently completed.

Restored Charles Pooter at the SLR

78ths 1 BB at ME 1


I am proud to be hosting the information site for Brian Wilson's 7/8ths scale Jack build which was serialised in Garden Rail magazine. Click here to find the parts lists, videos etc. etc. 

I have written up the complete build over on the Garden Railway Club - click here to go to it

jack for website 2a Jack website rear 1a