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Steam Dreams, Settle and Carlisle - 09/04/22

Discussion in 'What's Going On' started by sgthompson, Apr 8, 2022.

  1. torgormaig

    torgormaig Part of the furniture Friend

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    Dare I suggest a visit to Specsavers, Alan?:) I think we had better agree to disagree on this one.

    Peter
     
  2. Bill2

    Bill2 New Member

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    A report on Steam Dreams train London to the Settle and Carlisle Railway Saturday 9 April. A satisfactory trip, even the weather was good, mainly sunny but with some cloud with wind chill at Carlisle and a very few spots of rain at Hellifield on the return. The train was practically full; I was one of the half dozen joining at Preston, which gave the opportunity to see Braunton departing with the Saphos train 25 minutes beforehand. 86259 worked to Carnforth to be replaced by British India Line plus support coach making the load a relatively light 12 of mainly Mark Ii stock for around 405 tons tare and 435 gross.

    Some of the regular service trains were missing due to closure of the line north of Carlisle or possibly for other reasons and this enabled 35018 to set out 8 minutes early. Speed rose to 37½ mph at the bottom of the initial 1-in-134, fell to 31 half way up and recovered to 32½ at the top with speed then increasing to 65 passing post 13 at the start of Grayrigg. The 1-in-173 to Hincaster brought speed down to 57, with 56½ up the following 1-in-193 and an increase to 58 on the easier length to post 17. The 1-in-111 before Oxenholme was carried at 50½ mph with 52 through the station and only a gradual drop in speed afterwards to 47 at Hay Fell, with a fine recovery to 50 where the line turns east before Lambrigg and minimum of 41 at Grayrigg. Time from post 13 to 26 15 min 48.3 sec.

    57½ mph at Low Gill preceded a steady acceleration through the Lune Gorge to 69½ before Tebay, with 59½ up the following 1-in-146 and 43 on the 1-in-75 before Scout Green. However I think the locomotive was eased because of the flange lubricator here and the remainder of the bank seemed a bit of a struggle with 21 mph at post 37¼ and a final minimum of 18½ after a slip in the summit cutting. Time from post 31½ to 37¼ 8 min 36.1 sec and overall time from post 13 29 min 20.3 sec My seat was towards the back of the train, passing the sign at Shap summit 42 min 23 sec from the start at Carnforth. Speeds descending to Carlisle 55 before Shap station, 69½ before Thrimby Grange reduced to 67½ afterwards, 75 at Clifton, 67½ through Penrith, 74 at Plumpton, 75 at Calthwaite 73½ through Southwaite and a final maximum of 76 at Brisco before braking for Carlisle where platform 3 was reached nine minutes early in 74 min 3 sec from Carnforth (schedule 75). Another chance to see Braunton and train still in platform 1.

    The stock remained in the platform while 35018 went for servicing and to turn which seemed to involve some complicated manoeuvres as Saphos were occupying the connection between Upperby and London Road Junction, but the locomotive was back on the train in good time and the restart three minutes late. Performance on the return trip was rather better than the outward, starting with an acceleration to 41 mph up the 1-in-132 to Cumwhinton, and after 51 at Howes Sidings a remarkable further increase to 52 on the same inclination before Cotehill with a minimum of 50 at the minor summit before Low House, passed at 58 mph in 15 min 39 sec from the start. Speed was 59½ in the dip before Armathwaite tunnel and the climb through the Barons Wood tunnels was completed at 53½ continuing to pass Lazonby at 60 and Little Salkeld at 61½ before slowing for a tsr over an underbridge after Langwathby that was being renewed. Continuing, Culgaith was passed at 57½ falling to 55½ up the 1-in-132 before Newbiggin with recovery to 61 at Kirkby Thore. The schedule showed a water stop at Appleby, but we charged through at 53½ mph in 40 min 13 sec from Carlisle.

    Helm Tunnel was approached at 58½ mph on the first 1-in-100, with a minimum of 50½ at Griseburn recovering to 56½ at Crosby Garrett and an excellent 60½ at Smardale viaduct. The next 1-in-100 to Kirkby Stephen was completed at 49 with 50 on the easier stretch beyond and 39½ after Birkett Tunnel. The easing past Mallerstang enabled an increase to 45 mph and the final section at 1-in-100 was cleared at 37½ to pass the summit sign at milepost 259¾ in 61 min 17 sec from Carlisle and 18 min 44 sec from Ormside. We were 13 minutes early at Garsdale, mainly due to omitting the Appleby stop of course. It is perhaps not necessary to give too much detail of the downhill continuation, but despite what I suspect was a signal check in Blea Moor tunnel and a 20 mph tsr approaching Ribblehead viaduct we were still 9 early there. Settle was passed in 92 min 12 sec from Carlisle and Settle junction in 94 min 57 sec, with a 40 mph tsr in between, and a slow run to the water stop in the loop at Hellifield gave arrival 102 min 11 sec from Carlisle, seven minutes early. Restarting two minutes late, a steady run to Clitheroe gained six minutes on a fairly easy schedule. Speed was reduced to 19 mph approaching Whalley, doubtless to confirm that the signal was clear before attacking the bank, with speed then 36½ at Langho, 34½ approaching Wilpshire tunnel and a minimum of 29 at Ramsgreave. Such progress couldn't last and there was a signal stop for nearly nine minutes before Daisyfield, despite which we were only two late through Blackburn. Speed rose to 60½ downhill after Pleasington with 56 at the minor summit beyond and a maximum of 65½ before slowing to 37 for what I think was a signal check before Bamber Bridge and this was just the prelude to two more signal stops, one for more than 3 minutes before Farington Curve junction and a second of over 2 minutes approaching Preston station, where arrival in platform 6 was five late.

    So a slightly disappointing finish through no fault of the locomotive or crew, but an excellent day for which many thanks to Steam Dreams, West Coast, and staff.
     
  3. 30567

    30567 Part of the furniture Friend

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    I wonder what difference a run through Appleby makes to the Ormside--Ais Gill time relative to a standing start, given the line speed of 60. 18m 44s would have come tenth in the Blue Riband league table and the first Southern loco to hit the top ten. Anyway, an excellent climb and BIL is back on form.
     
  4. RalphW

    RalphW Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    I'm not 100% sure but isn't there a flange lubricator just before Shap summit, it being the reason for the regularly seen slips in that location?
     
  5. Shep Woolley

    Shep Woolley Well-Known Member Friend

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  6. sgthompson

    sgthompson Part of the furniture

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    Most drivers all say they are waiting on the regulator as they approach the lubricator on the bend ready to catch a slip .
     
  7. osprey

    osprey Resident of Nat Pres

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    Bootlicker?
     
  8. Bill2

    Bill2 New Member

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    I don't suppose I'm the right person to answer the question about the Appleby to Ais Gill time, and I don't think there is a simple answer in any case, but here goes nonetheless. One of the key determinants for time climbing a bank is the speed at the bottom, as the greater the speed the more kinetic energy imported to the climb. As mentioned, the line limit on the Settle and Carlisle is 60 mph, and this can be achieved by a train starting from Appleby, so there should be no difference in speed at Ormside whether starting from the station or going through. However it demands hard work to reach 60 at Ormside from the start, and that effectively means that the locomotive is working at high intensity all the way to the summit whereas a train passing through is only working at full intensity from Ormside. Thus the duration of the effort is perhaps 20 - 25% shorter in this case and to that extent it is easier (or perhaps I should say less difficult) to record a good time up the bank after passing through the station. On the other hand, a locomotive (and fireman) starting from Carlisle will already have been working for forty minutes or so by the time Ormside is reached and around an hour to the summit, so it is possible that any of the various extraneous factors affecting steam performance will intervene. The exact circumstances on the day may turn out to be the deciding factor...
    Incidentally the time I posted from Ormside to the summit was from post 275 and I believe there are more than ten runs in preservation faster than last Saturday's, though I don't have a complete list.
     
  9. 30567

    30567 Part of the furniture Friend

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    I was just going off this, I'm sure you're right.

    https://settlecarlislesteam.co.uk/the-blue-riband

    Perhaps fifteen mins at Appleby to prepare the fire is a countervailing factor? I guess the people who invented the blue riband (Mike Notley?) must have thought there was a slight advantage in passing Appleby versus starting.
     
  10. iancawthorne

    iancawthorne Well-Known Member

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    That is certainly correct. The 10 runs reference from @30567 only includes Blue Riband qualifiers; minimum load of 12, standing start from Appleby.

    35018 on Saturday just gone doesn't qualify to join the Blue Riband list as it went straight through Appleby.
     
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  11. torgormaig

    torgormaig Part of the furniture Friend

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    The people who invented the blue riband were the Duchess of Hamilton support team of the 1980s (principally Kim Malyon, Pete Pickering and Adrian Ashby) as a bit of bravado at a time when Hamilton was regularly setting the standard with 14 coach loads over the S&C. It was not intended to be too serious but the idea was taken on by others and I have no idea what definations were later attached to it.

    Here is 46229 waiting to teave York for Hellifield on Whit Saturday, 28/5/83 with the Blue Riband regalia that was cobbled together at the NRM earlier that week 83-5-28 2 46229 York.jpg

    Peter
     
  12. Big Al

    Big Al Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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    And that Blue Riband list excludes, of course, Tornado that was in the business of trying to break every record there was on the system soon after it came out of the box.

    So, for example, in 2010, with 13 on and starting out of Appleby, it ran the stretch in 19 minutes and that was with a tsr to 30 mph at Griseburn. 51 over the top.
     
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  13. iancawthorne

    iancawthorne Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone have a log of that one? Most of the entries on the linked page come from @46203's Lineside to Footplate book, the chapter on the Blue Riband being written by Mike Notley. I'd expect the list of worthy runs to be complete up to when that article was written, but there may be gaps since then.
     
  14. iancawthorne

    iancawthorne Well-Known Member

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    I've made enquiries and managed to source the log for 60163 on 24th June 2010 that @Big Al has mentioned. Going a bit off topic for this thread, but it is an interesting comparison to the 46229 record shown on this link:
    https://settlecarlislesteam.co.uk/2010/24th-june-2010-the-border-raider?compare=1679#data

    The beginning and end of the log demonstrate that 60163 was pretty much matching 46229's speed, only the middle section thwarted by the speed restriction and several miles taken to recover from it.

    Sidenote: It's included in the Blue Riband list now too!
     
  15. Mike Wylie

    Mike Wylie New Member

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    I believe that some of 46229s best runs don't count as they often had two people throwing coal in thereby the engine was being worked falsely. If word of mouth from those there is to be believed.

    Probably say the same for some of 71000 and 60532s runs in the 90s, but not heard anything specific on the grapevine about them.
     
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  16. Johnb

    Johnb Resident of Nat Pres

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    Don't bring me into this! I don't remember saying it. I'm sure you would be happy to apply new transfers if someone came up with the money. When 28 came back from Crewe the cabside numbers weren't quite correct and were replaced when it was revarnished a couple of years ago but don't tell anyone.
     
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  17. Big Al

    Big Al Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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    But let's all agree on one thing. If the depot at Carnforth hadn't been saved and developed as a major engineering and maintenance base in the way that it has....and quite a time ahead of other centres.....then there would be precious little going over Shap or Ais Gill in the sheer volume of charters that do just that in 2022.

    In that context, and for @J Shuttleworth in particular, size doesn't really matter at all!
     
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  18. torgormaig

    torgormaig Part of the furniture Friend

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    Mike, it is true about 46229's early runs over the S&C. Initially she was very heavy on coal and water and Kim Malyon, who was actively encouraging the Carlisle crews to see what the loco could do, regularly got stuck in to assist messers Grearson, Kane and others with the firing. Things were much improved after a front end overhaul in, I think, the winter of '82/3 which showed in better performances after this.

    Kim was always encourageing the Skipton and Carlisle crews to "have a go" at a time when steam was anyway limited to 60mph and worked over only a few selected routes. While the steam loco inspectors of the day were generally very diligant about drivers observing the 60mph limit for steam they were quite happy for locos to be worked to the max on the grades on the S&C which then like today was a 60mph railway anyway. But the old hand drivers were initially a bit reluctant because this is not how you drove in steam days. I always remember one old hand Carlisle driver arriving at Garsdale with a big grin on his face. "I always wondered what one of these 'big 'uns' could do, and now I know. Of course in the old days we never dreamed of working them so hard over Shap or Beattock as your mate was either at the start or finish of a long shift and there was no one to give him a spell". Once the initial reticence was overcome there was no holding their enthusiasm back, as is seen by performances ever since.

    I'm not sure why having two firemen on board should invalidate any loco's runs. It has been quite normal for firemen to let capably support crew members have a fire if they are keen, so why not have two firing simultaneously if needed. Anyway in my experience performance logs rarely tell the detail of what has been going on up front - what state is the fire in, where is the water level, how much has the boiler been morgaged etc. But I like to think that 46229's early work over the S&C some 40 years ago now helped to set the scene for much of the main line steam performances that followed. It was certainly an exciting time to be part of the Duchess team back then.

    Peter
     
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  19. 30567

    30567 Part of the furniture Friend

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    And that effort from Tornado and crew was after what is (or was at the time) allegedly the record climb of Shap in preservation by 19 seconds. The thread here on the Border Raider of 24/6/10 makes interesting reading.
     
  20. Mike Wylie

    Mike Wylie New Member

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    If its two firing at the same time then its not a true performance of man and machine in my book. But i'm funny that way o_O:):)
     

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