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Everything posted by dibber25

  1. I don't know of a preserved 121 or 117 in anything like original (or restored original) condition, particularly inside. They were refurbished - extensively - and pretty much everything inside got changed or painted over. The 122 at Buckfastleigh has, probably, the best external restoration, as all the later stuff, high-intensity lights etc has been removed. I don't know what its like inside. However, most preserved railways opt to retain the later fittings and work the old-style liveries around them. (CJL)
  2. Yes, that's pretty much how I remember them. Terracotta lino on the floor? Big dark green Loudaphone mounted on the side of the driver's seat. I think it got moved or removed later. (CJL)
  3. They were done by A.N. Wostenholme, who did a lot of work for BR at the time. I had some of his original artwork in a plans chest in my office at one time. There's a fabulous colour poster of all the 'new' BR locos in the 1950s - the Standards plus the gas turbines, 10000 etc which he also did. A personal favourite is the AC railbus he did for the Tetbury/Cirencester branch posters and flyers.
  4. The BSK weighs 830gm. I weighed one recently for a review. (CJL)
  5. Would be nice to have a ready-to-run 0-6-0 tender loco of some sort. Wasn't it the most common wheel arrangement in the UK? (CJL)
  6. Exactly! Unfortunately there's none so blind as those who WILL NOT see.
  7. That is awful. A while since I've been there and scarcely recognisable. Looks like the public footpath beside the railway south of the crossing has been obliterated. Those new-build apartments are on what was a used car lot. North of the crossing I guess the Heathrow fuel sidings have been disused throughout the pandemic as there won't have been many flights. I think the fuel trains only supplemented what went in via pipeline anyway. Here's a couple of Colnbrook shots to enjoy. The Colas 60 is assembling the empty tanks and was taken about 4 years ago from the A4 Bath Road bridge. The cab view was from an up train held at the signal, I think, to await crossing the down working of the morning through train to Paddington. (CJL)
  8. Had some slides scanned recently and couldn't resist posting this one, taken at Lillooet on the British Columbia Railway in 1981. The chop-nosed Alco and single passenger car formed the morning school train for indigenous children from Seton Portage. They would return home on the southbound regular passenger train. The coach (heated by a log-burner which w3asn't necessary in the 95deg heat when I was there) was named Budd Wiser, a gentle poke at the line's regular passenger RDCs. (CJL)
  9. The question of single cars or MBS/DTS combinations seems to have been as much down to date as anything else. Apart from GWR railcars (brought in because of a shortage of steam crews in the London area) the first DMUs were the Gloucester MBS - Class 122 (in 1958). Photos show them on the Staines branch either singly or in pairs of two MBS. The Gloucesters left circa 1960 once the Pressed Steel (121) cars were available. There are pictures of these running as MBS+DTS on the Staines branch and I certainly remember seeing them. However, they probably didn't last long as pairs because apart from the morning and afternoon runs that served the trading estate halts, that much accommodation was seldom needed. There was something very special about the ride across Staines Moor in the rain with the wet willow leaves slapping against the windscreen and the gentle rolling from side-to-side on track that was generally well maintained up to the end. It is impossible to imagine it now as gravel raising, the M25 and Heathrow airport have ruined the area. (CJL) Having said that, the first picture I find is a Gloucester MBS+DTS entering Staines West when the signal box was still staffed! The second is a Pressed Steel DTS+MBS at Staines West (Keith Jaggers picture). Now here's a teaser for you. Why did Staines West have Great EASTERN Railway canopy ironwork and valancing?
  10. There was certainly a weekday through 'commuter' train during my time (early 1960s) up in the morning and down in the pm. Looks like the afternoon return working went to Southall which is logical as that's where the DMUs lived. One of the oddities of the dieselisation was that some units had roller blinds with Staines West and other just had Staines. This was because around 1960 there was a plan to refurbish the wartime spur that linked the Staines branch to the SR Windsor lines and to run branch trains into Staines Central. The closure of the last half mile into Staines West would have eliminated the need for a bridge to carry the A30 Staines by-pass. However the SR reckoned they couldn't accommodate the trains at Central, so the scheme foundered but DMUs delivered during that time had blinds that hedged their bets. I think I've posted this elsewhere in the past but its a favourite picture and a rare one. (CJL)
  11. There is a book in preparation. It has been in preparation for a very long time but is now getting near to publication, I believe. I was involved with it initially but have been 'in and out' over the years, depending on other commitments. If you have specific queries, I can almost certainly answer them, as it was my local branchline from 1962 until it disappeared under the M25 some 25 years later. You'll find references above to my friend Keith Jaggers' website. Keith knew Staines West a year or two before I did. I've modelled Staines west in various scales over the years. This is the current version - in 'N' gauge. (CJL)
  12. It reminds me very much of my 1960 Hillman Minx - the rounded lower edges of the body are much like the sills on cars of that generation and have ended up being much the same - more holes, less metal. The Stationmaster speaks of rust but it's not so much the rust that's the problem as the holes where there is no rust, metal or anything else. It must be around 2-3 years since I went to Didcot to examine and photograph it before I commented on the first CADs that I'd been shown. I'd seen it previously at Crewe and Barrow Hill and been alarmed at its poor state back then. Sadly, although it is a very evocative shell, without its gas turbine 'innards' it is of little museum significance and is always likely to be a low priority for any serious restoration work. I hope I'm proved wrong. (CJL)
  13. The normal reason for 'non-standard' size is to get greater prominence on newsagents' shelves. (CJL)
  14. Didn't the UIC use it for some specific type of testing? Hence the changed bogie and suspension carve-up on one end. I'm afraid that the loco is in very poor condition - the body work is rusted into holes through most of its length, on the complex curved areas at the bottom of the sides. It is completely empty inside. As far as I'm aware it is not part of the GWS own collection, merely given a home by them, so it seems unlikely time or money will be spent on it. (CJL)
  15. Just wondered if any of the Canadian readers of RM web knows the current status of the equipment that was at Woss Camp on the Englewood Railway - the former Canadian Forest Products logging railway? The railway closed following a horrific accident when a cut of log cars ran away and five men were killed. Last I heard, the track was being removed and the trackbed turned into a logging road. The railway had three SW1200RS locomotives, two of which were recently re-engined. Has any of that equipment been preserved or sold, or has it all been scrapped? It was a very long drive beyond habitation to reach Woss Camp but I did it twice, most recently in 2014 when the railway was still operating. (CJL)
  16. A friend who is a VIA engineer said it was among the new fleet illustrations in a staff briefing. She didn't know what the significance of the different colour scheme was, either. (CJL)
  17. Not quite sure why you think I imagined it. (CJL)
  18. Certainly, my VIA friend refers always to turning on a 'Y'. The only balloon loop I've ever seen is at Bennett on the White Pass & Yukon but I'm not that well travelled in the USA. (CJL)
  19. It is highly likely that 18000 had standard GWR whistles. Quite a lot of fittings were supplied by Swindon - the details are in the files at the NRM. Of course, that's not to say that the whistle would have sounded the same as it did on a steam loco. Remember, too, that Swindon had fitted much better horns to its railcars after complaints that plate layers couldn't hear them coming. I'm guessing that when Swindon heard the whistles on 18000 they replaced them with the railcar horns (which were said to be EXCEPTIONALLY LOUD!) (CJL)
  20. There's a very nice high-definition version of the film available on Amazon Prime. Way better than the DVD version that I've enjoyed up to now. (CJL)
  21. Thanks again everyone. I have quite a few more, printed off when I had access to a batch of negs with no info whatsoever with them. I have a couple of 70ft auto coaches (W200W is one) in the most appalling state but what their story is, who knows. (CJL)
  22. I think the single-cab look is part of the tradition of North American railways. They don't view it as a single locomotive. In the heyday of passenger diesels they had lash-ups of four locos, one with a cab, two without and one with a cab facing the other way. Or two with a cab lashed-up back to back. Even with a single loco and one cab, it didn't matter because their usual practice was to turn the whole train on a 'Y', not to run-round with a loop in the way that was usual in the UK. The former Nightstar coaches that VIA used on the Ocean are being withdrawn because VIA can no longer turn the train at Halifax and Canadians don't travel 'back to the engine'. The Nightstar stock has seats all facing one way. The new trains with their push-pull cars are - at last - a move towards more economical operating practices with trains that will no longer need to be turned. How they'll deal with reversing the seats is not clear. Maybe a return to the old-style pivoted seat units. With regard to the photo, VIA is also showing pictures of a train with largely white/pale grey stock with a giant maple leaf. It is not clear whether that's an alternative livery. It looks to be a computer-generated re-livery rather than a train that has actually been painted. (CJL)
  23. Many thanks, everyone. I would never have sorted that out. Im now looking for info on W 9961 W. Obviously GWR origin (possibly ex-tri-composite judging from compartment spacings) a clerestory on 7ft Dean bogies and appears to be black)
  24. No.2200 first liveried example. A complete set is to be delivered later in the year so that it can be subjected to tests in a Canadian winter.
  25. I'm curious to find the origin and purpose of this coach W1065W which appears to be in BR carmine and is marked STAFF. I'm guessing it originated with one of the South Wales companies but what staff would it be reserved for? I had for years been under the impression it was an ex-LSWR vehicle but I don't now know why I thought that. I'm guessing there's someone who will know exactly what and when? (CJL)
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