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Il Grifone

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  • Location
    Essex next to the LT&SR and Sardinia Costa dei Grifoni
  • Interests
    GWR, DSB, FS, ATSF and SP. and trains in general.

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  1. The Gresley bogies are equalised and indicate an earlier example of the car, whereas the BR type are rigid and indicate a later example. Hornby Dublo cars only carry the numbers '74' for the 2nd class saloon and '79' for the brake/2nd, but the Wrenn reissues can have other numbers. Wrenn cars usually have the Tri-ang tension lock, but this could be substituted with the Dublo type. The third car looks like a Wrenn example to me, but it will be marked underneath. There will be an indication where the mould was modified to remove the Dublo name! The Wrenn cream is usually darker (more yellow) than the Dublo and they made alterations to the lining. It could have been renumbered/lined by a previous owner as stated, but this will detract from the value (collectors like original!), or it could even be a Wrenn body on a Dublo chassis. They screw together so are easy to dismantle. Take care to not lose the spacers around the securing screws. These serve to prevent the body being tightened too far onto the chassis and easily fall out and lose themselves. The cars aren't especially valuable - usually £10-20 (the presence of the box will increase this considerably). Damage (the missing dropper for example) will decrease the value. Even a slight mark will knock 10-20% off the mint value (as quoted in price guides) A poor example about 10% of this. About 50% of the mint/boxed price is for the box (yes really! ). Again condition is all important. AFAIK there is no great difference in value between the various versions, but Wrenn is a bit of a minefield here.
  2. Peco did produce (still do?) a fixed ramp. Basically it consists of two flexible 'check rails' curved inwards at one end. Pushing two vehicles from this end will open the couplings and reversing will leave one uncoupled. Pushing further past the ramp will allow them to couple again and now reversing will cause the droppers to pass through the centre of the ramp and remain coupled (in theory at least!). This is fine for sidings, but not much use elsewhere. The Dublo (and Trix*) uncouplers only function by lifting the uncoupling ramp either manually or electrically. * Since the droppers are at a different spacing, they are not compatible though identical in function.
  3. The difference is 'rivet counter' is based on reality, whereas the 'golden ear ' is entirely subjective. (There was a test in the early 90s in one of the magazines in the States where a group of 'golden ears' selected a $200 Pioneer amplifier as 'best'!). Many years earlier one of the British pedants ne month was castigating digital sound and a month on two later saying how good the FM sound was. The problem was that the link to the Wrotham transmitter was already digital....
  4. The Trix Twin Pullmans are not uncommon, considering they cost over a pound (something like 25/- IIRC) in the days when a pound actually bought something. The reflective internal white paper lining is usually discoloured and the contact for the centre rail is usually missing as it is rather delicate. Initially the roofs were white, but changed to grey on later examples (Easily swopped of course, as the roof is removable for access to the lighting - two 75mA 14V bulbs. Trix transformers were rated 3Aso the drain from the lighting wasn't a problem. Other makes werre not as generous, not that Trix would run on any other make of track.) (Reply drafted this morning but here in Sardinia the internet is not all it might be!)
  5. I bought my taps from Proops on eBay (usual disclaimer).
  6. It looks Hamblings to me. My guess as to the choice of an N2 is that the high pitched boiler (which gave problems on the prototype) gives plenty of room for a bulky motor.
  7. I get mine direct from China on eBay. Apart from directly ordering specific sizes, kits of assorted sizes are available as spectacle repair kits.
  8. Meccano would enable a simple and reliable traverser to be built. Parts can be obtained on eBay at reasonable cost. There are also Chinese clones available (usually metric based - 1 cm rather than 1/2" hole spacing). Four pulleys and a few girders should make a solid frame. (Meccano nuts and bolts are 5/32" Whitworth, but 4MA will do just as well Just don't mix them.)
  9. wire a resistor in series with each LED. They are cheap enough especially direct from China (delivery may be extended). I use 330ohm for 5V and 1kohm for 12V. 20V would require something higher say 2k2ohm. 1/4 watt rating will be more than adequate, Resistors can be connected in series to give the higher resistances. The actual value is not overly critical. Since the current demand is low (100 LEDs will only require about an ampere). they can be fed from the track supply at worst, though aseparate power supply is better. Try to avoid the switch mode type (check by weight - heavy indicates a transformer! Ideally the LEDs should be fed from a DC supply.
  10. They did their job! When you got it right the first time, why change?
  11. I would agree that the 1/2" motor is much less conspicuous than the ringfield (the cab full of motor always put me off buying the Castle, 8F or rebuilt WC). I do have one of the latter now (her performance can't be faulted), but my collections lacks the other two. The 1/2" is quite capable of pulling seven Dublo coaches (plain bearings and heavy), so should have no trouble with about three times as many fitted with pin point bearings. As regards DCC operation, there shouldn't be any problem insulating the other brush from the chassis and there's plenty of room for the decoder in the tender. The only problem could be that the motors are rather current hungry and need a robust decoder capable of supplying at least an ampere. (The draw should be less than this (around 600/700mA), but it's better to be on the safe side.)
  12. Very easy with meths! My brother's Mamod traction engine never worked again after we used the wrong fuel for it.... Quote from the Hornby ad. "The Hornby Train lasts for ever." True enough! It takes neglect or deliberate misuse to kill them. My LMS No. 1 tank from two or three years later still runs perfectly. The 30/- (1922) is allegedly now £84.53. One saved a few bob by buying the set. I believe the LBSC version is the rarest.
  13. I used some gloss black paint (Humbrol?). Its duration will depend on use, but I can't recommend the practice. With the right tools the wheels can be bored out and insulated, but the wheel profile is less than ideal. They could be turned to a better profile but is it worth the trouble? Nucro used to do a Dublo standard wheel, but hen's teeth come to mind now.
  14. I did that with my A4 tender when I converted her to 2 rail (cheapskate!). It worked for quite a while. The proper nylon wheels were quite expensive IIRC.
  15. Further research found the following https://www.reboxx.com/wheelsets.htm
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