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A bit of an interest of mine here...

 

Thought I'd set up a topic for the general discussion of pre-grouping electrics! There were a fair few systems about, my personal favourites being the NER and LBSCR Overhead systems, with some artwork for the units of the latter drawn up already. I just find them interesting, as they are much more overlooked than the overlooked era itself!

 

That's all for now! DISMISSED!

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You could add into the mix that quite a few 'Southern Electrics' used some or all of the parts from pre-grouping coaching stock too. There were 3 or 4 SUB units with LBSC and LSWR stock, and in a few cases, a mixture of both.

There were, of course, also new-build electrics for the third rail systems on either side of the LBSC overhead system.

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The L&Y had quite an extensive overhead system that always gets overlooked. I belive at least one fairly handsome electric locomotive was built as well as the EMUs. Then there's the NSR battery electrics but unfortunately electric milage in the UK pre-1923 was rather pitiful compared to our continental counterparts.

 

I do love the NER system; I just cannot imagine why the LNER decided to take it all down in 1938 rather than renew it. The EF1s were fine looking machines but the one-off EE1 was an absolute masterpiece. It's also a window in to an alternative world where electrification was embraced more widely after WW1. I imagine had the NER lasted a bit longer (let's say grouping happened in 1930 or so) and the electrification was expanded the LNER's electric network would have very much resembled that of it's transatlantic counterpart the PRR by 1948. I'd love a model of the EE1 but I'm afraid the Judith Edge kit is well beyond my skill level. It could be fairly easily scratchbuilt out of plasticard if it didn't have those magnificent wheels...

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Well I am seriously considering building an original first generation 2 car NER passenger unit, plus possibly one of the powered baggage units - but it is a long way down the "to-do" list.

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...I do love the NER system; I just cannot imagine why the LNER decided to take it all down in 1938 rather than renew it. The EF1s were fine looking machines but the one-off EE1 was an absolute masterpiece. It's also a window in to an alternative world where electrification was embraced more widely after WW1. I imagine had the NER lasted a bit longer (let's say grouping happened in 1930 or so) and the electrification was expanded the LNER's electric network would have very much resembled that of it's transatlantic counterpart the PRR by 1948. I'd love a model of the EE1 but I'm afraid the Judith Edge kit is well beyond my skill level. It could be fairly easily scratchbuilt out of plasticard if it didn't have those magnificent wheels...

 

The reasons were dwindling coal stocks in south west Durham and as the whole system was 20 odd years old it was all ready for renewal and the technology was becoming obsolete even then. Still a shame though.

 

Oh, to see an EE1 at the head of the Flying Scotsman...

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Strange that kits for the NE logos have been available for a while yet no layout on the exhibition circuit. The centenary is not too difficult so.....

 

Baz

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Oh, to see an EE1 at the head of the Flying Scotsman...

 

Indeed. If the York to Newcastle scheme had gone ahead, who knows what that might have lead to.

 

 

However, had electrification really taken off in those days, I wonder how the travelling public of the time would have reacted. Favourably one would have thought, given greater speed and efficiency, but from our point of view, the steam engine might have faced a seriously early demise. Mind you, that would have been history, and we would not have the need to concern ourselves with it.

 

Vincent Raven did see the need for some steam engines, and apparently was considering designs for high power short haul trips for the gaps in his anticipated electric network, at least, for the time that need existed.

 

Certainly makes you think, and it would be ironic that the region producing the most coal was using electric traction to haul it.

Edited by Dick Turpin
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May I offer the Mersey Railway as a fine example of a pre-Grouping electric railway?

 

post-21933-0-90012400-1515921033.jpg

 

Built as an underground steam railway, it was converted to electric traction in 1903.

 

In fact, it was never "Grouped", but kept its independence, and American style stock, until Nationalisation.  It made an end on connection with the LMS owned Wirral Railway at Birkenhead Park. The Wirral Railway was electrified in the late 30s, with stock built by the LMS (eventually classed as 503 by BR).

 

post-21933-0-38751000-1515921139_thumb.jpg

 

(A 503 on the Mersey loop for completeness, though not pre-Grouping by any stretch of the imagination!)

 

LMS and Mersey Railway stock could use both systems.

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Certainly makes you think, and it would be ironic that the region producing the most coal was using electric traction to haul it.

What do you think they burned at the power station?

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Indeed. If the York to Newcastle scheme had gone ahead, who knows what that might have lead to.

 

 

However, had electrification really taken off in those days, I wonder how the travelling public of the time would have reacted. Favourably one would have thought, given greater speed and efficiency, but from our point of view, the steam engine might have faced a seriously early demise. Mind you, that would have been history, and we would not have the need to concern ourselves with it.

 

Vincent Raven did see the need for some steam engines, and apparently was considering designs for high power short haul trips for the gaps in his anticipated electric network, at least, for the time that need existed.

 

Certainly makes you think, and it would be ironic that the region producing the most coal was using electric traction to haul it.

 

The reason for electrifying the North Tyneside lines was the electric trams were taking the business away, so the public were obviously happy with electric traction and overhead wires, most probably never thought about the third rail which is probably the most dangerous of the two.

 

If the EE1 was the experimental one off, the next would be a mixed traffic loco the third a passenger loco semi permanently coupled to it's train and finally a goods type... It would differ from actual later history in that the EE1 was a fine looking loco...

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I started building a 2 car 1904 Tyneside set but sadly with a house move and total refurbishment it kind of stalled and got as far as building the two coach bodies but really does need reviving as a project.

Tyneside system was superb from the outset.

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What do you think they burned at the power station?

 

Coal, but I have no idea whether they would be generating their own electricity or buying it from another source. Either way it should be more economic to burn coal at a power station than in individual steam locomotives (and to overcome the cost of the OLE equipment) providing the volume of traffic exists to justify it, which on a main line is more likely. I believe it was the falling amount of freight on the Shildon route that led to its ultimate demise by the mid '30s in this respect.

Edited by Dick Turpin

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Yep. My question was rhetorical, but that is the fundamental point.

 

Using coal at a power station to generate electricity is not only more thermally efficient, but it is also easier to control the emissions, than burning it in the firebox of a steam locomotive.

But the capital investment upfront is quite expensive.

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I think I've posted this before, but an LSWR axlebox cover on a 4-EPB in 1983. I've upped the contrast on the close-up so you can see the letters more easily.

post-6971-0-44828500-1515938591.jpgpost-6971-0-38845600-1515938575.jpg

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The L&Y had quite an extensive overhead system that always gets overlooked. I belive at least one fairly handsome electric locomotive was built as well as the EMUs. Then there's the NSR battery electrics but unfortunately electric milage in the UK pre-1923 was rather pitiful compared to our continental counterparts.

The L&YR had an extensive network of third rail electrification, using two different systems around Liverpool and Manchester. It did have a small amount of overhead - the three and a half mile long single track Holcombe Brook branch and a few hundred yards at Aintree sidings. There were only a couple of powered units and their trailers for the branch. There was only one proper electric loco, which could hardly be described as handsome, which ran experimentally as a shunter around Aintree, using the overhead in the sidings, and picking up from the third rail on the mainline.

The L&YR also had a battery loco, so the LMS inherited just three of this type, with one each from the Midland and North Staffordshire Railways, the last two becoming BEL 1 & 2 in BR days. All three had limited operational ranges being confined to specific locations for most of their working lives.

In addition to the NER freight only and the LBSCR passenger only overhead installations, mention should be made of the Midland's work on the Morecambe branch, as featured elsewhere in RMweb. There were at least three hospital railways that were electrified, at Hellingley, Cheddleton and High Royds. A number of industrial lines were also provided with OH, most notably Harton Colliery as modelled by the Carshalton and Sutton MRC.

The Mersey Railway has been mentioned, but Liverpool had another line, the Liverpool Overhead Railway, for which Judith Edge do two versions of the multiple units used, whilst in London, apart from the tube railways, the Metropolitan and the District Railways had locos as well as multiple units, and some mainline companies invested in the underground, with the GWR, the GNR and the LNWR getting involved, the latter also going alone with its Watford line, as running on the Twickenham club's Addison Road layout.

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Well... Quite the response I see!

 

First of all, my apologies! I admit to having forgotten to include the L&YR and Mersey Railway in the OP! Both Third rail and overhead on the L&Y I seem to remember. I know Mr Simon Dawson (Rue D'etropal on here) has produced 3D CAD for the L&YR (Along with their BR Successors), LNWR (Again, along with the BR Replacements), LBSCR and possibly also NER ones, and I think he was looking at Mersey Railway stock too. I'm tempted at some point to build a ficitonal layout, featuring a 'generic' suburban station, plus a small goods yard, usually set in West London. It would be set between 1900 & 1930, and normally would feature LSWR 3rd Rail and LBSCR Overhead stock, perhaps with 3rd Rail in the foreground, and stopping at the station, and the overhead in the background and not stopping. The goods yard would provide Steam action, and the generic nature of the station and scenery would be West-London based, but with the ability to run stock from any of the other Electric systems, maybe with L&Y stock running on both, LNWR on both, NER on both, LNWR or L&YR on Overhead and Mersey on 3rd Rail.

 

For me it would be something I might do in 3mm, or even 2mm, rather than 4mm scale due to the increased space for the units, and the fact that it would be something different! Also, 3D prints get cheaper as you get smaller... gets me back to my Bushey plan in 2mm, featuring the viaduct at the front, with Oerlikons and early Bakerloo stock crossing it and on into Bushey station, then down alongside the WCML into the fiddle yard. In the background on the mainline would be a multitude of LNWR and early LMS stock, probably late LMS initially for ease, all steam hauled.

 

That said, LBSCR AC may happen in 00... I'll need to look into that a bit more, as I would intend to do it on a 'Minories' Style layout, possibly with the overhead designed so it can be removed should I not wish it to be there for some reason!

 

Oh, and Fellburn looks stunning!

 

I'll shuddup now. :no:

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Yep. My question was rhetorical, but that is the fundamental point.

 

Using coal at a power station to generate electricity is not only more thermally efficient, but it is also easier to control the emissions, than burning it in the firebox of a steam locomotive.

But the capital investment upfront is quite expensive.

Part of the common sense approach of the NER is they enetered into agreements with the local electricity companies to supply the power to the railway so unlike others did not have to invest in building them.
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Excellent subject!

 

Can I throw in the Giants Causeway and Bessbrook and Newry? And, although it wasn’t the first, a very special mention for the Volks Electric, because it fossilised so early, and survives.

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Ah, but which Volks railway? There was the original one, of which relics survive, and it was a fairly conventional little electric tramway, albeit a very early one. And then there was this:

daddy-long-legs-01.jpg

 

There's something compellingly demented about an electric railway where the track is a few metres underwater at high tide.

Edited by Guy Rixon
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Ah, but which Volks railway? There was the original one, of which relics survive, and it was a fairly conventional little electric tramway, albeit a very early one. And then there was this:

daddy-long-legs-01.jpg

 

There's something compellingly demented about an electric railway where the track is a few metres underwater at high tide.

I suppose there's not many electric railways where lifebelts would be mandatory safety equipment!

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I was thinking of the VER, not the B&RSET (iirc it’s title), so good reminder.

 

Surprising that the idea wasn’t take up more widely, really, because a decent network would allow seaside piers to migrate with the changing seasons, perhaps overwintering in Cannes, and getting as far north as Bridlington in an exceptionally good summer.

Edited by Nearholmer

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Oh dear. You tired Kevin? Or have you been visting Castle Aching, or even Paltry Circus?

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