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Hi All,

 

I thought I would start a thread for talk about the more unusual items of GWR freight rolling stock. There were lots of very specialised vehicles in the Western inventory and some were very camera shy so there had better be a place for us to ask questions about them!

 

Right, here's the first poser for you. Does anyone out there in RMWEB land have knowledge of the CORAL A glass wagon at all? The soul survivor, No. 41723 at Didcot has not yet been tackled so nobody has yet done the research. Even the good Mr Bartlett's excellent site turned up a duck on this one. A trawl through the internet and the archives of RMWEB shows nothing but the same information that I have access to either on line or in the GWR 'Wagon Bible'. The main bits of web based information on this wagon are to be found here:

 

http://www.didcotrailwaycentre.org.uk/wagons/41723/41723.html

 

http://www.ws.vintagecarriagestrust.org/ws/WagonInfo.asp?Ref=6824

 

Right, a few questions. No. 41723 in its 'as recovered' state and the ancient K's kit that I have acquired to build it from only have the outside load supporting frames. Is this a consequence of later use as a steel plate wagon or is it a case of the moulds for the kit being made from the survivor and assuming that was how it was done? They were moveable racks in the middle so they could have been removed and misplaced I suppose...

 

Also, did all of the D diagram wagons go to steel plate use or was it just the D1 diagram that did? I have consulted my early edition of the 'Wagon Bible' but it is a little unclear on the point.

 

Finally, liveries for the early to mid 1950s. The GWR scheme is in 'The Book' but what about the BR(W) one? It would be in plain grey I assume with the number and weights where they were in the previous version (there really isn't much sign writing real estate on these things anyway!). The Historic Carriage Register seems to say that it was taken into departmental stock (and therefore painted black?) and given a 'DW' number but when was this done? Would it have been an engineering wagon, permanent way wagon or another use entirely? It was recovered for preservation from somewhere in 1981.

 

Many thanks in advance for your interest and assistance. That will hope fully kick off a very useful thread...

 

All the best,

 

Castle

Edited by Castle
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Is this a consequence of later use as a steel plate wagon or is it a case of the moulds for the kit being made from the survivor and assuming that was how it was done?

I suspect both of those are true.

 

If the Register records their transfer to departmental stock, my guess is that they might have got no more than a black patch with a DW number rather than a full monty repaint, but then it all depends on how long the 'non-steelworks' specimens lasted. Late 1950s? And it does beg the question as to what BR(W) used instead for the carriage of plate glass, or had most of the traffic moved to road by then?

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I suspect both of those are true.

 

If the Register records their transfer to departmental stock, my guess is that they might have got no more than a black patch with a DW number rather than a full monty repaint, but then it all depends on how long the 'non-steelworks' specimens lasted. Late 1950s? And it does beg the question as to what BR(W) used instead for the carriage of plate glass, or had most of the traffic moved to road by then?

I suspect that such plate glass traffic that remained on rail was handled by either the LMR's fleet of purpose-built glass carriers, Pilkingtons being on their territory, or in the smaller 3-planked open Shocks. Most photos I've seen of the latter show them around the Warrington/St Helens area, suggesting that they were mainly used for glass.

The LMS/BR-built wagons had longer loading spaces for glass, which would allow the bigger pieces of sheet glass, beloved of architects, to be carried. I wonder when the last glass traffic went by rail?

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I suspect both of those are true.

 

If the Register records their transfer to departmental stock, my guess is that they might have got no more than a black patch with a DW number rather than a full monty repaint, but then it all depends on how long the 'non-steelworks' specimens lasted. Late 1950s? And it does beg the question as to what BR(W) used instead for the carriage of plate glass, or had most of the traffic moved to road by then?

Hi Miss P.,

 

I agree with you on that one actually - a hint of both seems like nearer the truth! I like the idea of barely pasted over GWR livery - sounds good. Out with the weathering gear methinks!

 

Hi Brian,

 

Thanks for the great little insight there - very helpful indeed. From what you are saying, it was likely that the surviving no steelworks CORALs were not likely to have been in the glass trade any more. It looks like there is a whole untapped area of study and modelling with the plate glass trade.

 

All the best,

 

Castle

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Alas the only information I have dates from the period September 1932 to (by clearly traceable date) September 1937.  Coral A wagons were in the number series 41712 to 41730 but 41712 was, seemingly briefly, reallocated to and then taken out of Port Talbot steel traffic in 1937; at that date the remaining vehicles classified Coral A were in their original status and had the two movable intermediate partitions.

 

During the same period there were also a number of Coral wagons in service and all officially classified as 'Glass Wagons' -

 

36970 was 22ft 3" over buffers and had 2 fixed intermediate partitions - allocated Port Talbot for steel plate traffic

 

36971 to 36975 were23ft 5" over buffers and also had two intermediate fixed partitions - similarly allocated to 36970.

36973 was withdrawn during this period and it is possible, in view of the similarities of the entry, that 41712 was in mind as a replacement for it but might have then been found or considered unsuitable (conjecture on my part) unsuitable in view of the dimensional differences of the  Coral A from the earlier wagons with slightly lower frames and a slightly higher floor height (above rail) or due to its higher tare weight affecting loadability.

 

Source - GWR 'Diagrams of Special Wagons' published Septr 1932 and including amendments traceable by date to September 1937.

 

Edit to add PS.  Regarding surviving glass traffic on rail the London Division had at least two 'glass floats' (road delivery trailers for plate glass) in late 1966 and there was definitely still one of them on strength at Reading in mid 1967 although it was used for traffic other than glass.

Edited by The Stationmaster
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Eric Gent has a photo of the BR one - he can be contacted as Librarian of the HMRS.

Hi Paul,

 

I knew you would be along sooner or later on this one - thanks! I will drop him an e-mail if it is ok for non members to use the resources?

 

Have you consulted Dave Larkins lists?

Excuse my stupidity but what is the Dave Larkins list? I have not heard of that before.

 

Not everything is on the internet.

Tell me about it - if only all the drawings for a certain 1924 Castle were there to download - it would make my life about 4 million times more easy!

 

Cheers!

 

All the best,

 

Castle

 

EDIT: Thanks to Stationmaster Mike too! Very interesting stuff. Cheers!

Edited by Castle
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Back in pre-Internet days, David Larkin published sets of photos of wagons in Railway Modeller (this was the early-1970s, so quite left-field at the time.); he subsequently established something called the 'TOPS Circle', as well as all sorts of lists of wagons, gleaned from his visits to the Rolling Stock Library at Derby.

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Source - GWR 'Diagrams of Special Wagons' published Septr 1932 and including amendments traceable by date to September 1937.

 

 

It sounds like your copy is rather better updated than either of mine, but interestingly in the July 1939 issue the Corals have moved from page 14 to page 15 the scan is attached, a few gaps in the number series have opened up since the 1932 issue.

 

 

post-336-0-41057800-1368475097.jpg

 

I've had a quick look at the British Railways 'Classification of Special wagons' booklets for Aug '53, Sept '56 and Jan '64,

 

Aug '53 The 4wheel glass wagons are listed as GW dia 15 Glass WB (36970) and Glass WC (41713,6,8,23,26) with BR dia 170 (ie book 2/170 - available on the Barrowmore site) providing Glass WC's 902000 to 902005

 

Sept '56 36970 survives, but only 41723/6 are listed (with 41726 crossed out in my copy), 902000 to 902005 survive, and handwritten in are joined by GLASS WE 902035/6/7

 

Jan '64, 902000 to 902005 have all become GLASS MC, and I'm not quite sure what to make of the other 9020xx numbers... 902035/6/7 seem to be part of a larger series of GLASS MD's

 

Jon

Edited by jonhall
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Hi Jon,

 

That is absolutely brilliant - thank you so much for poking around in your books for me! If I read it right then, it would seem that they were still glass carrying wagons at the timeframe I am looking at (correct me if I am wrong please!) and I have a few internal racks to fabricate...

 

All the best,

 

Castle

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Source - GWR 'Diagrams of Special Wagons' published Septr 1932 and including amendments traceable by date to September 1937.

 

The June 1926 edition of "Special Wagon" shows all of the Corals and Coral As as glass wagons.  In the July 1939 edition the Corals are "Allocated to Port Talbot for steel plate traffic".  In January 1947 a separate memo simple states that Corals 36971, 39974, 36975 and Coral As 41712, 41715, 41724 & 41727 are deleted.

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As an aside, if you're wondering how plate glass is transported these days, in the UK it travels by road. We get a lot coming through the Tunnel- one of the big transporters is called Zanutti, IIRC. The trailers are short, covered, three-axle affairs, with a van-style body having the front and side top corners at a 45-degree angle. The body has a low floor, with the wheels being on stub axles; I'm told that they reverse onto the A-frames carrying the glass at the factory. This is a link to a You-tube video of a model, though the front seems to slope more than the ones I see every day:-

On mainland Europe, plate-glass has been transported by rail until fairly recently, though the wagons are somewhat larger than the Coral:-

http://www.lsmodels.com/Pages/Pays_F/Descriptif_materiel_F/Descriptif_materiel_universel_F/Wagon_Smms_F.htm

The last examples I saw, at Tergnier wagon works a few years ago, had sliding covers replacing the tarpaulins.

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Hi all,

 

Been reading this one with interest, after having just found it! Its seems like Castle i became interested i this wagon because it resides at didcot. Except in my case i went ahead and built a model in a much larger scale! I ended up making several visits to dicot just to photograph this wagon!

 

But i posed a similar question on these boards on the same topic about a year back now, and got very little info so i'm glad more has come to light. I expect most of the research i have done you have already come across long ago so i wont repeat whats already said in the russell books!

 

However whilst on the subject of liveries, doing a bit of practical research (yes hands and knees in the dirt over the thing!) if you take a peak behind the plate on the side side of the frame, something that is clearly a later addition, its possible to see a reasonable sized patch of BR standard freight wagon grey on it, so confirming it spent some time in this livery presumably making its living around the port talbot area. There doesnt appear traces of any black on it, the flakes being light grey or even possibly some traces of GWR freight grey lingering around the corners too.

 

But anyway, lacking any really decent drawings, i ended up measuring the prototype, and redrawing the whole thing on Cad, and making a kit of bits for one in 5 inch gauge, approximately 1/12th scale. Its not finished yet, but will likely be painted GWR freight grey, with the large lettering.

 

post-3595-0-42404800-1368733933_thumb.jpg

post-3595-0-48635100-1368733938_thumb.jpg

 

But its amazing what you learn of a vehicle just by spending time looking over it.

 

It appears it was heavily abused in its service at Dowty as a head stock tester after withdrawal from BR. Theres a large RSJ welded in the frames one end, the buffing spring, floors, draw hook etc having bee ripped out. unfortunately having spoken to the secretary of the owning group, the 813 trust and the works manager at didcot, its unlikely to see any attention anytime soon. The frames, once an inch thick are heavily corroded, you can put your hand through them in places! It would require a lot of new metal work to be in any condition to be used, not to mention the reassemling and correcting the damage done at Dowty (though its use allowed it to be saved). And besides, its not at al high on the trusts list to restore, nor didcots.

 

post-3595-0-04260900-1368734342_thumb.jpg

 

( i have plenty more images from al angles if they are of any use or interest to anyone)

 

 

Mark

 

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Hi Mark,

 

That is an absolutely ace model you are brewing up there - well done. Thanks for the information as well. I was getting to the crawl all over it stage myself but as you have already done that and very kindly posted the information I won't!

 

You are right in as much as that people keep looking at it as a potential project and then getting distracted into other things but I think it will get done eventually even if simply because it is the sole survivor. As you say however, it will be a major job to put it all right - it has suffered greatly at the hands of both previous owners and the dreaded metal moth...

 

I think I may just do mine in GWR freight grey just post nationalisation, with painted out GW and the number with an added W just on the basis that its as good a guess as anything else!

 

Hopefully this helps others in the future too. If anyone else has a question about unusual or rare GWR wagons then please feel free to use this thread!

 

All the best,

 

Castle

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Hiya castle

 

No problem and thanks very much. Been in planning for about three years now! The last picture was taken at GWR175! Like i say if you need anymore pictures, drop me a pm or something, i have plenty!

 

Incidentally, if yourself or anyone else is around dicot in the near future and is able to do me a favour, i could do with the dimensions for the suspension, namely the bracket that attaches to the main frames, i neglected to dimension it when i was last there and its the last thing to do other than brake gear atm. If not i need to visit didcot again at some point anyway to look at some bogies and 4 wheeler coaches.

 

Hopefully have it running by july august time, updates will be in the blog!

 

Another point to note is i'm pretty sure they had a planked centre floor, indeed that is how i have left mine. The floor supports seem to be lower in the centre well, and the holes more akin to large wooden fixing coach bolts, than rivets, if anyone could confirm that i'd be greatful!

 

 

So, whilst we are here, i shall take up castle's offer for a forum of GWR oddities

 

 

post-3595-0-37457300-1368814236_thumb.jpg

 

This is from the didcot Facebook page (all credit to the didcot collection and its original photographer Mike Peart) The caption reads

 

Once a stalwart of London suburban services, Tyseley large prairie 6101 still bearing the original 'lion and wheel' British Railways logo is seen at Swindon in 1962, the year of its withdrawal. Freshly painted 1021 County of Montgomery loiters in the background. In front of the loco is one of the special wagons used to transport locomotive parts, in this case from Swindon to Plymouth (Laira).

 

 

The question is, does any have or know of more pictures of any of the vehicles featured, the wagons used to transfer parts to depots. Anyone with any pictures, especially more unusual versions (this one appears to be an ex conflat or similar) love to see, and know about their origins, any extra info etc.

 

Regards

 

Mark

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Hiya castle

 

No problem and thanks very much. Been in planning for about three years now! The last picture was taken at GWR175! Like i say if you need anymore pictures, drop me a pm or something, i have plenty!

 

Incidentally, if yourself or anyone else is around dicot in the near future and is able to do me a favour, i could do with the dimensions for the suspension, namely the bracket that attaches to the main frames, i neglected to dimension it when i was last there and its the last thing to do other than brake gear atm. If not i need to visit didcot again at some point anyway to look at some bogies and 4 wheeler coaches.

 

Hopefully have it running by july august time, updates will be in the blog!

 

Another point to note is i'm pretty sure they had a planked centre floor, indeed that is how i have left mine. The floor supports seem to be lower in the centre well, and the holes more akin to large wooden fixing coach bolts, than rivets, if anyone could confirm that i'd be greatful!

 

 

So, whilst we are here, i shall take up castle's offer for a forum of GWR oddities

 

 

attachicon.gifTyseley Large praire 6101 at swindon 1962, 1012 countyof montgomery in background, in fron ot loco is special wagon used to transport loco parts, in this case, swindon to Plymouth Laira.jpg

 

This is from the didcot Facebook page (all credit to the didcot collection and its original photographer Mike Peart) The caption reads

 

 

The question is, does any have or know of more pictures of any of the vehicles featured, the wagons used to transfer parts to depots. Anyone with any pictures, especially more unusual versions (this one appears to be an ex conflat or similar) love to see, and know about their origins, any extra info etc.

 

Regards

 

Mark

The wagon in the photo appears to be a modified Conflat; I'm not sure what it might be used to transport. Would it be capable of carrying a complete engine from a Hydraulic, given yhey were meant to be lighter that their equivalents in the diesel-electrics? On those occasions I've seen diesel loco engines travel by rail, it's been on bogie wagons (I used to see the Toton-Derby-Crewe most days in the late 1970s).

As usual, Paul Bartlett's site has some photos of other types:-

http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/denpartzrv are the ones that were used for smaller components.

http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/enginecarrierzrw were purpose built for SR DEMU engines

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GWR 41723 is definitely one of the more interesting GWR oddities that we have around still. This wagon dosen't belong to the GWRS but the 813 Fund. From what I hear, there is interest in getting the wagon restored but it all comes down to funds in the end I guess. Since those photos from the GWR 175 celebrations it has been moved down to the right side of the GWR Engine Shed. The poor wagon certainly needs some love and attention now and I hope it will soon. The 813 Fund certainly has several odd other wagons besides the CORAL A, including the GWR Mites and a GWR 137696 which was originally a AERO wagon converted back to an open in 1946.

 

5910505338_24f4672cac.jpg
 

5910504868_16cf278e8b.jpg

 

In models I am lucky to have a scratchbuilt version that I won off ebay several years ago and it is one of my favourite GWR wagons. I will get a photo up later for you all.

Edited by Garethp8873
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Ah a location i am well familiar with, getting odd looks from other visitors as i get on the ground measuring and crawling around the frames! hehe!

 

But i'd love to see the aero wagon converted back, and with an appropriate load of course! Another to model one day. And good news that they want to restore it, but the problem with it is it needs space in the main loco workshop more than just the carriage shed, and what with Pendennis, 1366, the country, the saint and the prairie in there its a little way down the pecking order! But please do post the pics of the model, always good to see.

 

Back on the transport wagons, my first thought was as a converted conflat, but theres the extra framing on there it would be interesting to see a better pic of. And especially some better indication of the lettering applied, how it was used (ie what did it carry, what sort of train did it travel in, the next freight going that way or was there dedicated stores trains etc etc) and some more background info, for anyone with access to the wagon lists particularly.

 

Cheers

 

Mark

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Ah a location i am well familiar with, getting odd looks from other visitors as i get on the ground measuring and crawling around the frames! hehe!

 

But i'd love to see the aero wagon converted back, and with an appropriate load of course! Another to model one day. And good news that they want to restore it, but the problem with it is it needs space in the main loco workshop more than just the carriage shed, and what with Pendennis, 1366, the country, the saint and the prairie in there its a little way down the pecking order! But please do post the pics of the model, always good to see.

 

Back on the transport wagons, my first thought was as a converted conflat, but theres the extra framing on there it would be interesting to see a better pic of. And especially some better indication of the lettering applied, how it was used (ie what did it carry, what sort of train did it travel in, the next freight going that way or was there dedicated stores trains etc etc) and some more background info, for anyone with access to the wagon lists particularly.

 

Cheers

 

Mark

Given the chain pockets, I would say it had been a Conflat at some point (I don't know of any other wagon so fitted), but that cradles had been fitted, along with a box at one end. I can decipher some of the lettering; the top line seems to say ** locomotive engine & **** only', whilst the second line says 'Swindon to Plymouth Laira only'. My recollection was that stores vehicles like this one would travel, for the main part of their journey, as part of ordinary mixed freights, being tripped from the nearest main yard to the final destination. For urgent spares, the Western, following the GWR tradition, had dedicated 'ENPARTS' vehicles; these ranged from 4-wheel ex-Fruit Cs and Bloaters, via various former NPCCS, to (in later BR days)coaching stock with seats and partitions removed. These would be attached to scheduled passenger and parcels trains, often being diagrammed to work on certain trains.

The only example of a train entirely dedicated to conveying locomotive spares for any distance that I've seen was a daily Derby- Crewe working in the late 1970s, which had a wonderful mix of former Weltrols and Protrols, Lowmacs, 6-wheel Stores Vans, and assorted 4-wheel vans and opens. The visible bits of the load included diesel engines, generators, and bogies. This used to be 'looped' outside my place of work in Alsager- sadly, I didn't take any photos.

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Hello Mark,

 

First off here's the GWR Coral A Wagon. This was won off ebay several years ago along with several other wagons which included Iron Minks, Cattle Wagons and a SR Open Wagon. I must admit I didn't think I would win but luck was on my side with this one. One of my favourities and a talk of the wagon collection I will say.

 

Garethp8873.

 

img0191ky.jpg

 

img0192ev.jpg
 

img0193mk.jpg

img0194fr.jpg

 

 

 

 

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The wagon in the photo appears to be a modified Conflat; I'm not sure what it might be used to transport. Would it be capable of carrying a complete engine from a Hydraulic, given yhey were meant to be lighter that their equivalents in the diesel-electrics? On those occasions I've seen diesel loco engines travel by rail, it's been on bogie wagons (I used to see the Toton-Derby-Crewe most days in the late 1970s).

As usual, Paul Bartlett's site has some photos of other types:-

http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/denpartzrv are the ones that were used for smaller components.

http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/enginecarrierzrw were purpose built for SR DEMU engines

I also have the Denflat E Conflat conversion which is the type in the photo (the E can be made out)

 

http://PaulBartlett.zenfolio.com/gwrconflat/e32c707c7

 

http://PaulBartlett.zenfolio.com/gwrconflat/e272f7d48

 

http://PaulBartlett.zenfolio.com/gwrconflat/e2199fbb8

 

Paul Bartlett

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I guess it's a good thing that GWR 39860 was eventually given this duty otherwise it may have never entered preservation. Hard to imagine that this is the last GWR example now in preservation.

 

4409563942_ccf8c70762.jpg

Edited by Garethp8873
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Hello Mark,

 

First off here's the GWR Coral A Wagon. This was won off ebay several years ago along with several other wagons which included Iron Minks, Cattle Wagons and a SR Open Wagon. I must admit I didn't think I would win but luck was on my side with this one. One of my favourities and a talk of the wagon collection I will say.

 

Garethp8873.

 

img0191ky.jpg

 

 

 

 

I too have this model in white metal from over 20 years ago. The angle supports suffer

the same problems as the prototype, maybe a model ready for treatment with new

techniques..

 

Noel

 

(January 2014, - now available as a 3D OO Model)

Edited by Dazzler Fan
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