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15 hours ago, Tony Wright said:

The latest SEF A4 is now just about complete

 

446831147_6001306complete.jpg.006adb561276112edb7c91bcb097260f.jpg

 

Some cleaning and tidying up necessary. 

 

204143258_6001307panning.jpg.098d3ea052132117372d147d4ce69fd3.jpg

 

Tony, like some other modellers I've always thought the front didn't look quite right on the SE Finecast A4, as you've also indicated. I've just been comparing your great photos with photos of the prototype. Basically the bulbous look is because it appears like the front end is not long enough. Or you could say it's run into a solid concrete wall and flattened its nose! The furthest forward extensiom of the casing is too flat. The gap between the front of the cylinder cover and the front casing appears significantly too short supporting this view. Still as you say probably a good layout loco when flying around at 90mph with 14 kit built coaches behind it!

 

So my own view is that the Hornby A4 body is far better and that aesthetics are very important when it comes to the face of a locomotive. Maybe I'll build some Comet chassis for mine? Or maybe the SE Finecast chassis which I know are available separately. I'll have to wait and see.

 

Andrew

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9 hours ago, Barry Ten said:

There were a few panning shots around P1494, Tony, in August of last year.

 

I posted this one:

 

6006a.jpg

 

1/25th of a second.

 

Al

I'll try slowing down the shutter speed next time, Al.

 

I probably asked this before, but how fast (in scale) was your 'King' going? I usually have mine going past at over 90!

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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8 minutes ago, Woodcock29 said:

Tony, like some other modellers I've always thought the front didn't look quite right on the SE Finecast A4, as you've also indicated. I've just been comparing your great photos with photos of the prototype. Basically the bulbous look is because it appears like the front end is not long enough. Or you could say it's run into a solid concrete wall and flattened its nose! The furthest forward extensiom of the casing is too flat. The gap between the front of the cylinder cover and the front casing appears significantly too short supporting this view. Still as you say probably a good layout loco when flying around at 90mph with 14 kit built coaches behind it!

 

So my own view is that the Hornby A4 body is far better and that aesthetics are very important when it comes to the face of a locomotive. Maybe I'll build some Comet chassis for mine? Or maybe the SE Finecast chassis which I know are available separately. I'll have to wait and see.

 

Andrew

Good morning Andrew,

 

It could be my building of it....................

 

1028034809_60017onDownHeartofMidlothian.jpg.e98284a266100e864b0997419ca96516.jpg

 

I think it's fair to say that the Hornby A4 is more accurate in body-shape (however, there's something about the lower front end on this which doesn't entirely convince - why, I don't know). The boiler bands are also far too prominent (I thin them right down on the cast body shell). 

 

It's the mechanism which lets this down (look at the weird angle of the slidebars). 

 

I renumbered/renamed this one (ex-60031, I think), and we used it (as seen here) on Stoke Summit for a time, but it struggled on the heaviest trains.

 

I subsequently sold it on. 

 

All the above said, Hornby's A4 is outstanding value for money.

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Tony Wright said:

Good morning Andrew,

 

It could be my building of it....................

 

1028034809_60017onDownHeartofMidlothian.jpg.e98284a266100e864b0997419ca96516.jpg

 

I think it's fair to say that the Hornby A4 is more accurate in body-shape (however, there's something about the lower front end on this which doesn't entirely convince - why, I don't know). The boiler bands are also far too prominent (I thin them right down on the cast body shell). 

 

It's the mechanism which lets this down (look at the weird angle of the slidebars). 

 

I renumbered/renamed this one (ex-60031, I think), and we used it (as seen here) on Stoke Summit for a time, but it struggled on the heaviest trains.

 

I subsequently sold it on. 

 

All the above said, Hornby's A4 is outstanding value for money.

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

 

 

I think the one thing that lets down the look marginally of the Hornby A4 body is the flatness of the cylinder covers, given they are meant to follow the curve of the cylinders more in the lower half. I've thought about how to improve this a number of times without a firm conclusion. Probably the only way to fix it is to make new covers that are attached to the cylinders and therefore not to the footplate. But you wouldn't want a gap at the footplate.

 

I've usually realigned the sidebars on the few BR examples I have plus realigning the return crank into its forward leaning position.

 

Of course on my five LNER versions the sidebars are not overly visible so I haven't needed to realign the sidebars. Interestingly on the very first one I got, Mallard the sidebars were perfectly aligned.

 

Andrew

Edited by Woodcock29
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On 21/11/2020 at 17:32, micklner said:

Nowt wrong with Hornby A4's other than when extreme pulling ability, is needed. Pre war Valve gear hardly visible as are the dreaded Bogie wheels !!:P

 

Some of my Hornby A4 conversions most were were secondhand wrecks sourced via ebay. 

Most are based on the R2339 Mallard, including Merlin on which I removed the valances, much easier than repainting a BR version. Hornby have never made a current detail model of  a  post war Garter Blue A4.

 

post-7186-0-70703700-1330430703.jpg

 

post-7186-0-62569600-1346611487.jpg

 

post-7186-0-78283100-1343754276.jpgpost-7186-0-16708700-1343754297.jpg

 

post-7186-0-11473700-1418746545_thumb.jpg

 

 

post-7186-0-28391700-1407780592_thumb.jpgpost-7186-0-32141200-1407780734_thumb.jpg

 

post-7186-0-83823900-1394055364_thumb.jpg

 

I just went back to look at these images again.  Is there a livery or form (with or without valences) that an A4 doesn't look stunning?

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10 minutes ago, Northmoor said:

I just went back to look at these images again.  Is there a livery or form (with or without valences) that an A4 doesn't look stunning?

Apple green with a solid black front end did them no favours. 
 

Tim

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Looking at the real A4, the Hornby A4 and the SEF A4, it really does show just how much better the Hornby A4 is, so I would certainly stand by my earlier suggestion that a Hornby body on a new mechanism might be the best way to get a top quality loco that will perform on the heaviest trains. It is only really the slab sided cylinder on the Hornby one that needs attention to make it a real winner.

 

Another odd thing about the SEF one is the way the opening doors on the front are indicated. The lower three front lamp irons should all be in alignment across from side to side and should also be well below the line of the door hinges. That doesn't seem possible on the model and I note that all the examples illustrated have the centre lamp iron lower that the outer two.

 

For most people, perhaps that wouldn't matter but to somebody who makes such a big thing of lamps and lamp irons, I am surprised that got past scrutiny without being corrected.

 

The SEF model illustrated also lacks the curve under below the line of the piston rod on the cylinders yet the cylinder covers are not attached to the body. I can't see any reason why they can't be curved properly if you have them split from the body.

 

It ought to be possible, with a bit of care, to marry up the top line of the cylinder cover with the bottom line of the footplate to leave an almost invisible join. I have seen (or more correctly haven't seen!) baseboard joints done so neatly as to be almost invisible so it should be possible on a loco.

 

I am not sure about the balance weights either. The two cast in Romford ones are roughly the right shape and almost in the right place but the one on the centre wheel shouldn't be that much of a crescent shape, unless they varied and I haven't seen that variety. It has a much flatter inside curve, almost straight.

 

I would agree with the comments about the look of the real loco. So far ahead of its time when new and even now it looks more like a train from 2020 than one from the 1930s. The only livery that really spoiled the looks was the one in green and the vertical line to a big black smokebox. Whoever thought that one up and why?

 

A4s are way too modern for me but if I wanted one, layout loco or not, I don't think I would be rushing to get a SEF kit.  

 

 

Edited by t-b-g
Autocorrect changed too to to!
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2 hours ago, Northmoor said:

I just went back to look at these images again.  Is there a livery or form (with or without valences) that an A4 doesn't look stunning?

 

I'm not a great fan of this livery either, though it probably looks better on an A4 than anything else...

 

R3701_3463495_Qty1_1.jpg

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8 minutes ago, Chamby said:

 

 

I'm not a great fan of this livery either, though it probably looks better on an A4 than anything else...

 

R3701_3463495_Qty1_1.jpg

Having had the SEF A4 just about 'assassinated', perhaps some critical comments might be made about the Hornby model above.

 

The centre lamp iron is lower on this one as well. 

 

If the lining accurately follows the shape of the valance, then something is clearly wrong above the slidebar supports.

 

The LH front buffer is pointing at the sky.

 

The tender rides too high up, with the obvious misalignment of the vertical handrails and those on the cab, plus the front cover being higher than the cab roof.

 

The wrong angles of both the slidebars and the return crank have been mentioned before. As have the toy-like bogie wheels.

 

The expansion link is also too long. 

 

The leading front guard irons should be attached to the frames, not the bogie. 

 

I'd not really be so 'critical' of a model, but fair is fair.......................

 

The Hornby A4 is still an excellent starting point, however. 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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4 hours ago, Tony Wright said:

I'll try slowing down the shutter speed next time, Al.

 

I probably asked this before, but how fast (in scale) was your 'King' going? I usually have mine going past at over 90!

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

 

Quite a bit less than 90, Tony, as it's not geared for really fast running - probably more like 60 I'd imagine. I can't remember if I hand-held the camera or panned it on the tripod.

 

Al

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21 hours ago, Tony Wright said:

2102767236_60157panning.jpg.3e59cb82e5677bbfb46c78b524aa343a.jpg

 

GREAT EASTERN; built from a DJH kit and painted by Geoff Haynes (including hand-painting the coat of arms on the nameplate!). 

 

 

Lovely modelling as ever, but the gap and empty space between loco and train spoils the scene a little to my eyes. Perhaps I'm just used to tension lock and Rapidos filling the space. Could the gap be reduced and some dummy brake and steam heating pipes added?

 

Steven B.

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, t-b-g said:

Looking at the real A4, the Hornby A4 and the SEF A4, it really does show just how much better the Hornby A4 is, so I would certainly stand by my earlier suggestion that a Hornby body on a new mechanism might be the best way to get a top quality loco that will perform on the heaviest trains. It is only really the slab sided cylinder on the Hornby one that needs attention to make it a real winner.

 

Another odd thing about the SEF one is the way the opening doors on the front are indicated. The lower three front lamp irons should all be in alignment across from side to side and should also be well below the line of the door hinges. That doesn't seem possible on the model and I note that all the examples illustrated have the centre lamp iron lower that the outer two.

 

For most people, perhaps that wouldn't matter but to somebody who makes such a big thing of lamps and lamp irons, I am surprised that got past scrutiny without being corrected.

 

The SEF model illustrated also lacks the curve under below the line of the piston rod on the cylinders yet the cylinder covers are not attached to the body. I can't see any reason why they can't be curved properly if you have them split from the body.

 

It ought to be possible, with a bit of care, to marry up the top line of the cylinder cover with the bottom line of the footplate to leave an almost invisible join. I have seen (or more correctly haven't seen!) baseboard joints done so neatly as to be almost invisible so it should be possible on a loco.

 

I am not sure about the balance weights either. The two cast in Romford ones are roughly the right shape and almost in the right place but the one on the centre wheel shouldn't be that much of a crescent shape, unless they varied and I haven't seen that variety. It has a much flatter inside curve, almost straight.

 

I would agree with the comments about the look of the real loco. So far ahead of its time when new and even now it looks more like a train from 2020 than one from the 1930s. The only livery that really spoiled the looks was the one in green and the vertical line to a big black smokebox. Whoever thought that one up and why?

 

A4s are way too modern for me but if I wanted one, layout loco or not, I don't think I would be rushing to get a SEF kit.  

 

 

I believe the Smokebox was taken back to first Boiler Band, as they thought the Green paint would not be able to stand the extra heat from the Smokbox during running . Obviously if that was the thinking?, later version followed the usual curve.

 

post-7186-0-37991900-1447091572_thumb.jpg

 

 

Edited by micklner
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43 minutes ago, Tony Wright said:

Having had the SEF A4 just about 'assassinated', perhaps some critical comments might be made about the Hornby model above.

 

The centre lamp iron is lower on this one as well. 

 

If the lining accurately follows the shape of the valance, then something is clearly wrong above the slidebar supports.

 

The LH front buffer is pointing at the sky.

 

The tender rides too high up, with the obvious misalignment of the vertical handrails and those on the cab, plus the front cover being higher than the cab roof.

 

The wrong angles of both the slidebars and the return crank have been mentioned before. As have the toy-like bogie wheels.

 

The expansion link is also too long. 

 

The leading front guard irons should be attached to the frames, not the bogie. 

 

I'd not really be so 'critical' of a model, but fair is fair.......................

 

The Hornby A4 is still an excellent starting point, however. 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

 

I think the lining above the cylinders and slidebars is poorly applied, rather than the model being the wrong shape. The majority of the things you mention would be corrected either fairly easily or by a replacement mechanism.

 

The big difference for me is the cut out in the valance above the bogie.

 

The Hornby one looks right. I can't see how you can get the SEF one looking right without major surgery.

 

To be fair to SEF and to Hornby, that shape must have been a nightmare to get right in model form. I wouldn't know where to start with no flat footplate and curves all over the place.

 

That isn't my favourite A4 livery but the loco just about gets away with it!

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1 hour ago, Chamby said:

 

 

I'm not a great fan of this livery either, though it probably looks better on an A4 than anything else...

 

R3701_3463495_Qty1_1.jpg

 

Good afternoon Phil,

 

I don't think Hornby have much of a handle on accurate colour. I think the livery should look more like this.

 

 

60075.jpg

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2 minutes ago, micklner said:

I believe the Smokebox was taken back to first Boiler Band, as they thought the Green paint would not be able to stand the extra heat from the Smokbox during running . Obviuosly if that was the thinking?, later version followed the usual curve.

 

post-7186-0-37991900-1447091572_thumb.jpg

 

 

 

Yet they managed it with the grey and the blue paints earlier. Perhaps some paint expert will be able to say if green is worse when heated, than those colours.

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13 minutes ago, t-b-g said:

 

I think the lining above the cylinders and slidebars is poorly applied, rather than the model being the wrong shape. The majority of the things you mention would be corrected either fairly easily or by a replacement mechanism.

 

The big difference for me is the cut out in the valance above the bogie.

 

The Hornby one looks right. I can't see how you can get the SEF one looking right without major surgery.

 

To be fair to SEF and to Hornby, that shape must have been a nightmare to get right in model form. I wouldn't know where to start with no flat footplate and curves all over the place.

 

That isn't my favourite A4 livery but the loco just about gets away with it!

Looks like the body is damaged to me .

 

Possibly been forced on to the chassis and the Valve gear is pushing the Valance upwards, hence the lining is mishapen. The Buffer is part of a seperate front section which is a common failure on Hornby A4's , obviously loose as well. Both easy fixes compared to the same problem on whitemetal bodies.

 

The Finecast version needs some decent bottom washout plugs as well, not the holes in the sides as portrayed. You can buy a etch via ebay for the correct shape.

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1 hour ago, Steven B said:

 

Lovely modelling as ever, but the gap and empty space between loco and train spoils the scene a little to my eyes. Perhaps I'm just used to tension lock and Rapidos filling the space. Could the gap be reduced and some dummy brake and steam heating pipes added?

 

Steven B.

 

 

 

Good afternoon Steven,

 

You're right.

 

I don't know why the gap is too big. I'll shorten the hook.

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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1 hour ago, Headstock said:

 

 

 

I don't think Hornby have much of a handle on accurate colour. I think the livery should look more like this.

 

 

 

There might well be H&S implications.

Long ago some blue pigments were banned. 

I remember RAL5013 being one example some times known as Cobalt Blue. The difference between the English and German versions was at one time quite marked.

Without going as far as a colour analysis the BR blue looks to be getting near that dodgy area.

 

Regarding the A4 nose shape. Bert Collins used the Trix body but carved a "waist" in the area just below and in front off the number plate. At the time it was highly thought of and was considered by many people to be the best attempt at the shape.

Bernard

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38 minutes ago, Bernard Lamb said:

There might well be H&S implications.

Long ago some blue pigments were banned. 

I remember RAL5013 being one example some times known as Cobalt Blue. The difference between the English and German versions was at one time quite marked.

Without going as far as a colour analysis the BR blue looks to be getting near that dodgy area.

 

Regarding the A4 nose shape. Bert Collins used the Trix body but carved a "waist" in the area just below and in front off the number plate. At the time it was highly thought of and was considered by many people to be the best attempt at the shape.

Bernard

 

Good afternoon Bernard,

 

you may be right, However the purple A4 dose look a little toxic in itself. I think that they may have made a better fist of this livery in the past and there are other current RTR models that have done the colour better. On the other hand, Hornby are also not so good are BR green, Pullman umber or Garter blue amongst others. Their black is a quite good though.

 

Update

 

apparently the colour is ultramarine blue and is readily available from many sources.

 

An example of a Bullied pacific as the colour is intended to be.

 

http://www.goldenagemodels.net/images/sr-merchant-navy-banner-ipad0003.jpg?crc=158548073

 

 

Edited by Headstock
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When Ian Wilson (who doesn't read RMweb) and I exchange Christmas presents, we like to give each other something we've personally made/modified.

 

This year, the little item below will be one of his presents from me.

 

1369302303_Edenhamcoalwagon01.jpg.fea16df8227f6aa3b59a11912df859bf.jpg

 

612220216_Edenhamcoalwagon02.jpg.22e56a1d571457fea0ccf03eb8c05b8b.jpg

 

682201845_Edenhamcoalwagon04.jpg.67f5518020a0c9d1d144698690c1012e.jpg

 

His little OO layout, Edenham, has coal staithes which allow the fuel to be discharged by gravity, from above, into bunkers below (rather like the NER used). 

 

This will be (obviously) a static model, designed to sit on the top of the staithes.

 

It's a Bachmann 16T mineral wagon (fitted?), with bottom-opening doors. All I did was cut apertures in the floor of the wagon body and the floor of the chassis (removing the metal weight at the same time) and made a drop-down door out of Plastikard. 

 

I admit, I have no idea if this is right (if it's hopelessly wrong, then so be it), but I hope it'll make a nice touch.

 

Dry-brush weathering completed the job.....................

 

 

 

 

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28 minutes ago, Tony Wright said:

When Ian Wilson (who doesn't read RMweb) and I exchange Christmas presents, we like to give each other something we've personally made/modified.

 

This year, the little item below will be one of his presents from me.

 

1369302303_Edenhamcoalwagon01.jpg.fea16df8227f6aa3b59a11912df859bf.jpg

 

612220216_Edenhamcoalwagon02.jpg.22e56a1d571457fea0ccf03eb8c05b8b.jpg

 

682201845_Edenhamcoalwagon04.jpg.67f5518020a0c9d1d144698690c1012e.jpg

 

His little OO layout, Edenham, has coal staithes which allow the fuel to be discharged by gravity, from above, into bunkers below (rather like the NER used). 

 

This will be (obviously) a static model, designed to sit on the top of the staithes.

 

It's a Bachmann 16T mineral wagon (fitted?), with bottom-opening doors. All I did was cut apertures in the floor of the wagon body and the floor of the chassis (removing the metal weight at the same time) and made a drop-down door out of Plastikard. 

 

I admit, I have no idea if this is right (if it's hopelessly wrong, then so be it), but I hope it'll make a nice touch.

 

Dry-brush weathering completed the job.....................

 

 

 

 

 

Not sure, but somehow I think one of the side doors would be open so that the poor chap can extricate himself after pushing the remaining coal through the bottom doors.

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That's a lovely little wagon, Tony , and will make a nice cameo. It reminds me of when i was a newly appointed management trainee in the Civil Service, and every month, 4 or so of the fitter lads would go down into the coal cellar to keep the chute clear to get the coal inside. Hard, hot , sweaty work but great fun, and great teamworking, looking back. Imagine asking staff to do that now.

The models I was building at the time, 50 years ago, have been getting a spin today, and folk might be interested/amused/horrified.

 

. The N7 is the original Wills version with Belpaire firebox, running on a Triang Jinty chassis with X04 motor. I did fit Romfords but that was all - no brakes or anything else. it is reasonably prototypical on my ex-NER rake, as lots of coaches were transferred to the GE. The rake was built during lockdown, so the train represents all 50 years of effort

The J17 is a BEC kit, and I think it was the second I built, in 1973.  it originally sat on a Triang chassis, However, at one time Fenwicks in Newcastle had a Hornby franchise, and you could get some real bargains. I was picking up Hornby Gresleys for £20 and fitting Comet etc etched sides hand over fist. I picked up a couple of SDJR Jinties for £18 each, hoping to convert one to a J73, but this never happened, so stuck the BEC body over one of the chassis, as seen here. It completes my pseudo GE scene,

IMG_20201124_145704.jpg.185c44a5fbf6d9b5a7c5ed45b68357eb.jpg

The Railbus is an Airfix plastic kit on a scratch chassis - just 2 bits of brass soldered together and a DS10 fitted, I built it in the late 70's and I can't remember the last time it ran. It has lost a couple of windows, and I confess I was astonished when, after oiling, off it went, albeit noisily. Goodness knows when it will be out again.

IMG_20201124_150354.jpg.486acd01a6957b6b29eb912a280a918a.jpg

Edited by rowanj
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8 hours ago, Woodcock29 said:

I think the one thing that lets down the look marginally of the Hornby A4 body is the flatness of the cylinder covers, given they are meant to follow the curve of the cylinders more in the lower half. I've thought about how to improve this a number of times without a firm conclusion. Probably the only way to fix it is to make new covers that are attached to the cylinders and therefore not to the footplate. But you wouldn't want a gap at the footplate.

 

I've usually realigned the sidebars on the few BR examples I have plus realigning the return crank into its forward leaning position.

 

Of course on my five LNER versions the sidebars are not overly visible so I haven't needed to realign the sidebars. Interestingly on the very first one I got, Mallard the sidebars were perfectly aligned.

 

Andrew 

I agree Andrew re. the cylinder cover curving round the bottom . I improved it on two of my  Hornby A4s by making some overlays from  5 thou brass sheet . Rather fiddly and flimsy as I carried it on a few mm. along the narrow valance area . Popped rivet impressions with one of these pointed rods with a weight , rolling a curve like a coach tumblehome and glued it on . After of course filing the existing plastic rivets flat and forming a curve around the bottom  of the cylinder . Made like this they spring off and on if you need to remove the body . 

As for recent discussions about the radius link being too long and narrow , I have fitted Mike Edge etched two or three layer radius links and his radius rods which can be made to wark properly in gear , and also look right .

 

Regards , Roy .

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1 hour ago, LNERandBR said:

 

Not sure, but somehow I think one of the side doors would be open so that the poor chap can extricate himself after pushing the remaining coal through the bottom doors.

Probably,

 

But he's an Olympic gymnast!

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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