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Bluebell Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by Jamessquared, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Steel I believe.

    Tom
     
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  2. MuzTrem

    MuzTrem Member

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    I'm sure I have read somewhere that 323 was initially bought by the Bluebell rather reluctantly because no other "Terriers" were available at that moment. However she proved so successful in traffic that attitudes rapidly changed and when a third engine was needed, 27 was chosen in preference to another "Terrier"! I'm sure those more knowledgeable about Bluebell history will be able to confirm or refute that story :)
     
  3. torgormaig

    torgormaig Part of the furniture Friend

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    I'm not sure about their reluctance to buy 323 in the first instance, but it is true that when, towards the end of 1960, they went back to BR to buy a third loco they requested another Terrier, only to be told that no more would be available for another 2-3 years. So rather reluctantly they purchased 27 instead.

    Now you might wonder why in 1960 the more modern (1909 built) P Class were surplus while the older (1872 designed) A1x was still required. The answer lies in that the Terriers were the only locos permitted on Hayling Island and Newhaven West Quay. Both these lines survived until late 1963. I guess that the Ps were slightly too heavy the swing bridges at Langstone Harbour and Newhaven.

    Peter
     
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  4. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Interesting question. The weight of the 'P' class is given as 28t10cwt, against 28t for A1x. Both numbers come from Wikipedia, as SrEMG doesn't list a weight for A1x. For the 'Terriers', there has to be some difference between 'mainland' locos and those fitted with an extended bunker for IoW use.

    Worth noting that the 'P' class were the only (steam) locos to tread the Kingston Wharf (Shoreham Harbour) branch, following replacement of horse traction (as late as 1938, IIRC). I believe the choice here was predicated on the 'P' class not causing buffer locking on that very constrained branch.

    Perhaps it was more just the small numbers of the Wainwright locos which meant, with sufficient 'Terriers' to hand, there simply weren't enough 'P' class available (there were only ever eight of them) to think of allocating any to Fratton, for Hayling services
     
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  5. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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    You might be interested to know that W8 has had new injectors made which were fitted just before withdrawal for the ''10 yearly''. At a time when I understand some P class have needed replacement frames, it might also be of some interest that W11 still has the set fitted at the time of the Paris visit. These can be identified by the mounting holes for the speed indicator. No other examples of the type were so fitted.
     
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  6. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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    I believe but I am not certain that W8 &W11 both have fourteen inch cylinders but am open to correction. W11 was on the demonstration goods train to-day and glances at the webcam revealed no shortage of steam whatsoever. I am not a footplate volunteer but to a passenger their acceleration up the 1in 70 in either direction from Havenstreet is commendable. The best run was behind W11 but I suppose once a gold medallist always a gold medallist!
     
  7. andrewtoplis

    andrewtoplis Member

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    I couldn't comment with any certainty about cylinder size, but W11 is thought of as a stronger engine all round.
     
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  8. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Was good to be back on a locomotive at last! First of yesterday's members' specials; the public service resumed today. Tickets are available here: https://www.bluebell-railway.com/book-tickets/

    The bluebells were still out in force - more horticulturally-minded friends suggest it is due to the amount of rain we have had of late.

    21-05-19_0031_Bluebell-80151 - daveB.jpg

    (Photo: Dave Bowles)

    Amongst other things, the water tank was cleared of accumulated sludge - I didn't venture up the scaffolding but hope to have a report and photos for the next issue of BN or BT. Also, the 10mph slack that goes from station limits at Sheffield Park to Freshfield Bank has moved back towards SP due to more track renewal, so the 25mph line speed starts more or less at the end of the curve at Ketches where the line straightens out.

    There was work evident to stabilise the embankment at the south end of Horsted Keynes near new road bridge.

    A few hundred yards of bonus driving mileage on the O1 on Sunday as well while the workshop looked at a reverser issue; in the process discovered yet another little intricacy of the design you wouldn't instantly think about.

    Tom
     
  9. torgormaig

    torgormaig Part of the furniture Friend

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    That a cracking photo Tom, but I hope the rest of Horsted House Farm bridge is in better shape than that parapert on the right. These Victorian bridges are as much part of the line's history as the stations and other structures so I hope that there are no plans to demolish it as an easier option to repairing it.

    Peter
     
  10. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Further north than that - Birchstone Bridge (Kingscote is in the far distance).

    I don’t know any specific plans - the crack has been there for a number of years, so I assume it is regularly monitored. I’d agree that such structures are part of the character of the line and should be protected.

    Tom
     
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  11. torgormaig

    torgormaig Part of the furniture Friend

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    Of course - 80151 faces south, not north. Silly me:confused:.

    Peter
     
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  12. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Yes, and it’s a doddle to fire uphill and a bit of a handful coming south on our gradients to maintain water level when braking but not arrive with the water right up when you get back to SP - our only loco with a large boiler that faces south.

    Tom
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2021
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  13. Cosmo Bonsor

    Cosmo Bonsor Member

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    On the other hand, braking is so much easier on one that faces south. Especially with the nice brake on a BR Std.
    Last time I drove it was before the first lockdown last year.
     
  14. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Here's a brain teaser on rolling stock.
    In the most recent issue of Bluebell Times, Bob Pamment highlighted the dire condition of the remaining stock still on the Ardingly siding. There are, I think, 12 vehicles still out there.
    Of the 3 he chose to feature, one, Maunsell Nondescript 4444, was always a rot-riddled basket case, being retained purely as an underframe donor for sister Nondescript 4441.
    The TPO has always been in a difficult place, being of such extremely limited use in an everyday setting.
    Over the last year or so, I've completely lost track of what is undercover now, what isn't, and what the prognosis is for that remainder, because by the time, if ever, the contentious OP5 ever gets built, then the rolling stock which still remains outside, will surely by that time be beyond redemption.
    I recently asked this as an OP4 donor, to the Bluebell's .io group, but answers came there none, not even from Richard Salmon.
     
  15. Southernman99

    Southernman99 Member Friend

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    Bobs article raises the big question alot of railways are and will be facing. What can we realistically restore, overhaul and maintain going forward.
     
  16. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    I'll see if I can find anything out before the next issue of BT - no promises though. But I think in reality it probably needs something akin to the carriage fleet review that was written 25-odd years ago, and that is something that I at least am absolutely not qualified to write. Indeed, my sense from Bob's article was probably thinking along the lines of trying to put a prioritised list in place.

    Indeed. One of the big steps forward from Bob has been to make the maintenance plan explicit, and to show just how big a task that is. (For every operational carriage, a full overhaul every 30 years; an intermediate every 15; a door lock overhaul every 7.5; plus be working on one restoration and one innovative project at any point in time). A weakness in my view of the Railway's Long Term Plan is that it is long on aspiration, but doesn't give much sense of priority; nor of the capacity-building projects that are essential if we are to deliver substantial amounts of the LTP in a reasonable time frame.

    Tom
     
  17. PILLBOX MAN

    PILLBOX MAN New Member

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    Its a pity that a similar review was not made of the loco stock at the same time as similar hard decisions need to be made. The NLR Tank and Yankee tank will probably never run again on BB as they are unsuitable at line speed only being shunters with limited coal capacity/water. We also have the 09 for shunts which is more economical than coal fired shunts. Sharpthorn which was used to build the line and must be unique amongst preservation societies is not on any list to be done any time soon and is probably more significant than the Terriers historically. https://www.bluebell-railway.co.uk/bluebell/pics/sharpthorn_mike_esau_14may93h.jpg Loco disposals have taken place, an 0-6-0 industrial has moved as did Blue Circle. Should the USA/NLR above be sold to raise revenue to build covered loco accommodation. Sales will also free up 60foot of valuable siding space.
     
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  18. Southernman99

    Southernman99 Member Friend

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    Rather than sell the asset. Is there an opportunity to overhaul them and then offer out to hire as a revenue stream with the bonus of promoting the railway and its engineering standards.
     
  19. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    I don't think there is the overhaul capacity to do that.

    If it were me - and this is absolutely a personal view, not an official one - I think the best thing to do with the Yankee tank would be to put it in SteamWorks, cosmetically restored and sectioned à la Ellerman Lines.

    The North London Tank might best be placed out on loan to somewhere else on a "restore and use" agreement (which probably needs to be quite long-term to make it worthwhile to the location it goes to). There is a precedent for such arrangements, for example we have a Bulleid carriage on a similar arrangement at the Mid Hants. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but it was a shame in a way that it came back from Barrow Hill where it was well looked after under cover. At the time there was a plan to overhaul it, which fell through, but the end result was a loco off site under cover came back on site and back out into the open.

    Tom
     
  20. goldfish

    goldfish Resident of Nat Pres

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    That seems quite… permanent… for an engine I remember dragging us around on a childhood birthday trip, albeit that was many moons ago now. Is it that much of a mess that it’s more valuable as a cross section?

    Simon
     

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