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My Accucraft "Dolgoch" and Bowande "Talyllyn" are 45mm gauge versions for operation on my small garden line.

 

P1080530.jpg.eb09c0ae03d29ad5aacbcc70120869f0.jpg

 

So I've had the conversation with Paul Lumsdon regarding the improbability of me acquiring one of the proposed ETS made trains - very charming though and tempting. But to be right for running on 32mm gauge the scale should be 1:21.43125 (= 14.22222 to 1 ft).

 

I suppose the Grand-Childer=Beasts might like the ETS version??

 

Must get on with the indoor railway - 32mm, 3-rail and close to Birlstone, but of a different flavour!

 

Regards

Chris H

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All the talk of Fenchurch made me realise how heavily my mental picture of the steam-age rural SR is dictated by The Bluebell, and how that has influenced my toy trains. Throw in the KESR, which is where I picked-up the Austerity bug, and reinforced the USA-tank bug, and a bit of the IoWSR, and its sort of all there.

 

I can just about remember steam on the real rural railway, but really only a few mental snapshots from when I was very small, and while I can remember steam out of Waterloo better, I don't have room for the big trains that implies.

 

The infrastructure was still all there of course - steam might have gone, and lots of lines closed, but the rural bits that were left in East Sussex still had semaphore signalling, no mains water, gas or electricity at isolated signal-boxes, and gas-lit stations, and I very distinctly remember when the stations were repainted from green and cream, new signs fitted, and electric lighting installed, except inside the station at Tunbridge Wells West, which is a few yards into Kent and was clearly deemed unworthy of such modernity. And, coal fires in station waiting rooms. 

 

What that adds to the sum of human knowledge or happiness, I'm not sure, but it seems suitable for autumn.

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Its all about ones age, the older you are hopefully the more you remember, if you're lucky enough!  Some will never experience what you have mentioned and as there is still a considerable interest in the steam age, we are indeed lucky to have been around.  The sad part is that its all gone now, there is very little to confirm what we saw all those years ago.  I was too young to have a camera so wasn't able to record much of it all, indeed I don't have much from those days other than a combined Ian Allen book from 1951, duly underlined in green!  Don't know why as the GW was the main attraction but I liked the Southern as there was more to see on trips to Exmouth Junction or even Waterloo as well as the usual residents of the Plymouth area!

      Brian.

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Another possibly out of place question for all those here. How on earth does one operate a clockwork layout? I ask as I have been trying to read up on such things, but all I have found are various references to how not to run them (the engines) on an oval, and it requiring a certain “knack”. When I bought my BL GtV, I expected that it would be happy running around an oval, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. The engine was actually perfectly happy going round the oval, but from reading that doesn’t appear to be the correct design of clockwork layout. Have I overthought this, or is there a specific method for operating a clockwork layout?

 

As for steam memories, I haven't any being born in 2005. I did however take a trip on the Nene Valley Railway in 2013, my only real experience with British steam besides a visit to the NRM in the same year. My grandfather often told me stories of trainspotting during the war at Liverpool Lime Street, my dad is also quite into British steam, so I suppose that's how I got my interest.

 

Douglas

Edited by Florence Locomotive Works
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8 hours ago, Metropolitan H said:

My Accucraft "Dolgoch" and Bowande "Talyllyn" are 45mm gauge versions for operation on my small garden line.

 

P1080530.jpg.eb09c0ae03d29ad5aacbcc70120869f0.jpg

 

So I've had the conversation with Paul Lumsdon regarding the improbability of me acquiring one of the proposed ETS made trains - very charming though and tempting. But to be right for running on 32mm gauge the scale should be 1:21.43125 (= 14.22222 to 1 ft).

 

I suppose the Grand-Childer=Beasts might like the ETS version??

 

Must get on with the indoor railway - 32mm, 3-rail and close to Birlstone, but of a different flavour!

 

Regards

Chris H

 

Looks very nice. My Dolgoch is Red as she was that colour when I drove her.

 

I think I must rather older than Nearholmer it was mostly steam when I was young apart from the Southern Electrics although we did have the Reading- Redhill trains with Black Moguls.  I must have been about 14 when my Dad had seen a cheap excursion ticket to the Isle of Wight and bought a ticket for me. Stepping off the Boat at Ryde was like going back 50 years. It was an Edwardian railway preserved on an Island. 

Don

 

 

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35 minutes ago, Florence Locomotive Works said:

Another possibly out of place question for all those here. How on earth does one operate a clockwork layout? I ask as I have been trying to read up on such things, but all I have found are various references to how not to run them (the engines) on an oval, and it requiring a certain “knack”. When I bought my BL GtV, I expected that it would be happy running around an oval, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. The engine was actually perfectly happy going round the oval, but from reading that doesn’t appear to be the correct design of clockwork layout. Have I overthought this, or is there a specific method for operating a clockwork layout?

 

thanks,


Douglas

 

Well the skilled clockwork operators would know how many turns of the key would be needed to take a particular loco with its normal train to just reach the next station stop so it would come naturally to a stop.

Of course they used to make governers out of the ones in telephone dials to get locos to run at a sensible speed.

You could either walk round with a train being able to use the controls if needed and wind up for each section of the run. Or you could act a signalmen/station operators and control each train as it arrived.

Don

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I recall an article in an old RM, which described an outdoor clockwork line.  In addition to the appropriate winding for a given Loco and load, the line had been built so that the trains climbed out of the station (with wound spring), and descended into the terminus & drifted to a halt.  I suspect the gradients were subtle.

 

that said, I see no reason why appropriate winding shouldn't be used on a table top roundy-roundy.  I can imagine an entertaining session of “guess how many turns to do three laps and stop at the platform”.  


Would appeal to children of all ages :)

atb

Simon

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52 minutes ago, Simond said:

I recall an article in an old RM, which described an outdoor clockwork line.  In addition to the appropriate winding for a given Loco and load, the line had been built so that the trains climbed out of the station (with wound spring), and descended into the terminus & drifted to a halt.  I suspect the gradients were subtle.

Sounds like Crewchester.

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On the theme of O gauge clockwork I picked up an excellent book by Jack Ray titled  ‘A lifetime with O Gauge; Crewchester and others’. 
 

It’s a joy to read and is very informative. As others have said the key to successful clockwork operation appears to be much trial and error, influenced by different loads, to understand the sweet spot for number of turns. 
 

G

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4 hours ago, RateTheFreight said:

On the theme of O gauge clockwork I picked up an excellent book by Jack Ray titled  ‘A lifetime with O Gauge; Crewchester and others’. 
 

It’s a joy to read and is very informative. As others have said the key to successful clockwork operation appears to be much trial and error, influenced by different loads, to understand the sweet spot for number of turns. 
 

G

And I have just now located a second hand copy and ordered it on-line.  Thanks muchly for the reference.

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16 hours ago, Donw said:

 

Looks very nice. My Dolgoch is Red as she was that colour when I drove her.

 

I think I must rather older than Nearholmer it was mostly steam when I was young apart from the Southern Electrics although we did have the Reading- Redhill trains with Black Moguls.  I must have been about 14 when my Dad had seen a cheap excursion ticket to the Isle of Wight and bought a ticket for me. Stepping off the Boat at Ryde was like going back 50 years. It was an Edwardian railway preserved on an Island. 

Don

 

 

Don W,

 

I'm intrigued regarding the location of your formative years - mine were mainly spent in Bracknell - from age 4 1/2 , Purley Oaks before that.

 

So I enjoy similar recollections and went to see the back end of the IOW steam on day trips in my early teens.

 

My firing days on Talyllyn and Dolgoch were late 1960s / early 70s - hence my choice of the green versions.

 

Regards

Chris H

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17 hours ago, Florence Locomotive Works said:

Another possibly out of place question for all those here. How on earth does one operate a clockwork layout? I ask as I have been trying to read up on such things, but all I have found are various references to how not to run them (the engines) on an oval, and it requiring a certain “knack”. When I bought my BL GtV, I expected that it would be happy running around an oval, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. The engine was actually perfectly happy going round the oval, but from reading that doesn’t appear to be the correct design of clockwork layout. Have I overthought this, or is there a specific method for operating a clockwork layout?

 

As for steam memories, I haven't any being born in 2005. I did however take a trip on the Nene Valley Railway in 2013, my only real experience with British steam besides a visit to the NRM in the same year. My grandfather often told me stories of trainspotting during the war at Liverpool Lime Street, my dad is also quite into British steam, so I suppose that's how I got my interest.

 

Douglas

 

I'm intrigued- what is the correct design of layout for clockwork trains?  And what is the problem with an oval?  I've been getting into collecting 00 starter locomotives during the Lockdown, and was putting together a little layout for them... most sets come with a circle of track rather than an oval (except for a Lima set which has a figure-8 with a slightly mad combination of diamond crossing as a level crossing!)

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17 hours ago, Florence Locomotive Works said:

Another possibly out of place question for all those here. How on earth does one operate a clockwork layout? I ask as I have been trying to read up on such things, but all I have found are various references to how not to run them (the engines) on an oval, and it requiring a certain “knack”. When I bought my BL GtV, I expected that it would be happy running around an oval, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. The engine was actually perfectly happy going round the oval, but from reading that doesn’t appear to be the correct design of clockwork layout. Have I overthought this, or is there a specific method for operating a clockwork layout?

 

As for steam memories, I haven't any being born in 2005. I did however take a trip on the Nene Valley Railway in 2013, my only real experience with British steam besides a visit to the NRM in the same year. My grandfather often told me stories of trainspotting during the war at Liverpool Lime Street, my dad is also quite into British steam, so I suppose that's how I got my interest.

 

Douglas

 

I inherited a sizeable collection of Hornby tinplate from my older cousins, around 1960.. it was lost in the chaotic move from London to Cambridge a few years later. However I must admit, I never DID get the hang of it. 

 

I’d hardly call the NVR “British steam”! 

 

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Clockwork toy trains chased their own tails as per these Chad Valley ones https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=clockwork+train+1930&ru=%2fvideos%2fsearch%3fq%3dclockwork%20train%201930%26qs%3dn%26form%3dQBVRMH%26sp%3d-1%26pq%3d%26sc%3d0-0%26sk%3d%26cvid%3dB06E67557BDD41C380E7115C16E58E7D&view=detail&mid=56EDCAF313BDB502FA7D56EDCAF313BDB502FA7D&rvsmid=368D6AB3873873D58445368D6AB3873873D58445&FORM=VDQVAP

 

But, the best clockwork model trains ran on elaborate outdoor layouts, archetypically in vicarage gardens, with stations set "winding distance" apart, ideally at the top of a slight hump, to aid slowing-down and acceleration. Somewhere on Youtube is a film of Reverend Parley, the doyen of pre-WW2 clockwork garden railways, operating the service on his, but I'm blowed if I can find it. Worth remembering that clockwork models were made in Gauges 1, 2, and even 3, so huge mechanisms with massive springs.

 

In between were more or less elaborate indoor and outdoor lines that tended in one direction or the other.

 

This is immense fun https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=duck+end+railway&docid=608026305464241294&mid=316921260EAED93D5B4D316921260EAED93D5B4D&view=detail&FORM=VIRE

 

 

Edited by Nearholmer
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Another good, and inspiring, read regarding the establishment and evolution of an "O" gauge railway is "Paddington to Seagood" by Gilbert Thomas.

 

It is not specifically limited to clockwork, but is of its time and shows just what can be achieved if you have a good sized Billiards Room and count WJ Bassett-Lowke as a friend.

 

It can be difficult to find - I was lucky to borrow a copy - but definitely worth looking out for.

 

Regards

Chris H

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There’s a very good article about this O gauge clockwork layout in MRN 1925. Typical Of the more ambitious schemes of the time, I think, and very typically fully signalled, and operated properly.

 

CA13893A-4D0B-4E6F-AE82-B0C2A7B747DF.jpeg.65c33595881d32b0272f8545d750bf66.jpeg

 

Even quite small layouts tended to be properly signalled, and correct operation was much more important than photo-realistic appearance. The layout shown above looked very crude by modern standards, nothing much except railway buildings, track, signals, and bridges. The whole ethos was completely different.

 

When you see these things, it becomes clear what had influenced CJF in his youth, because some of earlier 00 plans are really 1930s 0 gauge plans made smaller - loads of operation in very little space!

 

 

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Thanks for all the info ladies and gents, I have put it to good use. I decided on building an outdoor layout with two stations, excavation will be covered on the topic linked in my signature, but here’s a tantalizing photo. 
 

Douglas

1C29B9FD-1B3C-4248-85E0-22D74434B36D.jpeg

Edited by Florence Locomotive Works
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1 hour ago, Ben B said:

 

I'm intrigued- what is the correct design of layout for clockwork trains?  And what is the problem with an oval?  I've been getting into collecting 00 starter locomotives during the Lockdown, and was putting together a little layout for them... most sets come with a circle of track rather than an oval (except for a Lima set which has a figure-8 with a slightly mad combination of diamond crossing as a level crossing!)

 

No problem with an oval at all. However if you prefer an end to end layout that can be good too.  It is all down to personal choice.

A lot of the best layouts are end to end but incorporate a link to allow a continuous run.

Don

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