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1863 George England Locomotive 'Mountaineer' replica

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by David Humphreys, Nov 7, 2019.

  1. David Humphreys

    David Humphreys New Member

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    The manufacture of this has started at North Bay Railway Engineering, Darlington for the replica of the 1863 Ffestiniog locomotive 'Mountaineer'. It is being built as near to the original as a side tank engine with modern requirements . It will also sport a brass dome.

    Details of the project are at http://1863mountaineerloco.co.uk/ David Wood, the project coordinator is looking for participants to make the dream come true.

    The boiler has been commissioned and is now in build at Darlington. Pictures of the boiler components that arrived in the last few weeks attached along with the drilling template for the throat plate.

    David




    Throat plate.jpg Tube plate template.jpg Boiler tube and firebox.jpg
     
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  2. Chris86

    Chris86 Member

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    Lovely project, did any components of the original Mountaineer survive at all?

    Chris
     
  3. David Humphreys

    David Humphreys New Member

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    I think there are a few small bits at Boston Lodge. Others will know better.
     
  4. 30854

    30854 Part of the furniture

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    There's a bell, which sometimes bedecked it's namesake.
     
  5. meeee

    meeee Member

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    There is a bell although it is not clear where or if it was carried. There are some other bits from the original condition engines such as cab handrails. Which engine they were from is anyone's guess though.

    Personally I would have built "The Princess" though as there are far more photos of that than any of the others.

    Tim
     
  6. Mrcow

    Mrcow New Member

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    I’m very pleased to see visible progress so quickly. Excellent work!
     
  7. David Humphreys

    David Humphreys New Member

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    Just been told that it will be in next weeks edition of Steam Railway SR495, will have all the details."
     
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  8. LesterBrown

    LesterBrown Member

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    Are there any photos of Festiniog locos carrying a bell apart from James Spooner? Even latter had lost its bells by 1880.

    Little Wonder was probably the most photographed loco of the relevant period yet no bell is visible even though Festipedia says its bell survived too.

    I wonder was there a decision to fit bells after some incident on the line but perhaps they were only actually fitted to the new loco under construction?

    Or is it just coincidence that the two locos withdrawn about the time James Spooner lost its pair of bells are the ones that bells supposedly survive from?
     
  9. MuzTrem

    MuzTrem Member

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    Well, despite my initial reservations about this project, I think this has given them a massive credibility boost. Well done and good luck to them!
     
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  10. David Humphreys

    David Humphreys New Member

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    We have recommended to a few people that they start with the boiler to prove the credibility of the project. It is not a new idea. See Corris No 10 'Falcon Project' and the Southwold Railway Blyth locomotive we are building.
     
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  11. meeee

    meeee Member

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    No there isn't and so there is lots of speculation as to what they were for.

    The most likely theory is that they were some sort of communication device for passenger trains. This probably died a death quite quickly especially with goods waggons running in front of passenger stock. Not to mention clanging with every wobble of the engine.

    Stock inventories from the early 1870s show most of them in store a Boston Lodge by then. So by the time the locos are being photographed they been removed.

    In the 1874 pictures of James Spooner you can see where a cord would be attached for ringing the bell. But it isn't in use by this point. Perhaps this loco retained its bells because of the elaborate brackets incorporating the whistle. These would survive until 1878.

    Little Wonder has a large bracket next to the chimney on the drivers side at each end. It looks too big to be for a lamp and the other engines carry the square socket style ones anyway. Perhaps there was one bell and you moved it to each end to connect to the coaches. The bell from this engine survived because it was used to signal the start and end of the day in Boston Lodge.

    Tim
     
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  12. 30854

    30854 Part of the furniture

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    OK .... I'm now officially interested (and rather impressed with progress!) :)

    A couple of questions, if I may:

    The illustrations on the website show the loco with conventional motion. I was under the impression the originals featured round section (marine?) coupling and connecting rods. Can anyone verify or refute this please?

    .... and will fidelity to the original concept go as far as employing the original coupling arrangement between loco and tender, giving the riding characteristics which earned the England locos their 'boxer' nickname? I ask this, as I assume we'll be looking at a finished product which the traffic department shouldn't be unduly keen to purloin for service trains.
     
  13. David Humphreys

    David Humphreys New Member

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    This is what we are building. It is up to the owners as to what it will be undertaking as and when.

    David
     

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  14. J Rob't Harrison

    J Rob't Harrison New Member

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    Officially interested....
     
  15. meeee

    meeee Member

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    If you're referring to the painting by Jonathan Clay, it is inaccurate in several respects. It is just painting though not an engineering drawing, all be it a very nice one.

    You are correct about the rods. They were marine style on the first four locos, and still are. 5 and 6 had rectangular section rods with split brasses.

    The loco is red but it wouldn't have been around long enough to receive the red livery. It is most likely green in the only picture of it. The first four tenders appear not to be lined in any photos. They are also a different colour possibly red oxide.

    The tank handrails on Princess and Mountaineer only have a sanction at each end. The second two engines have an extra one in the middle.

    With the smokebox door arrangement in the photo you wouldn't be able to open it. Sadly on the only photo showing the front of these locos the door is in shadow.

    Mountaineer had its chimney replaced at some point as you can see in the photo. I'd be tempted to say the original had the small flare like Princess rather than the big flare we see on Palmerston. But that is just a hunch based on Mountaineer and Princess being the first pair.

    Like I said though it is a painting not an engineering drawing or the finished article.

    As for drawbar arrangement. It looks like there is a sprung buffer and a screw link. This isn't much different to what Palmerston has now. Just with a fixed drawbar rather than a screw link. So long as you maintain the buffer in compression it works well.

    It's a great project though and I wish them well with it.

    Tim
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2019
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  16. Sidmouth

    Sidmouth Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    all the best with this . out of curiosity does the project have support from the F&WHR ?
     
  17. LesterBrown

    LesterBrown Member

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    They state on their website that they have full support of the Ffestiniog Railway, who have generously allowed them access to original drawings, casting patterns & expertise
     
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