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Condensing apparatus on steam locomotives.

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by Matt35027, Jan 26, 2013.

  1. LesterBrown

    LesterBrown Member

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    Only 15 days to go .......



    Before I create a Facebook page for a new-build Fowler's Ghost
     
  2. pmh_74

    pmh_74 Well-Known Member

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    I remember asking someone at Loughborough about the N2's condensing gear about 15-20 years ago and was told that it didn't work. I have no idea what is missing to prevent it from being put back into working order, but I suspect that the point is that there is no point.
     
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  3. daveannjon

    daveannjon Member

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    Frank Cronin's group which eventually saved 47383, actually set out to save 47202 which had for some reason ended up well north of Watford.

    Dave
     
  4. Miff

    Miff Well-Known Member

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    Yet a number of locos have been restored with operational water scoops, even though there are no troughs.

    If one of the Terriers had condensing gear reinstated I wonder if London Overground could be tempted to run it through the Thames Tunnel :)
     
  5. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Presumably only viable if you also reinstated feed water pumps, since the injectors wouldn't work with near-boiling water in the tanks.

    Must admit one of my bucket list loco challenges, that I suspect I'll never realise, is to have a day on a loco with pumps rather than injectors.

    Tom
     
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  6. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Part of the furniture

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    Well, Portbury & Henbury on the Bristol Harbour Railway have them
     
  7. Miff

    Miff Well-Known Member

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    Here is a 1930s K&ESR driver's account of fixing No.3's dodgy pump whilst on the move.
    http://www.terriertrust.org.uk/waterprobs.html
    The same writer has also described having to run the loco up and down a siding to keep the boiler topped up.
     
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  8. Richard Roper

    Richard Roper Member

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    I read in D.L. Smith's book "Tales of the Glasgow & South Western Railway" that their 279 class "Pumpers" were left standing at sheds with the tender handbrake screwed hard on, rails greased and the driving wheels slipping, to pump water into the boiler... Must have been an interesting, if somewhat dangerous sight to see! At what speeds would the loco be left slipping? Obviously not fast, but nevertheless... I wonder what the HSE would say if they saw that taking place?!

    Richard.
     
  9. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    That's an interesting description, particularly climbing along the frames to adjust the petcock when the pump had an air lock. My understanding is that that practice had led to a death at some point in the 1880s, been roundly criticised by the Board of Trade, and had led Stroudley to alter the controls so that the petcock could be adjusted from within the cab. Maybe that modification was only applied to some and not all locos.

    Tom
     
  10. Jimc

    Jimc Part of the furniture

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    Easy to imagine, in pre H&S days, 50 years on from the accident in the 1880s, and on a minor line without extensive manufacturing facilities, a conversation on the lines of
    "Bill, this damn gadget is ****** and we haven't got any bits to fix it."
    "Oh, d*** it. Look, none of our guys are stupid enough to go crawling around the footplate while they're moving. They'll just have to stop and sort it out. Just disconnect the gubbins..."
     
  11. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Possibly, though I think the modification was not much more than a control rod running back to the cab - not exactly hi-tech.

    Climbing on the frames for e.g. lubrication purposes clearly didn't die out with the Victorians. Somewhere I have a photo of, from memory, an Adams 4-4-0 running at some speed, taken in the mid 1920s, and if you look carefully you can see that the driver is working his way round the front of the boiler on the running plate, presumably to attend to the motion. I seem to recall that in one of the Settle and Carlisle accidents ca. 1910, the driver had taken a trip round the framing and arrived back to find his fireman struggling with a recalcitrant injector and was thus distracted at a critical moment, when he might have been better served by helping his fireman earlier rather than leaving the cab.

    Tom
     
  12. pmh_74

    pmh_74 Well-Known Member

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    In a copy of 'Main Line' magazine (the GCR's in-house magazine) from the 70s or early 80s there is a photo of, IIRC, 'Littleton No.5' running between Loughborough and Quorn, with Alen Grice on the running board attending to something or other. It's specifically commented on in the caption. So this practice survived well into the preservation era (although Alen is, of course decidedly steam era himself!)
     
  13. John Stewart

    John Stewart Part of the furniture

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    I wonder if the ERDF could be persuaded to pay for their reinstatement at Garsdale? We could then have a Blue Riband for Leeds to Carlisle non-stops.;)
     
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  14. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    You mean to say that these practices are no longer part of Bluebell life? You;ll be telling me that your cleaners don't sit on the front buffer beam with a sand bucket when it's slippy, next. And you call yourself a Victorian Railway!
     
  15. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    I can't find this anecdote in my copy, can you point me to a page reference?
     
  16. gkerr9623

    gkerr9623 New Member

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    Anyone know if the Metropolitan Rly E class 0-4-4 tanks originally had condensing gear? They were used on the service from Baker Street which was electrified in 1905 so not long after the E class was built.
     
  17. sir gilbert claughton

    sir gilbert claughton Member

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    and some of the Fowler class 3 2-6-2 tanks

    ah std tank beat me to this
     
  18. sir gilbert claughton

    sir gilbert claughton Member

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    I believe some of the GWR Metro tanks were also fitted
     
  19. LesterBrown

    LesterBrown Member

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    And the bigger double framed 3511 2-4-0Ts used when the Seven Tunnel was first opened
     
  20. gkerr9623

    gkerr9623 New Member

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    Most of the main line railways running into London used condensing locos for use on the Widened Lines, the Hammersmith & City, East London and other parts of the Metropolitan/District railways. I think the exceptions were the London & South Western and Great Central (the latter a "late comer"); not sure about the North London, did they have any?

    Outside London, the only other users of condensing locos of which I'm aware were the Mersey Railway and the Caledonian, which had some condenser-fitted tanks for use in the tunnel through Glasgow Central Low Level. The LMS locos which replaced them were certainly not condenser fitted. LesterBrown has mentioned the use of the GWR 3511 class in the Severn Tunnel, of which I was unaware, so that's another location.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2019

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