After a period of inactivity brought on by the numerous summer jobs I have been successfull on ebay. This time it is a Wrenn rebuilt West Country locomotive called Lyme Regis in Southern Livery. This is a two rail loco which I will have to get converted to 3 rail by my local expert Mike King. This is an interesting engine as it is a rebuilt West Country in Southern Railways livery. I don’t think that this actually happenned in real life. The West Countries weren’t rebuilt until they were in the hands of British Railways but I am open to correction by anyone who reads this and knows better. It looks good, is unboxed and the only problem is that the ebay description mentions slight fading on one side, we wait and see.
Very little activity on the train front. No buying and very little running activity. Even the planning for the extension is on the back burner at the moment. There are no local train fairs so I have not been tempted to add to the collection and attempts to buy on ebay have been very unsuccessful, either I am mean or there are people out there prepared to bid higher than the item is worth.
A win on ebay at £61.00 including £10.00 postage has produced a lot of track. 8 large radius curves, 8 standard curves, 24 full straights, 5 LH points, 8 RH points plus a half straights and curves – enough for a pretty good layout. I have cleaned it all up and now its ready for the autumn project. I need to check that the large radius ciurves will fit the width of the new addition. Having the large radius curves enables a parallel track to be run all the way round. This will be essential as I don’t have a lot of width to play with on the new layout. I am eager to proceed but will wait til laters before starting the project or there will be a conflict with the essential summer jobs.
The weather here has been very good so lots of gardening, mowing etc and little time to play with the trains. However planning is underway for the autumn/winter activities. With the additiond of Flying Scotsman, Mallard and 80135 there is now no sidingd left to store trains or engines. So we have got to the more track more trains syndrome. So its more track. The plan is to build a new layout behind the current one to fill an area the width of the workshop, some 15 ft and about 3 ft wide. This will allow an access area in the middle etween the two layouts. It would be nice if they can be joined together to allow cross running but this might be difficult both electrically and phsically with the track constraints of HD. I have bought on ebay a collection of track which is a starter pack for the new layout. This includes the large radius curves which will allow parallel track running around the layout with the sidings and stations in the middle. A new framework will have to be contructed alllowin acces both to the middle and to allow the stuff stored under the layout to be accessed. I think that I will be calling on Jamie’s carpentry skills to assist with this part of the project. Once i get the track I will begin to lay it out on the floor, or perhaps the table tennis table to work on potential layouts and to make sure that it is in good condition. This project will not start until at least October probably when the clocks change and it becomes dark at 4.00 and before it gets too cold.
155 locomotives of this class, the largest tank engine in the BR standard range, were built between 1951 and 1956. In common with the other standard designs they were to be found all over the country, with large concentrations in the Eastern Region (London, Tilbury and Southend section) and the Scottish Region (Glasgow suburban). Several were sent to Whitby shed and were frequent performers on the Malton trains, over what is now the NYMR, until evicted by the onslaught of the DMUs.
No. 80135 was completed at Brighton Locomotive Works in April 1956 and was initially allocated to Plaistow for working over the London, Tilbury and Southend line, later transferring to Tilbury depot, where it continued on the same duties until the route was electrified in 1962. 21 of the class were then transferred to the Western Region and 80135 was one of 4 allocated to Shrewsbury for passenger duties. At the start of 1963 it moved to Oswestry for service on the Cambrian section, and then returned to Shrewsbury in September 1964. Withdrawn from this location on 17 August, 1965 it was towed to Barry scrapyard at the end of that year.
By virtue of its simple design and ease of access for maintenance, the Standard tank engine became an obvious choice for purchase by the NYMR. No. 80135 was in the best all-round condition of the surviving 2-6-4Ts at Barry and was delivered to Pickering in March 1973. Subsequently bought by Jos de Crau, who financed its restoration in the NYMR workshops, the locomotive was put to work in Brunswick green livery in April 1980.
In 1992 it received a repaint in a slightly different shade of green, and it normally achieved high annual mileages without serious problems. In July 1992, however, a succession of tube failures led to the engine’s slightly premature withdrawal for a full overhaul, but after an insurance inspection, permission was given to extend the boiler life by a year on condition that all the small tubes were replaced. It was thus in use for the 1993 season in which it achieved a mileage of nearly 9,000. Its overhaul started in 1994 and included a new firebox built at Pridham’s. It returned to traffic in February 1999, making its ‘Main Line’ debut on 23 May, on a ‘Captain Cook Pullman’ to Whitby.
Another new loco has been added to the rolling stock. This is a Standard Tank 4 MT repainted by Paul Thompson as BR 80135 in gloss Brunswick Green. This was supplied as a body only and Jamie Nelson provided the chassis from a 80054 which he had had as a kid albeit with missing screws for the body, front bogie and the valve mechanism. it had not run for 45 years but some WD 40 plus oil had it working beautifully within 20 minutes. A trip to Mike King for the missing screws and now we have a beautiful loco working very well and shown in the gallery on page 4. An excellent addition to the rolling stock.
As already stated this loco runs very well but it does have a problem reversing into its siding. Either the pony on the loco or the wheels on the tender have a marked tendency to de-rail. This is frustrsating as it operates from the siding where it has to reverse to pick up its train. I have tried sanding down the rail connections but it seems that the radius of the curves is a little too tight for it. I am not sure what Lilliput locos were normally run on but certainly not HD 3 rail track. Its a problem which I can live with but it would be nice to solve it.
The running of the Mallard has been improved. taking the body of the locomotive reveals that the weight which is attached to the loco by a screw in the smoke stack is also the fixing point for the body. Now that is cheap. Anyway tightening up both screws has allowed the front bogies to run better with the result that it no longer sticks on the bends and runs reasonably well although still very noisily. I currently have it on one of my more out of the way sidings as I don’t see this as being a prime runner.
I am now convinced that both locos are 3 rail conversions as they still have the insulated wheels. They do make an interesting addition to the rolling stock although I think that I will still go after a HD Mallard and replace the Trix, but I need to re-stock the purse so it won’t be for a while yet. Anyway with the good weather coming, time with the trains will probably be reduced somewhat.
The Flying Scotsman
Following a service and the correction of an intermittent short circuit. the Flying Scotsman now runs very well. It has a plastic body with the motor in the loco. It is nicely detailed with fine hand rails and good detail on the loco and the tender. Probably not as good as HD and nowhere near the quality of Wrenn but very satisfactory. The only questions I have is this an original 3 rail (it has a Marklin pick up) and about what year was it made. Any one who knows please reply through the comments section
Comments on Mallard are below Mallard. Now tihis is probably the disappointmet that I expected as it is a tender drive. This makes it noisy and has a tendency to stick on the bends and also to de-rail as there is no weight over the loco. I can see why the manufacturers went to tender drive, for standardisation of motors, but the running effect is poor.
The other intriguing thing is that this model seems slightly larger than the HD model of Sir Nigel Gresley, although they are both OO. The extra detail on the plastic loco, such as the safety valves and the footplate roof ventilators, make the model more realistic,but as a runner it doesn’t compare with HD or for that matter with the Flying Scotsman. Was`this a genuine 3 rail loc or has it been converted? This one also has a Marklin skid.
I welcome your comments.
the two new locomotives arrived today. They were in excellent condition and very nice models. They need servicing as it would look like they had not been run for about 30 years so they have gone to Mike King for a general service and check over. I expect to have them back next week so that running and further comments can be added. So far so good.