7 1/4" Gauge
Finally I got to test a 7 1/4" gauge
Hercules. The body and chassis are the standard Hercules with
only the bogies being modified. The wheels are to 7 1/4"
gauge profiles which ran really well on test at the Chingford
Club track. To start with I used one of our 5" bogie coaches
but was unable to give the loco anything more than a light work
Having asked if I could use a club coach, the coach chosen was
a monster. Not only did it weigh a huge amount, sitting in the
first forward facing seat, you could hardly see the engine. Far
from holding it back the loco seemed to just take it in it's
stride. Once again the new motors showed no sign of warming
despite hauling the coach loaded with adults. The only real
problem was the weight of the coach pushing the loco when trying
With the external wheels the bogies look a little close to
each other. I think the looks could be greatly improved by
stretching the chassis by 75mm and adding 75mm to the rear body
of the bonnet. This extra length could allow the use of larger
Last month I had a section titled "Motor
Problems". This month it is motor solutions. I have now
purchased 50 of these motors and the more I drive behind these
motors the more I like them. Having run them in 5" and
7.25" gauge locos I have yet to see the motors become
anything more than luke warm. Load wise they seem to take
anything you can throw at them.
The main disadvantage is the preperation work
required to mount then. They require a cradle along with trimming
some of the tags and removal of a bit of the mounting rim. All
will be described in the kit instructions which I hope to modify
in the coming months.
December was a month of Quarry Hunslets. By chance I had
orders for two so we could build them side by side.
Due to the snow Hunslet No.4 was handed over a week later at
the Chinford Club.
Not having any rolling stock to the same scale as the Hunslet
I decided to build a quarryman's coach to go behind. I had
intended to use a pair of old wheel sets but with a bit of
squashing up I managed to get it on to a raised truck chassis.
The coach is not rideable but I think it helps set off the
Hunslet. Being between a riding coach and the engine it needs
additional weight to keep it on the track.
Middleton Garden Railway
Despite the weather Simon Pugh (of Simons Miniature Railway)
came down from Yorkshire to collect his loco.
Simons loco along with
one of our panel coaches.
There is a video of the engine on its
first test run on Youtube.
Below Left Hunslet 3 passes No. 1 in our
Below right - Simon passes the signal
box. No sign of the inner loop under the snow.
|Left No.3 with it's top off. This is a
heavy loco so the us of quick release battery connectors
is essential if you are to get the loco off the rails.
Back in the summer I put pictures of
the house surrounded in scaffold. We still have a
verranda to build but the external insulation and
additional void insulation has really come in to its own
in the cold weather. I doubt you would ever get your
money back in fuel savings, but the improved comfort in
the house if fantastic. The snow still on the roof a a
bit of a tail tail sign.