Friday, 24 February 2017

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: Stroudley 4 Wheel Coaches

To accompany our Stroudley Terriers we have built some Stroudley 26ft 4 wheel coaches which would have been used frequently by these engines under the LB&SCR and Southern Railways on local branch services.

They were built from mahogany with teak framing and had various interiors fitted to the same shell which has allowed us to create a base model and provide all of the classes very efficiently.
The first task was to build the base model.

We then constructed interior compartments using the following guidelines:
First class – blue colour scheme, plush cushions with blue buffalo hide in smoking compartments
Second class – brown colour scheme
Third class – bare wooden seats

Using these compartments we filled the empty coach shells to the following types:
First class, Second class, Third class, First/Third class composite.

Finally we needed to build the brake coach with its large front windows and rear looking "wings". These were placed at the ends of each consist so the engine could run around and always have a guard in a brake coach at the rear of the train.

A typical consist was as follows: Brake/Third, Third, First, Second, Third, Brake/Third which weighed in at just under 60 tons.

The correct shade of mahogany has been the subject of much debate however we believe that Victorian mahogany tended to be of a reddish hue (rather than the more purple colour of current sources of wood) and the red undercoat tended to bring this out also and this is the colour that we have used.

On entering Southern service the coaches were painted in Southern Green and we have duplicated all of the coaches in this livery as well.

Next week we'll be taking a look at the first of the many liveries which we will be creating. Anyone for some Marsh Umber?

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: A1X Options

Today we are going to take a look at the optional parts available for the rebuilt A1X Terriers. These parts will eventually be available for ALL liveries, but today will only be shown on the completed Stroudley Improved Engine Green version - so if you think some (or all!) of these options weren't available on this named loco in this livery... then you are very likely correct! It's a sample of what will be available on ALL liveries we provide - which will hopefully be a lot!

So lets begin with the A1X as "standard".

All of these listed options can be selected using the locomotive numbering system in the standard scenario editor, and changing the first of these characters allows us to change the frames from red to black (which is the standard on most other liveries). You can also choose to have the visible Westinghouse brake system removed as some engines did.

Next up is the choice of the bunker and extra bars. The above pictures shows the coal bunker as built which could carry just over half a ton of coal however various ways were introduced to make the Terriers go that little bit further.

First they added bars to the top of it. Open bars originally and then closed bars due to the smaller lumps of coal falling out between them (1 & 2 below)
The Kent & East Sussex railway used a different set of open bars (3) but eventually they rebuilt their bunker to be slightly higher (4) but even this wasn't enough and they added bars as well (5). The largest bunkers were those modified by the Isle of Wight Railway who kept the same height but extended it rearwards right up to the buffer beam (6) allowing almost 1 ton to be carried.

Chimneys come in 3 different styles; the original Marsh chimney (left) which was fitted when the A1X's were re-boilered from the A1 engines. Centre is the Drummond chimney fitted to some of the engines rebuilt by the Southern Railway and finally the Isle of Wight cast chimney.

To run on the Southern Railway network a system allowing for 6 lamps or discs rather than the standard 4 was required and this was achieved on the Terriers by adding lengthened brackets allowing 2 more lamps or discs to be "stacked" on the left or right sides.

Many of the Terriers had their lubricators changed during their lifetimes and additional oil feed boxes were often added to the front of the tanks. The Isle of Wight Railway also added handles to the tank fronts on some of the engines - presumably to make them easier to climb up to for watering!

A common attachment to a Terriers chimney, especially on the Hayling Island branch line, was a spark arrestor. These were designed to stop the small fragments of burning coal that were often thrown out of a steam engines chimney when they were working hard. We've read various reasons for why they were used (sparks could set lineside grass and bushes on fire for example) but on the Hayling Branch it seems to have come from the danger of setting light to the wooden bridge over Langstone Harbour.

During their time under Southern ownership some A1X's were fitted with a Drummond dome and safety valves.

The Isle of Wight Terriers had a "hooter" fitted rather than the traditional whistle.

Also part of the Isle of Wight style of rebuild; rather than adding the small curved splasher these had a combined splasher and sand box which was more akin the original A1 splasher style and was lined in a similar fashion.

Finally putting some of these options together we see below a fully kitted out Isle of Wight (IOW) rebuild using: IOW bunker, IOW cast chimney, lubricator boxes and handles on the tank fronts, IOW hooter and IOW splashers. Also shown are the additional weights added to the front and rear wheels by the IOW Railway.

As you can see there are many ways that you can choose to have your A1X set up and these options will be available for all liveries. We will of course include pre-made lists when you place down any Terrier in game which will show the correct names, numbers and fittings for each livery provided.

Next time we'll be taking a look at either some LB&SCR coaches or another livery depending which have progressed the most!

Friday, 3 February 2017

LB&SCR A1/A1X Terriers: A1X Cab

Having looked last week at the external changes made to the rebuilt A1X Terriers, this week we're looking inside the cab to see how that changed.
And we find that just as with the clean design of the original A1 the inside became just as messy and jumbled as the outside!

The most obvious change is the vacuum brake pedestal placed in front of the driver. This connects directly to the vacuum exhaust pipe outside on the left hand side of engine. The steam intake pipe is routed from the right hand side across the front of the cab, weaving its way between the dials.

Looking to the other side we can see that the pressure gauge that was against the right hand wall has been moved (the wooden mounting plate can still be seen, painted over in the same colour as the walls) and a hydrostatic lubricator put in its place. Interestingly the steam feed for this enters the cab through the hole that was originally used for a tap controlling the condensor, now no longer required due to the fitting of injectors. Above the lubricator is the gauge for the coaches steam heating.

An extra control has been added to the backhead for the steam powered sander, which replaces the A1's gravity fed system. Also seen here is the air brake duplex gauge which was moved from the left hand wall due to the placement of the vacuum brake controls.The engine is air braked separately from the vacuum train brake and in Advanced mode you will need to use the appropriate brake to slow down.

The drivers view from the front window (you may notice that we've improved the glass texture since last week and this has been applied to the A1 as well). The steam injector taps are clearly visible above the backhead either side of the whistle pull. The water for the injectors is still controlled from the old water taps either side, however due to the location of the vacuum brake pedestal the driver's side one is quite tricky to get to in real life and having to open it and screw the nut that holds it in place while not burning your hands on the pipes is apparently something of a challenge!
The dual vacuum gauge is a new addition as well.

The view forwards from the fireman's side.

And as with the A1 cab, headout views with working controls are provided...

... for both sides.

So that wraps things up for the driving positions.
Next week we'll be looking at the many optional components that will allow the creation of dozens of different Terrier appearances - and that's before we even get to any more liveries.