Sunday, October 30, 2016

Block Play: Train engine (steam type)

Hello, everyone.

The block has finally been finished!

Here is a picture of the elements, just before the final seaming:


I was going to put up the sketch, but it's covered with scribbled letters and such.

This is an incremental development of the train engine block that is on Pinterest, and possibly also at About.com. (I don't remember seeing it there, but it probably is. A lot of blocks are!) The original had a shorter red body section and the two wheels were the same size. Also, though it's hardly an innovation, I decided to make the cow catcher black. It just seemed a little more true to the old-time steam engines' shape.

This is the list of fabric pieces, instead:

The background is blue. The main body of the engine is red. Stack and wheels are black. Cab top can be either black or gray, cowcatcher can be either black or red. Smoke puff is white.
Measurements are in inches. The block overall is in two parts: upper and lower.

List of materials

Size
Red
Black
Gray
White
Blue
3.5 square

1



2.5 x 7.5
1




2.5 x 3.5

1


1
2.5 x 4.5




2
2.5 x 2.5
1
1
1

3
1.5 x 4.5
1



1
1.5 x 2.5
2



4
1.5 x 3.5




3
1.5 x 1.5
3
5

1
4
1” square
2



2
Opt. scraps to decorate stack




Upper portion:

Stack section:

(Optional: add a bit of ribbon or fabric strip to make a painted stripe on the stack before proceeding with the rest of the stack construction.)
Sew a 1.5” black square to the 1.5” white square and add another 1.5” black square to the other side. Press, trim, set aside.
Sew 1.5” blue squares to the 4 corners of the 2.5” x 3.5” black piece snowball style. Press, trim and set aside.
Sew a 1.5” blue square to a 1.5” black square and add another 1.5” blue square to the other side. Press and trim.
Sew the blue-white-blue strip to the top of the 2.5” x 3.5” piece. Sew the blue-black-blue strip to the bottom. Press and trim. Sew the 1.5” x 4.5” blue piece onto the front end of the rectangle just created. The sub-assembly is now 4.5” square. Press and trim. Set aside.

Cab section:

Sew the gray 2.5” square to a blue 2.5” square. Press and trim. Sew the unit to the long front side of a 2.5” x 4.5” blue rectangle. Sew the other 2.5” x 4.5” blue rectangle to the other side. Press and trim. Sub-assembly is now 6.5” wide and 4.5” tall.
Sew the cab section to the rear of the stack section, press, and trim. Set aside.

Lower portion:

Wheel section:

Sew two red 1.5” squares to the upper corners of the black 3.5” square snowball style. Sew two 1.5” blue squares to the lower corners of the same square likewise.  Press and trim. Sew a 1.5” x 3.5” blue strip across the bottom of the square. Press and trim.(large drive wheel)
Sew two red 1” squares to the top corners of the 2.5” black square snowball style. Sew two 1” blue squares to the lower corners of the same square likewise.  Press and trim.  Sew a 1.5 x 2.5” red strip to the top of the black square. Sew a 1.5” x 2.5” blue strip to the bottom of the square. Press and trim.(front wheel)
Sew the 2.5” red square to a 2.5” blue square. Press and trim. (middle of chassis)
Sew the drive wheel to the rear side of the red/blue rectangle, press and trim. Sew the front wheel assembly to the front side of the red/blue rectangle.
Sew the 2.5” x 7.5” red strip across the top of the wheel assembly, press and trim.

Cowcatcher section:

Sew a 1.5” x 2.5” red (or black) strip to a 1.5” x 3.5” blue strip, placing the red strip crosswise and 1.5” in from the end and using a diagonal seam. Be sure to check the way the pieces will press out before doing any trimming. The idea is to create a 4.5” long strip with an angled seam  that goes from 1.25” up at the front to 2.25” up at the back on a 1.5” wide strip. (Think of joining strips to make bias here!) Press, check to make sure the edges are straight, and trim the back side of the diagonal seam to a ¼” seam allowance. (cowcatcher)
Join the 1.5” x 4.5” strip of red to the back edge of the cowcatcher. Press and trim. Sew a 2.5” blue square to the bottom edge of the cowcatcher assembly, press and trim.

Step section:

Sew a 1.5” red square to the end of a 1.5” x 3.5” blue strip. Sew the end of a 1.5” x 2.5” blue strip on the opposite side. Press and trim.
Sew the step strip to the rear of the wheel section. Sew the cowcatcher section to the front of the wheel section. Press and trim.

Sew the upper section to the lower section, press and trim. Final size of the block is 10.5” square.