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Wright writes.....


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11 minutes ago, Barry Ten said:

compound.jpg.237130de10aa0cdbc55bb77d72218022.jpg

 

 

Readers of Wright Writes will remember that a few months ago the opportunity came to make an offer on the fine collection of Midland models kindly built and donated by Dave Hunt. I put in a bid for the items and was very pleased to have it accepted. The models rested with Tony until it was feasible to collect them, but they are now with me and I've begun test-running on my own layout.

 

The collection includes four locos, a number of fine Midland carriages, and quite a large selection of goods vehicles. From the outset, Tony advised that two of the locos in particular might struggle with less-than-generous curves, so I made my offer in the full knowledge that the two passenger engines - the Compound above, and a Single - might have to remain cabinet cases. Pleasingly, however, it turns out that both engines are able to run on my layout. The Compound will go around both clockwise and anti-clockwise roads, while the Single needs to be confined to the former, but that's still a very good result as far as I'm concerned.

 

In the brief video below, both locos are shown running as-is, with nothing but a touch of lubrication on the Compound. Both need a bit of attention with regard to pickup, being wired on the American style with loco and tender at opposite polarities. The Compound runs fine in forward, but shorts out in reverse. The Single runs well both forward and reverse but is prone to dips in power at various spots on the layout, which I think is due to it only picking up on two axles on either rail.  For that reason I've cranked it up to nearly top speed on the layout, but it should run much more slowly once the pickup is amended. My intention is to modify the arrangement to the normal style, both to give more collection points, but also to enable both engines to run independently of their tenders. This will be done in as "minimally invasive" a style as possible, so as to preserve the integrity of the models.

 

As it happens, I do now need to do a bit of surgery on the tender of the Single. A captive nut inside the body has come loose inside, meaning the rear bogie can't be attached. I've devised a repair plan which will involve a bit of keyhole surgery, but nothing that will harm the details or beautiful finish. I think  once I've done that, I'll have no qualms about adding a few extra pickups and wiring, all of which should be invisible.

 

My video work isn't the best, but hopefully some of you will enjoy seeing these fine models running under power. Thanks again to Mr Hunt for this generous donation, and to Tony for facilitating it.

 

 

cheers,

 

Al

How marvellous to see these wonderful models in action Al,

 

Thanks ever so much for showing us.

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Compound2632 said:

 

The wagons from Slater's kits looked as if they could rebuilt to modern standards, avoiding some of the pitfalls inherent in the design. 

 

I've no intention of doing anything other than basic repair and maintenance. I'd far rather see the collection as a snapshot of some fine modelling from 40 years ago, than a basis for making it into something else, even if that might be more accurate.

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4 minutes ago, Compound2632 said:

 

The wagons from Slater's kits looked as if they could rebuilt to modern standards, avoiding some of the pitfalls inherent in the design. 

Good morning Stephen,

 

It's not for me to say, but I don't think Al has any intention of rebuilding anything in the collection to 'modern standards'. The maintenance of the integrity of Dave Hunt's superlative models is paramount as far as I know. They're 'historic' in every sense of the word. They were (wonderfully well-) built over 40 years ago, using the technology of the time. 

 

As Al has said, all he'll do is 'tweak' them slightly to give 'perfect' running.

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

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23 minutes ago, Barry Ten said:

I've no intention of doing anything other than basic repair and maintenance. I'd far rather see the collection as a snapshot of some fine modelling from 40 years ago, than a basis for making it into something else, even if that might be more accurate.

 

22 minutes ago, Tony Wright said:

The maintenance of the integrity of Dave Hunt's superlative models is paramount as far as I know. They're 'historic' in every sense of the word. They were (wonderfully well-) built over 40 years ago, using the technology of the time. 

 

Ah well, the Slaters kits are once again available, so there's no need to recycle old builds any more. 

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48 minutes ago, Tony Wright said:

How marvellous to see these wonderful models in action Al,

 

Thanks ever so much for showing us.

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

Agreed - enjoyed watching the video just, that Spinner was cracking a fair pace! Lovely stuff.

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The Spinner is really useful as a reference point as I'm engaged in a years-long struggle to get another single to work. A while ago I acquired a part-built Dean Single (chassis, body and tender mostly assembled) and set about getting it finished and running. It's proven very challenging for various reasons. The big wheels are non-concentric so a lot of energy is wasted just in the rail-wheel interface. The motor and/or gear ratio doesn't allow for high enough speed, so even when running light engine, the loco struggles to get up to any kind of decent clip. By far the most challenging problem is balance, though, with everything depending on the springing of the front bogie. Too little, and the model's nose-heavy, so the rear wheel lifts off the track and pick-up suffers. Too much, and the drivers lose adhesion. I'm not saying it'll be a panacea, but having the Dave Hunt model as a point of comparison, and knowing that it basically works, will be quite helpful in figuring out the balance points for the Dean. 

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1 hour ago, Barry Ten said:

The Spinner is really useful as a reference point as I'm engaged in a years-long struggle to get another single to work. A while ago I acquired a part-built Dean Single (chassis, body and tender mostly assembled) and set about getting it finished and running. It's proven very challenging for various reasons. The big wheels are non-concentric so a lot of energy is wasted just in the rail-wheel interface. The motor and/or gear ratio doesn't allow for high enough speed, so even when running light engine, the loco struggles to get up to any kind of decent clip. By far the most challenging problem is balance, though, with everything depending on the springing of the front bogie. Too little, and the model's nose-heavy, so the rear wheel lifts off the track and pick-up suffers. Too much, and the drivers lose adhesion. I'm not saying it'll be a panacea, but having the Dave Hunt model as a point of comparison, and knowing that it basically works, will be quite helpful in figuring out the balance points for the Dean. 

Hi Barry,

Loco balancing is more complex than many realise.  A key point to note is that the weight being lifted by the bogie at the front is a constant and so the down force being added to the rear axle by springing the bogie is being transferred mainly from the driven wheel rather than from that weight above the bogie.  What you really need is more weight to be added over the rear axle.  A really good source of this can be from resting the front of the tender on the draw bar.  If you can get enough weight in the tender you can then add weight to the smoke box to increase weight on the driven axle of a single whilst retaining sufficient down force on the rear axle to keep it on the track.   
Who’d have thought that studying levers and moments of inertia for ‘O’ level physics would now prove so useful for understanding how to balance a model locomotive?

Frank

Edited by Chuffer Davies
Wrong tense
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1 hour ago, Dylan Sanderson said:

A'up everyone...

 

I came across this photo on Smug Mug today, thought it might be of interest!

 

60822 on a stock move? Brand new Mk1 Pullmans?1622642258_Screenshot2021-10-12at10_39_31.png.c6919e9cd5c91b2a2014261f58254850.png

 

Lovely - thats going straight into my 'prototype for everything' pile :)

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1 hour ago, Dylan Sanderson said:

A'up everyone...

 

I came across this photo on Smug Mug today, thought it might be of interest!

 

60822 on a stock move? Brand new Mk1 Pullmans?1622642258_Screenshot2021-10-12at10_39_31.png.c6919e9cd5c91b2a2014261f58254850.png

 

Looks to be carrying Class C lamp code so that would fit an ECS move. Absolutely everything and anything could be on a ECS move so not so much unusual as distinctive.

When I was involved with the 'big railway' there was a series of planned ECS moves which were invariably called the 'works trains', designed to get stock to and from coaching stock depots and main works. So could easily be one of those.

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Empty stock trains can be really interesting, I was train spotting at Stafford in 1964 when a grubby Wakefield WD 2-8-0 ambled through the station from the south heading towards Crewe with a very long ECS train.

Pigeon specials can also be interesting, usually trains of bogie vans and could be hauled by anything! An A1 4-6-2 worked down the ex GC lines in 1963 ( not sure about the exact date) and an 8F appeared in East Sussex with another pigeon special. I think they usually ran on Sundays so shed masters had plenty of choice for the locos.

 

David

Edited by Norton961
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3 hours ago, Dylan Sanderson said:

A'up everyone...

 

I came across this photo on Smug Mug today, thought it might be of interest!

 

60822 on a stock move? Brand new Mk1 Pullmans?1622642258_Screenshot2021-10-12at10_39_31.png.c6919e9cd5c91b2a2014261f58254850.png

 

Great shot, but definitely not Essendine (the bridge is too low).

 

Suggest Greenwood, not long after the widening just a bit further north?

 

Regards,

 

Tony.  

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I have always been impressed by the pointing rodding on our Hungerford layout.  I should state at this point that I had no involvement in its construction or installation and it is wholly the work of other more competent modellers than I.  The planning for all the runs (including correctly positioned compensators etc.) being carried out by Mike Evans who then installed the point stools at the same time as the track was laid and prior to ballasting.  It was much later that the rodding was built and installed from Colin Waite etched components by Russ Whitwam.  I think the end result is as good as I have seen on any layout.  Unfortunately the Colin Waite etches went out of production years ago but fortunately for us we have sufficient left (I believe) to install the rodding on Clayton.  If this proves not to be the case I will create some bespoke etched components to match the CW items.

 

File1.jpg.049fecf6270587883d711e67874964ab.jpg

You may recall that this picture was one taken by you (Tony W) many years ago for a magazine article and it remains one of my favourite pictures of the layout. 

 

Frank

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43 minutes ago, t-b-g said:

Even Buckingham has point rodding. Fairly rudimentary with none of the extra twiddly bits like compensators that we would put in today now that suitable etches are easily obtained but certainly better than nothing. I think the rodding stools are no more than an upside down T section of plasticard with some holes drilled in it. The rods under the track are plastic to avoid shorting. Ones along the track are steel (possibly piano wire), which can be quite painful if the end of a bit catches when you are cleaning the track. 

 

I am not sure that square wire for more modern rodding would have been available at the time Peter Denny built his, so it was good for him that "back in the day" round rodding was used on the real thing. Whether that was mostly or exclusively I don't know but it was round on the GCR in 1907 so that will do for me. Round rodding was gradually replaced with a flat sided upside down U channel section (often described by modellers as square rodding) over the years but as with all these things, it was a slow process and I wonder if a few sections of round rodding may still be in place in some obscure outposts.

 

Anybody interested in point rodding (the prototype and how to design and set out an installation rather than how to model it) could do much worse than to look up the small book by Laurie Adams, published by the 2mm Association.

 

572093871_Article3.jpg.88e741163e1bbaa13141531c2cf2839e.jpg

 

 

 

It's one thing which struck me when I photographed Buckingham, Tony. 

 

That attention to detail.

 

1888657462_Buckingham04.jpg.6098cdaa3a1a22092ac18d5cf6dcf6bc.jpg

 

Seen before, but always worth a further look. 

 

Given that Peter made everything, I'm not really surprised he included things like point rodding. Yet, it's conspicuous by its absence on many layouts I've seen. 

 

83034774_pointrodding31.jpg.06a6f76e830a499c98b670cd0952f550.jpg

 

We have such a comprehensive range of components to assist us nowadays in the making of rodding. 

 

1450532724_morepointrodding10.jpg.670bf27ef5a1aa0b93845be3d49b4156.jpg

 

669442151_morepointrodding20.jpg.22c2b6ea044f40c8b69f5df41bf9bbe7.jpg

 

Including all those lovely MSE etched cranks, etc.

 

However, my close-up photography means I need to be more diligent in my soldering.

 

That little 2mm Scale Association booklet on the subject. Yes, invaluable! 

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

 

 

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8 hours ago, Tony Wright said:

I'm writing a piece for BRM on point rodding.

 

It's one of those details which often get missed off model railways. 

 

1900963197_NorthForeland05.jpg.87c62e55793e20750c50cce14432de45.jpg

 

Yet, it's so distinctive when installed.

 

1619250066_PenfoldPriory17.jpg.ef16e14861b15598b40859069e94ef58.jpg

 

Even just a hint of it.

 

755306425_pointrodding39.jpg.d8e113289535dfb8861f7523ab9dbec5.jpg

 

In last year's lockdown, I completed the lot on Little Bytham!

 

This was all made/installed using MSE's components. 

 

Has anyone used the Wills system for 4mm? I acquired some, but found it just too big - nearer 7mm if anything; certainly S Scale. The rods themselves wouldn't go underneath SMP plain track. 

 

 

 

 

I used it, but then ripped it out and used the MSE stuff instead. As you say, far too overscale. I also found the lengths too short to work with.

 

I didn't take any photos of the Will stuff specifically but it does show up in one or two old shots I took:

 

cambrian.jpg

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I’ve posted elsewhere but my iPad notified me this morning that those who subscribe electronically to Railway Modeller now have access to digital copies of the back catalogue back to 1949.  Browsing through an 80s edition, I happened on these articles..  I’m sure there’s more of Tony’s back catalogue to explore!

 

David

D233B941-27E2-4624-8A29-A3BDAD6A07AE.png

C3A693EA-1595-435D-9C7A-DE78237797DB.png

Edited by Clearwater
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10 hours ago, Clearwater said:

I’ve posted elsewhere but my iPad notified me this morning that those who subscribe electronically to Railway Modeller now have access to digital copies of the back catalogue back to 1949.  Browsing through an 80s edition, I happened on these articles..  I’m sure there’s more of Tony’s back catalogue to explore!

 

David

D233B941-27E2-4624-8A29-A3BDAD6A07AE.png

C3A693EA-1595-435D-9C7A-DE78237797DB.png

Thanks for those David,

 

My word, wasn't my photography limited back then?

 

Though I can't exactly recall, the Hillbury images were probably taken on medium format (Mamiya Super 23 6X7) and the Moretonhamstead ones on 35mm (Nikon F). The 'sky' in the latter was created by applying transparent, self-adhesive Frisk film to a 10" x 8" B&W print, then cutting round the 'horizon' with a scalpel, peeling off the frisk covering the 'sky', then applying white, designers' gouache. Once dry, the lower Frisk level was removed, and the print submitted for publication. As seen, a rather hard edge was the result, though better than clubroom walls and shelves in the background. 

 

There was no 'undo' button!

 

Regards,

 

Tony. 

Edited by Tony Wright
typo error
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The post by Clearwater earlier set me thinking with regard to  the number of articles I've had published in the model railway press down the years and the number of layouts I've photographed which have been published.

 

Had I been diligent and organised, I'd have kept copies (and of the books I've written) but that's not the case.

 

One thing I must do is digitise all the tens of thousands of B&W negatives I have and the transparencies. This has been done in the main with my prototype railway images (their having been published).

 

I recall chatting to Brian Monaghan shortly after he retired and I asked him about his vast library of model railway pictures (all of which had been taken using a 5"X4" Linhof). 'Are they catalogued?' I asked. The gist of his reply was probably not, if any survived at all. Once a commission had been completed, the prints/transparencies were sent off to the editors and he kept very little, not even negatives, it would seem. HIs name was prominent in the model press for a long time, though I wish he'd left his 'helicopter' behind on occasions. He photographed Fordley Park for Model Railways, at the request of Cyril Freezer, and I asked him if the camera could be lowered (to no avail, though the picture quality was impressive). I took the pictures for any subsequent Fordley Park articles (locomotives of, etc.), but, though taken from eye level, they didn't have the quality of Brian's; until I bought into medium format equipment. It carried on through Leighford, Stoke Summit, Charwelton and so on, gradually evolving into digital imagery. 

 

I suppose Barry Norman showed the way to take 'realistic shots'. 

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