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bécasse

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  1. That is an interesting comparison with the construction of Bembridge in P4 fifty years ago which, although privately owned, was largely built at Keen House and was always billed as "by members of the Model Railway Club". Its total stand frontage probably wasn't very different to that of CF, it was just as pioneering and it was almost totally scratch built, but we had an active team of just five (with odd bits of help from other members) and, starting with a site visit in mid-September 1969 through to exhibiting at the Easter Central Hall show in 1971, it took us just over 18 months.
  2. Indeed, I have no doubt what the reaction of the Inspecting Officer to the concept of an incline leading straight into a wrong direction running line and into a tunnel to boot. He would no doubt have used some choice words to express that reaction verbally but in writing it would simply have been "NO!".
  3. There is an 1:148 white metal kit available for a steam roller which might make a suitable load - and provide a raison d'être for the use of the G1 diagram wagon. Lytchett-Manor steam roller link
  4. It is a strange thing (because most ex-GWR carriages that were painted crimson quickly weathered to a pale, almost orange, colour - I suspect that a white or light grey undercoat might have been used), but those ex-GWR autocars that were painted allover crimson came out a dowdy dark colour that was very close to how they would have looked in the later maroon had they ever been painted thus (and I agree that they wouldn't have been). When the Airfix model first came out, I remember a learned friend saying that it was so nice because "that was just how people remember them".
  5. If an N is basically the same as an A26 with a section cut out, and an A26 body is available from Simon Dawson (Rue d'Êtropal), have you asked Simon if he would add an N to his range. Since he already has a CAD file for an A26, creating a file for the shorter N should, at least in theory, be a very simple task.
  6. The layout may seem haphazard to you but you can be sure that there was a logical reason for it. the most likely reason for choosing particular inter-window spacings is that they made best use of the timber sizes available in the works, minimising the amount of sawing (and especially sawing along the grain) required. It is by no means impossible that there was no fully dimensioned drawing when the first example was built (drawings weren't normally used on the shop-floor of railway works anyway) and the men on the ground (and especially the foreman) worked out the most efficient way of arrangin
  7. As you have doubtless spotted, Tim, those "knees" are there to help support a cantilevered walkway with handrail that runs the length of each roof outside the guttering whose purpose was to facilitate the maintenance of the slate roofing. The walkway could have been either wooden planking or a steel/iron grill, the photo suggesting the former. Such walkways were actually quite common on roofs on large buildings, indicating that provision for (relatively) safe working at a height didn't start with an EU directive on the subject (or even the UK's own H&S legislation of the sixti
  8. Now that I have had my memory triggered, I agree, both names were familiar but I couldn't quite remember how they fitted with each other. I couldn't be certain about the 1930 changeover date, but if that is what Mike says, it is bound to be right.
  9. Actually, sarking was commonplace anywhere, the slates have to be nailed to something and in the days before the Great War when timber (and labour) was relatively cheap it was probably simpler to lay planks rather than battens. After the Great War new roofs, at least in the London area, tended to be tiled rather than slated and, although they were laid on battens (the tiles having moulded projections so that they didn't need nailing), they were also stronger and incendiary bombs were less likely to break through them. The great danger with incendiary bombs was that they would lodge somewhere o
  10. I meant to comment on the roofs visible in this photo when it first appeared but somehow failed to do so. Most domestic properties in the inner suburbs of London whose roofs are fronted by parapet walls, as these are, have twin slopes draining down from the fire walls either side (an LCC Building Regulations requirement) into a central front to back gully, and there are plenty of such examples modelled on CF. These, however, have a single slope which drains down to a (hidden in this view) gully along the nearer fire wall. This might just give more usable attic space but I suspect a
  11. On the Eastern and Central sections the contractor was the Pullman Car Company, sometimes using that company's vehicles, sometimes using vehicles supplied by the Southern Railway. An obvious example of which was the 6-car electric sets which worked on the Brighton main and east and west coast lines - the 6-PUL sets having a single Pullman car which provided light catering for the whole set (as well as providing seating for which a supplementary charge was payable), while the 6-PAN sets just included a pantry with serving hatch within one of the seating carriages which again provided light cate
  12. Interesting that that was a three-horse dray, although I think it unlikely that they would have been used in the (relatively) heavy traffic in London - too difficult to control. Photos in Oakwood Press's book on the potato railways of Lincolnshire show two horse and one horse (but with an assisting horse) drays. The cost of moving potatoes, even in a rural area, by horse and dray was, of course, the rationale behind the creation of the county's many potato railways many of which were worked by horse.
  13. Judging by the 5kg bags that I buy in the supermarket, potatoes are quite heavy items for their bulk and that leads me to believe that two-horse drays would have been used. Coal merchants generally got away with using a single horse but, firstly, their deliveries were usually quite local and consequently the dray was probably stationary for unloading more than it was on the move, and, secondly, the load would have got progressively lighter as the round progressed; both factors significantly reducing the total effort required by a single horse.
  14. There is a (small) drawing of a two horse dray in Beal's Modelling the Old Time Railways and there should be a copy in the MRC library - once you can get back to Keen House, of course.
  15. No.7 is Neath Riverside on the former Neath & Brecon line. Brecon is a likely destination for the train pictured - so no later than 1962. I wondered if no.9 might be in the rugged "arrière pays" between Calais and Boulogne and whether the train, given the stock it is formed of, might be a (British) enthusiasts' special.
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