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pete_mcfarlane

The Locomotives of Boulton's siding

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On 13/01/2019 at 02:11, Killian keane said:

They keep cropping up steadily

 

 

 

 

 

post-29975-0-69362200-1548254528.jpg.741bc00031bb10063b67615c347593be.jpg

Hercules in action. I've seen a much larger version of that somewhere. I think the original is in the London Transport museum collection.

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Those of you on Facebook who join the OA&GB Group will find a photo of Boulton's Siding Signal Box. This was on the OA&GB at the point where the line to the Boulton's facility diverged.

 

I gather that the original belongs to Tameside Public Libraries, if anyone is interested enough to want a copy. I suspect this box was abolished circa 1911, when the GCR west curve to Ashton Moss was put in, and I certainly have not seen a photo of it before.

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Model railway Constructor 1948, i forget which page, a model of Ant

 

heres part of the article concering it

 

The "Ant" is really included to make a contrast with No 44. it has 8mm wheels and is equipped with everything possible down to the brake blocks. This loco was formerly "Queen of The Forest" (Delamere forest, Cheshire) and in condition shown was "bought" into Boulton's siding--really in exchange for a second hand 6 hp portable engine.

The cylinders were 7in x 14in stroke and wheels 2ft diameter. In July 1872, after being renovated by Boulton, it was sold to Kirkleatham Iron co, middlesborough for £250. In 1878 it was re-bought by Boulton and sold to Butterworth & Brooks, Manchester for £200 and finished her career there.

 

...she is painted as many in Boulton's yard, royal Blue, yellow lining and black undercarraige

 

001.JPG

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A fascinating little loco, but where's the archieology? Is there any proof that it existed. From the Model Railway Constructor, I got the impression that it was standard gauge. So I've made a quick sketch of it and for comparison put a standard 15ft open wagon next to it.
In the article 2 foot wheels are quoted so that has been my baseline. Drawn out the little engine's dimension seem more like a narrow gauge quarry loco than standard gauge501296131_Ant040twagon.png.50b510926f54d23282c975913d0e41a0.png?

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3 hours ago, relaxinghobby said:

A fascinating little loco, but where's the archieology? Is there any proof that it existed. From the Model Railway Constructor, I got the impression that it was standard gauge. So I've made a quick sketch of it and for comparison put a standard 15ft open wagon next to it.
In the article 2 foot wheels are quoted so that has been my baseline. Drawn out the little engine's dimension seem more like a narrow gauge quarry loco than standard gaugehttps://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/uploads/monthly_2019_09/501296131_Ant040twagon.png.50b510926f54d23282c975913d0e41a0.png?

 

Shades of https://preservedbritishsteamlocomotives.com/wren-0-4-0st-lyr-horwich-works-narrow-gauge/

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Hi Malcolm 0-6-0

But Wren is an 18 inch gauge engine, my point is Ant seems to small for a standard gauge engine.

 

And sir douglas the Colin Binnie drawing of Lilliputian is a 2 foot gauge railway .

And Little Grimsby started out as a 2foot gauge but was later converted to which gauge ?

 

So Ant could have started out as a narrow gauge and latter Mr Boulton could have broad gauged it ?

Oh for a photograph.

 

Edited by relaxinghobby
additional info
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8 hours ago, relaxinghobby said:

Hi Malcolm 0-6-0

But Wren is an 18 inch gauge engine, my point is Ant seems to small for a standard gauge engine.

 

 

No disputing that - I was thinking more of the outline.

 

I also was having difficulty visualising it in standard gauge.  

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No need to visualise Ant as a standard gauge locomotive; she wasn't.

 

For any who do not have the Chronicles to hand, I can report that her origin and date of construction are unknown, though her history goes back until at least 1862.

 

Her gauge at the time of acquisition by Boulton is not stated, but the inference is that she was a narrow gauge loco.  Boulton kept a stock of different axles from 2'3" to 3' so that her gauge could be adjusted to suit the hirer, and it was, several times.

 

An 009 version would seem perfectly in order.

 

 

Edited by Edwardian
Corrections
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ANT-1.jpg.bf7537a21d916ef8f8fe6d14b0232a0d.jpgI

There is an article in an issue of Industrial Railway Record on the subject of Queen Of The Forest/ Ant but I'll have to look through my collection to find it.

Edited by Ruston
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7 hours ago, Edwardian said:

Boulton kept a stock of different axles from 2'2" to 3' so that her gauge could be adjusted to suit the hirer, and it was, several times.

 

 

That's a 5 inch range each side. Looking at the photo, I'm wondering what Boulton did about the connecting rod etc. - the cylinder position can't have been changed?

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Yes, I had exactly the same thought, and devised in my head a set of crank-pin extenders, or cranked connecting rods, but then started to worry about them bending under load ..... the trick would be to make them beefy enough that the wheels slipped first.

 

More likely is that the wheels could only go in so far, and mega-wide tyres were fitted for very narrow gauges. If you look at the photo, the tyres shown could go in by c2”, a gauge narrowing of 4”, with no trouble.

Edited by Nearholmer
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Thanks, Ruston, Ant has a square saddle tank in your photo, the model shows a round-topped tank and much higher buffer beams. In the R J D Watson article

above he does not say if his Ant is built for the narrow gauge or standard or 00?  Looking at the grainy black and white photo of it next to the Big Varney American switcher gave

me the impression that it was a very small loco for some industrial standard gauge use, especial with those high buffer beams.

As Edwardian reports from his copy of Chronicles of Boulton's sidings Ant was regularly modified to suit different customers. It could have acquired a round-topped tank after the photo. The gauge there looks about 3 foot going by comparison with the crew and the 2-foot diameter drivers.

Or it could be a case of swapping nameplates between engines, something even the major railways did for their own convenience.

The temptation to model such a tiny and cute loco is strong for me, perhaps extend the buffer beams upwards to engage with the standard buffer height, then you have a sort of " Flying Bufferbeam" engine, like the modified Peckett ?  Which was down at the Quainton Road steam centre and was claimed to be the worlds smallest standard gaugers, but would not that be a claim for one of Mr Boultons geared engines?

 

https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/14476140587/in/photostream/

 

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4 hours ago, relaxinghobby said:

Thanks, Ruston, Ant has a square saddle tank in your photo, the model shows a round-topped tank and much higher buffer beams. In the R J D Watson article

above he does not say if his Ant is built for the narrow gauge or standard or 00?  Looking at the grainy black and white photo of it next to the Big Varney American switcher gave

me the impression that it was a very small loco for some industrial standard gauge use, especial with those high buffer beams.

As Edwardian reports from his copy of Chronicles of Boulton's sidings Ant was regularly modified to suit different customers. It could have acquired a round-topped tank after the photo. The gauge there looks about 3 foot going by comparison with the crew and the 2-foot diameter drivers.

Or it could be a case of swapping nameplates between engines, something even the major railways did for their own convenience.

The temptation to model such a tiny and cute loco is strong for me, perhaps extend the buffer beams upwards to engage with the standard buffer height, then you have a sort of " Flying Bufferbeam" engine, like the modified Peckett ?  Which was down at the Quainton Road steam centre and was claimed to be the worlds smallest standard gaugers, but would not that be a claim for one of Mr Boultons geared engines?

 

https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/14476140587/in/photostream/

 

 

Drawings in the Chronicles of her condition when received by Boulton and of her rebuilt by Boulton in 1876 (the point at which she was renamed Ant, both show her as a saddle tank!

 

These are the Locomotive Magazine drawings of 1922 reproduced in the Sharman volume.

 

The other features of the loco are too distinctive, IMHO, for Ruston's picture to be of anything but the same Ant, so, either there was a subsequent rebuild or one or both drawings are incorrect in apparently showing a saddle tank.

 

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Thanks for your suggestions Edwardian, my main take is that the nameplate was moved around between engines or to save time and paint Boulton's signwriter used the same name.

As a marketing idea they could have said when so and so hired Ant they found it a good engine so why not hire "Ant " here as Ant has a good reputation?

But I do so want there to have been such a tiny standard gauge engine to model.

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1 hour ago, relaxinghobby said:

Thanks for your suggestions Edwardian, my main take is that the nameplate was moved around between engines or to save time and paint Boulton's signwriter used the same name.

As a marketing idea they could have said when so and so hired Ant they found it a good engine so why not hire "Ant " here as Ant has a good reputation?

But I do so want there to have been such a tiny standard gauge engine to model.

 

Though I suspect you are quite probably correct regarding such practices, aside from the tank, in all other respects, Ruston's picture conforms to the NG Queen of the Forest / Ant drawn in The Locomotive Magazine and described in the Chronicles.

 

It must be said that, quite apart from the tanks, the condition in the photograph is not quite a match to either her Queen or rebuilt Ant appearance, but lies somewhere between the two! 

 

497872314_ANT(Ruston).jpg.450d7858a81ccad24c6c4645e2959b44.jpg

IMG_3017.JPG.c375fbb80344940aae043a9690dfe5b1.JPG

IMG_3018.JPG.ddbf4d28c1227fdc21e60448f04ac93c.JPG

 

The photograph is in several respects closer to the rebuilt, "Ant", form, but lacks the continuous footplate/valance included in the drawing.  Thus the plot thickens, and it is to be hoped that Ruston finds his article.

 

For an apparently standard gauge locomotive not much bigger, try Amy with 2'5" wheels   

 

IMG_3016.JPG.138c480f5e1c43d21f916bf2392ef63b.JPG

 

 

 

 

Edited by Edwardian
spelling!
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18 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

Yes, I had exactly the same thought, and devised in my head a set of crank-pin extenders, or cranked connecting rods, but then started to worry about them bending under load ..... the trick would be to make them beefy enough that the wheels slipped first.

 

More likely is that the wheels could only go in so far, and mega-wide tyres were fitted for very narrow gauges. If you look at the photo, the tyres shown could go in by c2”, a gauge narrowing of 4”, with no trouble.

 

Wider tyres for the narrower gauges surely wouldn't work? The flanges wouldn't be in the right place for the flangeways on turnouts, I'd have thought...

 

Bennett states that Boulton kept axles for her from 2ft.3in. (not 2ft. 2in. as Edwardian says) to 3ft. in length. If you look closely at the photo you'll see that the tyres have been fitted so they are extended out from the wheels, which gives at least a couple of inches extra for what must be the maximum gauge. To narrow the gauge the crank pins could be pressed out and longer ones pressed in to the wheels and the wheels themselves be pressed in on the axles. As Boulton did major rebuilds and even new builds I'm sure his works would have been quite capable of doing this work.

 

P.S. IRR 154 - Royal or Religious Roots?, by Trevor Lodge.

Edited by Ruston
Magazine Article
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1 hour ago, Ruston said:

Wider tyres for the narrower gauges surely wouldn't work? The flanges wouldn't be in the right place for the flangeways on turnouts, I'd have thought...

The tyre is widened on the inside, to place the flanges closer together.

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1 hour ago, Ruston said:

Bennett states that Boulton kept axles for her from 2ft.3in. (not 2ft. 2in. as Edwardian says) to 3ft. in length.

 

What makes you think that these spare axles were not fitted with wheels?

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1 hour ago, Ruston said:

 

 

Bennett states that Boulton kept axles for her from 2ft.3in. (not 2ft. 2in. as Edwardian says) to 3ft. in length. I

 

Indeed, a typo on my part that had gone unnoticed.

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1 hour ago, billbedford said:

 

What makes you think that these spare axles were not fitted with wheels?

I suppose they could be but they would need to keep a lot  wheelsets for every possible gauge variation. Why have money tied up in wheelsets that you may never use again when you have workshop facilities to press wheels and crank pins?

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I doubt that.  Photos of wheelsets are relatively common compared with those of separated wheels and axles. More likely they kept usable wheelsets from scrapped locos 'just in case'.

 

... and how many possible gauges could there be between 2'3" and 3"? one? two?

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14 minutes ago, billbedford said:

 

... and how many possible gauges could there be between 2'3" and 3"? one? two?

 

In this instance at least:

 

- Whatever gauge she was when acquired

 

- 2' 8" for D Owen of Swansea

 

- 2' 11 1/2" for Butterworth & Brooks, Manchester

 

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