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rowanj

Trainspotting at Little Benton Sidings, Newcastle.

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J39/1 64701 heads empty cattle wagons north. They will be dropped off either singly or in pairs (or as required) at various points , probably as far as Berwick, before being added to freights heading for Tyneside from the various Marts in Northumberland. They will then be aggregated for the return north, as in this trip.

The loco is Bachmann with a scratch - built 3500 GS tender- so the loco is the only one of  this sub- group based at Heaton.

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Posted (edited)

My rather heavily modified DJH D20 has been give non-corridor stock for a SO Alnwick - Newcastle extra. We never called this place "Little Benton"- it was always The Powder Monkey, named after a spoil heap from a closed colliery. The photos have been taken from the top.

The last coach is an Isinglass 3D Print Gresley 6-compartment Brake 3rd, which sits reasonably well with the Hornby stock. Hopefully his range will continue to expand. The service was excellent, and the coach built up pretty well. Extra parts were from Dart Castings/MJT. though I used the Isinglass 3D bogies as an experiment, They worked fine too, though in an ideal world I prefer the additional weight of cast bogies.

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Edited by rowanj
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Dave Alexander Q7 has a train of mineral wagons, heading south but destination unknown. Not the staithes on the Tyne - that would be carried in 21T hoppers. Possibly Stella South, or Tyne Dock to be then shipped up to Consett?

 

 

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Wanting to do something simple, I matched a spare DJH D20 tender with a Bachmann J39 to produce a J39/3. The tenders on this sub-class were a real mixture of types, but Yeadon has turned up an appropriate loco. Here it stands in the sidings as an express passes heading south. The odd-looking coach is an SEF kit of a Cravens FO. The stock is a real mix of Gresley, Thompson and MK1's so must be a relief. 

I didn't do much to the tender, other than opening up the rear coal rails. The frame cutouts are wrong for a D20, but are OK for this loco, as far as I can tell. Some of the last builds, strangely enough, in 1940, got tenders stored at Darlington from withdrawn C7's. I had assumed the ex-NER tenders went to the first builds, but not so - they got either 3500 gallons and were 39/1 or 4200 gallon standard tenders and were 39/2. I live and learn

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I came across the prototype photo when doing research while building my Birdcage Brake 3rd, and thought I'd give my NuCast K2 one of its' occasional runs on the rake of ex-NER stock.

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In all my visits to Little Benton. I never saw a train held at signals, yet here we have 2 trains. Presumably something odd has happened between here and Heaton.

The J39/3 has the short "meat n'fish" - I have a couple of Parkside kits to add to the rake-, while A2/3 "Ocean Swell" has been relegated to a Berwick-Newcastle "all-stations". This is an ex-GBL A2 with Graeme King resin castings, running on an altered SEF A2 chassis.

 

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It's obviously a Summer Saturday, and possibly the weekend of the Bedlington Miners Picnic. Extra trains have been drafted in, and the J77 has been despatched to Heaton Yard to collect the ex-NER set, which will be used as a shuttle between Morpeth and Newsham . The splitting distant shows the train will leave the ECML at Benton Quarry Junction, take the electrified North Tyneside loop to Backworth and then head up the Blyth and Tyne Mainline. With any luck, passengers will be able to do the same thing in 2022.

Incidentally, the Bedlington Picnic was where I had my first date with the current Mrs. Rowanj in 1968.

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60052 "Prince Palatine" has an Up TPO for Waverley. The loco is a GBL body on a Hornby chassis. The tender is a tender-drive body, cut back to appropriate dimensions, on a modern Hornby chassis. The loco is ex-works, literally, as its' valve gear locked up in classic Blue Peter fashion and the crosslink snapped at the crosshead joint. I sent for, and received, a replacement set, then remembered reading that, although most models are built with that joint in a pivot, it actually should be rigid on the crosshead. As an experiment, I soldered it up, and now have a spare set of valve gear.

This was the test run, which it passed.

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Posted (edited)

Hello John , a picnic and a lifetime of model railways.....our wives are very fortunate ...........

Edited by 46256
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60113 ran well on the test track, but developed a loose driver on its' maiden run in service, so is back in the works. It was seen from time to time at Newcastle, normally on Parcels or Reliefs, but would have been sent back to Doncaster pretty sharpish, and there is no evidence of it further North. 

I "restored" the loco, which has lain in the spares box, with a Wills A3 chassis and misc. bits of valve gear etch and will persevere to get it running properly- it's nearly there.

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John you've answered  a question I was going to ask as to whether a regular visitor to your neck of the woods . In respect of a loose driver why is it always the one that necessitates taking the motion off to get at ? 

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Posted (edited)

A much more likely sight would be 60060 "The Tetrarch" on this Newcastle-Edinburgh semi-fast. The loco was a common sight on Tyneside, and seems to have been well-liked at Heaton and Gateshead. There are pictures of her at all points on the ECML. Being a common sight, she was, of course, despised by disappointed spotters searching for a cop. Loco is an old Wills kit on Comet chassis.

The leading coach is the a  Hachette £2.99 magazine effort, modified to a BSO . Comet sides, PECO interior.

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Edited by rowanj
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I have been steadily developing my non corridor stock, as I found myself unhappy having only RTR Hornby LNER, excellent though they are. In the distant past, I had built a couple of Kirk kits but was unhappy with my work fitting the roof and the underframe details. Funnily enough, the lack of flush glazing, which seems to be the major issue for many, didn't bother me.

Anyway, this rake has my Isinglass 6-Compartment Brake, and an all-1st Kirk with MJT fittings sitting alongside the Hornby stock. The DJH A8 has an SLS Special from Teesside and Sunderland which will take the West curve at Little Benton Quarry and head for the long closed station at Ponteland, and possibly the even longer closed end-of-branch at Darras Hall.

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This is probably an early-morning "workmans' train, diverted to get a faster run to Central via the ECML rather than the usual route to Manors. It will also allow connections at Central to far- flung outposts like Sunderland, ot even Middlesbrough.

Although the coaching stock is old, it still gives a comfortable ride, and the G5 can go on forever. The date is probably 1951.

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The time machine has leapt to 1960. I don't have too many diesels, and, frankly, they are pretty bog-standard and don't get out much. However, like the young lad watching the trains go by, this is the sort of scene I remember becoming more common as I ended my spotting days.

The 24/1 is renumbered as a Gateshead loco, as is the Lima 40, on the fully-fitted goods heading to Niddrie. Crepello has an Edinburgh -KingX relief to the Heart of Midlothian, and is a GBL body on a Lima chassis.

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The BP tank wagons have been collected from the sidings, and given the signal to head for Tyneside or beyond. in the meantime, my Clayton Class 17 - a Silver Fox kit- has a typical duty on a short goods,

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Then the time machine kicks in again, and we leave Status Quo on our trannie, and hear Cliff and Billy Fury, as Dave Alexander N10 takes the ex-NER rake an an ECS back to storage, probably at Morpeth.

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