Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by D6332found, Jan 29, 2017.
Or even pure nonsense. There are in existence and, from time to time at least, operational, two BR Std. 7s, two B1s and a B12/3. That covers most of the post WW2 express passenger classes on the GE line and is more than sufficient to cover all likely future opportunities for steam operation on the GEML. The sole exception is the B17/ B2s, which were considered by those who operated and managed them underpowered, rough-riding and troublesome. Probably the best description that I heard of them was from no less an authority than R.H.N. Hardy who, when discussing the B17's B2 rebuilds, described them as "a bad engine made even worse."
I don't like to encourage more new-build schemes, God knows there are more than enough already, but if anyone is really desperate to recreate a worthwhile representative of GE express motive power, why not go for a GER S15 4-6-0, complete with Belpaire firebox, decorative footplate valances etc- more efficient, attractive and historically interesting than a B17. Oh, and if you abandon at least one B17 new-build, that will provide a suitable tender.
I'd better shut-up, lest I give people ideas
Trouble is we don't know which schemes are going to be viable. Probably anything the A1 trust or the GWS launches will ultimately make it, but there are also some unlikely schemes such as the G5 that are making great progress.
One thing about the G5 scheme ... I don't think they've ever bothered much with wide-ranging appeals for small donations and subscriptions. They are looking for shareholdings of £500 or more, and I suspect they had a core of committed funds before they even launched the project to the public.
On the other hand, I suspect some other schemes ... not naming names ... were hoping that the "Class X for the price if a pint" formula would do the trick.
"Unlikely"? It's much more "likely" than the B17 schemes or many of the others for that matter.
I wonder if those who are quick to say "they're building the wrong loco" would like to put their money where their mouth is and launch a project to build the sort of loco they tell us the heritage railway movement needs.
There is a Claud Hamilton project (H88 Class, or D16 for the neophiles). I don't think it is much advanced. But it would be a rare operational pre-grouping passenger tender loco.
Quite right. I've pointed out before that it's a little bit silly that we get hung up about filling minor gaps in 20th century locomotive development when, by comparison, there are gaping black holes of missing Victorian designs, most of which are now forgotten by enthusiasts.
Neither do I accept the argument that we "need" any new-build locomotives (except maybe in a few very specific circumstances, like the Ffestiniog's new double-Fairlies). There are more than enough ex-Barry and industrial engines rusting in sidings, or just waiting in overhaul queues, to cater for the likely needs of the heritage movement. However, that is not to say that if a group want a new design, and can get the money together, they shouldn't go for it.
So if you want to fill a gap in surviving GE motive power, might I suggest one of these?
Or a Class C53 (LNER Class J70)
Or what about the ultimate challenge- the Decapod!
Yes, exactly. It's "unlikely" in that it's a project that you would expect to struggle for support. But they seem to have got a really effective fund-raising approach.
Spot on. We now have reasonable coverage of primitive locos thanks to Beamish, Manchester MSI and a few others, but the 1840s and 1850s have very few representatives. Shame that the Bloomer has ground to a halt.
One problem with replicas from that era (apart from the lack of sufficient interest to fund them) is the limited use to which they can be put due to a lack of power and adhesion.
I'm delighted that we're going to have a working Grange ... I never saw one in my spotting days. However, to describe it as a significant gap in the ranks of preserved locos is a bit far-fetched. It's being built for the same reason as Tornado ... because people remember the class with affection, and are digging deep to make it happen.
Oooh!! I'd want to see a new Decapod too.
Isn't this only a problem because we don't have mid-19th century carriages for them to haul? Mark 1s may be too heavy for them.
New build carriages IMHO would have at least as much point as new build locos. See various Welsh narrow gauge lines.
That would straighten the track out at Mangapps!
I don't think that is true - there's no reason why a mid-Victorian loco shouldn't haul a remunerative load.
To take an example I'm most familiar with, there has been discussion in Bluebell circles about a future new build of a Craven 2-4-0, dating from the late 1850's in design. The estimate is that it would haul a practical load of 100 tons on our gradients (i.e. 100 tons with some contingency in hand, as is always the case when setting load limits). That may not sound much, but we limit a P class to 70 tons, and yet can find useful work for them. With Victorian carriages, 100 tons would be about eight four wheelers. Even allowing for a brake coach, a low capacity 1st class etc, it is likely such a train would have about 300 seats - not too shabby. Moreover, the Bluebell's gradients - which is what sets a practical limit - are steeper than all but a handful of other lines: for most other railways, haulage would not be the practical limit on such a locomotive.
What you do probably have to think about - which would limit the attractiveness to many lines around the country - is to think of such a project as "Victorian train", not "Victorian loco". In other words, consider the loco and carriages as an entity. That isn't a novel thought - the Firefly replica at Didcot was necessarily done in that way, as have been projects to produce very early locos at Beamish and elsewhere. It's that factor, rather than the likely use of such a loco, that makes me think that there is probably only a handful of lines around the country who could even think seriously about a mid-Victorian loco project. You would need to be thinking about lines that not only have the engineering experience and capacity to build the loco, but also have the experience of working with wooden-bodied carriages, or at least the desire to develop such experience through a project.
See above about carriage weights. What is worth pointing out is that while carriages from the 1850s are rarer than rocking horse droppings, those form the 1870s onwards are comparatively common, and are also more amenable to rebuilding onto modern underframes. (The Bluebell has some derelict Craven-era carriages from the 1850s, but I believe they have integral bodies and underframes, which makes any rebuild to running condition more problematic than the "typical" Victorian carriage rebuild of a grounded body onto a 1950's van underframe).
So would running an 1850 / 1860's loco with 1880's carriages be a problem? I don't see why. Even at that time which was a period of considerable innovation, locos typically lasted 25 years or more, so an 1850's loco would have hauled later carriages towards the end of its life. No-one thinks it is incongruous to have a 1930's loco hauling carriages built in the 1960's, and an 1850's loco hauling 1880's carriages would be no more anachronous.
It is funny how the word 'need' is picked up and frothed over by those who feel it is their mission in life to pour cold water. I said we'd need x in order to represent most c20 GE Mainline loco types, I never said we needed to achieve that, I acknowledge entirely that it is WIBN. It's actually quite unpleasant the way certain people set to with a vigour to tell people how stupid they are. Let me make myself clear. I would like to see a B17 but it is not my dream loco, I would absolutely love to see a Claud but, at the moment cannot see that project making significant headway. My very limited funds are currently most likely to be directed towards the Y14 and B12/3 and NNR based wooden bodied coaches as and when required but I reserve the right to dream and plan how I will spend my Euromillions win.
Yes, I agree with this idea, and with Paul Hitch's point that carriages from that period are equally desirable. It would be nice (IWBN) to be able to offer an authentic mid-19th century travel experience, complete with gas lighting and foot warmers, short track panels, bonnets and crinolines. An authentic train of this sort would probably make as much money from film work as it would from passenger fares.
I'm looking forward to seeing you in a bonnet and crinoline.
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