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Mealsgate M&CR EM gauge layout


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Lovely to see such unusual models, in EM too. I have only just spotted the mention of the Denny fretsaw machine. Here it is in all its pre-war glory. He bought it for 18 Guineas in 1937 or 17 Guineas in 1938. I can't recall which way round it was. A lot of money back then but he got every penny worth out of it.

 

DSCN1861.JPG.ff0b0cef51ef7ccf534e3ac70251f79f.JPG

 

Also a snap of some scrap that came to me, showing how he pinned metal to Bristol Board/Hardboard to allow him to cut it with coarser blades. You can make out loco shaped bits. I may have to try to work out which loco they are from one day.

 

DSCN1864.JPG.7e379ce51eafce2d5f00d4120685f721.JPG

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Would you believe that my bedtime reading this very evening included 'Buckingham Great Central' ?! The legendary Hobbies fretsaw is even more old-fashioned than I thought as I always pictured it as having some sort of art deco 1930s styling, forgetting just how archaic many pre-war items were - did the job though !

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I still use it from time to time, especially if I need a cut that the frame of my hand saw is too small for.

 

It does rattle a bit now! Maybe it always did.

 

It snaps fine blades for fun, which is why the trick with the board was used to create an artificial thicker material and allow more substantial blades to be used.

 

Glad to hear you have been reading up on the old layout!

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What strikes me from seeing the scrap pieces from 'Buckingham' is how neat they are and a real testament to just what a skilled craftsman Peter Denny was - even his discarded scrap is  still inspirational !

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Lots of progress tonight. Well, lots by my indolent standards. I've trimmed the firebox on No.7 and added some strengthening strips along the lower edges to make a nice solid job. As a result, the body and chassis now fit together again and I can make a start on the cab and the tender. As for the putative No. 20, a rummage in the stores produced not only the requisite double buffer beam intended for the Beyer-Peacock kitbash, but a passable chimney and dome, another set of safety valves and, would you believe it, an M&CR cab front ! I originally made this for No.7 from plans for 0-4-2 No.4, which has a narrower cab and by coincidence, it's spot on for No.20. I'll obviously still need to cut it away to accommodate the rear splashers but this has saved rather a lot of work and wear & tear on my increasingly painful arthritic hands. I'll probably fill the large space on No. 20's boiler where the GWR dome was fitted and return to both of them tomorrow - I work 0.8 wte and tomorrow is my weekday off  and whilst this is usually a gardening day, it looks like more rain is forecast !

M&CR 2 for 1.jpg

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12 hours ago, CKPR said:

What strikes me from seeing the scrap pieces from 'Buckingham' is how neat they are and a real testament to just what a skilled craftsman Peter Denny was - even his discarded scrap is  still inspirational !

 

That was just what I thought and why I have kept them. The fretsaw machine is a fantastic bit of kit that involves great hand, eye and foot coordination but when somebody had as much practice as Peter Denny did, it really is a joy to use and cutting neatly like that is still possible. I cut some valances for a 7mm loco on it and the edge only needed a touch with a file afterwards to clean it up.

 

 

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Been at the workbench today and it's past the point of no return with No.20 as she's lost her buffer beam, steps,  much of her valences and smokebox front. together with the odd handrail or two.I've just soldered up the buffer beam to new brass overlays for the cut down valences and nearly completed a new smokebox front - no photographs for now as its all too much of a mess at this stage !

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No. 7 and No.20 (or maybe No.6 ?)  at the close of play this evening - No. 20 now has a new smokebox front, buffer beam and valences and has had the large hole in her boiler filled. This brings both engines to a similar state of completion and I can build them in unison from here onwards. In reality, these two engines were both built and rebuilt at Maryport and despite their very different pedigrees in model form, I am discerning a distinct family likeness, which I'm taking as indicating that I'm on the right lines.

M&CR_7_&_20_[2].jpg

M&CR_7_&_20_[1].jpg

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On 19/06/2020 at 19:46, CKPR said:

No. 7 and No.20 (or maybe No.6 ?)  at the close of play this evening - No. 20 now has a new smokebox front, buffer beam and valences and has had the large hole in her boiler filled. This brings both engines to a similar state of completion and I can build them in unison from here onwards. In reality, these two engines were both built and rebuilt at Maryport and despite their very different pedigrees in model form, I am discerning a distinct family likeness, which I'm taking as indicating that I'm on the right lines.

M&CR_7_&_20_[2].jpg

M&CR_7_&_20_[1].jpg


 

Hi CKPR,

 

Would it be possible for you to take the photos with your back to the light please?  The back lighting of the subject makes the detail impossible to appreciate.

 

Ian.

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On 13/01/2020 at 10:48, Compound2632 said:

I'm inclined to think that the Sou'-West's shed being off M&C metals may have had some influence too - the 0-4-2s and 2-4-0s have something Stirlingesque about them.

 

On 13/01/2020 at 10:57, CKPR said:

Indeed and it probably  goes both ways as Hugh Smellie worked for the M&CR before he went to the G&SWR  to succeed James Stirling https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hugh_Smellie .

 


That Wikipedia article is pretty basic. Before he went to the M&CR, Smellie had been employed in the Kilmarnock works of the G&SWR for 14 years, rising to works manager in succession to James Stirling when Stirling became locomotive superintendent. So it isn’t too much of a surprise that there are strong ‘Stirling’ influences in M&CR engines.

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9 hours ago, [email protected] said:

Would it be possible for you to take the photos with your back to the light please?  The back lighting of the subject makes the detail impossible to appreciate.

 

That's very kind as you're presuming there's actually some detail to appreciate...expect an update (with better photos)  at the end of the week when I've hopefully made further progress with the very Stirling-esque cabs

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On 13/01/2020 at 18:48, Compound2632 said:

 

I'm inclined to think that the Sou'-West's shed being off M&C metals may have had some influence too - the 0-4-2s and 2-4-0s have something Stirlingesque about them.

Carlisle Currock didn't open until 1895, the G&SW had other unsatisfactory arrangements to the south of the city prior to that.  By that time the G&SW was in the Manson era, 0-4-2s and domeless boilers were of the past.  The G&SW only allowed Hugh Smellie a wee loan period at the M&C, he was essentially a Kilmarnock man, steeped in the traditions of the Stirling brothers.

 

Alan

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It just shows how parochial we can be in our interests as my knowledge of the G&SW is very sketchy despite it having a major presence in Carlisle, the link with the M&CR and, rather shamefully, my own Scots ancestry on my mum's side. Mind you, my dad's family came over from the Netherlands in the 17th century and my knowledge of the pre-NS HSM is nil...

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A very belated update but some progress to report. I've bitten the bullet and tackled the rear splashers on No.7 using more of the stock of Nu-Cast 'BTP' splasher fronts and some scrap brass fret - the slotted sides will be hidden by the cab but I've had to make backs for the splashers as these will be visible inside said cab. This brings No.7 to the same state as No.20, which already had rear splashers courtesy of her Airfix / Mainline  'Dean Goods' origins. I can't say that I'm entirely happy with how these have turned out as they are more wonky than I would have liked but this sort of fabrication from scratch is now quite difficult and rather painful for me to do. Anyway, job done and most of it will be hidden in the cab, the front of which can be seen in the photos. The next job is to make a simple wooden former for the cabs for both these two and 0-4-2 No.4  - the M&CR might have been very individualistic and idiosyncratic when it came to building and rebuilding locomotives but I'm imposing a degree of standardisation in my miniature version of the Maryport workshops.

 

NB the boiler was just plonked back on for the photos and isn't properly aligned on the footplate, hence the rather obvious but merely temporary  wonkiness. No excuse for the ropey L/H middle splasher though...

 

cab_splashers_1.jpg

cab splashers 2.jpg

Edited by CKPR
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The sum total of this evenings session at the workbench, fashioned from a discarded oak curtain pole bracket, the rest of which will probably be used to make a former for the tenders. I know it looks a bit lopsided in the photo but it is pretty much symmetrical and weather, work and hands permitting, I might try and get the cabs marked up and cut out this week. 

 

If all else fails, it'll make a nice Gauge 1 tombstone - Here lies CKPR's attempt to model the M&CR...and why not ?

M&CR cab former.jpg

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On 01/09/2020 at 23:25, SteamAle said:

I approve of the workbook!!!!

Published in 1947 (!), never reprinted or revised and to this day, it's still the only  history of the M&CR. At which point, I must put in a plug for the current edition of  the CRA magazine 'Cumbrian Railways' , which contains an excellent article on the M&CR's 'other' branch line, the Derwent branch linking Bulgill on the M&CR mainline with Cockermouth on the CK&PR. 

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12 hours ago, CKPR said:

Published in 1947 (!), never reprinted or revised and to this day, it's still the only book  on the M&CR. At which point, I must put in a plug for the current edition of  the CRA magazine 'Cumbrian Railways' , which contains an excellent article on the M&CR's 'other' branch line, the Derwent branch linking Bulgill on the M&CR mainline with Cockermouth on the CK&PR. 

Not quite the only book! I have a copy of "History of the Maryport & Carlisle Railway" by Herbert and Mary Jackson, published in 1979. A curious book, aimed more at the local historian than the railway enthusiast. Over half of it is devoted to employees and reminiscences, the rest is a potted history of the line and a brief run through locomotives.

Is there any chance that the CRA will produce an enlarged edition of the booklet on the company they produced for its 150th anniversary in 1995, more along the lines of their recent publications which now occupy a several inches of my shelves? I'm not expecting anything as extravagant as the recent tome on the Furness Railway by Michael Andrews, but a decent new history would be very welcome.

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I do have a copy of the Jacksons' book and you're right, it's a curious self-published pot purri of memories and facts about the M&CR but  frustrating short of any useable information for we modellers ! Incidently, there are copies of both books for sale on Ebay for very modest prices.

 

The Jacksons did some other books (pamphlets really) on various Cumbrian topics, including one of station photographs, and whilst these used to be widely available, the last place I've seen them on sale is 'Keswick Collectables', Main St., Keswick.

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Nick

CRA would love to produce a definative history of the MCR. Work is going on in the background on various aspects with articles appearing in the Journal as and when. There is one on coaches with the editor at present but no idea when it will appear in print as we have rather a lot of copy at present, which is great, but some authors get frustrated if 'their' piece does not go in the next edition after submission!

The Journal is planned 12 months in advance to give a balence of subjects so it is not usually possible, unless a planned article has to be pulled for whatever reason.

 

I'm looking at starting a specialist interest group for those of us interested in the MCR be it historians or modellers.

Several people have already done lots of work on the locomotives, both sorting out the numbering and building as well as trying to identify every photograph ever taken of them! Wagons are in the early stages although numbers built, repaired and scrapped over the years has been done. Newspaper articles have been copied and are being worked through for all sorts of information and so it goes on.

What would you like to work on? Please PM me or contact via e-mail as shown in LX.

 

Anybody else on here like to join us do likewise.

Philip

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Cabs for both No.7 and No.20 have been cut out and bent to shape on the former and the next job is to cut out the clearance for the rear splashers and then solder up the cabs and add the beading and spectacle plates. No pictures this evening as it's just a couple of pieces of nickel silver and some plasticard jigs for marking out the splasher clearance but I'll take some when the cabs are all done and dusted, hopefully later this week.

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Don't wait up for any updates as my health has taken a turn for the worst (severe angina & conjunctivitis) and my railway modelling has been been dramatically curtailed to reading about it rather than doing it.

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Mentioning reading, I have to thank you for the mention of Jack Simmons' little book on the M&C which I discovered reasonably readily available from the usual online second-hand dealers so got one for under a tenner, including postage. It's a fascinating little book, not least because much of the primary source material on which it was based had been destroyed or gone missing by the time the book was published.

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