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Edward Thompson: Wartime C.M.E. Discussion 2012 - 2021

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by S.A.C. Martin, May 2, 2012.

  1. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Indeed - though you are comparing a class 7 with a number of class 8s, so it ought to have better route availability, or at least no worse. Compare those locos with the 'King' is a different kettle of fish, especially given the reputed 25 ton axle load of a King - which was my, albeit sarcastic, point ...

    Tom
     
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  2. Allegheny

    Allegheny Member

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    Hopefully the new-build P2 might provide a different "right" answer.
     
  3. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Part of the furniture

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    As a founder member of the project, I hope it will. My point about the A2 rebuild isn't in any decrying that.
     
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  4. MellishR

    MellishR Part of the furniture Friend

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    I don't think Simon or anyone else has claimed that Thompson's choice of what to do with the P2s was the right answer; only that it was a right answer. In engineering there is often a choice of right answers.
     
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  5. MellishR

    MellishR Part of the furniture Friend

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    It would be interesting to pursue that theme, but it belongs on a different thread.
     
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  6. MellishR

    MellishR Part of the furniture Friend

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    For all the criticisms of Tuplin's writing, he made some valid points, one of which was that the ability of a steam locomotive to pull a train depends on the fireman's ability to shovel coal. The only respect in which the rebuilds were obviously inferior to the originals was adhesion weight, through losing one coupled axle. That matters when you're at risk of slipping, which may not be much of the time. Most of the time the firemen's ability to keep those very large fireboxes fed would probably have been more of a limitation. AFAIK the fireboxes were unchanged in the rebuilding, and as large as any ever hand-fired in Britain.
     
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  7. bluetrain

    bluetrain Well-Known Member

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    Or a choice of answers, none of which is perfect and all of which can be criticised by somebody.

    Wheel-arrangement changes, in this case from 2-8-2 to 4-6-2, were unusual. Another case was Chapelon's rebuild of some Paris-Orleans 4-6-2s as 4-8-0s. I imagine that Dr Tuplin might have advocated rebuilding the P2s as 4-8-0s!
     
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  8. Jimc

    Jimc Part of the furniture

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    Its rather hard to be wrong *all* the time...
     
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  9. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Part of the furniture

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    I think the idea that the A2/2s weren't capable of doing the work the P2s could do isn't borne out by the facts and stats. Thane of Fife was doing the exact same diagrams as the P2s and did double the mileage and availability in 1944. It was the literal mainstay of those services: doing roughly the work of two P2s in reality.

    Nobody is questioning that the A2/2 had lower adhesion than a P2: but so did the W1 and it managed perfectly fine when put onto these services, ahead of Thane of Fife's rebuilding. The difference in the ratio of adhesion between W1, A4 and A2/2 is not so large as to make a question of the latter's ability to haul trains.

    I think there's a large number of people who have outright ignored the actual sequence of events, statistics, and more in favour of literal heads in sand thinking where the P2 class is concerned. The P2s were not capable of doing their own work: the A2/2 did it better. Why? Because the P2s were manifestly unreliable and the A2/2 was reliable.

    It's the reverse of the general thinking on this topic that has been repeated for decades.

    And maybe that's where we find people most aggressively attacking this thread or the ideas thrown up. It's changing their interpretation, asking them to consider things which are more solid than second and third hand opinion pieces.

    I don't blame people for being reluctant to let go of pre-conceptions. I had many when I started this process. I had many pre-conceptions about Bulleid too, and no doubt I have some elsewhere in my life that I'm not aware of as yet (and will need to revise).

    But we have to be clear on this. When the facts change, so must we.

    We are not, by the way, criticising Gresley for the condition of the P2s in the 1940s. Nor are we criticising the design. We are recognising that there were issues. 6 P2s out of 6500 ish locomotives represents a very small amount of the work that the LNER were carrying out as part of the war effort. Gresley can be completely forgiven, in my view, for doing nothing - for that is also a valid choice - Thompson did something, and he should also not be criticised for that either.

    In the end, the P2s were a wonderful looking, high performance and potential, locomotive class that was found lacking when in service during a period of low amount and low quality maintenance. The A2/2s which were rebuilt from them were only slightly less powerful, had less adhesion (but still acceptable for a Pacific), and did the work asked of them significantly better than as P2s. That's the bottom line.
     
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  10. Allegheny

    Allegheny Member

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    Presumably better adhesion would give advantages at low speed, such as hill climbing and acceleration where, incidentally, steam is considered to be weak on the modern railway.
     
  11. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    [Light blue touch paper]

    One often overlooked quality possessed by Mr.Bulleid's 'Leader'.

    [Retreat to a safe distance. Never return to a firework once lit]
     
  12. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    As @Jimc says of Tuplin:
     
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  13. sir gilbert claughton

    sir gilbert claughton Member

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    Did it ? IIRC all were in service in 1960
     
  14. RLinkinS

    RLinkinS Member

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    I read that Solario was withdrawn in 1959. I wonder why. I suppose diesels were becoming available and perhaps the loco was in poor condition

    Sent from my SM-A105FN using Tapatalk
     
  15. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    60104 Solario was withdrawn in November 1959..
     
  16. Fred Kerr

    Fred Kerr Part of the furniture

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    Class 40 locomotives (then the most powerful diesel type on the ECML prior to the Deltics) were seen as the replacement on ECML passenger duties and early class members were already taking over some ECML workings.
     
  17. Cartman

    Cartman Member

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    The Eastern fairly quickly off loaded the 40s into the LMR, as soon as the Deltics entered traffic
     
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  18. Fred Kerr

    Fred Kerr Part of the furniture

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    Think it more likely once the Class 47s arrived during 1963 and took up the mixed traffic duties; I well recall the introduction of 7* services between Peterborough and Ferme Park and the High Dyke - Scunthorpe operations by Class 47s shortly after their introduction.
     
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  19. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Part of the furniture

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    Yes that is true. How much did not having a Mikado layout compared to a Pacific really affect the services though? From what we can see from availability and mileages, the Pacifics were far more available for work and physically did far more work.
     
  20. Spamcan81

    Spamcan81 Nat Pres stalwart

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    Genuine question - but what sort of work did they do?
    Another genuine question - The P2s were introduced to eliminate double heading on the heaviest trains in Scotland but was double heading reintroduced after they were rebuilt or were train weights reduced so as to not require double heading anyway?
     

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