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Bulleid 'Leader'

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by Eightpot, Mar 23, 2020.

  1. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    My honest view is that, although I'll defend ... indeed applaud ... Bulleid's attempt to do other than watch steam wither and die (and the Southern's board for giving him the go-ahead), the only reasonable conclusion is that the project ultimately failed.

    The insurmountable problems, as I see 'em were:
    (a) unacceptable lateral balance, due to the offset boiler, could only be rectified by abandoning the side corridor linking the cabs
    (b) firing arragements were unacceptable for a production run, could possibly be addressed with automated firing, but use of (domestic) coal was an imperative
    (c) sleeve valves, with all evidence suggesting they're unsuitable for any application not involving sustained operation at constant speed

    Leader's 'successor', CIÉ CC1, employed central crew accomodations and a centrally positioned boiler, hence didn't suffer the lateral balance issues (think 'double Fairle' .... with a square boiler!), and eschewed 6 sleeve valved cylinders in favour of 4 piston actuated ones. With the different fuel (peat, not turf!), there's no realistic comparison to be made with Leader's firing arrangements. Although CC1 did successfully operate a (very) few freight turns, it was never 'handed over' into capital stock.

    I'd summarise the matter thus:

    With technological advances over the past seven decades, is a double ended, total adhesion steam loco now a realistic possibility? Probably.

    Is there any concievable reason to commit the considerable resources neccessary to persue such a possibility? Let's be honest ..... not really.
     
  2. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    Well, that certainly works. BR obviously didn't persevere and iron out all the snags. :)
    Question: Does the model have sleeve valves or have they been replaced by something more conventional?
     
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  3. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Nat Pres stalwart

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    Haven't the foggiest I'm afraid, I simply knew of its existence and was fairly sure there was a youtube video of it. Would be interesting to know. Perhaps it just has an electric motor and a heating element and reservoir for the steam effect! :)
     
  4. Eightpot

    Eightpot Well-Known Member Friend

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    Don't forget (d) 30 tons over-weight.
     
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  5. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Indeed. Can't recall off the top of my head, are we talking about was chucked on board in an attempt to correct the lateral imbalance, or before that happened?
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2020
  6. 8126

    8126 Member

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    Piston valves. If I remember correctly, the builder had previously done a Q1, so those power bogies have two cylinders each and Stephenson's gear. Back to the future, one might suggest.

    Edit: http://www.bulleidlocos.org.uk/_ldr/ldrKevan1.aspx

    So no, he hadn't built a Q1 before, but that's what his Leader is, in the grand tradition of articulated locos, two tender engine power units.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2020
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  7. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Unless two people have been crazy enough inspired to complete a 5" gauge 'Leader', I saw it, years back, part completed, at Brighton Model World (on the Worthing & District SME stand) and was told the pistons had been adapted from that for a 5" gauge 9F!

    There's much of Bulleid related model engineering interest here (though the menus don't behave well on my Android):
    http://www.bulleidlocos.org.uk/intro.aspx
     
  8. Hunslet589

    Hunslet589 New Member

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    I don't recall reading anywhere exactly how much was added - but it's seems safe to say it was already well over the intended weight and the ballast simply took the thing to plain crazy levels.

    This thread sent me to the books and it is worth noting that the original concept was for twin axle bogies. Three axle was substituted when the estimated weights came out over a 20 ton axle load target (80 ton total). Which is ironic given that the final product ended up at over 150 tons - I.e. 25 ton axle load! For an M7 replacement....

    It really was a complete design disaster.
     
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  9. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    I'm very disappointed, this thread seems to have come back onto topic again.
    Simon made a valiant effort to start an LNER/LMS dispute, but no one took him up on it.
    How about I try...
    On the FC Antofagasta Bolivia, they had both Kitson Meyers and Garratts, as did the FC Trasandino (on the Argentine side, the Chileans only had KMs).
    In general the KMs seemed to be preferred in the Andes, but these two railways seem to have valued their Garratts: the FCAB bought a second batch later.
    Their KMs were also interesting, being tender engines.
    So both designs could be very successful.

    Sent from my Pixel 3a using Tapatalk
     
  10. LMS2968

    LMS2968 Part of the furniture

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    Indeed he did, but since what he said was quite correct, there wasn't really much scope for that dispute.

    Of course, Bulleid started as a LNER man so there's some, albeit tenuous, link to the thread title, so I think you need to try harder!
     
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  11. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    He saw the error of his ways though ...

    Tom
     
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  12. City of truro fan

    City of truro fan New Member

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    What colour was the leader in real life?
     
  13. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Mostly flat shop grey, but 36001 spent some time in black ... though (I belive), allegedly applying the BR emblem was forbidden.
     
  14. City of truro fan

    City of truro fan New Member

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    It wouldn’t be the best colour if anyone built a new one. I quite like if someone painted there west country in br blue. I know the round one has been done but the square one would look nice I think
     
  15. Jimc

    Jimc Part of the furniture

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    Well yes, but he abandoned the majority of Bulleid features and built what could be characterised as a Beyer Garratt with two Maunsell Q class chassis inside a Leader shaped casing...
     
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  16. Sheff

    Sheff Well-Known Member

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    It’s always important when embarking on a new build loco project to decide on the colour first.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  17. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Oh, and there was I thinking that step 1 was to resolve the Cu / Fe boiler material conundrum
    ...

    Tom
     
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  18. LMS2968

    LMS2968 Part of the furniture

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    Try to keep up, Tom!
     
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  19. ross

    ross Well-Known Member

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    Careful, Simon. Remember what happened last time;)
     
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  20. 8126

    8126 Member

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    It had one for a while in grey (picture to prove it), but for some reason it was painted out, leaving a large panel of either a different shade or cleanliness on the side. I can't recall ever seeing a picture of the real thing in black, various models have muddied the waters somewhat.

    The thing that always makes me smile about the appearance of Leader is the strong resemblance, in the bogie/body proportions and the roofline, to two other classes to have operated on the national network. It's as though somebody in the EMD drawing office, back in the '80s, went leafing through pictures of British locomotives until they found one they liked. "There, we'll make it look like a bit like that one, it'll seem familiar to them...."
     

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