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  1. The reference to 29mm back to back is only used as a working definition of finescale, not a qualification on membership. It functions solely as a distinction from coarse scale and the so-called "standard scale". Narrow gauge can still be modelled in finescale just as much as standard gauge can. Jim
  2. Actually £30 a year, unless you are over 65, in which case it is currently £28. Jim
  3. Like the Technical Standards for Interoperability? Jim
  4. That is simply a consequence of the fact that the RAIB's role is to establish what happened and, if necessary to identify any shortcomings and make recommendations. It is specifically barred from apportioning any blame; that is the responsibility for the safety authority, ie HMRI, as part of the ORR. Jim
  5. The Reform Group want to improve not just the way the finances are managed, but to improve all the aspects of the way in which the Guild is managed, including being open with and accountable to the members. At the same time we know that the Guild's image needs improving and the Guild as a whole moving away from being steam centric. It's 50 years since steam finished on BR, many diesels have come and gone, and the Guild needs moving into the 21st century. Jim
  6. Yes, and looked quite different as a consequence. I remember them going through Acton Works at the time, whilst I was a young engineer in the CME's department. Jim
  7. However, bottom discharge was a permitted option under the RCH specifications for class B tank wagons. Jim
  8. Whilst the reds are particularly prone to fading, the problem lessens with the darker shades, hence the use of maroon and crimson in preference to the bright reds. Even the London Transport reds (bus and underground were slightly different) were darker than pure red. The situation with greens and blues was similar, and again it is the darker shades that were more common, not that blue was particularly common to start with. Jim
  9. That reads more like a catalogue of sour grapes from a professional design house whose corporate ego has been punctured by the client doing the job quite successfully by themselves, with a degree of amateur help. Jim
  10. But whether the safety authorities (the ORR) would agree, given the current nature of the network, is another matter entirely. Even the Docklands Light Railway isn't fully automatic as it still requires manual oversight of door closure, a requirement that is as true today as it was when the DLR was built. Boris does not understand, or has not even bothered to try to understand, that UK law doesn't permit a train operator to hold the passenger responsible for any injuries caused by getting trapped in the closing doors and/or dragged by the train. Jim
  11. Locomotive coal was normally supplied "as mined", ie ungraded, whereas most coal for domestic and industrial use was graded by size. At a guess, ungraded coal was probably cheaper, and given the amount that the railways used, that could amount to a significant cost saving. Depending on the plant they had, some industries, such as power generation might buy ungraded coal for the same reasons, but they used machinery to reduce the coal to specific sizes to suit their mechanically stoked boilers. Jim
  12. Unless I'm being slow, that doesn't make sense. On the climb to the summit, the couplings would all be in tension, and will remain in that state until, in simple terms, more than half the mass of the train passes the summit. At that point, the couplings will start to close up, which is hardly going to break them. I would have expected the problem to be at bottom of a dip, when the train transitions from leaning on the locomotive to hanging on the drawbar. Jim
  13. I fully agree, my speculation is that with highly effective garratts it might have pushed things more in that direction, at least for block movements There comes a point where the haulage capability of the locomotive becomes limited by the strength of the drawgear on the wagons at the front of the train. Then again, with very long trains, managing them over successive changes of gradient calls for considerable skills on the part of both driver and guard to avoid drawgear damage. Jim
  14. Useful in such spectacles as this is that once you induce wheelslip, the coefficient of friction falls. No oiling of the rails is needed. Jim
  15. Not to mention the strange dark arts practiced by the Signal Engineers, who from my days on London Underground had the final say in determining what constituted a train. Jim
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