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Everything posted by wagonman

  1. But surely historians have always judged the past by the standards of their own times – what else could they do? When I was studying history one of the texts I had to read was Pieter Geyl's analysis of the changing attitudes to Napoleon Bonaparte during the 130 or so years since Waterloo (he was writing 'Napoleon For and Against' in the mid 1940s).
  2. There's a lot of cocaine swilling about in the District of Columbia ... or did you mean Colombia?
  3. As some wag sprayed on a wall of the Odéon in Paris in May 1968, "Je suis Marxiste – tendence Groucho".
  4. When Network Rail was created out of the ashes of Failtrack they promised they would take the bulk of their work in-house with the twin aims of improving control and reducing costs. It doesn't seem to have happened though... A rolling programme of electrification using their own labour would be better than the ludicrous situation we have had recently with schemes cancelled half way through and operators forced to use inefficient and expensive bi-mode trains instead.
  5. Most DLOs were attached to Housing or Refuse departments and were usually kept busy. They were abolished under 'Thatcherism' from the '80s on, not because they were inefficient (some were, some weren't) but because they failed to provide profit opportunities for the Tory Party's sponsors.
  6. You just have to worry about the man-eating pike...
  7. I'm afraid to say the brake push rods on your 3 plank are the wrong way round as those wagons had normal lever brakes.
  8. The various divisions seemed to have used different designations for the various coach rakes. For instance, what Ian Smith describes as a B-set in Bristol (c1918 and presumably earlier too) was a K-set. Their B-sets were made up of a close coupled trio B/3rd+Compo+3rd (usually T47, U4 and S9 as modelled by Ratio) with a loose B/3rd to round it off. The basic set could have strengtheners added, and the odd swinger too.
  9. Indeed, and I remember several of the posters had the added line "and driven by morons"
  10. You can add to the list King Oliver and Earl Hines (perched on his Manhattan telephone directory). I don't suppose Prince counts though...
  11. At the risk of allowing boring reality to creep in, I would point out that mining – digging holes in the ground in search of specific minerals – has a long history in Norfolk. https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/grimes-graves-prehistoric-flint-mine/
  12. I rescued my first wife from life as a SAG. Henceforth she has been a SAK (small improvement I know).
  13. There was a well known American author called Eudora Welty though whether she had anything to do with the email program Eudora I know not.
  14. That has more than a whiff of urban myth about it.
  15. Men already have the other 23 hours a day – or so the feminists would claim (with some justification).
  16. For Ankh Morpork I suggest you up your wagon/coach turntable quota by a factor of two at least. I'm sure young Master Simnel would see the benefit.
  17. The Tilbury lines out of Fenchurch Street were operated for several years by the Stonier 3 cylinder 2-6-4-Ts built especially for the line. After the 1950s some BR 4MTs were drafted in as well. There were other lines where specially designed classes held sway, if not total exclusivity. Think of the Oban Bogies for instance.
  18. Question 1: No. The Hornby and Dapol 7 plank mineral wagons are fiction. Question 2: No again. Though some of the wooden wagons acquired at nationalisation were comparatively new they had short lives being swept away by the tsunami of 16 ton minerals. Question 3: I'm not familiar with the actual kits but if the buffers are too high when the correct wheels are fitted then there must be a mistake somewhere...
  19. As has been suggested, two platforms, one each for arrivals and departures, separated by a number of carriage sidings and joined by turntable, possibly at both ends, would seem to be the way to go for the 1850s. The old Bishopsgate terminus of the Eastern Counties was another that fitted that template – for a while at least.
  20. One way to get the multiple exposures was to use a complex system of beam splitters and filters, but such a system would be prone to mis-calibration and colour fringing. It seems likeliest that Prokudin-Gorskii used a simpler arrangement whereby the long thin plate was moved across the camera back between exposures – hence the long thin format. The downside would be the time taken to make the exposure which would cause problems with any subject not totally immobile – apparently some of his plates did show this effect which have had to be removed digitally. It's interesting to think
  21. He must have been using some of the earliest panchromatic films to be able to shoot through a red filter. His basic technique was later used by Techniclour for their film stock except of course they had to expose the three images simultaneously.
  22. While I greatly admire Mike's skill and perseverance – and agree with him that when a model ceases to be fun, put it aside for a while. Problem is when you're as easily distracted as I am you end up with a shelf full of half completed models slowly disappearing under the dust of ages. I would show you a picture but it's too embarrassing !
  23. Have you noticed how the Prime Minister's official spokesman, Boris Johnson, is sounding more like Trump every day.
  24. From a friend's favourite satirical crochet artist ...
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