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Imaginary Locomotives


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11 minutes ago, Compound2632 said:

 

Well, that's true for a certain idea of what a heritage railway should be. For myself, a far more interesting day out than a large locomotive on eight Mk 1s or Mk 2s would be a ride in some reproduction 42 ft radials behind a reproduction Precedent (or equivalent for some other pre-grouping company) - at least trying to give the experience of 19th century travel. I guess that's why I prefer narrow gauge lines such as the Lynton & Barnstaple or Talyllyn to many of the standard gauge lines.

I tend to agree; a recent ride on the Bluebell gave me the opportunity to ride on multiple sets of carriages which didn't include a Mark 1 (and I like Mark 1s).  @DenysW's analysis of the requirement is right, except that only a small proportion of standard gauge preserved railways normally operate eight coach trains.  Even lines such as the KWVR and Mid-Hants, which might be considered two of the Big League and certainly run big locos, normally run 5/6 coach sets.  There is plenty of demand for smaller locos, which is why 82045 is being built.

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A dude in a Discord I’m in was gonna model this engine from the RWS, and said it was an N7. I pointed out it had extended side tanks, and he was disgusted at the thought.

 

Then I made an edit, and even he had to admit it looks good. Thoughts?

09DA1CE6-B0E8-474B-8CD9-28E09AF4FC28.jpeg

102D7435-7F51-4110-92CB-CB493DE96746.jpeg

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20 hours ago, Northmoor said:

I tend to agree; a recent ride on the Bluebell gave me the opportunity to ride on multiple sets of carriages which didn't include a Mark 1 (and I like Mark 1s).  @DenysW's analysis of the requirement is right, except that only a small proportion of standard gauge preserved railways normally operate eight coach trains.  Even lines such as the KWVR and Mid-Hants, which might be considered two of the Big League and certainly run big locos, normally run 5/6 coach sets.  There is plenty of demand for smaller locos, which is why 82045 is being built.

When I was a volunteer there, the longest trains which a loco could run round on the Mid Hants was 7 mk1 length vehicles. Any more than that needed top & tailing or shunt release.

 

On normal operating days outside summer weekends the service was more like 4 carriages, and the Ivatt tank was quite capable of doing that without making a mockery of the timetable. And there are some pretty big hills on that route. I think the railway may even have bought it, but if that happened it was after I left.

 

They do need more power at times though, hence the big steam locos and type 4 diesels.

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23 hours ago, DenysW said:

Without wishing to reject anyone's enthusiasms for some really good historic locos, shouldn't this start with a specification of what the present need is for new steam engines? At present I'd say most heritage railways need to haul up to 8 (30-ton?) coaches at no more than 25 mph on branchlines that vary in ruling gradient from 1:100 to 1:50 (yes, the West Highland Extension has a short stretch that's even more severe). That's about a 300 ton load (including the loco), requiring 450 hp for 1:100 and 900 hp for 1:50 just to overcome gravity. Stephenson's approximation was that 75% of power was used by gravity for a 1:100 rising grade, with the rest on rolling resistance and acceleration, so the gravity-only isn't too bad a starting point for loco power.

 

I fear the older locomotives just don't have the power, beautiful and intriguing as they are.

Interesting comment 

 

Back in 1997 the basic need then was for a good 2-6-2, easy to prep and dispose capable of everyday use to take the burden off locos built in the 30's such as 45xx etc. Now bear in mind I was a fireman on the SDR and could see what was going to work.

 

45xx while great little engines their weakness was the front of the frames - in fact you now have the WSR 45xx being rebuilt with new frames and cylinders.

 

It was out of this thought that why not design a new loco for the heritage market... looking into it further it became clear that to do so would be almost impossible to get type approval from the powers that be, the answer was blindingly obvious - build a 82xxx as its spec covered our needs and thus was born the 82045 project...

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3 hours ago, 11ty12 said:

A dude in a Discord I’m in was gonna model this engine from the RWS, and said it was an N7. I pointed out it had extended side tanks, and he was disgusted at the thought.

 

Then I made an edit, and even he had to admit it looks good. Thoughts?

09DA1CE6-B0E8-474B-8CD9-28E09AF4FC28.jpeg

102D7435-7F51-4110-92CB-CB493DE96746.jpeg

I doubt the work an N7 did would ever require an extended range, particularly as the larger water tanks and condensing equipment of the N2's allowed them to exceed the N7's in that regard. Whilst a nice looking locomotive aesthetically, I doubt such a niche existed for it.

As for if that particular locomotive even is an N7, I suspect it to instead be a freelance locomotive as there's no reason to believe the pre-NWR Railways wouldn't design their own rolling stock for their own needs. If you ask me it looks more like a 2-4-2T, a believable lighter locomotive for Sodor.

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As Watkin was a man of grand (grandiose?) ideas and a Director of CF du Nord and the South Eastern Railway, what would the impact of SER/Nord going for a roll-on/roll-off train ferry in the 1880s? Mostly for freight, maybe one sailing a day in each direction with passengers? The train ferry across the Forth was an example, but a small one - 30-34 wagons only, and a short crossing. I also couldn't find out how often it was cancelled due to bad weather.

 

I'm thinking he might have upgraded (some of) SER's loading gauge from small to compatible with Nord's. We might then have seen Nord locomotives turning around at Kings Cross-York Road!

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1 hour ago, DenysW said:

As Watkin was a man of grand (grandiose?) ideas and a Director of CF du Nord and the South Eastern Railway, what would the impact of SER/Nord going for a roll-on/roll-off train ferry in the 1880s? Mostly for freight, maybe one sailing a day in each direction with passengers? The train ferry across the Forth was an example, but a small one - 30-34 wagons only, and a short crossing. I also couldn't find out how often it was cancelled due to bad weather.

 

I'm thinking he might have upgraded (some of) SER's loading gauge from small to compatible with Nord's. We might then have seen Nord locomotives turning around at Kings Cross-York Road!

Watkin was also involved with the Metropolitan and Great Central. The Metropolitan widened lines  are a tight squeeze anyway.  

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2 minutes ago, PhilJ W said:

Watkin was also involved with the Metropolitan and Great Central. The Metropolitan widened lines  are a tight squeeze anyway.  

 

And of course the Channel Tunnel. His dream was a direct service between the two greatest cities of Western Europe. We still don't have it.

Edited by Compound2632
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3 hours ago, DenysW said:

We might then have seen Nord locomotives turning around at Kings Cross-York Road!

I suspect that it wouldn't have taken long for an Edwardian channel tunnel to be electrified, in the manner that some of the crossings of the Rockies were. Or perhaps we'd have ended up with some Cab-Forward loco designs.

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9 minutes ago, Zomboid said:

I suspect that it wouldn't have taken long for an Edwardian channel tunnel to be electrified, in the manner that some of the crossings of the Rockies were. Or perhaps we'd have ended up with some Cab-Forward loco designs.

 

The work carried out by Watkin's Channel Tunnel company was in the early 1880s, which is I think just a whisker too early for electric traction. They had the example of the Severn, Mont Cenis, and Hoosac Tunnels, all steam-worked.

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12 minutes ago, Zomboid said:

I suspect that it wouldn't have taken long for an Edwardian channel tunnel to be electrified, in the manner that some of the crossings of the Rockies were. Or perhaps we'd have ended up with some Cab-Forward loco designs.

When the Channel tunnel was seriously considered electrification was in its infancy. The proposed traction was compressed air locomotives. One was used in the initial tunnels built in the 1880's.

https://www.lookandlearn.com/history-images/U316453/Beaumont-Compressed-Air-Locomotive-used-in-the-Channel-Tunnel-Works?img=18&search=4+March+1882

To operate the trains 2-4-2 locomotives were envisaged with centrally mounted air tanks and a driving position at each end.

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I would still argue that it would have been electrified pretty early in the scheme of these things, as it would have been very long and there's not really much scope for ventilation shafts. There's only so much that a large bore and cab forward locomotives can do for you.

 

Edit- Compressed air might have been viable initially, but after one generation of that, electrification would probably have been ready to use.

Edited by Zomboid
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4 minutes ago, Zomboid said:

I would still argue that it would have been electrified pretty early in the scheme of these things,

 

Yes. And I'm wondering what the adhesion and tractive effort of those compressed air locomotives would have been. Rope haulage might have been a better bet.

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6 minutes ago, Zomboid said:

I would still argue that it would have been electrified pretty early in the scheme of these things, 

Especially as it would surely not have been finished until the state of the art was much more advanced.

 

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As soon as Watkin's Channel Tunnel plan stated to get serious-ish, we're told the xenophobic hand of the Government squashed it. That's why I though a ro-ro train ferry. Much more tide and weather dependant than a tunnel, but much easier to close down without destroying it. 

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My personal preference is a bridge from Dover to Calais. Though I can’t see how a 19th century British Government could agree to it, perhaps a written promise from Wilhelm II to never declare war in his lifetime. 

Edited by scots region
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4 hours ago, Compound2632 said:

 

And of course the Channel Tunnel. His dream was a direct service between the two greatest cities of Western Europe. We still don't have it.

Sadly for common sense in transport matters UK wide resistance to the idea of a more closely integrated Europe has not changed over time nor, for many, does even the continuation of a governmentally united British mainland seem desirable. As for the islands that you might consider to be geographically British several are already NOT fully part of the UK. That this non-integration was the wish of a majority of those who turned up to vote recently we all know. This is not a political rant, just an observation that there isn't the national will amongst either the ordinary populace or the governmental agencies for the type of integration that in the short or medium-term will allow HS2 & HS1 to be connected such that (Cardiff or Manchester or Leeds) to Birmingham - London - Paris or Brussles/Koln will ever take place and nor will a Didcot International ever form a pax-interchange hub for the south of England as Lille has done for France.

 

The impact of several centuries of history has left these unhealed societal rifts.

 

Edited by john new
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As well as the issues John New brings up, there is also a congenital reluctance among the British to spend the money required on big railway investment.   This is, IMHO, in a large part down to the 'race memory' of the George Hudson Railway Bubble of the 1840s and the Overend Gurney bank collapse, also railway related, 20 years later.  The new middle classes, who are still the people whose benefit the country is run for and to some extent by, suffered horribly in these events; they'd all been promised that railways would make them rich, even that nice Prince Albert that the Queen had married thought they were A Good Thing, and now here they were in the workhouse or 'on the parish'.  They have never trusted railways since, and are unlikely to now.  Railway = spending other peoples' money badly, asking for more, giving an inadequate and overcrowded service, and asking again for more.  Sound familiar?

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All true, but the question was would a ro-ro train ferry Folkestone-Boulogne service have made enough sense to pay for the lesser investment than a tunnel or a bridge - and opened up London to seeing from Nord locos? And what would that have done to UK locomotive design?

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On 31/10/2021 at 22:01, DenysW said:

All true, but the question was would a ro-ro train ferry Folkestone-Boulogne service have made enough sense to pay for the lesser investment than a tunnel or a bridge - and opened up London to seeing from Nord locos? And what would that have done to UK locomotive design?

 

I doubt that locomotives would have travelled on the train ferry - they certainly didn't either on the Firth of Forth at one extreme or the Golden Arrow at the other.

 

Anyway, those marvellous Nord compounds:

 

834638727_De_Glehn_compound_locomotive_2674_Nord_railway_France_(Howden_Boys_Book_of_Locomotives_1907).jpg.9c6f959e2540ff300c342ad21033e2db.jpg

 

were designed by a chap who grew up in Sydenham.

Edited by Compound2632
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17 minutes ago, Compound2632 said:

 

 

I doubt that locomotives would have travelled on the train ferry - they certainly didn't either on the Firth of Forth at one extreme or the Golden Arrow at the other.

 

Anyway, those marvellous Nord compounds:

 

453039385_De_Glehn_compound_locomotive_2674_Nord_railway_France_(Howden_Boys_Book_of_Locomotives_1907).jpg.72236b3aa37e9b042b81af13e332628c.jpg

 

were designed by a chap who grew up in Sydenham.

Didnt the GWR have a couple at one time...

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12 hours ago, DenysW said:

I'm thinking he might have upgraded (some of) SER's loading gauge from small to compatible with Nord's. We might then have seen Nord locomotives turning around at Kings Cross-York Road!

 

The SER and Nord had more or less the comparable loading gauges until after WW1 when the Nord was brought into line with other French lines. 

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