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EFE Rail launches N gauge Class 17 and Mermaids


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1 hour ago, Roy L S said:

I haven't felt a need to test the limit of haulage, but 20 Farish Presflo wagons and a Brake Van and it isn't at all taxed. 

 

In reality I doubt a single Clayton would manage 20 loaded Presflos that easily, I suspect the weight with a brake would be well over 600 Tons, I can visualise bits of engine letting go!

 

Smoke generator function for engine fire anyone?

 

Roy

 

I only got to the limits as the layout I had available to test it on wasn't the one it is going to be used on.

 

On the flat or a slight grade it will take the type of load that LOOKS right behind a type 1 diesel.  That is fine by me.  As another haulage aside it outpulls three of my four WDs, where it took Bachmann over two years to admit there was a milling problem with traction tyres on some that don't touch the rails.  A lot of harsh words were said by those lucky enough to have a correctly milled WD that would pull 50-odd wagons to those with incorrectly milled locos that could hardly manage seven or eight.

 

What YOUR loco will pull often depends as much on YOUR circumstances as much as anything else.  If you use the harder abrasive track rubbers your track becomes slightly pitted on the surface over time, which increases traction at the expense of needing cleaning more often and shorter traction tyre life.  If you use a fluid cleaner your rails become smoother and more slippery over time.  Tighter radii make for more problems by increasing sideways friction.  I have mostly radius 3 to 4 on Croft Spa but Bregenbach goes down to Continental radius 1 (tighter than UK radius 1).  The Clayton will run round Continental Radius 1 by the way.

 

In the North East a Q6 (6F 0-8-0) was only allowed to take eight 21-tonners up to Consett without a banker, and a pair of Class 24s was not allowed to take a Consett ore train up the hill without a Class 37 or bigger shoving it.  I assume Claytons were allowed up to Consett.  On the Silksworth branch they were tried but replaced by Class 08s as the 08 could stop a train it could start, but I've not heard any tales of people's Claytons being pushed down hills....

 

Les

 

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On 26/08/2020 at 10:43, Joseph_Pestell said:

 

Looks bulky in all dimensions to me.

 

OK, we all know that this type of locomotive, with narrow bonnets, is the most difficult to replicate in a model that has to go round trainset curves. But better to accept that it can't be done than to build up peoples' expectations of a good model. As someone else has written, a return to the 70s for N gauge.

 

Can't be done? Modern continental diesels like the MaK (Vossloh) G1600/1700 series, modelled accurately by both Minitrix and PIKO, which Les showed in his video as the comparison, are pretty similar in terms of having really quite narrow bonnets. Likewise, no shortage of narrow bonnet American diesels in Z scale.

 

It seems pretty well established now, by various respected modellers, that the cl.17 is accurate in all dimensions EXCEPT height. It seems a common issue with models that DJM had a hand in, especially the Mermaids.

 

I can't help but wonder whether the diameter of the wheel faces and diameter of wheel across the flanges were mixed up during the design stage, messing up the relationship between solebar level and track. 

 

J

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7 hours ago, bingley hall said:

 

I partly answered this on the previous page

 

To expand.....I believe that over time most of the red diamond locos were converted to blue star, especially those that were repainted blue.

A quick search on Flickr brings up D8507 at Millerhill during July 70 in blue livery with blue stars.
However at least one of the Beyer Peacock built examples D8600 green SYP - one of the EFE weathered ones - carried the red diamonds and is correctly modelled so, 

There is also a pic on Flickr of 8599 at Tyne Yard in July 1969 with no mu working symbols at all. 

 


Thanks for that explanation, makes sense now. I should have flicked back a page!

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4 hours ago, justin1985 said:

 

It seems pretty well established now, by various respected modellers, that the cl.17 is accurate in all dimensions EXCEPT height. It seems a cmmon issue with models that DJM had a hand in, especially the Mermaids.

 

I can't help but wonder whether the diameter of the wheel faces and diameter of wheel across the flanges were mixed up during the design stage, messing up the relationship between solebar level and track. 

 

J

 

A comparison with a side view of the Heljan Clayton shows where the differences lay. I fear it's more than just the rather oversized wheels, more a mix of issues centered around the bogies, and the basic bogie design means lowering the body isn't an option. I do wonder if the wheel size was to overcome other problems for it's noticeable the axle boxes don't match the wheel centres. Reducing the wheel size might just cause the bogies to ground. Like I said, a shame. But what do I know. Not a lot, mostly.

 

Izzy

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Well I purchase two class 17s one blue and one green and was initially pleased with both. However while running in the blue one on my small second radius test track I noticed that it kept derailing on every corner. My green one runs fine but I'm wondering if Im just unlucky and got a "Friday aftennoon" model or if this is something anyone else has experienced? In any case I have returned it to the shop and they agree that one bogie didn't move freely so I now eagerly await a replacement! 

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4 hours ago, Richp1976 said:

Well I purchase two class 17s one blue and one green and was initially pleased with both. However while running in the blue one on my small second radius test track I noticed that it kept derailing on every corner. My green one runs fine but I'm wondering if Im just unlucky and got a "Friday aftennoon" model or if this is something anyone else has experienced? In any case I have returned it to the shop and they agree that one bogie didn't move freely so I now eagerly await a replacement! 

 

It doesn't matter WHAT model you buy, there will always be the one with a stray piece of flash stopping it rotating , or a rivet not quite hammered hard enough, or an electronic component that fails.

 

In the past I've returned very promptly-

A Farish A2 with valve gear that fell apart within six feet of its wheels first touching the track

A Fleischmann Class 111 electric loco (last month) which burst out in thick oily smoke within one minute of first having power applied

A Farish Deltic with beautiful working lights but a motor that did nothing at all

An Atlas SD45 (I think, though it may have been aa SD40) which loved straight track but didn't turn left running nose first

 

... and so on.

 

It is entirely chance who gets what.  This time it is your turn.

 

Les

 

BTW the Deltic was purchased at a Quorn show.  The dealer asked me to accompany him as he took it straight back to Bachmann's stand with a returns form and showed it to Graham Hubbard, who agreed it didn't work.  Two months later it came back from Bachmann marked "no fault found" and still not working.  Said dealer now marks his returns forms "for refund".

 

 

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7 hours ago, Izzy said:

 

I fear it's more than just the rather oversized wheels, more a mix of issues centered around the bogies, and the basic bogie design means lowering the body isn't an option. I do wonder if the wheel size was to overcome other problems for it's noticeable the axle boxes don't match the wheel centres. 

 

This is just what I meant. Especially with the Mermaid having the same kind of problem, I can't help but wonder whether specified dimensions / clearances "from wheel to X" mixed up which point of the wheel they were measuring from. So the problem isn't so much the wheel size, it's all of relationships between the wheels and the rest of the bogie and solebar height of the chassis.

 

Nonetheless, I've got one for my little Scottish themed layout, and I'm pretty happy with it. I've already sent the wheels away to be turned down to 2mmFS (don't trust my own lathe skills yet) and I'll give it some other fettling and weathering, and I'm sure it will do a great job as a shunter on a small 'plank' layout!

 

J

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I'm pretty sure the flappy bogie electrical pick up transmission design is the cause of most of the problem here. If you press down on the loco, it sinks down onto its bogies by the best part of the excess height. I bow down to those with more engineering expertise on what modification, if any, would help ...

 

IMG_20200903_181659.jpg.7053bc6ad078a39740ef65134c2115ce.jpg

(Buffer height)

IMG_20200903_181446__01.jpg.ea7bd879e9e87aed845135198e580608.jpg

(The warehouse doorway is lower than it should technically be, but it does accommodate literally every Farish, Dapol, or PECO wagon that I've tried)

 

J

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8 hours ago, Sithlord75 said:

Is it a trick of photography or is the body not on straight in the shot with the van?  Seems to be lower on the bogie on the left hand side.

 

That's just a trick of the angle of the photo / slightly fisheye effect of close up from a phone camera, I think! 

 

However, like other Dapol diesels of the DJ era, it does sometimes rise up on the leading bogie when starting from a stop - which does produce the one end higher look. I'm pretty sure that is caused by the very loose worm mesh again. The Dapol 26/27 are particularly bad at doing this too.

 

J

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On 03/09/2020 at 23:13, justin1985 said:

I'm pretty sure the flappy bogie electrical pick up transmission design is the cause of most of the problem here. If you press down on the loco, it sinks down onto its bogies by the best part of the excess height. I bow down to those with more engineering expertise on what modification, if any, would help ...

 

IMG_20200903_181659.jpg.7053bc6ad078a39740ef65134c2115ce.jpg

(Buffer height)

IMG_20200903_181446__01.jpg.ea7bd879e9e87aed845135198e580608.jpg

(The warehouse doorway is lower than it should technically be, but it does accommodate literally every Farish, Dapol, or PECO wagon that I've tried)

 

 

That is rather nicely demonstrative of the over-scale height issue. The loco buffers are almost overriding those on the van and that it won't fit under/through a doorway that will accommodate all other N gauge models is telling.

 

Very nice buildings BTW.

 

 

 

Edited by grahame
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After discussion with @Pixie over in the 2mm forum I decided to tackle the bogie pickup tabs to see if I could reduce the height by taking out some of the springing effect between bogie and chassis.

 

I arrived at a result I'm happy with by cutting 1mm from the top of the copper upright tabs and then tidying it back up with a file. Helpfully, a steel ruler fits neatly behind the tab and rests on the cross member, making it easy to mark the height (colour with a Sharpie then scribe with blade), and the gear tower pops off to make it easy to cut and then file without damaging the plastic parts.

 

IMG_20200905_143620.jpg.6e2a45332e64f041e362f3798180a189.jpg

 

With 1mm off, it definitely looks better, and after a little tweaking of the flappy contact above the bogie, running was still good. I did try filing a little extra off the tabs at this point, but then did get some running issues. Adapting Steve's idea, I popped some coupling springs over the tabs, and this sorted that issue. But I'd definitely recommend to anyone else taking no more than 1mm off the tab.

 

Before:

IMG_20200903_181659.jpg.7053bc6ad078a39740ef65134c2115ce.jpg

 

After:

IMG_20200905_144834.jpg.353189680b911fca4316ab4c8af81860.jpg

 

The result is still a tad high, but it's much closer to the buffers lining up with other vehicles. And to my eye it reduced the amount of daylight between bogie and chassis enough to look appreciably better.

 

I also removed the close coupling arm and I'm going to fit DG couplings now, so I don't know if this modification might create problems with coupling height for normal NEM couplers? Any of these modifications would void the warranty, so at your own risk etc - just reporting what worked for me!

 

Justin

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12 hours ago, Roy L S said:

Hi Justin

 

Rather than cutting the tabs would folding the ends flatter potentially achieve a similar effect do you think?

 

Regards

 

Roy

 

 

Hi Roy,

 

Do you mean the upright tabs? Folding the ends over (outward) by 1mm at the top should probably have the same effect.

 

I suspect adjusting the flappy parts on the chassis wouldn't be such a good idea though, as you need some element of springing to maintain electrical contact. Pre-bending the flappy bits to lay perfectly flat and horizontal might be an option if you're fitting coupling springs to the bogie tabs though.

 

Steve mentioned he takes the flappy bits out on other Dapol diesels and fits coupling springs over the upright tabs, which then make contact with the chassis block itself. But in the cl.17 there isn't really any chassis metal exposed around the bogie - clearances are too tight and the flappy bits actually pass over the hole for the bogie pivot / clip - you have to gently thread the bogie clips past them at an angle to remove or reinsert the bogie. So I don't see any alternative but retaining the flappy bits.

 

J

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15 hours ago, justin1985 said:

The result is still a tad high, but it's much closer to the buffers lining up with other vehicles. And to my eye it reduced the amount of daylight between bogie and chassis enough to look appreciably better

 

Nice simple improvement!

 

Removing the coupling mount has left quite a lot of daylight behind the buffer beam, though it's no doubt less apparent from normal viewing angles.  Is there any way you can fill in a bit of structure without unduly restricting bogie swing? Prototype photos don't seem to show much detail here but it looks dark.

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1 hour ago, Flying Pig said:

 

Nice simple improvement!

 

Removing the coupling mount has left quite a lot of daylight behind the buffer beam, though it's no doubt less apparent from normal viewing angles.  Is there any way you can fill in a bit of structure without unduly restricting bogie swing? Prototype photos don't seem to show much detail here but it looks dark.

 

Good point! 

 

It's hard to see detail between buffer beam and bogie in prototype photos, like you say, but I'd imagine there must have been some strengthening ribs, at the least. Some triangles of plasticard might well be in order.

 

Edit - adding the steps will make a big difference too, I think!

 

J

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11 hours ago, Flying Pig said:

 

Nice simple improvement!

 

Removing the coupling mount has left quite a lot of daylight behind the buffer beam, though it's no doubt less apparent from normal viewing angles.  Is there any way you can fill in a bit of structure without unduly restricting bogie swing? Prototype photos don't seem to show much detail here but it looks dark.

 

All this makes me rather relieved that mine needs its couplings on both ends, to pull a train and push a brake tender, just like the prototypes.

 

Les

 

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The lowering mods look to be a partial success though compared with images of the real thing there's still some way to go to capture the look of the thing settling down on top of its bogies. Unfortunately there look to be other issues in the cab/exhaust area. I've borrowed Justin's excellent photo as it's clear and just at the right angle to illustrate what I mean.

 

1704451373_claytonprob.jpg.54849d7a4bc303519be23d02577e2ace.jpg

 

There's a gap top and bottom of the exhaust cover which shouldn't be there. It looks as though the cab can't seat properly which might account for some excess height and the gap at the bottom, not sure why there's a gap at the top though.

Edited by Neil
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It's all about compromise. space had to be made for the close coupling mechanism, inevitably removing it will have left a gap. Whether the feature was necessary is definitely a matter of opinion, I would have preferred bogie mounting personally but the designer decided it should be this way.

 

Inevitably one can spot all sorts of anomalies in enlarged pictures, and the exhaust is clearly not as tight a fit as it could have been. It is not unusual, few models are perfect, take the first incarnation of new tool Farish 47s with the bogie spacing issue just for one. For sure the Clayton's exhaust "stack" should fit flush to the underside of the roof, but at normal viewing distances without being blown up many times actual size it is noting like so visible. 

 

Nothing is perfect but it seems pretty clear that the vast majority of people are well satisfied with their Class 17 models which have been priced very keenly in the current market, and for those for whom it doesn't cut the mustard there is always the Parkwood kit (joking!) or a go at a scratch-build I guess....

 

Roy

 

 

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On 13/08/2020 at 10:32, justin1985 said:

 

 

I don't really know much about the prototypes though, apart from the fact they were so unreliable. I had a feeling that many were withdrawn before even being painted into BR blue. So would a heavily weathered green loco still be plausible for the very final years of operation? Basically I think the green livery looks better on them!

 

There only seems to be one variant in green with full yellow ends, and no weathered version of that. Was that an uncommon livery variation in real life? Did most stay in green with small yellow panels until repainting into blue, or directly to scrapping?

 

 

 

 

A DTG member told me a fault of Claytons in BR service was failure to start and fuel starvation,  he said they had fixed their D8568 by swapping out the pipe runs for diesel fuel from  narrow bore to larger bore.  Fuel starvation has knock on effects such as poor combustion and high soot exhaust smoke which clogs up turbochargers,  not good for longevity.

 

I cannot comment on the  ratios of liveries, I too prefer the   duo-tone green livery over  the blue livery for the Clayton, but only by a small  margin. Livery variations  from EFE are red buffer beams or black buffer beams  applicable to all depictions of BR service. Again I prefer the visual lift of the red.

The Clayton in green full yellow ends is the anomaly by EFE, black buffer beams only,  yet the same with red  did exist,  i 'm delaying a further purchase in the hope someone at EFE notices the missing variation

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Can anyone give me a definitive answer as to whether any were renumbered in TOPS series, ie 17 XXX?

 

I seem to think there were some at Polmadie in late 60s/early 70s when I was ticking them off in in my ABC books?

 

I think the books then listed both numbers for each loco, so I might be misremembering, it was a while ago, lol!

 

Angus

 

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None ever received their TOPS numbers.  By the time renumbering was in full swing, all bar a couple that were used by the RTC were either dead, dying or baked bean cans.

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