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Newsletter January 2010

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 out.

Ron cleaning one of Chingford Club's coaches

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 to stop.

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 batteries.


Motor Solutions


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.

Workshop News

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 shed

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.


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