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McMullen Coal Company reborn into 7.1/4"


Owd Bob
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On 14/11/2019 at 14:27, alastairq said:

Border Collie's {?} facial expression says it all.....   :)

Your dog?

Or 'er indoors'?

Her dogs alastairq and we have two at the mo' but had four at one point, the one in most pics' is always with me though and likes getting in the road and is always wanting to help or play and is into everything :lol: The other is a rescued Dog and is very soft and won't ever leave her side...mind you we believe it was really badly treated in the past, the last two weeks of 24 hours a day non-stop fireworks going off did'nt help it much and the poor thing was terrified and shaking for a full fortnight.:( The other is'nt bothered by them at all. We love 'em both to bits despite their differences....so here's a good excuse to post some dog pics';)

           I've been saving up and collecting stuff for the loco' build, all bargains bought of fee-bay, two 4mm thick off cuts of plate steel for the buffer beams, two 1200mm lengths of 50mm x 25mm box section for the chassis side rails and an original box of five 1970's bike sprockets for the future chain drive to the wheels, they are proper quality British made hardened steel sprockets and not brittle cast Chinese junk like todays bikes have. I'll start saving up now or more like also have to sell something to buy a new welder to stick it all together with.:D 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've nothing to report on any further track laying or trackbed construction, and the rocks around the pond feature sank back and some fell in to it due to the vast amount of rain we've had lately, hopefully i can get a stiff mix of cement under and around them all this weekend. I got all mechanical and drilled out and then tapped a 1/4 inch thread into the axle bearing blocks to fit new grease nipples into. Trying to keep to the seven and a quarter societies guidelines for maximum widths and heights etc. which means the height of any cab roof from the track bed can't be higher than 110cm, and with the max' width being 60cm. The width is plenty at 50cm for my wants but it looks like i'll have to make a sunken foot well in-between the bogies if i'm ever to sit inside any future cab i may construct. 15mm box section tubing has been bought in and chucked on the growing pile of metal for the cab' frame construction. Heres a couple of pics' i have found for loco' ideas':unknw_mini:A centre cab Irish loco' built by Walkers of Wigan and a 1915 Hudson loco':)

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Cheers Ozzy! :drink_mini: Really nice to hear from you, hope you are well? I'm going to pick up 80ft of track which i should have stacked up here in a few weeks time, it should be well enough track for my needs, it will still be a while before it gets laid though. Hope to visit and to see you soon at yours, and in better weather. Here's the two 'V' skip bodies all riveted, welded and painted up, and really ready for some chassis making to sit them on.  Happy New Year to all. :)

  

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Not much has been achieved lately, but its getting there a bit at a time.:) I drilled out eight holes and tapped a 6mm thread into some  'U' shaped steel cross members for the loco's bogie mounts, and trial fitted and bolted them to the chassis side frames, all came out nice and square, level and flat, so in time it can be all welded up together, i'll be adding further strength and bracing where needed in good time. Note card template for the possible grille panel. A good friend brought round a small trailer load of rubble and helped us knock down the side of the old shed, and the blocks and rubble are now being used to form the solid base of the track bed where it will start to curve and make a return towards the laid tracks starting point. Levels will have to be checked and pegs put in for track bed heights in this area next before any further progress, all i can see is that i'll need a lot more rubble and infill, and some fresh soil bringing in by the ton to build it all up so that it reaches the height of the already laid track. The reason that this area is so low is that many years ago i dug it all out and removed at least 18 inches of depth from this area so i could get my then series one landy in and under the shed roof. The whole of the old shed can and will come down soon and the white and maroon painted corner post will come out so that the track can have a point fitted just before the curve and allow more of the track to carry straight on from where the old wheelbarrow is sat in the pic' for a further 15 ft. or so.;) SWMBO is happy with her little pond area and is busy sorting out some new plants, soil and compost for it.:wub: 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I chased up the eight ten foot lengths of track at the weekend and we will now wait until warmer times to start the leveling and laying process.  Many thanks to the forum member who kindly let me know he had the track up for sale.:) Thanks must go to swmbo who has made a few visits to the local garden centres where she found that they sell off a few straggly plants at this time of year cheaply. So the pond area is slowly filling up nicely. ;)  

 

 

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A couple of quite dry calm days this week gave me the excuse i needed to get out and do something with the new track, the next two 10.ft. long sections of track had to be curved so i stripped the sleepers off from the rails, all ended being very easy and a lot quicker than i first thought, the rails are only screwed onto the sleepers using large slotted screws on either side. It made it a lot easier for me to bend the alloy rails separately once i'd stripped it down. I then laid out the straight lengths of rail onto the track bed and roughly marked them up with a permanent marker pen in the places they would need bending. I used my fancy iron garden gate to bend each length as the rail just slotted nicely into the fancy spiky bits:D.  After some time consuming and very gentle bending and double checking the rails curvature by placing on the ground where they were to be laid. I eventually got the lengths to the right amount of curvature i needed, it was'nt a process i wanted to rush and make mistakes with. The sleepers were screwed back on and they pulled the rails nicely parallel together again. The track has been left down for now but i'll lift it and treat the wooden sleepers before i finally lay it down. Thankfully the curve is not quite as severe as it looks in these pics' and from now on for the next 35-40 feet its all going to be an almost straight run.:)

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21 minutes ago, Mike Storey said:

 

Will this track go anywhere near the problem you had with subsidence?

Well he’s not going to have a problem filling the hole with those skips!! ;)

 

Great stuff Bob, I wondered at first if you were going to leave the skips unpainted for natural weathering it’s so wet ;) 
 

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Think i'll get them thar skips finished off next Paul, then i can use them as i go along from now on with the ballasting, cos swmbo is getting too old for all the lifting and is getting as fecked up as i am these days.:crazy:  I would leave those skips outside to rust if i did'nt think the local scum bags would take 'em and weigh them in.:lol:

           Mike it is built on top of the old 16mm line footings all along that same problem fence line:o But at least i might stand a better or an easier chance of keeping the bigger track leveled up by bunging more ballast under it if it do's start to sink.:D So far so good though as there is no longer two rows of heavy blocks built on top and as yet there is no weight on it. :) Oh! and the '0' gauge might have to go...i need a new welder.;) I can't afford to be so diverse these days and the old car needs fettling with soon for its mot....etc etc.:rolleyes:

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Its actually heading towards you Apollo:D Next stop Hindley Green!:biggrin_mini2: No chance of a railway again here again ...that Burnham chap backed a guided bus way here when he was in power rather than what the people really asked for and desperately wanted but that's Labour for you.:rofl: 

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I gave the sleepers a good two days of drying out and then i've soaked them in a 50/50 wash of black car under-body seal (waxoyl) and paraffin, i can only hope it helps them to last a bit longer. The two lengths are now down and are roughly leveled up until more ballast arrives this week, for now they look like giant pieces of Peco 32mm. track.:D  The next track length along gets me to the gate and fence, and it just needs a slight curve putting in it before i can lay it, i should only need to remove a third of the sleepers on this section to bend the rails. The big rocks and the Hebe in the last pic' have since been slid further back, it was'nt such a bad guess on the track alignment when i first plonked them in.:)

              I'm heading into the bigger gauges so that hopefully it gives me enough practice and know how so that maybe one day i can go volunteer on the real thing. Having been waiting several years for a couple of operations to put me at least half right then i can go do it, and just when i finally thought i was having the ops' done, such is the state of the NHS that i have now been sent home four times from the operation appointments in the last five weeks because there are never any empty beds to recover in.:nea:

 

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Edited by Owd Bob
old age cock up.
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Another few wet and windy days but we have managed to level and lay another length and ballast it up between the showers, each ten foot length is taking two full bags of 10mm diam' white limestone chippings. The long straight area behind the sheds and beyond the Green gate and fence was a few inches too high so out came the rake and small pick and the excess materials were removed and dumped further down the track bed to form another level stretch of embankment. Having now removed two inches retaining boards had to be put in to keep the future ballast in place and off the planting beds. It cost us nowt by re-using some almost new but used fence boards, they were put in dead level and left two inches above the base of the track bed. The Green gate and fence can be removed and re-used soon to make a one piece level crossing style gate hung from the shed corner, hopefully we'll make it high enough to stop the dogs from running riot all along the track and getting into this part of the garden.;)

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I started building the crossing style gate a few weeks ago and i have finally managed to get it hung this morning. It was made from some rough sawn and reclaimed (from my old shed floor) 25mm x 25mm. battening. It is roughly four feet long by two feet high. We painted it with more left over white masonry paint which works well on rough sawn timber we have found from experience. The red circle is made from alloy and came from the push out bottom of an old cake baking tin and was etch primed and sprayed Red. The 10mm sized squared mesh came from an old Chicken hutch. It has been hung off the shed corner and shuts against the existing gate post. The next length of track can now be laid and ballasted up during this week. The gap under new gate we be just tall enough for wild life to pass under but thankfully not the Dogs. ;)

 

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This looks great and is really encouraging me in my idea of putting a railway into the pub garden. Some of your curves look tight for 7.5". What radius are they?

 

And have you had to bend the rails? Or are they flexible enough to lay out and then attach sleepers afterwards?

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Thanks Joseph, i saw your posts and i will watch your progress and i wish you good luck with it all. Like yourself its all new to me and i'm learning as i go along, i read a lot on the seven and a quarter society web site and i have a few dedicated mags' to learn from, i'll make mistakes but i'll learn from them as long as it don't cost me owt!:lol: I removed the sleepers Joseph and i gingerly bent the rails in the garden gate as can be seen in the pics' no rush at all getting this task done, if it was wrong i tried again until it was right. There's only really one sharp curve here which is'nt quite as tight as it looks in these pics' it's my old camera with an almost fish eye lens that makes it look like the curve is so sharp. I've been using my bogies as i go along, which i have shoved around the curves to make sure they are ok, something you might like to do yourself before buying any track is to figure out using a bogie or set of wheels or a wagon just how sharp or wide you can make your curves. I am limited for space especially width wise in places, so i'm using short wheel bases and bogies of 24cm. or eight an half inch axle/wheel centres for my yet to be made small fleet. I've three sets of points to make and maybe a check rail putting on the sharp curve to make and figure out to keep me busy this summer. I have now saved up enough dosh since the festering season to get a new welder this weekend and get those two wagons all done, running and in use.:)

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Last weekend we got another track length set down and ballasted up, the wet and wind cleared up on both days but only in the afternoons, we also managed to treat the sleepers on another 10ft length of track whilst the weather was still dry enough, this length needed a slight curve put into it which was easily done by putting one end on top of a garden table on its edge with the other end on the ground and then getting my mate to gently sit in the middle until the desired curve was achieved. The well rotted wooden base of swmbo little 7' x 4' shed needed replacing so we built a new one out of 3" x 2" posts for the frame and half inch thick ply for the floor. The patio flagged base needed lifting and leveling up so a full wheel barrow of a dry mix of concrete was used under them. hopefully we'll have another break in the weather this weekend and hope to get swmbo shed put back on its base and back in position. I've finally got a new welder but all this wet stuff is probably going to be keeping me from progressing for a while yet. 

 

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