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Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by GWR4707, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    I saw today on the webcam that Whillian Beck was in action.
    I was wondering how this engine has been found to perform in service, now it's got a couple of years under its belt and is a known quantity. How does it compare to the others?
    It's certainly a handsome addition to the fleet. Mind you, all the Ratty engines are handsome, to my eyes.
    Are all the engines available for service at the moment?

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  2. GWR4707

    GWR4707 Nat Pres stalwart

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    No links to the railway but from what I see on their Facebook page and in the journal they seem very happy with her.

    As for availability, and again happy to be proven wrong but my understanding is all available bar Mite who is under overhaul.
     
  3. Steamie Boxes

    Steamie Boxes Member

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    River Mite is the only engine not in service and is currently under overhaul at Bouth. From a volunteers perspective the Beck runs very well, only the Esk beats her in strength, thanks to Nigel Day.
     
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  4. Robert F

    Robert F New Member

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    I am closely linked to Ratty, though not a driver. My clear impression is that Whillan Beck [sic] has performed very well. It is a bit different from the other 'main fleet' steam locos, particularly being a bit more prone to slipping, but with alert drivers controlling this promptly it doesn't generally seem to be a problem.

    As GWR4707 says, of the 'main fleet' only River Mite is unavailable - that loco is off site nearing the end of a scheduled major overhaul. The hope is that it will return this autumn, at least for test running.

    The current special Covid service requires 2 locos in steam per day 7 days a week, and all 4 available have taken a share in operating this.
     
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  5. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    Thanks everyone for your quick replies.
    I've finally joined the RERPS after many years of meaning to do so, so looking forward to being more up to date with things at Ravenglass.

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  6. MuzTrem

    MuzTrem Member

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    I must admit that comes as a surprise - IIRC, on paper she is slightly less powerful than the rest of the R&ER's "core" steam fleet, and I remember that when she was first offered to the railway there was a fair bit of internet speculation as to whether she would be up to the job. I'm sure nobody is complaining about being proved wrong, though! :p
     
  7. Steamie Boxes

    Steamie Boxes Member

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    I've seen her pull 11 fully loaded coaches happily along the line, quite the sight and sound may I add
     
  8. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    Which rather suggests that "quite a bit of internet speculation" was, as so often and on so many subjects, just a lot of nonsense!
    "Sound and fury and signifying nothing" as you might say....

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  9. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    Certainly on the video footage I've seen she looks superb and sounds magnificent.
    Sadly I've not been anywhere near Cumbria myself in recent years.
    Although entirely serendipitous, the acquisition of Whillan Beck seems to be a great development, a very capable new loco, and one with a very interesting history and which adds variety to not just the RER but to British fifteen inch in general, and more resilience in the core fleet.
    Hope I can wangle a visit to see her in person one of these days, instead of sneakily checking the webcam during work!

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  10. Big Al

    Big Al Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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    Certainly looks good in the flesh.
    P1120801.JPG
     
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  11. acw71000

    acw71000 Member Friend

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    A video from a couple of days spent up in Cumbria. An example of 'Whillan Beck' slipping can be found at around 2:40 in the video. The slip was expertly controlled by the driver on a very wet morning.
     
  12. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting.
    Great video, by the way.

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  13. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    I think I remember seeing some YouTube video footage of Bonnie Dundee back in tank engine days. But I can't find it now.
    Anyone able to point me to it?
    While I quite understand all the reasons for its conversion and eventual sidelining, I think from the purely aesthetic viewpoint, the tankie Bonnie Dundee is a loss to the RER. Absolute stunner.
    Still, the railway has five magnificent and handsome main line locos now, which is wonderful.

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  14. acw71000

    acw71000 Member Friend

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    Many thanks, glad you enjoyed the video
     
  15. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Well-Known Member

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    Made me very "home"sick for the Ratty!

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  16. 5944

    5944 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Lucky that there were no injuries or significant damage, except to the sheep, which may be on the menu at Dalegarth Station tomorrow...
     
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  17. MuzTrem

    MuzTrem Member

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    Now, I know that "locally sourced produce" is all the rage, but I can't help thinking that may be taking it a little too far... :eek:
     
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  18. Matt37401

    Matt37401 Nat Pres stalwart

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    Why not? Roast Lamb makes a change from Bacon and eggs!
     
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  19. Steamie Boxes

    Steamie Boxes Member

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    My video from the year at Ravenglass
     
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  20. Guitar

    Guitar New Member

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    Harder to cook on the shovel in the firebox though.
     
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