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Showing content with the highest reputation on 01/07/2018 in all areas

  1. 3 points
  2. 2 points
    Ahhh 'G' lads....what do ya do when you're running low in the black stuff?
  3. 2 points
    PRE-GROUPING AND GSR COACHES IN THE CIE ERA FOR MODELLERS The purpose of this article is to provide a brief summary of the types of wooden stock to be seen on the CIE system between 1950 and 1975. I’ll do it in two parts. This bit gives a bit of background to the wooden bodied vehicles still very much alive and well into the black’n’tan era, and in a few cases just past the “Supertrain” era. A few wooden bodied bogies of ex-GSWR origin could be seen alongside Mk 2 air-con “Supertrain” coaches for an overlap period of barely 2 years, 1972-4. The next instalment will concentrate on what Ratio / Hornby or other vehicles can be approximated to some of the actual types in existence in the post-1955, i.e. diesel era. Prepare yourself, what follows is a dry dusty and long winded piece; I did say I’d little else to do today! I’ll do the second bit over the next few days. I hope that it is of interest. Particularly with younger modellers in mind (to me, that’s anyone under forty!), it is important firstly to bear in mind how the average train on the average railway differed in times past. With the growing popularity of the “grey’n’green era” (1945-62) and the “black’n’tan era” (1962-72), it is easy for those seeking accuracy to see the past through the eyes of the present. Since the “Supertrain era” (1972-87), plus more modern times, it is the norm for a passenger or goods train to comprise a long line of a single type of vehicle. The opposite was the case almost from the dawn of the railway age. Many layouts today have this feature because today it IS accurate – it is prototypical. But in creating accurately a scene from any time prior to 1975 or so, even a long train could barely have two vehicles alike. Today, different types of trains have different couplings, different electrics, different corridor gangways (unless IE have sealed them over with tin foil). In the very recent past, EVERY vehicle on EVERY line, originating with EVERY company, had EXACTLY the same couplings. There was no such thing as “you can’t couple this to that” until the 1970s, when we find that Cravens or laminates can’t be mixed with Mk 2’s in traffic as the corridor connections weren’t compatible, and NIR’s 80s and Castles* weren’t compatible unless one was hauling the other dead. (* They were never called “450”s, still less “thumpers”, when in use!) So, during the black’n’tan and grey’n’green eras and before, if accuracy is the goal, we need to rethink entirely what’s on our layout. Instead of the common theme of trains of a number of identical vehicles – a “rake” of this and a “rake” of that – hauled by a variety of engines, it’s the other way round. Most lines had only one or two different types of loco, but rarely had two wagons or carriages behind them that were the same! So many GSWR branches rarely saw anything but J15s, thus a model would have half a dozen of them and nothing else, but no two carriages alike. Against all of this background, we might look at the bewildering array of carriages types, ages and origins pre-1970, or more so pre-1960. This is what the following will attempt to unravel. In 1925 all companies whose lines were entirely within the Irish Free State would amalgamate into the GSR. This excluded lines within the 26 counties which had a cross border element: the LLSR, CDR, SLNCR, DNGR and of course above all the GNR. Some of these companies were tiny, and possessed no stock of their own, being worked by a neighbour. Others (e.g. the Waterford & Tramore) had only a few vehicles, whereas the overwhelming majority of the GSR’s coaching stock was previously owned by the DSER, MGWR and GSWR. The distinctive curved-ended stock of the erstwhile WLWR was by now already included in GSWR stock, following their earlier takeover of that concern. The CBSCR had a reasonable stock of elderly relics of their own. There’s a lot more to the overall story than this, but suffice to say, as far as the modeller is concerned, what was still running in the 1950s onwards is probably of most interest. The purpose of this tome is to illustrate what is possible to represent in varying degrees of accuracy, at the top end of which is obviously a total scratchbuild from original plans. Many existing kits can be made to look like many prototypes – and there’s practically a prototype for everything. Carriages were built in small batches – often, as one-offs or a pair or trio. Take the “Pullmans” for example – they are not known to have ever run in one train, so a “rake” of them, possibly suitable for Britain, was most certainly not the case here. Instead, they’d put one on each of several trains. The rest of the train – anything and everything. Firstly, the design features. The Midland, like the GSWR, had two distinctive roof profiles, in each case the older “flat” (low curved) and the later “elliptical” (high curved). Each company had a distinct profile for the higher version, the MGWR one being somewhat flatter on top. Window heights and shapes, and door handle designs, gave away the company origin too. DSER stock had its own window design, but was often characterised by a visibly wider chassis, and a high-pitched curved roof. Midland stock was distinguished by windows with square bottom corners and curved top corners. WLWR stock usually had curved-in ends, like the English Midland Railway; the WLWR being the only Irish company to include this design feature. After CIE took over in 1945, they inherited a motley collection of museum pieces. Apart from the “Bredins” (as we now know them) or “steels” as they were then known, it was basically the same ageing stock inherited twenty years earlier by the GSR. However, from 1951, CIE started building their own stock (very much modelled on the “Bredins”) and this led to increasing withdrawal of the older types, the average age of which was now about forty five years. By 1950, most DSER types had been withdrawn. By 1955, only 19 ex-WLWR vehicles survived. These included the only six bogie vehicles that company ever owned – two each of thirds, composites and brake composites, all 48ft long. That’s 192mm body length in 00 scale. By 1959/60, only 7 were on the books. PASSENGER CARRYING BOGIE In traffic 1955 In traffic 1970 GSWR GSWR (Ex WLWR) 188 6 26 0 MGWR 16 0 DSER Unknown - few 0 CBSCR 4 (see note below) 0 PASSENGER CARRYING 6 WHEEL GSWR GSWR (Ex WLWR) 82 13 0 0 MGWR 68 0 DSER Unknown – possibly nil 0 CBSCR 2 0 NON PASSENGER CARRYING BOGIE GSWR GSWR (Ex WLWR) 15 0 7 at least, possibly 11 0 MGWR 0 as far as known 0 DSER 0 as far as known 0 CBSCR 0 0 NON PASSENGER CARRYING 6 WHEEL GSWR 63 1* GSWR (Ex WLWR) 0 as far as known 0 MGWR Some in use but number unknown 0 CBSCR Possibly 1 0 *This was the last six-wheeled vehicle ever to operate in traffic with CIE. It was No. 79, dating from 1887. The last passenger carrying six-wheeled coaches were withdrawn officially in 1964, but were last used in 1963. It is believed that the last ever use of one of these was an ex-MGWR example in which a party of Cork area IRRS members travelled from Glanmire Road to Albert Quay and back in that summer. Mail vans are not included. Several ex-GSWR mail vans were in use a few years longer in the 1970s. For the West Cork system, nineteen vehicles were on the books in 1955, though most would be withdrawn in 1957. By 1959 / 60, four remained. Two were six-wheeled, one being of interest in having its origin on the LLSR before it had been converted to narrow gauge. The other two were very short bogies, 37ft and 48ft long. These non-standard products of the West Cork’s workshops at Albert Quay were for the sharply curved Courtmacsherry branch, where such relics lived on because newer coaches were too long for the curves. None strayed into the non-Cork world, thus models of these are only historically appropriate on a West Cork-based layout. Almost every Irish company had 30ft as their standard length for six-wheeled coaches, including the GSWR, DSER, WLWR and MGWR. So a 30ft scale chassis would be a good thing to have available even as a kit. That’s 120mm body length. The BCDR was different with several longer variations. Vehicles of ex-GSWR and WLWR origin just had their number inherited from GSWR days. Ex-MGWR carriages had “M” added, thus MGWR No. 124 was now 124M, while ex-Bandon stock had “B”, and DSER stock “D” after their numbers. Construction of some of the very first coaches technically introduced by the GSR had been started by the GSWR, and their “architecture” would be continued for several years – thus the very few coaches completed by the GSR are identical in design to GSWR types. Only after the “steels” came in, did a distinct GSR style emerge – very closely like the English LMS, whose lined maroon livery Inchicore would copy almost exactly from 1933. Early CIE types introduced 1951-3 would be similar to these “Bredins”, with the later “laminates” built between 1956 and 1959 being developments of these. I have not included details above of ex-GNR types which came into CIE stock in 1958. That's for another day. And then we’re off into the era of the Cravens, and after that it all went downhill fast as we stopped building, and started importing standard BR tin cans....... The Supertrain era is born! And jhb171achill slips into a coma; too old to hear new chimes, as yer man said. It has been decreed; all trains forever hence will have a standard rake of exactly the same type of vehicle, for ever and ever, amen. And they all lived happily ever after. Now finish yer cocoa. JB 060118
  4. 2 points
    That is violently horrific.
  5. 1 point
    Lovely work as always Popeye.
  6. 1 point
    Thanks again for all the positive comments since my last posting, really appreciated. Tonight, I downed tools for the last time on this project having painted the steps, installing the board in the box and fitting two downspouts to either end. A curious thing happened the other evening as I popped in to my local model shop checking on my order of track. I got chatting to someone and in the course of conversation we discussed our layouts. In a passing comment he mentioned the modelling of this signal box as he'd come across it on this very forum and revealed to me he was a former signalman of the actual box. I learnt a few new nuggets of information on the local station and he was also very complimentary on the build. It was a pleasure to have met him and I hope our paths will cross again Ian. Anyway, as said, the box is finished so in an attempt to show it off to its best I've photographed it against a white background to attempt to prove the lighting. Paul
  7. 1 point
    I use Code 55 as opposed to the more common Code 80 Peco N gauge track. With careful ballasting this can look well enough without being oversized. I suppose the overall challenge for any railway modeller is to convert "toy trains" into something that looks "real". One way I have attempted this is to model real locations and represent them with carefully selected kit built model buildings etc using subtle colours. Modern HD camera 'phones provide a good way of testing if the effects achieved are real. I have posted photo sequences on this forum of the building of each of my layouts and as they progress, I can see at some point how they cease to look like a collection of model items on a board and begin to cohere as a believable scene (my current build Llauwchllyn is approaching this point I hope!). Many people have commented favourably on my results which I appreciate and I am always happy to share how/what I do with them.
  8. 1 point
    I agree, met the man himself in Enniskillen - loved his cracking layout 'Llangollen'.
  9. 1 point
    Some of the great N gauge layouts that have emanated from WMRC in recent years defy that by a few hundred country kilometres. Done well due to the possibility of more prototypical radius curves and train lengths N gauge can look stunning especially by scenic masters. I was blown away by the authentic realism of some of @Irishrailwayman N gauge layouts.
  10. 1 point
    Aside from the lack of any Irish RTR stock, another possible issue for some who wish to shunt and operate prototypical low speed movements is the reliability and smoothness of N gauge locos, and the relative light weight of wagons making coupling unpredictable (e.g. Wagon pushed before couplings engage, or inverse when backing over uncoupler). I know N gauge loco motoring and gearing have come a long way in the past 20 years, but not quiet as shuntable as OO/4mm nor the supreme gauge for prototypical shunting - O gauge with its heavier rolling stock less likely to bounce like a pin ball. If I was interested in stock that suited continuous circuit operations then I would be seriously tempted by N gauge. My ultimate dream might be an O gauge GWR pannier tank and a handful of Dapol wagons on a 10-12ft end to end shunting layout.
  11. 1 point
    Me, definitely. Scratch building in that scale needs a VERY fine and highly skilled modelling background, so for me, there would have to be a good and broad range of RTR stuff.
  12. 1 point
    That's all very informative. I had to take a break halfway through, but lots of information there. You should write a book about it.
  13. 1 point
    Brassmasters do a couple of very good kits for 6 wheel coach chassis.Andy.
  14. 1 point
    In part, but the main issue is that the larger brands are run by accountants, and so crap like below, whose tooling costs have been well and truly paid for by now, costs £17 to purchase from a box shifter. I've a fair idea of how much this would actually cost to make, and it's just profit gouging, as Bosko said earlier.
  15. 1 point
    The Orange bubbles
  16. 1 point
    RATIO 48FT COACH. This coach was built to be a GSWR look a like. The ends were rounded at the bottom so this was cut off and a new piece added in.
  17. 1 point
    Glad to see Marklin My World mentioned here, it's a fantastic range. I think a big problem is price. The perception of the hobby is one of cost. If hornby could gather up all there old tooling (lima included) and launch a proper budget line aimed at young punters it might help the situation. The railroad range is a bit of a joke. £100 for a Lima deltic, seriously???
  18. 1 point
    From meeting many of our customers over the past 18 months or so, I've been pleasantly surprised at the age range. Many are in the 30-50 bracket, which is at odds with the perception that the hobby is mainly the preserve of the older generation. As Fran said, Marklin's kids' sets are among the most popular toys in Germany. They're also compatible with the regular Marklin sets, which helps promotes quality parent/child time, too, as well as nurturing interest in the hobby. There's a distinct lack of an equivalent product in the OO market... On a related note, there's very little promotion of the hobby towards people who don't already have an interest in railways, certainly here and in the UK...
  19. 1 point
    Just sticking these here to keep all the RTR stuff on this thread Set A Set B Set C Set D
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