I’ll begin by saying I’m constructing a wooden model fire engine, a scaled down version of the ‘DENNIS F9‘ fire tender, and please refer to my previous three postings because they explain all……. that’s if you’re curious of course 🙂 .

(I’m not vain posting my model pics here, I’ve just enjoyed documenting the progress.)

I’ve been furloughed by my employer this past 14 weeks hence my need of a hobby project (in other words improve my waning mental health) , and the photos above represent my progress so far however HOWEVER! This maybe the furthest I get for a while, I’ve been recalled back to work as of ‘sooon’, therefore I’ve purchased bottles of alcohol base hand-gel also 30 disposable face masks all in readiness, all because I’ll be using public transport and to say I’m apprehensive is an understatement.

I’m very happy to be returning though 🙂 even though the PPE is going to be expensive, but welcome to the new ways of working Andrew……. post COVID-19 working is going to be a very different way of living.

A. Shepherdson 2020

Step one: Tracing the outline (of my fire engine)

This June 2020 onwards, I’m constructing a model DENNIS fire engine from plywood, it’s my little project to keep lockdown boredom at bay, now in order to follow the construction I’m afraid the reader really will have to read (if you’re interested 🙂 ) my previous 2 posting because it’ll save me repeating the content once again, for the first real occasion in over 2 year my WordPress has a theme.

So hopefully you’ve returned interested as to what happened next, btw I’m not showing off, I’m enjoying seeing my mini project on the internet.

1. I’d previously googled DENNIS F8 fire engine then copied 120 found photographs, then saved onto my PC (inside a folder).

2. Pictured below you’ll see a side-on outline of one fire engine side panel, on tracing paper again purchased from good old Amazon.

3. Taking a sheet of tracing paper, I attached said paper to the PC screen and traced the outline, then using scissors cut out the fire engine profile a technique well known to all you dress makers…….. exactly the same except I cannot sew lol!

Below you see a model DENNIS purchased from Amazon for £10, this toy’s only purpose to give me an reminder/prompt as to what the engine actually looks like as I construct the model……… it’s all a question of scale.

😀 I hope you’re keeping up!

4. Taking the fire engine profile paper tracing, I then attached to a piece of birch tree sourced plywood and proceeded to cut out one side panel using my scroll-saw, follow the pencil line with the saw blade carefully and scroll-sawing really is very easy.

Repeated the tracing/sawing procedure on a new sheet of plywood so as to manufacture a second side to my DENNIS F8 fire engine………. for those unaware of this beautiful magnificent vehicle, the fire tender was built in the 1950’s and below shows the actual image I used to trace around.

…….…. and here’s my model (below) partly constructed by gluing the plywood profiles to one another, using wood glue!

To be continued………….. (any questions in comments please)

A. Shepherdson 2020

My new Workshop……. in the (spare) bedroom!


As of now I’m making (constructing) a model fire engine from wood……. it’s a hobby of mine and my new Blog theme!

Btw I’m happy 🙂 with WordPress once again, after spending time playing with their new ‘flashy’ Block Editor……. I’ve cracked it!

(We humans hate change don’t we, and I’m here to tell you ‘adapting to change’ gets harder the older you become 😦 . (Sigh… a not tooo dissimilar scenario when I notice young ladies are getting younger by the year…… the only trouble is they don’t date middle aged guys.)

Anyways returning to the English built 1950’s DENNIS fire engine, as you may or may be aware (see previous posting) I’m constructing a scaled down model from wood, after weeks of idly surfing the www also twiddling my thumbs doing ‘sweet fanny Adams’ I desperately needed a project however first things first build myself a ‘small’ workshop!

So I cleared and tidied the spare bedroom (a task in itself I can tell you), constructed a work surface which in effect is a sturdy wooden shelf, purchased myself a Pillar drill (£100 delivered to the door by Amazon) then mounted to the bench so as to compliment my electric powered Scroll-saw…….. and did you know ladies own these amazing machines? Yep they purchase 3mm plywood and profile cut intricate wooden jigsaws… que YouTube! Go look and see for yourselves and never again label me as being sexist……. unless I’m writing about large ‘milky’ breasts lol.

Btw if you wish to view this model DENNIS fire engine I keep writing about? Pictures will follow in a posting scheduled for tomorrow’ish’.

A. Shepherdson 2020

The DENNIS fire engine and……..

Today’s my very first attempt at writing a Posting with the new Block Editor……… infuriating, my take is WordPress can shove it where ‘the Sun doesn’t shine!’ (I’m joking) 😀

So what’s the reason for today’s blog Andrew after being away such a long time? (Perhaps not one for my female readers then again that is sexist of me.)

Truth be told after ten weeks living in covid-19 lock down isolation I was very close to suffering a mental breakdown, I could feel all will to live draining out of me, I’m not joking for effect because depression isn’t funny and what’s more I’ve been missing work badly having been furloughed because I’m unable to work from home, bored and inactive occaisionally masturbating in place of sex with women, it slowly dawned on me I was spending tooo much time surfing the internet suffice to say I needed a PROJECT!

So I built myself a compact workshop in my spare bedroom, purchased a new pillar drill to compliment my aged scroll-saw and set to work designing and making a scale model of the DENNIS F8 fire engine, a British icon and aesthetically mesmerising. I love the body lines, window shapes with it’s distinctive headlights and unforgetable front end, so I purchased a sheet of 6mm plywood online and set to work using my hands………… as an aside, on-line shopping is a blessing, how would we have coped in this crisis without digital shopping?

We’d have all gone loopy!

A little history facts and trivia before I reveal my unfinished wooden model fire engine……. you’ll have to wait till ‘tomorrowish’ btw never ceases to amaze be that people have liked and commented my old postings from over the past 2 years, that’s what keeps me going 🙂 .

  • Model: The ‘DENNIS F8’ fire engine
  • Manufacturer: Dennis Brothers Limited
  • Factory: Guildford in England
  • Date: 1950-55
  • Engine: Rolls Royce
  • Exported: To the British Empire

Sadly the last Dennis fire engine left the Guildford factory in 2007, yes they are alas long gone having been making fire engines for just over 100 years, produced army vehicles during 2 world wars and yet another great British icon consigned to the history books along with so many others, makes be want to literally cry but that’s another story.

They built the F8 after the war and similar to most manufacturers Dennis suffered from a shortage of materials and skilled labour not forgetting Britain was bankrupt. So they went back to basics fabricating a steel chasis then dropping a wooden (coachbuilt) body on top and bolting the two together, with no independent suspension they reverted to leaf springs from Cowboy Stagecoach days, the result was a beautiful vehicle that quite literally shock the fillings loose from the firemen crew, however I’ll never deride the F8 and Dennis Brothers made over a thousand selling them to countries across the Empire from Canada to Singapore.

A few more photographs for you,

To be continued………

A. Shepherdson 2020