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George England 2-2-2


5&9Models

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Over the few years I've been a member of RMWeb, I seem to have erroneously created several blogs. My clumsy grasp of computers has been a bit frustrating as I never know where I've posted and have a horrible habit of posting new material on the wrong blog and so on. Therefore a little bit of belated Spring Cleaning is required and I have copied the info from my previous 'George England 2-2-2' blog to this one so that I can have it all in the right place. So, apologies to those who have read the first bit before and I hope that the new material is sufficiently interesting to make up for it!

 

The Railway Chronicle for December 16th 1848, carries an article on 'a specimen of a light locomotive, called the 'Little England', which, with its tender on the same frame, will work the ordinary stock of a company. The 'Little England' and tender weigh together when roadworthy 9 tons 5 cwt. It has a 7-in. cylinder, a 12-in. stroke, and 4 ft. 6 in. driving wheels. The diameter of the leading trailing wheels is 3ft. The distance between the extreme centres is 14ft.'  The article goes on to describe the journey from New Cross to Brighton station with three first-class carriages containing 31 persons of note. Its sprightly performance was much praised and George England went on to produce several versions at his Hatcham Iron Works just off the Old Kent Road.

 

In the Summer of 1849, George made his first sale of his little 2-2-2 engine to the Dundee, Perth & Aberdeen Railway. Before the year was out, a further example (named Dwarf) went to the London & Blackwall, and the following year six more were sent to a variety of destinations. Of these, three (named England, Samson and Hercules) went to the L&B, one (also named England) travelled north to the Edinburgh & Glasgow and another to the Liverpool, Crosby & Southport Rly. A further locomotive (named Little England) was prepared for the Great Exhibition, becoming exhibit no.509 and receiving a Gold Medal for it's efforts.

 

A charming contemporary illustration apparently shows 'Little England' and is probably the Great Exhibition engine with a wheelbase of 15ft. Clark also illustrated one of George's engines with a 12ft. 6in. wheelbase, so there were different versions along the same theme sometimes with the same name. Finally, a photograph of 'Dwarf' on the Sandy & Potton confirms the 15ft wheelbase version.

 

The aforementioned etches provide a good basis for what is essentially a scratch build. Motorising such a tiny loco is always a challenge and I chose to hide an H&S mini motor in the bunker and drop the gears down under the footplate, up into the firebox, to a 40:1 worm and pinion on the driving axle. The gears themselves were robbed from an old toy engine from my childrens wooden train set, (don't worry, the motor was burned out beyond redemption - I'm not that mean)! It all seems to run very sweetly and does the job at a total of 90:1. I'm going with the 15ft wheelbase for my model although I'd like it to be 14ft to represent the original 'Little England' I can't face 'cutting and shutting' the etches and it's not obvious where to loose the 4mm without making it look very odd indeed. I suspect I would need to steel 2mm from behind the drivers somewhere and 2mm in front which is just too much hassle!

 

I appreciate this little locomotive has graced the pages of RMweb before thanks to the excellent contribution by chris p bacon, however, thanks to the aforementioned gent sending me a set of etches to aid the scratch building of my own attempt, I thought I'd share the progress here. 

 

The Railway Chronicle for December 16th 1848, carries an article on 'a specimen of a light locomotive, called the 'Little England', which, with its tender on the same frame, will work the ordinary stock of a company. The 'Little England' and tender weigh together when roadworthy 9 tons 5 cwt. It has a 7-in. cylinder, a 12-in. stroke, and 4 ft. 6 in. driving wheels. The diameter of the leading trailing wheels is 3ft. The distance between the extreme centres is 14ft.'  The article goes on to describe the journey from New Cross to Brighton station with three first-class carriages containing 31 persons of note. Its sprightly performance was much praised and George England went on to produce several versions at his Hatcham Iron Works just off the Old Kent Road.

 

In the Summer of 1849, George made his first sale of his little 2-2-2 engine to the Dundee, Perth & Aberdeen Railway. Before the year was out, a further example (named Dwarf) went to the London & Blackwall, and the following year six more were sent to a variety of destinations. Of these, three (named England, Samson and Hercules) went to the L&B, one (also named England) travelled north to the Edinburgh & Glasgow and another to the L.C&S.Rly. (although what that stands for I'm not sure - help me out someone)! A further locomotive (named Little England) was prepared for the Great Exhibiton, becoming exhibit no.509.

 

A charming contemporary illustration apparently shows 'Little England' and is probably the Great Exhibition engine with a wheelbase of 15ft. Clark also illustrated one of George's engines with a 12ft. 6in. wheelbase, so there were different versions along the same theme sometimes with the same name. Finally, a photograph of 'Dwarf' on the Sandy & Potton confirms the 15ft wheelbase version.

 

The aforementioned etches provided a good basis for what was essentially a scratch build. Motorising such a tiny loco is always a challenge and I chose to hide an H&S mini motor in the bunker and drop the gears down under the footplate, up into the firebox, to a 40:1 worm and pinion on the driving axle. The gears themselves were robbed from an old toy engine from my childrens wooden train set, (don't worry, the motor was burned out beyond redemption - I'm not that mean)! It all seems to run very sweetly and does the job at a total of 90:1. I'm going with the 15ft wheelbase for my model although I'd like it to be 14ft to represent the original 'Little England' I can't face 'cutting and shutting' the etches and it's not obvious where to loose the 4mm without making it look very odd indeed. I suspect I would need to steel 2mm from behind the drivers somewhere and 2mm in front which is just too much hassle!

 

IMG_2347.jpg.1b1b5430dc0f19c3ad3f8f69e87e072e.jpg

 

Having cobbled together a working gearbox the rest of the loco could be built up. It's a combination of etches and bits of brass and nickel silver. The copper firebox top, dome, chimney and other round parts were turned up on the lathe, an essential tool when modelling engines of this period as one can certainly never expect to find the correct size and shape from proprietary sources.

 

IMG_2360.jpg.7a24ef25a79f053507e42029f73c11a8.jpg

 

The final chassis has wiper pick-ups to the leading and driving wheels, but the trailing wheels had to be cast from resin. An issue I hadn't foreseen was that the usual steel-tyred wheels ran so close to the sides of the motor that all they wanted to do was stick to it. The only solution was to make them from plastic and the resulting wheels work just fine... thankfully!

 

386692996_Chassis01.jpg.19165efd78ad413bbd3504c837531548.jpg

Facing right.

 

1808017363_Chassis02.jpg.d5ea62053884529f42e508505d000432.jpg

Facing Left, and not quite on the rails...!

 

1660702925_LE01.jpg.d1b869609d4316b2a7c2784b7817ceee.jpg

 

739407414_LE02.jpg.0622942bf37bc3f98678e5e8492a00a1.jpg

 

138004814_LE03.jpg.17c5505077a36f5c7564abac2db1d634.jpg

 

1097043240_LE04.jpg.13b40f2f39cd39c217e2074d5c15c6b0.jpg

 

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15 Comments


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Very good design with the whole gearbox assembly and I am impressed by the brightwork on the engine details. 

 

To be fair it really is well worth posting twice, and liking twice. 

 

 

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"will work the ordinary stock of a company" - the writer forgot to add "one vehicle at a time"...

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18 minutes ago, Compound2632 said:

"will work the ordinary stock of a company" - the writer forgot to add "one vehicle at a time"...


To be honest I’ve yet to see if it will work the ordinary stock of a model railway!

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Excellent. No one has mentioned the front buffers. Not so much fuss in those days :)

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20 hours ago, 5&9Models said:


To be honest I’ve yet to see if it will work the ordinary stock of a model railway!

Chris 

Where are you going to find some stock that would fall into most people's idea of "ordinary"?

Best wishes 

Eric 

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Compound2632

Posted (edited)

2 hours ago, Mikkel said:

Excellent. No one has mentioned the front buffers. Not so much fuss in those days :)

 

The rear ones look dicier as they appear to lack the diagonal brace. One heavy shunt and buckled bunker...

 

EDIT: Tank, I should have said. That "bunker" is mostly water tank.

Edited by Compound2632
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2 hours ago, Compound2632 said:

 

The rear ones look dicier as they appear to lack the diagonal brace. One heavy shunt and buckled bunker...


In Mr England’s obsession with lowering the centre of gravity he seems to have forgotten that the buffers really do work better with the support of the frame behind them. As you say, one heavy shunt and they would buckle.

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Compound2632

Posted (edited)

3 hours ago, 5&9Models said:

In Mr England’s obsession with lowering the centre of gravity 

 

A misplaced obsession and the fundamental fallacy underwriting the monstrous waste of investors' capital on Brunel's broad gauge lines. McConnell, on the Birmingham & Gloucester and then the LNWR Southern Division, seems to have been one of the first to appreciate that a high centre of gravity was not only safe (on a well-engineered road) but also more desirable, as less destructive on the permanent way. As a locomotive pitches and rolls, it exerts both vertical and transverse forces on the rails. The higher the centre of gravity, the smaller the component of transverse force. The permanent way is designed to take large vertical forces but is relatively weak in the transverse direction. So a locomotive with a low centre of gravity will spread the road more than one with a high centre of gravity.

Edited by Compound2632
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This evening’s test was to see if Little England would actually pull six cast white metal 1st class carriages on a level road, and... “Oh ye of little faith”... it did!

 

But, (and there’s always a ‘but’), it would only do it bunker first and the gears make quite a racket! I also need to adjust the spring loading on the front axle as the wheels slide a bit. Perhaps a weighted collar around the axle would help.


For the sake of BBC style balance, I also tried my 0-4-2 on the same rake and it strolled quietly away with them like they weren’t there! I love that engine..!
 

 

CC658D97-988B-49CF-9094-5CD771E61DA0.jpeg

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That 0-4-2 looks very much as if its going to grow up to become a classic French Belle Époque 2-4-2!

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Some lovely work here, reminiscent of Mike Sharman with his cracking oddities.

 

Please keep it up !

 

G

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I was about to say 'lovely work and a nice prototype' about the George England 2-2-2... which I still say, but I then scrolled down and saw the 0-4-2 - which is just gorgeous!! As bgman says, all very reminiscent of Mike Sharman, wonderful! :)

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