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  1. Not to mention drinky's...
  2. That's it. Was available as a Ryanbus kit. one at £35 on ebay, Happy memories of hitchhiking on lonely loads, kindness of strangers and impossibly boozy nights.
  3. My experience of bus travel in Ireland was more rural- typically in West Cork in the 70s/ early 80s (the days before we had a car). Single deckers, box- like bodies, roof racks with a ladder. Scarcely touched the seat from Cork to Skibbereen for the bouncing. I can't even find a photo of one at the moment.
  4. Book arrived today, no problems, less than a week in the post. Waved a forked hazel twig over it to check for any new Covid varieties, but nothing exciting there. Enough reading to keep me going for a while.
  5. Thanks- I've been working up to buying the book, swallow hard, see what comes in the way of additional bills to import it...
  6. Does anyone know of any scale or dimensioned drawings of these? Or is there a works GA somewhere?
  7. Now all you have to do is remember to put it back in the drill case. Here's my DIY tip: Don't try to install a GRP shed roof unless you do it for a living, and if you do, charge the earth for it. I came within an ace of going headfirst through the (to be installed) skylight when it suddenly rained (after a fine forecast till it didn't matter) and I had to drag the tarpaulin over at an indecent speed. Just- set resin is very slippery! Next time a roof is needed, I'll consider the advantages of getting wet.
  8. If you really want to know (and I'm sure you don't), there's a very good and comprehensive value calculator at Measuring Worth The good news is that you are BOTH right, anywhere between £22 and £77 is a "right" answer for £1 in 1960. It depends on whether you take how much other stuff you could buy for your pound, how much it's worth relative to the average wage, or any of half a dozen other ways of measuring that very non- linear illusion called money. They also did very foreshortened carriages and diesels. I suspect the set with two brakevans is not the original configuration.
  9. It drives me crackers that simple division sums flummox people. I'm not blaming anybody here, but it's nearly 900 years since Fibonacci introduced the simple Arabic/ Indian system, but the rule of three doth bother far too many people and that's an indictment of teachers. A perfectly good calculator is a quid in a British pound shop, no idea if you have Euroshops. A foot is 304.8mm exactly. Five foot three is five and a quarter times that- 1600.2mm Nobody ever laid track accurate to two tenths of a millimetre. That's only twice the level of drink in an English spirit glass, so 1600mm. Seven millimetres to the foot, so 304.8 divided by 7 is... 43.5(42857...) and ignore the small change, 43.5. and 1600 divided by that is.... 36.78(16092...). That's 37mm in anybody's book- the difference in real scale is 3/8 of an inch give or take Trump's IQ. Far more cogent- what gauge did Fry use? (32mm I bet). And Arigna Town?
  10. Is NIL still going? Neither the website nor the Facebook page has been updated since 2015.
  11. Michael McGowan was born in Cloghaneely in Co Donegal in 1865, and went to America in about 1885. He made a small fortune in the Klondike gold rush, and returned home in about 1904. Sean O hEochaidh recorded his story in 1941, and it was published in English as The Hard Road to Klondike. This is his first encounter with the Burtonport Extension, which had recently opened when he arrived back in Ireland. As soon as we put our feet down on the quay at Derry, we saw that there had been big changes since we had left home. We went towards the hotels and the one we went into was fairly full. We ordered a drink of ‘The Derry Hag’ as the old people used call Watts’ whiskey. There was a man in our company that got very friendly and it wasn’t long until he started to tell us about the changes that had come over the country since we had left it. ‘You don’t have to walk to Cloghaneely this time,’ he said, ‘as you and your fathers had to. The train goes now and you’ll be able to take it as far as Cashelnagor.’ ‘It’s good to hear that,’ we all said together. ‘And what‘s the reason for this sudden change?’ I asked the gentleman. ‘I’ll tell you that,’ he said, ‘if you have time to listen to my story. A Board was set up called the Congested Districts Board and some years ago a man named Balfour visited your parts. He enquired about the condition of the people and when he had done that, he conferred with people in authority about schemes to help the poor districts that stretch from here westwards to the sea. As a result of that, the railway between Letterkenny and Burtonport was started.’ ‘It couldn’t be that this work took very long,’ said one of my friends. ' ‘It didn’t,’ said the gentleman, ‘and that's where the workers did themselves damage. They were so enthusiastic at the work that it only took two years to build the railway. Gangs of them all worked together and they tore hills away and filled in little valleys and it wasn’t long until there was silence again all over the place. If they had had any sense, they could have made the work last much longer. And the pay they were getting wasn’t even all that good—they were working from dawn to dusk for a half-crown a day.’ ‘What way did they bring the railway?’ asked Hugh McGinley. ‘They brought it out the very cheapest way for themselves,’ said the gentleman, ‘and they’ll rue it for more than today. They built it as straight as they could over hills and dales and it doesn't go within miles of any village from here to Burton- port. If they had built it along the coast, as they should have done, the land would have been dear but instead they bought the cheaper land and built it around by the foot of the hills. Of course, from the tourists’ point of view, it goes through some of the loveliest countryside in Ireland.’ ‘The fishermen of the Rosses have benefited by it,’ said a man from Burtonport who was in our company. ‘You could say that,’ said the Derryman, ‘and it will do this town good too. It has done so already. There’s a man in this town that has made a. small fortune out of clocks since the railway started—a man named Faller. He began making clocks and selling them for a pound each and there isn’t a house between here and Arranmore that hasn’t a clock now.’ Next morning, we left; Derry. We were longing to see the old home itself. The train wasn’t in too much of a hurry, even if it was new. If you were a good walker, I’d say that there were many stretches where you’d have had no trouble keeping abreast of it. There were times when you’d have the urge to leave it altogether—-like one man who went to America long ago and who grew impatient with the sailing boat he was on. He said he'd be better off walking - that he’d get there quicker. Once when one of the two men who were in charge of the train came into our compartment, I asked if it wasn’t possible to make it go a bit quicker. He didn’t answer but sat down for a minute at my side. ‘Did you ever hear of Columbkille’s prophecy?’ he asked. ‘I did, surely,’ I said. ‘Well,’ he said, ‘it was about the Black Pig's race: that the day would come when the black pig would race from Deny Bay to Burtonport. This is the black pig of the prophecy—and you never saw a pig going fast!’ He got up then and went off roaring wit.h laughter. In the end we got to the station at Cashelnagor and I don’t suppose anyone ever got off a train feeling as good as I did then.
  12. Manchester Museum of Science and Industry hold the Bayer Peacock GA drawings archive, but the search front end has changed completely and I can't find it any more. If anyone has used it lately, a link to it that works would be much appreciated.
  13. Frightening. Three passenger trains passed over it before Network Rail stopped traffic- even though it had been reported. That line of larger stones in the collapsed area looks interesting, as does the baulk of timber and stakes apparently associated with them. It looks to me as though there had been problems there in the past, and that was the repair, which itself collapsed causing the problem. Perhaps the terracing originally had a retaining wall, which started to fail so they dumped all that clay up against it. No doubt no records of the patching exist now, though given my experiences with Network Rail they can't find the records they do have.
  14. One clip to the track, the other to the far end of the wire. How the buzzer works- the buzzer itself is a battery and a sounder. There's no sound because the circuit is open, at the croc clips. Close the circuit- touch the clips together- and the buzzer sounds. Open it again, and it goes off. Now you want to check if your solder joint is good, so connect one clip to the track- it's still open circuit, so no sound. Touch the other to the (bare) far end of the wire. If the joint is good (and the wire isn't broken) the circuit is closed and you get a noise. If you don't, the joint is bad, or the wire is bad, or the clip on the track has pinged off while you weren't looking.
  15. It was really a standard(ish) design- the Ballymena & Larne (and later the Castlederg and Victoria Bridge) used an earlier version of the same loco, and it was exported to Norway, Sweden and maybe other places, so its sort of "within bounds" for freelance Irish as it stands. Belbaught might go mixed gauge! Garfieldsghost is right- they are available, but only from the Isle of Man government. Hutchinson and Car 21 ordered. I'll tell you how easily motorised when they are when I get them.
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