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NRM Rocket replica

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by ovbulleid, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. ovbulleid

    ovbulleid New Member

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    I was flicking through heritage railway today and saw an article on the renovation of the NRM's replica rocket. the article was focusing on the fact that given the boiler, frames, and one other component which i have forgotten has been replaced, its verging on the realms of being a new engine. bearing away from the philosophical debate about grandpa's broom, why has so much been replaced on this engine when it is barely 20 years old? its not as if the engine was worked hard regularly, doing high speeds pulling long trains on the mainline? i'm not normally interested in NRM bashing, particularly as most of it relates to engines not being steamed and this one is, but it just seems a bit odd that so much of a relatively new, lightly used engine is being replaced. Does anyone know why?
     
  2. williamfj2

    williamfj2 New Member

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    I believe that a 'industrial archeological dig' was carried out on Rocket and it was discovered that all of the replicas are rather incorrect. I cannot remember what the issues are/were and I know that a book was produced detailing the study and Rocket in general and I cannot recall the title of it for love nor money.
     
  3. LMS2968

    LMS2968 Well-Known Member

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    The Engineering and History of Rocket, Michael R Bailey and John P Glithero, National Railway Museum, 2000, ISBN 1 099747 18 9
     
  4. williamfj2

    williamfj2 New Member

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    Champion! I've been after that book and I finally know what I'm looking for.
     
  5. Anthony Coulls

    Anthony Coulls Member

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    And...the boiler was worn out...which happens to be a major component on the loco, there isn't much else except wheels, cylinders & frame. Sans Pareil's boiler is also life expired and that's the same age as Ricket.
     
  6. williamfj2

    williamfj2 New Member

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    Going slightly off topic but are there any plans for Sans Pareil now that Rocket is (almost) finished?
     
  7. DJH

    DJH New Member

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    Problem is in relative terms the loads the replica is pulling is a heavy load for rocket- Sames true with a lot of the early locomotives- and so things wear out. History of the originals showed they lasted a similar length of time so not completely surprising.

    Be interesting to see the replica after the rebuild and what was changed to make it more authentic.

    Regards

    Duncan
     
  8. 504

    504 New Member

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    Planet and Rocket together later this year maybe??? watch this space !
     
  9. Anthony Coulls

    Anthony Coulls Member

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    If money allows, we'd like to do Sans Pareil too, and make it look better with dished boiler ends, dummy rivets etc.
     
  10. MEJ

    MEJ New Member

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    It would be great to see the replica "Rocket" and "Sans Pareil" steam together again. Making "Rocket" more authentic to the original aside, as Duncan says, the wear and tear on these lightly built locos is very high, and although built with modern materials, they have lasted much longer in regular service than the originals! "Planet" at MOSI has now been running regularly from 1992- 1996 and again from 1999-present with only short winter periods for maintenance. Whilst "Planet" is more heavily built than "Rocket" or "Sans Pareil" it still requires attention regularly, as the design of wooden sandwich frames and the boiler providing integral strength to the loco will always see more wear and tear than a more "modern" loco with steel plate frames etc. Also consider the work that these replicas do- regular running on relatively short lines such as Shildon, York and Manchester, with constant reversing and stopping and starting, somthing the originals wouldnt have done as often, and again increasing the wear and tear on such items as tyres, brakes, reversing dogs, bearings etc etc. (Also bear in mind, that "Rocket" and "Sans Pereil" are 31 years old!) As a short example, "Planet" was steamed 120 times for passenger trains in 2009, and clocked up 1341 miles in our Febraury to November operating season! This is alot of work considering the MOSI run is 0.9miles of journey with 3 reverses per trip...

    The original L&MR locos were thrashed daily until they wore out, with most of the original "Planet" class locos of 1830-1831 worn out or broken within 3 years of them being built. Most L&MR locos were heavily rebuilt serveral times, with swapping of parts and making improvements commonplace during their harsh working lives. When the original "Planet" dissapeared off the L&MR stocklist in about 1839, it was heavily rebuilt into a 2.2.2 and so what actaully remains of the original "Rocket" and "Lion" for example, probably would entitle them as "Grandpa's Broom" locos...!
     
  11. DJH

    DJH New Member

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    Awakening an old thread but I was wondering in the longer term if there are plans to get the Sans Pareil replica running again? Memory recalls there was a reason why it hasn't been steamed in some time.
     
  12. Anthony Coulls

    Anthony Coulls Member

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    Yes, the boiler was made out of a piece of uncertified pipe. Boiler inspector said he would continue to pass it as long as it remained in service. The water pump suffered frost damage, a replacement could not be afforded and thus the boiler certificate lapsed and a new one will not be given until a new boiler with appropriate paperwork is provided.
     
  13. DJH

    DJH New Member

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    Thanks for the update Anthony.
     
  14. QLDriver

    QLDriver New Member

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    Going back to the idea of Rocket replicas... it would be interesting to see one of Rocket in its 1830's condition.
     

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