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A pair of brake wagons in service.

Dave John

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Some photos of the brake wagons. Both have a rather rough appearance, but I doubt they were high up the list for maintenance.

 

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I have made a few guesses about the final finishing.

 

Firstly, I’m not sure about the running numbers. I know that No. 185 was of this type so I have just used a couple of close low numbers. Being built on early wagon frames they might just have been painted on rather than having number plates.

 

Secondly, it was CR practice to paint the ends of brake vans vermillion. These brake wagons don’t have much of an end, so I have just painted the outside of the end footboards red. The overall colour seems to have a bit of a purplish tinge when photographed. 

 

Thirdly, lamp irons. There is an amendment on the drawing of the later type of brake wagon indicating that lamp studs should be fitted, but that is dated 1913. I have no idea whether that applied to the earlier type as well, but if the earlier type had them I would guess that the later type would have them fitted at build. However I can’t imagine going out on the main line at night without one so I have fitted 235 with a lamp just fixed to the handrail with wire. Might well have been the kind of improvised solution applied at the time.

 

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If more accurate information comes to light then I can always redo them

 

 

This is my take on how they would be used. A small trip working. Four empty cattle wagons, an old pig iron wagon and a brake wagon out on the main line.

 

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It might have kept the BOT happy, but it looks like Archibald would prefer a proper brake van.

 

  • Like 11
  • Craftsmanship/clever 2


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These must only have been used in situations where no paperwork was required - guard's journal etc. Would they even have been allowed out on the running lines?

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Apologies, just went back to the previous post and read comments there re. main line working. Still no place for the guard's journal, flags, detonators, lamps, tea caddy, etc.

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Very true compound, I am still not sure how they would have been worked in practice. As you say, there is no storage capacity, I think they must have been limited to working short trips on the mainline for transfer of a few wagons between yards. Then again the brakesmen, of which there might have been quite a few on early passenger trains prior to the introduction of the continuous brake in addition to an overall guard, would not have such facilities either. 

 

This is where I hope further researches by the CRA might shed light on things. These brake wagons did not seem to be under the control of a Guard, indeed the drawing of this one specifically refers to a Brakesman as late as 1913. My guess is that Guard and Brakesman were different jobs, the later being solely to control a brake wagon rather than oversee and document the safe conduct of a train. It may not even have been a specific job by this time, just allocated as and when to yard staff as required. 

 

"Operating the Caledonian part 2" may shed some light on the matter. 

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Love these, they look great. Perhaps the addition of a toolbox or chest to contain any paperwork, lamps and sandwiches?

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Excellent looking models Dave. I always wondered what these would have looked like as part of a train. Can't have been much fun working these trains in winter!

 

Ross

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In general appearance they look like the brake wagons designed for Clee Hill rope worked incline by the LNWR in the 1800s.

Gordon A

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Well, hopefully a photo may come to light to see whether any storage was fitted, though I think the brakesman would be doing other things as well, possibly assisting or acting as the shunter. Winter working must have been hard, no wonder the accident rates were high.

 

Perhaps the use of such wagons elsewhere as Gordon suggests happened elsewhere but just never got recorded. 

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Looking at those wagons I'm reminded of the brake wagon used by the NBR on Cowlairs Bank while it was rope worked. I suspect that the Caly versions were used in similar situations. 

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