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Mayner last won the day on September 28

Mayner had the most liked content!

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About Mayner

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    Senior Member


  • Biography
    Born Dublin, lived most of my life in Dublin and the UK. One time builder, moved to New Zealand several years ago. One time WHHR Volunteer Portmadoc, track ganger, diesel loco driver and bulldozer driver, plant operator, now an Armchair


  • Location
    Hamilton, New Zealand


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    My family, solving problems, anything to do with railways, travel, blues, rock, jazz, stirring thing

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  1. Some more odd-ball stuff. I planned to build an American On30 narrow gauge layout in a garden shed/garage and set up a mock up of one line crossing above another without realising there was once a similar arrangement on the Ongarue Bush Tramway in King Country Bush Tramways or logging lines tended to use a mixture of American and locally designed geared steam locos but no Shays. The locos in the Ongarue photo are AG Price 16 wheelers which are similar in concept to the Type A Climax with the weight spread over 4 bogies or trucks. Although I had a space of 24X12 the On30 layout never got beyond the planning/mock up stage and started to build a permanent American N Gauge layout with a center island as I felt the On30 did not work out in the available space. The Taupo Totara Timber (TTT) company operated the 80Km Mokai Tramway between its mill at Mokai north of lake Taupo and the New Zealand Railways Rotorua Branch. The tramway was worked mainly by Heisler geared locomotives and a Mallet operated through remote country with challenging civil engineering including a corkscrew section and a large single arch bridge over the Waikato. The tramway struggled financially through much of its existence, the bridge got into poor condition and was replaced by a steel structure in the 1930s. The Corkscrew. Most of this area was converted to plantation forestry from the late 1930s a 30Km section of the line was upgraded to serve a pulp and paper mill in the late 1940s after the tramway had ceased to operate, sections of tramway are in use as private forestry roads.
  2. A bit more progress with the Y Boiler 650 Class. The chimney appears to be high despite having reduced it in height. The modified chimney will be used as a master for a cast brass chimney, I also need to produce a master for the valve that sits at the back of the smokebox behind the chimney. The loco and tender is on chassis borrowed from the test build for the original kits. I suppose if there is sufficient interest the next step is to design a fly away cab as an 'add on" for the original kit for those that want to build the loco in its original condition, resulting in a potential 7 different variations of a class of 19 locos in GSR days.
  3. General Motors had already laid the groundwork in the 1950s re-powering Alco and other less satisfactory diesel locomotives with EMD power units in the United States. While General Motors locos had a reputation of being reliable and trouble free, Alco and other American loco builders struggled with reliability and maintenance problems similar to the British builders into the late 1950s. Like the Crossleys early post War Alco diesels suffered from engine problems but had a very good electrical system (possibly an association between GEC (USA) Westinghouse & Metropolitan Vickers). While CIE retained the existing electrical and control system during the re-builds, the cooling system appears to have been upgraded for the new power units most likely in response to problems experienced with re-powered locos in the United States.
  4. The Metrovicks were considered to have a very good electrical system compared to other contemporary British & GM diesel electrics. Like the American Alco & GE diesels the Metrovicks had very good low speed haulage ability necessary for hauling heavy goods trains. There is a good account of A Class operation in a Dan Renihan IRRS paper including an A Class hauling the very heavy Bertram Mills Circus train over Barnagh in damp conditions without slipping. Interestingly both classes of Irish Sulzers had Metropolitan Vickers electrical systems both were considered to be more reliable than the Crossleys but handicapped by a low power to weight ratio because of the very heavy Sulzer engines, despite their low power the B101 were entrusted with the heavy Cork-Rosslare Boat Train over a difficult steeply graded route and successfully handled passenger and freight work on the Cork, Waterford and Limerick lines until displaced by GM locomotives.
  5. Wednesday on the Main Trunk Line Seemingly the 1st opportunity I had the time weather was fine enough to go on Drive/Walkabout. Photos were mainly between Te Kuiti and Taumaranui where the line crosses the headwaters of the Waipa and Wanganui river systems. Tripple bogie EF 30094 & 30232 departing Te-Kuiti with a Southbound freight. The line climbs on 1:70 ruling grade for 20 miles from Te Kuiti (178') to the summit at Poro-Tarao Tunnel (1113') Remain of the Te Kuiti Industrial Line which once served a lime works and a fertiliser depot approx a mile South of the town. Kopaki passing place. Line follows the valley of the Mangokewa Stream above Te Kuiti the valley basically rises in a series of steps with a combination of relatively wide valley sections linked by narrow twisting gorges. Passing loops on the electrified section of the line are approx 1Km in length trains generally load to 30 bogies or 1200 Tonne glw 30094 & 30232 passing Waimiha (752') on the descent from Poro-Tarao Tunnel to Taumaranui. The line descends at 1:66 from the summit to Waimiha before flattening out to 1:70 to (Taumaranui 561') This area is particularly remote with a mixture of remote homesteads, sheep farms and forestry workers. This was one of the last areas of native forest opened up to commercial logging in the 1940s, the last of the steam powered sawmills abandoned in 1996 https://teara.govt.nz/en/photograph/34687/endeans-mill-sawmill-building-2011 . While it was fairly easy to keep ahead of the train on the twisting hilly sections the train has a distinct advantage on the straighter sections of line with a line speed of 100Km/h. Wanganui Viaduct Taumaranui ( or the one that got away!) 30094 got ahead of me when I stopped for petrol in Taumaranui. I decided to stop and wait rather than catch up with the southbound as Train Control had set up a path for a North Bound train. Growing impatient I set off to try an catch up with the South Bound or the approaching train nearer to their crossing place. The three volcanos fresh from Owhango. The mountains on the Plateau and Southern Alps had received a fresh dusting of snow during a recent cold snap. I decided to turn back at Owhango signal lights were out at the crossing place which usually indicates that no routes have been set up or traffic due through the section. Re-tracing my steps to the Wanganui bridge signals are set up for a North Bound train but when? I cannot listen in to Train Control or the chirping of a FRED (Radio end of train device) as left my radio scanner at home! The one that got away!. Although I had composed the shot, I had little warning of the sound of the approaching train and nothing happened when I pressed the shutter as the locos emerged from the bridge!. Crossing side stream in the Ongarue Valley. I caught up with the train about 20 miles further up the line in the Ongarue Valley on the climb from Taumaranui to Poro-Tarao Tunnel. Ongarue Village was Mill Town with a large steam sawmill with an extensive logging railway system that used American Climax and native AG Price logging locomotives. The Ongarue Tramways have been converted to cycleways and are one of the center pieces of the Pureora Forest Park. The railway bridge is a recent replacement of a wooden piled bridge with a low maintenance steel and concrete structure. Steelwork is Wethering steel product similar to CoreTen which does no require painting. The bridge was replaced as part of a bridge replacement programme which indicated that the New Zealand Government was committed to retaining the Main Trunk line. Approaching Mangapehi on the descent from Poro Tarao. Mangapehi township largely abandoned following the closure of a large sawmill https://natlib.govt.nz/records/23145751?search[subject][]=Ellis+%26+Burnand+Ltd&search[subject][]=Sawmills&search[path]=places. There was an extensive private railway system that operated in conjunction with the sawmill and a local coal mine. Back where I started 9446 passing Te Kuiti. The infrastructure is typical of the larger stations on the electrified section of the Main Trunk with gantry structures supporting the overhead, bracket signals, a long passing loop and third road serving a freight yard or loco depot. There has been lobbying at Regional and District Council level to re-establish a freight terminal at Te Kuiti presumably to handle export container traffic from the local meat processing plants, the electrified section of the Main Trunk is basically a run-through railway with little no originating traffic over the mountainous central section between Te Kuiti and Oakune.
  6. Inspired by Cumbres & Toltec Rio Grande Southern re-enactment of a two engine freight with DRGW 463 pretending to be RGS 455, the Jackson County had to follow suit with one of the first trains of the Spring season in the humid Waikato rather than semi-arid South West. 463 started slipping in light drizzle and actually needed 348s help to move its train over the road My 348 is actually a DRGW C16 pretending to be a larger C19 similar to 315 so another element of pretence. Must look at adding smoke units!!!!!!!!!!
  7. Six wheel coaches appear to have been used in main line, suburban and branch line passenger trains at least up to the Emergency when a large number of ex-GSWR 6w coaches (mainly 3rd Class) were withdrawn/converted to carry turf. Apart from the few remaining branch lines with passenger services six wheel coaches continued in use on Dublin & Cork suburban passenger services and excursion trains until replaced by more modern stock or services ended. Cork retained a rake of six wheel coaches for use on excursion trains into the early 1950s. . There is a 1947 photo of a J15 departing Cobh for Cork in 1947 with an excursion train made up of at least 9 6 wheelers and a couple of bogie coaches in Irish Railway in Colour Vol2 (Tom Ferris Midland Publishing 1995) There is a 1952 photo (photographer unknown) of a Midland 2-4-0 arriving in Sligo with a train of 7 6 wheelers possibly on an excursion from Ballaghadereen. Redundant coaches that passed into Departmental use appear to have been mainly used by the Civil Engineering and Signal & Electrical Departments as mobile workshops and dormitories rather than the loco department. The Loco Department had mobile Dormitories used at major cattle fairs, these were special purpose vehicles rather than converted passenger stock.
  8. Nice modelling and very atmospheric. I wonder was the signal box re-built with an apex roof by CIE or IE.? Wicklow signal cabin appears to be the odd man out with Arklow, Gorey and Rathdrum retaining curved corrugated iron roofs.
  9. Harry Connaughton was a Dublin based professional model maker who produced (mainly O Gauge) models of Irish locos and stock mainly in the 1970s, he passed away during the mid 1980s. His models included batch built GNR Compound & JT 2-4-2T in 4 & 7mm scale and various commissions in O Gauge including a number of GNR (I) T2 4-4-2T, CIE J5 Midland Cattle Engine, J19 Midland Standard Goods, & 650 Class 2-4-0, GNR non-passenger and goods stock including bogie Parcel Vans, Bread Vans, Goods Brake and a large fleet of GNR cattle wagons. One of my first introductions to railway modelling was watching Harry shunting of scratchbuilt O gauge cattle wagons and non-passenger stock with a pair of GNR 4-4-2T at an early MRSI exhibition in Phibsborough, the most striking thing was the sense of momentum and smoothness of operation compared with contemporary OO.
  10. The loco looks like a model of 402 following its re-build into a 2 cylinder loco in the 1920s. The whole saga of the re-building of the 400s was prolonged and complicated, the original locos were supposed to have been heavy on coal and expensive to maintain. The GSR scrapped 3 of the 4 cylinder locos (apparently as surplus to requirements) and gradually re-built the remaining locos into 2 cylinder form between 1928 & 37. The 1st 3 three rebuilt were basically completely new locomotives apart from using the existing boiler and bogie, 402 was unique among the rebuilt engines with its straight running board the next two engines rebuilt 401&406 had low running boards and Caprotti valve gear, The final four re-builds were more-economic retaining their original frames and driving wheels and introduced a step in the running board above the motion bracket. The rebuilding of the 400 Class into two cylinder locomotives appears to have been successful with 402 remaining in service into the early 60s.
  11. Looks like Accucraft UK have already released a County Donegal-IOM railcar to go with the IOM steam locos and stock https://www.ebay.com/itm/Accucraft-Trains-County-Donegal-Isle-of-Man-Diesel-Railcar-1-20-3-Scale-/283558169557
  12. Most likely because Accucraft believe that there is sufficient demand to produce a version with red rods, a high proportion of sales of the locos are likely to be to large scale modeler (outside the UK or Ireland) who want to add an Irish loco or train for their collection or garden railway rather than modellers that are specifically interested in the Irish Narrow Gauge. The models are likely to be only really accurate for the locos in their current re-built/preserved condition and visually are quite different from their pre-amalgamation condition. No 3 Lady Edit received a new boiler with a distinctive flat topped dome in the Mid 1920s, while No2 Kathleen originally a "Main Line" engine like No3 was rebuilt during the 1940s with the "Tramway" cab and superstructure from No 7 Violet and boiler from No 1. Lady Edit appears to have run at some stage with red rods while in preservation in the United States I guess the new locos are a good motivator to cull my collection of N and 4mm models and concentrate on the larger scale.
  13. Interesting massed produced Irish narrow gauge live steam ! The price is not particularly high by large scale standards. Accucraft is based in the States with its own factory in China and produces a large range of American, Continental and British outline narrow gauge locos and stock. It will be interesting to see if they will produce some matching rolling stock to run with the C&L 4-4-0T Its good to the see it planned to donate the profits from the sales of the locos in Ireland to the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum and the Cavan & Leitrim. Many of the Irish narrow gauge classes have been batched produced in live steam including the C&L 4-4-0 Archangel (Stewart Browne) & T&D 2-6-0T (John Campbell). http://grw.trains.com/~/media/import/files/pdf/4/8/b/irish_narrow_gauge.ashx
  14. ONe-TRAK appears to have been devised in the late 1990s to allow more realistic operation (within an American context) and more realistic scenery by avoiding the "tile' effect of traditional modular layouts, the 15" group adapted a similar approach to 4mm British outline branch line modelling in the 1980s and more recently the "One Track Minds Group" modelling in New Zealand Railways in S Scale. One Track Minds went for 2' wide modules to allow reasonably realistic modelling of typical New Zealand Bush and Footrot Flats countryside. Modeler's essentially building small layouts with a modular interface. I experimented with modular construction in N gauge with open farmed baseboards about 20 years ago though never got beyond the development stage in terms of scenery Small yard with wooded mountain backdrop 12" wide 3'6" modules. Passing siding open frame construction 2--12"X4' modules, the original plan was to add an additional module to allow longer trains to cross. Tall steel trestle module interfaced with crossing siding modules. Open frame baseboard construction.
  15. De Selby's collection of kit and scratchbuilt GNR(I) & NCC Locos? The GNR Vs was placed 3rd in the 2016 RM Web build a loco challenge, there is a thread on building the NCC "Whippet" (small 4-4-0) in https://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/80681-an-ncc-whippet/page/2/
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