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vonmarshall

Formation for 1950's Orient Express

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Posted (edited)

I was lucky to take the VSOE home from my honeymoon a decade ago and find myself now with the space to run a full length train in my garden. 

 

We slept in coach 3544 which served in both the Train Bleu and Simplon Orient Express (and as a brothel during the war!).

 

As a lover of the SNCF 241 locomotive I intend to run a realistic Simplon Orient Express from the 30's or 50's and just sit back and watch it go by. As an aside I am also open to representing the Train Bleu too. 

 

My French is not strong enough to search on the French forums so I thought I may ask here. 

 

Does anybody know what the formation would have been back then. I hope to use Elettren coaches throughout so hope I can build a realistic rake. I may need to get a coach renumbered as 3544 but Elettren did make #3350 which was also an LX so it should not be too hard. In an ideal world I would be representing the train as it ran from Paris to Venice in a busy Summer.

 

I am particularly interested in how many sleepers would have typically run, the make up of the dining / bar sets and the luggage options.

 

Many thanks for any input.

CIWL #3544.jpg

VSOE 2010.jpg

Edited by vonmarshall

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Using Elettren you could make the following:

For the Train Bleu of the fifties you need some 5-7 LX sleeping cars. Elettren makes 5 different (n°3532 3497 3472 3480 3540    CAT. 1503), a Salon Bar (Elettren Salon bar n°4162 CAT. 1216), a Restaurant car (Elettren Dining car   n°3638  Cat.1100 or Dining car    n°4218  Cat.1101) and a Baggage car (Elettren Baggages 6 doors blue n°1283  Cat.  1300).

 

For the Orient Express you could use 3 or 4 of the same LX cars; the same restaurant but no Salon Bar and an added Baggage car (e.g. Elettren Baggages 8 doors blue n°1251  Cat. 1303). You could also instead of an LX sleeper have an S type sleeper (Elettren Lits “S” n°3406    CAT. 1502). So no Pullman cars or bar cars!

 

Of course you can also mix and match with some MTH and Fulgurex cars. Here are some examples I ran in my garden.

 

 

 

 

And in Gauge 1:

 

Call it the Nostalgic Pullman and Orient Express and you can run whatever you like!

Regards

Fred

 

 

 

 

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21 hours ago, vonmarshall said:

We slept in coach 3544 which served in both the Train Bleu and Simplon Orient Express (and as a brothel during the war!).

 

3544 was one in the series of 3496 to 3555. Amati made a gauge 1 kit for an LX sleeper with number 3533. That might be build with number 3544. Here are pictures of the one I made: http://sncf231e.nl/amati-kit-for-a-ciwl-lx-sleeping-car/

 

Regards

Fred

 

 

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Thanks for your help Fred. I love your videos and have watched them many times!

 

I was aware that the Pulllmans ran on the day trains such as the L'Etoile du Nord, l'Oiseau Bleu, the Sud Express etc and not on the sleeper trains, but was not aware that the Simplon Orient Express did not have a bar. I also thought it would have been longer. 

 

Do you know whether most of the coaches mentioned would have been seen in the 1930's trains? 

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11 hours ago, vonmarshall said:

 

 

Do you know whether most of the coaches mentioned would have been seen in the 1930's trains? 

The Salon Bar (Elettren Salon bar n°4162 CAT. 1216) was not yet there in the 1930's. They were introduced in 1951. The other types mentioned were also running in the 1930's.

 

Regards

Fred

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3 hours ago, vonmarshall said:

I stumbled across https://www.wagons-lits-diffusion.com/ last night and found some rather interesting drawings that I thought sharing for any future reader coming across this post. 

 

 

 

Note the the Orient Express shown in this diagrams is of 1926. The LX sleeping cars (Elettren Cat 1503.) were made in 1929/30; they were used in the thirties in the Orient Express.

 

Regards

Fred

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, sncf231e said:

The Salon Bar (Elettren Salon bar n°4162 CAT. 1216) was not yet there in the 1930's. They were introduced in 1951. The other types mentioned were also running in the 1930's.

 

Regards

Fred

 

Thanks for the heads up. I am leaning towards a 1930's era so that is very relevant.

 

20 hours ago, sncf231e said:

Note the the Orient Express shown in this diagrams is of 1926. The LX sleeping cars (Elettren Cat 1503.) were made in 1929/30; they were used in the thirties in the Orient Express.

 

Regards

Fred

 

Late 20's early 30's works well for me so will go for LX.

 

Given the relatively short length of the Orient Express and the fact that I have budgeted on getting around 12 coaches to go with a 241, I am thinking of getting some of the Pullmans, a 1st class couplet and a 2nd class couplet. I could then use the same 2 bagage cars at each end to recreate L'Oiseau Bleu or even a close approximation of the Fleche D'Or.

 

As an aside, do you know when the Fougons were phased out? And were they never used on the Orient Express?

 

Edited by vonmarshall

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4 hours ago, vonmarshall said:

 

 

 

As an aside, do you know when the Fougons were phased out? And were they never used on the Orient Express?

 

Which fourgons do you mean? The "fourgon containeur" (first picture) were only used with the Fleche d'Or. The other fourgons (Baggage cars) (second picture) were used for any CIWL train.

P1100573.JPG.219ef08d561ccf64d23c8fdb7fd4ad42.JPGP1100948.JPG.74eb190919242b261832d8bd66d1617c.JPG

 

Regards

Fred

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I recommend you take a look at the Man in Seat 61's web page for the "real" Orient Express, which covers both the Paris-Bucharest Orient Express and the Calais - Paris - Athens/Istanbul Simplon Orient Express, with an honorouble mention also going to the Oostende-Vienna Orient Express. The web page is here: https://www.seat61.com/OrientExpress.htm

 

The Man in Seat 61 (Mark Smith) describes some of the formations, and says that three LX cars were used on the Simplon Orient Express (Calais - Trieste, Paris - Athens and Paris - Istanbul) but none on the Orient Express proper. Other sleeping cars were S-type (before the war) or Z-type (after the war). Both types are made by Elettren. A little information is also given about fourgons and restaurant cars.

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Thank you for the link. I had a feeling things would not be simple and it turns out I was right! 
 

I am normally a fan of 1930’s GWR express trains which is a total minefield of what was used and when, but at least all of the info is in English. My schoolboy French is not cutting it on the French forums!

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I should probably rename this thread because the pictures have opened up more questions than answers!

 

Let me start by stating that I have a single line in the garden for O gauge and I only watch the trains go by. I exclusively like long express trains with 10+ coaches and tend to like running as prototypical formation as possible.

 

Most of my focus is 1930's UK mainline with the following rakes in process of being created:

 

LNER P2 hauled express with 11 LNER teak coaches including the triplet diner

LMS Duchess hauled Queen Scot with 13 LMS Period II and Period III coaches with a 12 wheel diner

GWR Castle hauled "Ocean Liner" special with Ocean Mails van, Super Saloons and 70' Collet stock

 

Because I had travelled in #3544 on the VSOE and I also happen to love the 241 locomotive, my original thought was to model the SOE. But in the garden, I can run long rakes and there is nothing like watching an impressive loco pulling a heavy load, so given the info above I am leaning towards recreating Le Train Bleu or maybe even the Fleche D'Or. Re the latter, the 1936 Fleche D'Or seems to include 2 sleepers along with the Pullmans and the rather interesting Fourgon at the back. But it seems odd to me that a train that only ran from Calais to Paris would have sleepers. Would they be sleepers for a through train, maybe linking onto the Train Bleu and on to Nice or Rome?

 

And whilst talking about the Fleche D'Or, would all of the Pullmans (and the loco) have carried the big gold arrows on the side?

 

Sorry for all the questions but this is a fascinating subject to me!

 

 

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What 241 locomotive do you have (or do you want to get)? Note that the Nord region (where the Fleche d 'Or  was running) did not have 241's but 231 Chapelon and Super Pacifics. The occasional sleepers with the Fleche d'Or indeed only did get to Paris and were then (via the Ceinture railway) coupled to a train to Rome etc. The normal FdO only had Pullman cars (and the container baggage car).

The Arrows on the Fleche d'Or cars were only there in the first years (when the Pullman cars were still brown/creme).  The locomotive kept the Arrow at the front also later.

 

Regards

Fred

 

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Posted (edited)

You are a source of amazing information!

 

#3544 worked the Rome Express in 38-39 so conceivably made its way up to Calais as part of the Fleche d’Or. My thinking therefore is I could use 2 LX sleepers, a selection of Pullman 1st and 2nd class couplets and a pair off different forgons to create a truly visually interesting and historically accurate formation. Would you concur?

 

Re the loco, I am hunting down a 241A. The P came along a bit late for my preferred era I believe.

 

I did not know the honour of leading the Fleche d’Or fell on a 231. I may have to employ some artistic licence because the 241 is perfectly proportioned in my eye and I only have one loco per rake on my railway and this is likely to be my only French loco. However I shall revisit the 231 Chapeleons to see what my options could be. 

Edited by vonmarshall

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Posted (edited)

A Railway Magazine article about the Flèche d'Or from 1927 (https://railwaywondersoftheworld.com/fleche_dor.html), when the service had only just been introduced, only mentions Pullmans (it does mention the unusual fourgon). At some point, the Flèche d'Or started conveying through sleeping cars for le Train Bleu (or perhaps that should the the Paris-Méditerrannée), but I have no idea when this was. The times appear not to fit for for the Simplon Orient Express through carriages.

Edited by Jeremy C
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Posted (edited)

I read that too and from the same site the description of the Rome Express imcludes “Passengers from London leave Victoria at 11 am. The Southern Railway’s boat express is primarily part of the “Golden Arrow” service between London and Paris. The connecting boat from Dover arrives at Calais at 2.50 pm. As with the “Orient Express”, we shall perhaps see at Calais only two sleeping cars attached to an ordinary Northern Railway of France boat train, which follows the route of the “Golden Arrow” through Boulogne, Abbeville, and Amiens to the Gare du Nord in Paris. Thence the through sleeping cars are worked round the Paris Ceinture or “Belt” Railway to the PLM Terminus of the Gare de Lyon.”

 

From the same website, when talking about the Golden Arrow, there is a picture of Calais with the following comment... “AT CALAIS the passengers are transferred to the Paris Express, seen here on the quay of the Gare Maritime. On the sides of the Pullman cars are painted arrows of gold. Some of the sleeping-cars form a part of the celebrated “Blue Train” which runs from Paris to the Riviera. One of the sleepers, labelled “Rome”, is attached at Paris to the equally famous “Rome Express”.”

Edited by vonmarshall

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As a matter of interest, what is the loco at the head of this train? Is it a 231 Chapeleon without deflectors?

 

If so, when would the deflectors have been added and what livery would it have carried when deflectorless? And what livery in the late 30’s? Understanding French Eras and liveries is a new minefield for me!

C5182951-C37B-4D82-A9EE-9549263C1A81.jpeg

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The locomotive on the picture is a Nord Super Pacific (if you want to learn about models of European pacifics you could have a look at my ebook: http://sncf231e.nl/pacificseu/)

The Chapelon Pacifics arrived later (1934). Both pacifics were brown until the national railways (SNCF) was formed in 1938. 

Regards

Fred 

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Fred, you are costing me a fortune!

I keep coming back to your Gauge 1 Aster 241 and cannot help but feel that I am going to end up regretting building an O gauge collection, always craving 1/32!

 

I am in collection mode. I work full time and have a gorgeous, large garden and a dream for me has been to build a single long line meandering around the garden to haul only one or two of my favourite trains. The original thought was for a 10-12 Train Bleu or Orient Express with a 241, an 8 coach Golden Arrow behind a Britannia and then, if funds allowed, a 10-12 coach LMS Mail train with Duchess up front and a LNER P2 with 10-12 Teaks. 

 

In O gauge that was rather stretching the budget and in G1 it will be a no-no.

 

I have 10 years to collect the locos and coaches and have already got the Pullmans for the Golden Arrow in O. 

 

But I now find myself thinking have just 2 trains, a 7 coach Orient Express as you detailed in your first answer, and a 7 coach UK Golden Arrow behind a G1AM Britannia. That will cost the same as 4 long O gauge trains. I have been out in the garden working it out and reckon I can get a 150-200m long run around the edge with half of it raised and half at ground level. The sound of live steam, and the melody of G1 coaches rocking in a scale manner is a sight to behold. 

 

You clearly have both options on your clever track. If you were only able to have 1, which would you prefer? A couple of G1 trains or a wider selection of O gauge? Does the weight and feel of G1 give you more pleasure than the volume of O gauge?

 

 

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As member of the TCS my motto is Any Make, Any gauge, Any age. And my website homepage mentions: Many different model railways in all scales & gauges, But only the trains I like

So I am not the right person to ask which gauge is better. Note however that live steam is something completely different than running electric powered trains. Further I would not recommend to have a garden track at ground level; 2 feet high is the minimum.

 

Regards

Fred

 

 

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