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Sir John's 'Special'

MikeOxon

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I've finally worked out a simpler method for constructing a clerestory roof, so now I have all the vehicles needed to take Sir John's family up to London for the season.

 

On my first U29 composite, described in recent posts, I folded the roof from a single sheet of 5 thou brass sheet but found it difficult to make the reverse folds correctly. For the family saloon, which I now believe to be Diagram G13, I have therefore made the roof in three parts - two separate sides and the raised centre section. This method of construction meant that only a simple right-angle fold was needed on each piece, and it was also easy to cut out slots for the windows, along the sides of the clerestory.

 

blogentry-19820-0-38147700-1395921072.jpg

 

Apart from that, I constructed the saloon in much the same way as I had built the U29 composite.. On the composite, there are four laminations to each side - the outer three of card and the inner of styrene, so that it could be 'welded' to the styrene ends. The tumble-home of the lower side is formed by an up-turned section of the brass chassis plate. When building the saloon, I dispensed with the innermost of the card layers, but now think this was a mistake, since the thinner side is less rigid and tends to bow slightly, especially around the large saloon window. A nice thing about making the pre-printed sides with the Silhouette cutter is that is very easy to make replacements but, for the moment, I shall live with those I have.

 

There are still loads of details to add - oil lamp tops, foot-boards, buffers, couplings, etc., but I am very pleased with the '19th-century' look of these coaches, with their panelled sides and 'up and down' window line. I fear that the 80:20 rule may apply - the remaining 20% of the work needing 80% of the total effort.
blogentry-19820-0-06402600-1395921204.jpg
Left: U29 tri-composite Right: G13 1st-class saloon

 

I now have all the vehicles needed for Sir John's special train. The components are:

 

'Sir Alexander' class 2-2-2 locomotive, no.1124, sister to that illustrated at Witney on the webpage http://www.fairfordbranch.co.uk/History.htm Nos. 1124 and 1128 were the last of this class to be scrapped from Oxford shed just before WW1. My model is scratch-built from brass sheet, with a very simple 'rolling' chassis, and is powered by the tender, which has a Hornby 5-pole motor inside a white metal body from Scale Link (see my earlier post at http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/blog/1405/entry-12756-tender-drive-a-convenient-short-cut/ )

 

V5 Pasenger Brake Van, built using Shirescenes sides on a cut-down Ratio 4-wheel brake third. (described at http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/blog/1405/entry-13204-v5-full-brake/ )

 

G13 1st class saloon, scratch built on a brass Cleminson chassis, with Silhouette printed card sides and roof as described above. The prototype was apparently one of two, re-built from broad-gauge sleeping cars in 1891.

 

U29 tri- composite built by the same method as the G13 saloon. This vehicle carries the servants and other household staff in Sir John's party. I expect the greatest fun was enjoyed in the 3rd class section, where the young maids would be making their first trip to London.

 

Early (1866) Paddington-built carriage truck carying the 'Victoria' carriage for use by Lady Wilcote and her daughters, Amy and Blanche. The truck is scratch-built on a wooden frame and the carriage is built from a Scale Link kit.

 

N6 Horse Box to carry the carriage horse, with the groom in his own compartment, built from Wizard Models/51L etched brass kit (described at http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/blog/1405/entry-12276-turning-back-the-clock-2/ )

 

Although there is still a lot of detailing to complete, the following picture gives an impression of the ensemble, standing in North Leigh station.

 

blogentry-19820-0-89058800-1395921372.jpg

 

I know that 'special' trains were a regular feature of 19th-century railway operations but know very little about their actual 'make up'. If any one can provide information on an appropriate configuration for such trains, then I shall be very grateful and will modify my 'consist' accordingly.

 

Mike

 

EDIT: Alternative configuration suggested in comments, below:

 

blogentry-19820-0-74067000-1396031804.jpg

 

Any other thoughts will be gratefully received.

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I'd put the van at the end and the horses and carriage either before the van or immediately behind the engine. The two coaches could be either way but if the horses and carriage are towards the rear, such that the coaches are behind the engine then the saloon should probably follow the composite. This is just my opinion though. It could further depend on where Sir John's party were travelling from and to - the order might have been decided based on the proximity of his seat to the station buildings at one or both locations to reduce wear on his shoe leather.

 

The 'transitional' style of the composite you have chosen is something that I do like a lot.

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Thank you Rich - that's exactly the sort of suggestion I was seeking and, yes, I like the U29 for the same reason, though it was awkward to draw since almost every panel is unique!. 

 

I think I read somewhere about the horses being at the back but it does seem more likely that the PBV would be at the end.  I think I'll try: G13, U29, CT, N6, V5 starting from the engine.  

 

It's a good point about the destination.  Since the party is heading for London then, perhaps, his saloon should be at the front.  I remember the row, though, when they tried to reverse the formation of the HST's after the accidents outside Paddington.  Perhaps I should seek Sir John's views first :)

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Hi Mike. That's the most interesting train I've seen for quite a while! And the say all GWR trains are the same. A very nicely conceived and executed project, I think.

 

My instinct would also have been to put the horsebox at the rear behind the van (like here) , but Richard is more knowledgeable than me, and this being a special train - and with the horsebox being attached from the outset - I can see his point.

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...Richard is more knowledgeable than me, and this being a special train - and with the horsebox being attached from the outset - I can see his point.

 

Er, where's the properly red faced smiley? I am guessing. Is Buffalo anywhere to be found?

 

I'd be tempted to put the saloon second still: the ride would have been smoother, I think.

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Er, where's the properly red faced smiley? I am guessing. Is Buffalo anywhere to be found?

 

I'd be tempted to put the saloon second still: the ride would have been smoother, I think.

 

How about :blush_mini:. Looks like I might need one too :blush_mini:.

 

I think I would put the carriage truck and horsebox together at one end or the other. If at the rear then behind the van, otherwise the van would be the last vehicle. This would be most convenient if they had to be shunted off to a separate dock. Carriage trucks are meant for end loading so, if the destination is a terminus, it should probably be in front of the horsebox.  Most photos I recall show either one or other of these arrangements. In cases where photos show horseboxes and/or carriage trucks marshalled elsewhere, I suspect the train might have been intended to split en route.

 

Nick

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I'm pleased you find it an interesting train, Mikkel.  The idea just grew - I built the Horsebox, then I got the Silhouette cutter and one thing led to another.  I'm on a slippery slope, now I've given names to some of the characters.  I'll soon have to keep a notebook of all their family histories!  I expect there are some eligible bachelors in Farthing, who just might meet Amy and Blanche.

 

I  did like the photo that you linked - perhaps I should make a milk train next, since I have a Siphon.  On second thoughts, I really must pay some attention to the scenery and I've never finished re-ballasting the track, after inserting a 3-way point, either.  and, and, and..........

 

I've been doing a bit of maths!  There are 5 vehicles, so I reckon that they could be arranged in 120 different ways behind the engine.  Then, each could be placed either way round (hardly noticeable in the case of the V5).  It would make an interesting shunting puzzle.

 

Thank you for your suggestions too, Nick.  Let's try : tri-comp, saloon, van, carriage, horsebox - definitely with help from the big hand in the sky :)

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120 ways! Well you could try a new way every day. I'll keep a look out for photos of trains with horseboxes, I had one in mind but can't remember where it is.

 

So Amy and Blanche are looking for eligible bachelors? Well there's always Charles R. Dixon, although some say he's a rather shifty character.

 

gallery_738_870_24036.jpg

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Never mind if Charles R. Dixon is shifty - what's his fortune and how much income per year? :)  He does look a bit staid for these rather 'flighty' girls, though.  I have some Langley "Vic/Edw. Upper Class figures" so, hopefully we'll be able to see them all, before too long.  I don't think I'll be able to get near Job's painting skills, though.

 

I'll be interested to see any photos you find.  Although one reads about special trains, there seem to be very few photos. It's nice to have an 'interesting' train but it would be great to know that it's prototypical as well!

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Thanks, Mikkel, for pointing out the Andrew Stadden figures - they do look very good.   I shall have to practice on the ones I have first, before I can hope to do them justice.

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Mike,

Late to the party, very late.  All the photos I have seen on the Cambrian have the Horsebox(es) just behind the engine for a smoother ride.  I think it was common practise, but maybe not outside Wales.

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Thank you for commenting, Chris.  I once travelled in the rear coach of a DMU, which seemed to have no damping, and I had to move because of the swaying, so I have sympathy with your point! 

 

I think the consensus was that the horse box and carriage truck should be at one end or the other, so that they could be detached and unloaded easily.  I think it looks 'sensible' with the horse box at the front and the PBV at the back.  Unfortunately, I've never seen an illustration of a 'real' private train like this one.

 

Mike

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