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11 minutes ago, grahame said:

 

Hmm, that sounds like a bit of an excuse. Filling it with dodgy poor quality non-steaming fuel is as daft as filling your petrol car with diesel. 

Actually, this may become more of a problem in the future: there's a piece in the latest Friends of the GCR magazine concerning the shrinking UK coal industry and the difficulties that poses for heritage steam railways; it also touches on the question of different types and qualities of coal, while discussing some of the problems with importing it from abroad.

So it may be a case of having to use whatever can be obtained, even when it's not the ideal variety...

Edited by Chas Levin
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10 hours ago, Porcy Mane said:

 

Aye John, the young'un was going well past Sunderland Bridge Just over an hour ago...

 

Tornado-SunderlandBridge_19-06-2021-Sm.jpg.c7062569faa10282c529ecf45fc272a5.jpg 

It looked half decent in the sunshine at five to eight this morning.  (My body is still in shock from being awake at that time of day!).

 

https://flic.kr/p/2m6oDz4

 

P

 

 

Shame that both she and 60103 are carrying the same livery at the moment.  I thought Tornado looked most stunning when painted in BR blue a few years back....

 

 

 

 

Edited by Chamby
Corrected auto spelling mistake
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Posted (edited)

A couple of pictures from yesterday................

 

1427238135_NickLoganmixedstock.jpg.3e937dde86a991179395d3b3d690228f.jpg

 

An eclectic mix, indeed.

 

726777954_NickLoganK3.jpg.68413f7d73aeacd12c12ed7ba863bd71.jpg

 

And a South Eastern Finecast K3 (the wires above the tender are for future pick-ups - fitted beneath, of course). 

 

All the work of Nick Logan, who's learned very quickly from my giving him hints and tips in his model-making (not required henceforth). 

 

 

Edited by Tony Wright
typo error
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11 hours ago, B15nac said:

I don't normally comment on here but though I would give my opinion on gearbox's etc. I've not built hundreds of locos I've built about 8. I've used 3 different types of gearbox's markits high level an djh. My 47xx has a high level gearbox that I built an she runs very nice smooth an quite. The markits one I fitted in a old crownline 47xx never ran quiet I believe getting the mess perfect between the brass an metal gears a art I've not learnt yet. I've got several models with branchline gearbox's all perchanced off a chap who had the art of building these all brass gearbox's down to a t they are powerful quite an very smooth. My latest model a djh Britannia I've fitted a new age djh gearbox an motor an it runs beautifully smooth an quite with good slow an top end speeds it's a excellent combination. Not sure where they get there motors from now but they are very quiet an powerful? My personal conclusion is in all my future builds they will have the djh box an motor unless it's a small or tricky model where the range of high level box's are superb. I guess I'm working a full time job an got a 2 year old so time is limited so a ready to go gearbox an motor comb is going to be worth me saving up to buy to save on time. All my modeling skills I've learnt from watching Tony write on the right track dvds etc without them I wouldn't be able to of built what I have. I will attach a picture of my latest model.

 

Kind regards Neil

 

DSC_0429.JPG

DSC_0427.JPG

Thanks for showing us your work Neil,

 

It looks very good. 

 

You raise a very interesting further point regarding gearboxes; that of time saved set against cost. How does one evaluate time, especially if, by saving it, one also, just about automatically, has a beautifully-sweet prime mover?

 

I think the discussions have probably all been aired now, and, as I've said many times, 'You pays your money and you takes your choice'. I fully understand yours.

 

Two constructively-critical points on your 'Brit' if I may? Replace the bogie wheels with correct nine-spokers, and fill in the triangular gaps in the frames (designed to accommodate an open-framed motor) with Plastikard 'wedges' of appropriate thickness (soldering brass in-fills at this stage is a bit too tricky). 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, B15nac said:

I don't normally comment on here but though I would give my opinion on gearbox's etc. I've not built hundreds of locos I've built about 8. I've used 3 different types of gearbox's markits high level an djh. My 47xx has a high level gearbox that I built an she runs very nice smooth an quite. The markits one I fitted in a old crownline 47xx never ran quiet I believe getting the mess perfect between the brass an metal gears a art I've not learnt yet. I've got several models with branchline gearbox's all perchanced off a chap who had the art of building these all brass gearbox's down to a t they are powerful quite an very smooth. My latest model a djh Britannia I've fitted a new age djh gearbox an motor an it runs beautifully smooth an quite with good slow an top end speeds it's a excellent combination. Not sure where they get there motors from now but they are very quiet an powerful? My personal conclusion is in all my future builds they will have the djh box an motor unless it's a small or tricky model where the range of high level box's are superb. I guess I'm working a full time job an got a 2 year old so time is limited so a ready to go gearbox an motor comb is going to be worth me saving up to buy to save on time. All my modeling skills I've learnt from watching Tony write on the right track dvds etc without them I wouldn't be able to of built what I have. I will attach a picture of my latest model.

 

Kind regards Neil

 

DSC_0429.JPG

DSC_0427.JPG

Thanks for showing us your work Neil,

 

It looks very good. 

 

You raise a very interesting further point regarding gearboxes; that of time saved set against cost. How does one evaluate time, especially if, by saving it, one also, just about automatically, has a beautifully-sweet prime mover?

 

I think the discussions have probably all been aired now, and, as I've said many times, 'You pays your money and you takes your choice'. I fully understand yours.

 

Two constructively-critical points on your 'Brit' if I may? Replace the bogie wheels with correct nine-spokers, and fill in the triangular gaps in the frames (designed to accommodate an open-framed motor) with Plastikard 'wedges' of appropriate thickness (soldering brass in-fills at this stage is a bit too tricky). 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

Edited by Tony Wright
Duplicate post for some reason!
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On 18/06/2021 at 17:58, LNER4479 said:

Feel free to throw brickbats and tell me all the places where I went wrong if you really feel the need to. But that wasn't the point of the post and - as you can see - in spite of myself, I still ended up with a sweet running gearbox.

Not throwing brickbats but a set of instructions - always sent from Chris Gibbon at High-level which consists of a general tips page (applying to all versions of gearbox) plus one specifically for the model of gearbox bought, really covers most of your problems.

 

First I carefully open out the frame holes for the axle bearings whilst still in the fret using a broach, checking as I go along to ensure that as soon as the holes are big enough to allow the bearings in for a push fit, no more metal is removed.


Secondly of all I don't force the worm on to the motor. I ream it out to 2mm which gives it a close but adjustable fit and fix in place with lock tight when at the specified place (lock tight applied from the outer end of the shaft to avoid any danger of getting the stuff in the motor). This avoids the use of a vice to force it on. If anyone wonders about the reliability of the worm on the shaft, I've done a good few without any failing.

 

Thirdly, when the frame is folded, to ensure it's square use a small engineers square and clip in the etched spacer for the bottom part of the frame. Once satisfied, solder a cross wire as instructed to keep it rigid whilst soldering the fold lines. Hey presto, a square, robust framework ready to add the rest of the gubbings.

 

Fourthly, the idler shafts are cut to the length (the width of the gearbox from plus a little) from the 2mm bar supplied using a carborundum (spelling?) disc before adding and fixing in with epoxy. (My personal theory is that Tony doesn't like them for this reason :)). The reason why epoxy is used is obviously the gears are nylon.

 

Graham, I'm not wishing to criticise, but you have made the job more difficult than it needed to be. Referring to the instructions would have made the job so much easier. The only bit not included in the instructions is the worm fit, which is my own method as I've found his more recent worms far too tight to fit on without the kind of risky drastic action you described. The only other problems I've encountered with them are the motor fixing points on some models (high flier for example). In order to orientate the motor to give the narrowest body fit, I normally have to file the screw holes in the frame work (the ones at the sides to allow for motor replacement) towards the centre by about 0.5mm each. I do this before I take it out of the fret, checking the motor against it.

 

Once you've done a couple and got used to it, they really are a doddle and at less than half the price of the less flexible DJH models, they are surely worth a the extra bit of effort required? And if you build it with reasonable care, you get a sweet runner every time.

 

 

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2 hours ago, grahame said:

 

Hmm, that sounds like a bit of an excuse. Filling it with dodgy poor quality non-steaming fuel is as daft as filling your petrol car with diesel. 

Excuse? Hardly. This does happen. 6233 came to grief a few years ago, bewteen Durham and Newcastle, iirc.

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Before anyone says it, I know. 'Keep up!', you'll tell me. I didn't realise most of the points I made had already been answered! It's just that this thread runs at a pace that is too quick for my legs. 

 

One other thing I should add to my original post: My layout, set on a very busy but secondary route, in general has smaller locomotives than many of the main line express layouts. This is where High Level come into their own.... for the locomotives where space is limited or where there is space under the boiler.

 

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11 hours ago, Porcy Mane said:

 

Aye John, the young'un was going well past Sunderland Bridge Just over an hour ago...

 

Tornado-SunderlandBridge_19-06-2021-Sm.jpg.c7062569faa10282c529ecf45fc272a5.jpg 

It looked half decent in the sunshine at five to eight this morning.  (My body is still in shock from being awake at that time of day!).

 

https://flic.kr/p/2m6oDz4

 

P

 

 

Nice shot, I was going to have a look down Tyne Yard to see it passing last night but got waylaid...

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42 minutes ago, Clem said:

Not throwing brickbats but a set of instructions - always sent from Chris Gibbon at High-level which consists of a general tips page (applying to all versions of gearbox) plus one specifically for the model of gearbox bought, really covers most of your problems.

 

First I carefully open out the frame holes for the axle bearings whilst still in the fret using a broach, checking as I go along to ensure that as soon as the holes are big enough to allow the bearings in for a push fit, no more metal is removed.


Secondly of all I don't force the worm on to the motor. I ream it out to 2mm which gives it a close but adjustable fit and fix in place with lock tight when at the specified place (lock tight applied from the outer end of the shaft to avoid any danger of getting the stuff in the motor). This avoids the use of a vice to force it on. If anyone wonders about the reliability of the worm on the shaft, I've done a good few without any failing.

 

Thirdly, when the frame is folded, to ensure it's square use a small engineers square and clip in the etched spacer for the bottom part of the frame. Once satisfied, solder a cross wire as instructed to keep it rigid whilst soldering the fold lines. Hey presto, a square, robust framework ready to add the rest of the gubbings.

 

Fourthly, the idler shafts are cut to the length (the width of the gearbox from plus a little) from the 2mm bar supplied using a carborundum (spelling?) disc before adding and fixing in with epoxy. (My personal theory is that Tony doesn't like them for this reason :)). The reason why epoxy is used is obviously the gears are nylon.

 

Graham, I'm not wishing to criticise, but you have made the job more difficult than it needed to be. Referring to the instructions would have made the job so much easier. The only bit not included in the instructions is the worm fit, which is my own method as I've found his more recent worms far too tight to fit on without the kind of risky drastic action you described. The only other problems I've encountered with them are the motor fixing points on some models (high flier for example). In order to orientate the motor to give the narrowest body fit, I normally have to file the screw holes in the frame work (the ones at the sides to allow for motor replacement) towards the centre by about 0.5mm each. I do this before I take it out of the fret, checking the motor against it.

 

Once you've done a couple and got used to it, they really are a doddle and at less than half the price of the less flexible DJH models, they are surely worth a the extra bit of effort required? And if you build it with reasonable care, you get a sweet runner every time.

 

 

 

Wise words Clem.

 

I have seen the most simple of kits assembled badly. Even something made up from 4 or 5 bits needs some degree of skill. Suggesting that such kits are somehow difficult because of the inability of a few people to carry out the simplest assembly is not really fair on the kit.

 

The same with gearboxes. If you have the skill to do even an average job of putting a loco kit together and make it run in terms of wheels, crankpins, coupling rods, frames etc. then you have the skill to make a gearbox work well.

 

As for the optimum period to be a railway enthusiast, I cannot decide. Would I want to be 15 years older to have memories of steam in its last decade? Would I have wanted to be around in pre WW1 days to see my beloved pregrouping GCR at its best, with the working conditions and health care of the day and the horrors of the trenches to come?

 

It is tricky but on balance I would rather have those 15 years still "in the tank" (fingers crossed!) and I wouldn't want to lose the luxuries and relative ease of modern life.

 

So if I ever find myself wishing I was around in other times, it doesn't last long.

 

If I want to time travel, I can go back to 1907 for an hour or two any time I want to in my railway shed.

 

Looking back I have always been a railway enthusiast and a modeller, so there hasn't been a "best" time for me. I have enjoyed every time of my life from a railway point of view and continue to do so.

Edited by t-b-g
Correct badly typed sentence
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39 minutes ago, MarkC said:

Excuse? Hardly. This does happen. 6233 came to grief a few years ago, bewteen Durham and Newcastle, iirc.

 

Sounds like another excuse. Quality control of the fuel used to fill the loco truck would help prevent reoccurrences.

 

 

 

 

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46 minutes ago, grahame said:

 

Sounds like another excuse. Quality control of the fuel used to fill the loco truck would help prevent reoccurrences.

Up to a point I agree, because coal is not a consistent, refined product; coal gets dug out of the ground, crushed to size and that's about it.  Two lumps of identical looking coal can have very different calorific values and ignition temperatures.  They might actually have come from opposite sides of the same opencast mine and behave very differently.  It's not like petroleum products which come in sealed barrels from known sources and traceable production processes.  

But perhaps the coal supply industry does need to sharpen up its act on QA testing. 

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14 minutes ago, Northmoor said:

But perhaps the coal supply industry does need to sharpen up its act on QA testing. 

 

As @Chas Levin said earlier, the problem is not a failure on the part of "the coal supply industry", rather its complete collapse. I suspect that the complete ban on coal extraction in the UK and attempt to ban coal consumption - both highly laudable in general - will be a bit like BR's ban on main-line steam in the decade after 1968; after a while a sense of proportion will be achieved and it will be realised that a small amount of extraction of good quality steam coal to support a heritage industry makes an insignificant contribution to atmospheric CO2 compared to the emissions of the UK as a whole - folk will need to give up their private cars (however propelled), central heating, air conditioning, H&M Duette controllers, etc. well before the collapse of heritage railway sector makes any difference!

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4 hours ago, Tony Wright said:

A couple of pictures from yesterday................

 

1427238135_NickLoganmixedstock.jpg.3e937dde86a991179395d3b3d690228f.jpg

 

An eclectic mix, indeed.

 

726777954_NickLoganK3.jpg.68413f7d73aeacd12c12ed7ba863bd71.jpg

 

And a South Eastern Finecast K3 (the wires above the tender are for future pick-ups - fitted beneath, of course). 

 

All the work of Nick Logan, who's learned very quickly from my giving him hints and tips in his model-making (not required henceforth). 

 

 

Wow - would Nick be described as a beginner?

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3 hours ago, grahame said:

 

Sounds like another excuse. Quality control of the fuel used to fill the loco truck would help prevent reoccurrences.

 

 

 

 

With respect, bad coal is nothing new. There are many recorded instances of bad coal causing problems during BR steam and earlier. The problem with coal is that you don't necessarily know you have a bad batch of black stuff until you are out on the road. By then of course, it is too late to do anything about it.

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3 minutes ago, Denbridge said:

With respect, bad coal is nothing new. There are many recorded instances of bad coal causing problems during BR steam and earlier. 

 

Probably about time something was done about it. Perhaps supplier accreditation, product checking before use, due diligence or whatever is necessary.

 

 

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12 minutes ago, grahame said:

 

Probably about time something was done about it. Perhaps supplier accreditation, product checking before use, due diligence or whatever is necessary.

 

 

In the main, coal supplies are pretty consistent. It is an unfortunate fact that occasionally some 'bad' coal will slip through the system. It is rare, but it happens. You can't test every single load. It is no different to the stories we occasionally read about concerning 'bad' fuel being pumped into petrol station storage tanks. 

Nothing in the real world is 100% perfect, sometimes things go wrong. Perfection doesn't exist in reality. :)

Edited by Denbridge
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Bad coal is nothing new. In the 80s I nursed a old chap who had been a fireman on the LNER. He told me that in the 20s they were given German coal as part of the WW1 reparations. It was small and hard, and when working the Pullman trains out of Kings Cross with a GCR 4 cylinder 4-6-0 locos the draft was so strong it would lift the coal off the fire and exhaust it out the chimney. Which in turn fell like rain on the cab roof. 

 

He liked the Ivatt Atlantics but the Gresley Pacifics were too much like hard work to fire.

Edited by Clive Mortimore
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31 minutes ago, grahame said:

Probably about time something was done about it. Perhaps supplier accreditation, product checking before use, due diligence or whatever is necessary.

Hardly worth the effort now the industry is all but historical I would have thought!  

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Just now, Clive Mortimore said:

Bad coal is nothing new. In the 80s nursed a old chap who had been a fireman on the LNER. He told me that in the 20s they were given German coal as part of the WW1 reparations. It was small and hard, and when working the Pullman trains out of Kings Cross with a GCR 4 cylinder 4-6-0 locos the draft was so strong it would lift the coal off the fire and exhaust it out the chimney. Which in turn fell like rain on the cab roof. 

 

He liked the Ivatt Atlantics but the Gresley Pacifics were too much like hard work to fire.

a few years back, I was involved with a preserved Burrell traction engine. At the beginning of one season, the owner took delivery of a coal supply from his usual supplier of good welsh steam coal,always from the same colliery. In those days coal was delivered in large sacks and had a batch number tracing it right back to the seam. Of the 20 or so bags delivered, all but one were of the usual high quality. The exception looked the same, initially burnt the same, but out on the road, wouldn't make a hot fire and clinkered terribly. we had no option but to pull off the road, dump the fire and start again. I suspect a similar situation occured with 60103. the difference being, that it is a major undertaking to replace the complete fire and tender coal load on a mainline pacific. I feel for the passengers and the support crew, but that kind of issue isn't one that can be recovered from quickly and easily. They would have had no option other than pull the loco from the train.

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3 hours ago, davidw said:

Wow - would Nick be described as a beginner?

Thank you for your kind words. 

 

The twin is made from two Comet kits with MJT underframe parts and a scratch built break end. The other kits are Parkside and D and S. 

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3 hours ago, grahame said:

 

Probably about time something was done about it. Perhaps supplier accreditation, product checking before use, due diligence or whatever is necessary.

 

 

 

You've presumably not had any dealings with solid fuel then.

Attached are a couple of pictures, see if you can tell the difference between the different fuels, they're all black and will burn and provide heat under the correct conditions.

 

 

IMG_20210620_173645240.jpg.8ee93b4dd35e05ca07816a4be5dec507.jpg 

These two while looking very similar are a medium quality housecoal, excuse the odd bits in one of them as we burn all our address labels and such so there were lots in here awaiting the next time we light a fire, the other was obtained from a house clearance where the householder, being a model engineer with steam models had some properly sorted and graded steam coal. I brought it home for the fire anyway.

 

 IMG_20210620_173744813.jpg.6d5a1a3bb993b56e292b0f503e0fa2fc.jpg

 

This is smokeless coal, again there are different grades and brands. It burns given the right conditions and provides lots of heat.

 

Which would you suggest be put in a loco tender for a mainline run?

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1 hour ago, great central said:

 

You've presumably not had any dealings with solid fuel then.

 

 

Actually I have, but I wouldn't be picking a fuel for steam locos. I'd expect an experienced professional to do that. And to get it right.

 

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9 hours ago, Tony Wright said:

Thanks for showing us your work Neil,

 

It looks very good. 

 

You raise a very interesting further point regarding gearboxes; that of time saved set against cost. How does one evaluate time, especially if, by saving it, one also, just about automatically, has a beautifully-sweet prime mover?

 

I think the discussions have probably all been aired now, and, as I've said many times, 'You pays your money and you takes your choice'. I fully understand yours.

 

Two constructively-critical points on your 'Brit' if I may? Replace the bogie wheels with correct nine-spokers, and fill in the triangular gaps in the frames (designed to accommodate an open-framed motor) with Plastikard 'wedges' of appropriate thickness (soldering brass in-fills at this stage is a bit too tricky). 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

I must admit I didn't realise the bogie wheels were incorrect I will get this sorted along with the frame cut outs. Thanks Tony.

 

Regards Neil

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