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CME 15/07/17

Discussion in 'What's Going on' started by pete12000, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. RalphW

    RalphW Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    So my contribution from a reliable source re coal quality was pure speculation? Is it any wonder that those who do have the facts don't bother to post on here when their offerings are ignored.
     
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  2. MellishR

    MellishR Well-Known Member Friend

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    I haven't seen anybody in the last few pages blaming WC for anything. Only expressing satisfaction but also some surprise at the absence of diesel assistance, given the combination of the load, locomotive and route, and speculating that dodgy coal is the most likely reason for some delay on the return after getting up Shap OK.
     
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  3. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    Please get off that high horse, this self appointed defence counsel role is unnecessary. If someone credible did post they would not be ignored but thanked for adding constructively to the discussion. This is always the case when folk with genuine authority to speak on behalf of an organisation post.
     
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  4. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    It's a reasonable bit of speculation but has no bearing on whether the load per se was manageable for the traction, given route and timings. As I said even with optimal coal it was at the limit of any 5X capability, that's all.
    As for blame, nobody is apportioning any but that won't matter to those eager to draw attention to perceived bias. WC is the only game in town so of course their work will be subject to discussion just like national Cricket selectors or football club owners are subject to public scrutiny and opinion. What's the problem discussing it?
     
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  5. Big Dave

    Big Dave Member

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    Why are people getting so excited about this think of your blood. pressure.
    Following these arguments 6P overloaded 7P OK yet if you compare a rebuilt Jubilee to standard model you have a bigger boiler with a pressure difference of 25psi, not a hell of a lot of difference.
    Poor coal on the other hand will bring even an 8P to it's knees.
    Poor coal is not a modern phenomenon, back in the 60's I got a bad load of coal on our roller that would barely boil water.
     
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  6. henrywinskill

    henrywinskill Well-Known Member

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    Is that before he joined the Animals lol
     
  7. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    Exactly. Leander only dropped a couple of minutes over Shap and luckily just kept ahead of the Glasgow service but it was tight. The crew did well to manage the train. On the return it was less straightforward but on the face of it the CME only delayed the CME which, again was lucky.

    On another occasion WC would play safe. This time they made the call in favour of steam. Something to be grateful for.

    At times I do believe that WC is damned if they do and damned if they don't, or at least in terms of generating unnecessary debate and argument, they seem to be.
     
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  8. Dobbs0054

    Dobbs0054 Active Member

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    I agree with your sentiments. WC and RTC delivered pure steam and everyone is happy. Slotting in between the usually late running TPE and the chasing Glasgow often means looping. This wasn't needed on the day and clearly NR were content with the progress.

    No one in this thread has made a criticism of WC. Only concerns that the load was over the NR guidelines. Also speculation about the owner's view of the load.

    Curious that it seems that the Duchess had work done on it when it was one of the options. Has it been stood down?
     
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  9. Johnb

    Johnb Part of the furniture

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    I think he name was Burdon mate. They did have a record especially for WC and their MN

     
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  10. 1020 Shireman

    1020 Shireman Active Member Friend

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    Okay. Much has been written and commented on. Thought I'd step on my northern colleagues toes and do a full report from 'on train'. It's a bit long but so was the return journey!!!

    Cumbrian Mountain Express 15/7/17

    We'd not travelled behind 45690 Leander for nearly 10 years and were surprised to find out it was going to be on the front of a heavy 12 coach train over Shap. We set off from Abergavenny on the 0623 to Crewe hoping the weather forecast was wrong. We only ran through some patchy rain on the lower stretches of the Marches so fingers crossed. Unfortunately the weather deteriorated the further north we went with Les Ross in charge of the train. In the rain at Carnforth, Leander and POB stood in the road on our left so WCR hadn't changed their minds and sent the Scot out!!

    Mick Kelly was our driver with Chris Holmes his fireman, an excellent crew for what was going to be a real challenge. The Edinburgh Airport TPE was a few minutes late and so were we. Despite very wet rails, without seemingly pushing the Jub, Mick got her to over 35 over the mile to the foot of the annoying 2 1/2 miles at 1 in 134 that is Yealand Bank. Speed only fell to 31.6 over the summit which was an excellent start to the day. Once over the top we really heard the characteristic Jubilee roar as the crew got into their work over the 2 miles of 1 in 293 down followed by 2 miles on the level to Milnethorpe, the foot of 13 mile climb to Grayrigg. Here we saw the difference between a 6 & 7P as despite their best efforts and the superb roar of 45690, we only got to just over 57 as we roared through Milnethorpe, some 7-8 mph slower than a typical run with the Scot.

    Grayrigg ain't a nice bank and the weather was pretty awful, misty and wet though not heavy rain which would probably have been better, so the climb was going to be interesting. Working really hard speed fell to 49 over the 2 1/2 miles of 1 in 173, ending at mp15 1/2. The gradient eased to 1 in 193/392 over the next 2 miles, speed being was held at 49/50 accompanied by a real racket from the front. Over the next mile and a bit the grade steepened to 1 in 111 with a consequent loss of speed to just over 43. Even with an easing of the grade to a mile of 1 in 178 on the approach to Oxenholme, speed fell to 41.6 but rallied to 43 through the station and over the short 1 in 104 to mp20 1/2. There was a short slip at mp 20 which cost us, speed falling to 38. the Jub was worked hard up the 1 in 215/124 to mp 21 1/2 and we hit the 2 and a bit miles of 1 in 131 at 37.4.

    From the third coach back the roar of the Jubilee echoed around the fells as Mick got her to dig in and as speed slowly fell to 33. Constant checking of RTT on the climb had shown us in no danger of being looped as some had expected as we approached the killer part of Grayrigg, the final 2 miles to mp26 at 1 in 106. We roared through Lambrigg at 32 and with great credit to Chris on the shovel, we only lost a further 4 mph over this difficult section, passing the summit at 28.3. Now the crew had 5 1/2 miles in the Lune Gorge to get the fire sorted before Tebay where the gradient rises to 1 in 146.

    The run around the gorge is a little undulating but basically either down grade almost level and every attempt is always made to maximise speed at Tebay. From the smoke falling past our carriage, a bit of fire cleaning and sorting went on for a couple of miles before we heard that characteristic Jubilee roar and a serious increase in volume as Mick opened her up as much as he could to peak at 62.9 at Tebay. Despite the deafening noise from the front our speed fell slowly to hit the start of the 4 miles of 1 in 75 to the summit at just over 56. The linesiders were in for a treat as were we as the Jub pounded up climb. Just under a mile in at mp34 we were still doing 44.8 and made a spectacular sight in the misty morning. Despite best efforts there was a rapid fall in speed as the 1 in 75 took hold. Speeds past the quarters were: 34 1/4 42.2; 1/2 38.8; 3/4 35.5; 35 32.3; 1/4 29.6; 1/2 27; 3/4 26.1; 36 24.5. Then, as seems to happen with most engines, the Jub rallied and speed drop per quarter steadied: 36 1/4 23.7; 36 1/2 23.2; 3/4 22.2; 37 21.9; 37 1/4, the end of the 1 in 75, 21. Unlike the Scot the last couple of times, the Jub didn't slip on the curve and we passed the summit board at 21.9. To my mind, for a 450ton+ train in a strong crosswind on wet rails, this was some performance and a real credit to Mick and Chris on the footplate and to the judgement of WCR for their confidence in the engine.

    After a couple of miles of fire management and filling the boiler we attacked the downgrades to Carlisle in fine style. It took only an exhilarating 20 minutes to cover the 25 miles from mp42 to 67, Upperby approach, Penrith being passed at 75. We rolled into Carlisle only 6 minutes late. One of our party did get to the engine and reported back that everything was fine with the engine. The coal was the same as they'd used on the Fellsman and they weren't expecting any problems for the rest of the day. Hmmm...

    There was a crew change at Carlisle and we're not really sure who did what driving. John Rogers brought the engine into the station. Ron Smith was on the footplate and Martin Soames was our fireman. We had a very puzzling and sluggish run from Carlisle to Appleby. There are no serious grades and the journey generally takes a max of 45 minutes. It took us 62 minutes with intermediate speeds: Howe and Co. 34; Armathwaite 40; Baron Woods Tunnels 38; Lazonby 49; Little Salkeld 43; Langwathby 37; Culgaith 37; Kirby Thore 30; Long Marton 37. The generous timings meant we were only 12 down.

    At Appleby the engine was off the platform so I only had the chance of talking to one of the Support Crew. He wasn't aware of any problems up front and was only concerned about the load. We left 12 down and things seemed fine as we roared away and took advantage of the down and gentle grades to reach 52 at the foot of the 3 miles of 1:100. Ormside was passed at 52 but speed fell markedly and we entered Helm Tunnel at 40. Our speed fell steadily to just over 30 at Griseburn, the end of the 1 in 100. As the grade eased to a mile of 1 in 166 our speed didn't pick up much but we gave nothing to the 1 in 100 through Crosby Garrett, passed at 37. We picked up to almost 40 on the level into the tunnel but after this things took a turn for the worse. We could hear the noise back in the 11th coach but it wasn't the familiar roar and speed fell on the 1 in 100 to pass Kirkby Stephen at only 23.

    On the short 1 in 264 we picked up to 28 and then speed fell slowly to Birkett Tunnel, entered at 24. On the mile of 1 in 330 to Mallerstang we did hear the roar from the front as we got to 35 at the foot of the final 3 miles of 1 in 100 to the summit. The Jub struggled a bit on this section in the wet conditions and speed fell quite rapidly to 30.5 at mp262; 26 at 261. The last mile was a struggle with a speed of 17.3 at mp260. Time taken from Appleby was 36m 01s. On reflection, with the load and weather it wasn't a bad run but had cost us 7 minutes. The run across the top was OK; Shotlock Hill Tunnel 38; Moorcock Tunnel 50; Garsdale 41; Rise Hill Tunnel In 41; Dent 24; Arten Gill 51; Blea Moor Tunnel In 30. The run down to Settle Junction was fine; Horton-in-Ribblesdale 60; Helwith Bridge 61; Taitlands Tunnel 60; Settle 57; Settle Junction 60. The climb to Bell Busk was noisy and topped at 46. We drifted into Hellifield Goods Loop 22 down.

    After taking on water we left 20 down and the spectre of not getting to Clitheroe before the 1745 stopper to Manchester loomed large. There's not a lot you can do between Hellifield and Horrocksford junction as there's a 50 mph speed limit. Our concerns rose as we approached Horrocksford Junction. We passed the distant at 45 with everything crossed but were brought to a stand as it was 1728 and the service train was due out at 1729, the time we were expected to pass the junction. Pretty sure we could have beaten the 150 unit to Wilpshire Summit carrying 45 into Clitheroe as it had to stop at all 3 stations before the summit.

    This was well and truly proved to be the case. When we got a green we charged down the bank from Clitheroe, approaching Whalley at 42 where we came to a halt as we'd gotten too close to the 150. With only a short level section before over 4 miles of over 1 in 82 to face this is not what you want if you're the crew of 45690 with 455 tons on the drawbar. We got away well and passed through Whalley station at 13.6. with a real racket from the front and speed rose on the 1 in 81 1/2 to almost 18. Just over 2 miles in we passed Langho Station still doing 16, but then hit the brick wall on the climb up to Wilpshire Tunnel. At mp15 1/2, speed was 14.7 and then if fell off the cliff and our driver dug in to try to get us through the tunnel and over the summit.

    Speeds were: mp 15.1 14.1; 15 13; 14 3/4 10.9; 1/2 7.7; 1/4 7.8. The easing to 1 in 88 got us to 10ish entering the tunnel but fell back rapidly to 5.9 and a minimum of 4.4 as the old Wilpshire station came into view. It was quite a remarkable feat by the footplate crew to keep the engine moving at all. On the 1 in 86 our driver coaxed 45690 to almost 10 mph but this fell back to 9 through Ramsgreave and Wilpshire station. Just as the engine crested the summit we came to a halt. Pretty sure this was to fill the boiler which must have been 'mortgaged' on the climb. In any case we would have hit adverse signals due to the York-Blackpool service time crossing Daisyfield Junction ahead of us. It's a fairly long block with a single line section. So we finally arrived in Blackburn 58 down. Eventful or what??? I must admit we wondered more than once if an assisting diesel was being fired up in Carnforth Yard!! Lord knows how long we would have been there if we had stalled and the crew had been unable to restart the train on Wilpshire.

    An interesting contrast of an engine with the 'right load' is that of the now famous Cumbrian Fells Express of 30th May 2015. The Brit was held at signals before Whalley and was only doing 11 mph through the station yet topped the summit at 35!!

    Any fears about the condition of 45690 were immediately dispelled as we roared down the bank to Mill Hill, passing the station at 48; Pleasington 58; maxing at 61 down the 1 in 101/99. Speed fell as it always seems to on the approach to Bamber Bridge passed at 19 after which we drifted down arrive for the loco change at the Farington Junction, still 58 down. Fortunately we got out onto the West Coast Mainline just over an hour late and had an uninterrupted path to Crewe, arriving in plenty of time to get the 2109 train back to Abergavenny.

    So, an excellent morning run over Grayrigg and Shap to Carlisle; a half decent run considering the load and weather to Ais Gill; and an exciting(!!) climb of Wilpshire. Personally I think the signaller would have achieved better train regulation by letting us through Clitheroe before the 150 unit to greatly lessen the risk of a steam hauled train getting into trouble on such a steep bank which is difficult at the best of times.

    Thanks to 45690's owners and Support Crew for turning out an engine in such fine condition. Mick, John and probably Ron did excellent job driving, ably assisted by their firemen, Chris and Martin with such a heavy load for a Class 6 in mostly adverse weather. WCR dodged a bit of a bullet with the choice of locomotive but I guess they had no choice and we really wouldn't have wanted diesel assistance.
     
  11. iancawthorne

    iancawthorne Active Member

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    I wonder what will be on the front Saturday coming. Hopefully 46233 will be ready in time and we'll see a move from Butterley to Crewe this week.
     
  12. CLN_WVR

    CLN_WVR New Member

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  13. Dobbs0054

    Dobbs0054 Active Member

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  14. iancawthorne

    iancawthorne Active Member

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    On the back to Liverpool.
     
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  15. alastair

    alastair Active Member

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    I am surprised at you,as a moderator,coming out with stuff like this. Whilst I am sure your info re. the coal was reliably sourced,what you say in your second sentence is simply not true. I can think of several VERY well informed posters (owners,managers,drivers,senior support crew etc) who have taken the trouble to come on here recently. Every single one of them, far from being "ignored" has received,in some cases several, posts to thank them for their valuable info.
     
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  16. Mick45305

    Mick45305 New Member

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    Very enjoyable report of what was quite a toil for 45690, but a set of challenges that were seized with both hands from all concerned.
     
  17. RalphW

    RalphW Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    And I know of three people in the business who refuse to post on here, so my second sentence is true whatever you might think. What 'stuff like this' are you referring too?
     
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  18. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    Having been accused of being a broken record, this I am afraid is a very tired piece of vinyl. Whatever gets posted on NP does not determine the response of anyone with an interest. It is entirely a matter of choice how folk choose to respond or not so if this elite trio do not wish to dignify us with their views fair enough, their decision. NP will tick along with or without them. They probably have neither the time or inclination anyhow so I doubt berating posters for causing their silence is any value but you seem to enjoy it so if it makes you happy .....
     
  19. GWR4707

    GWR4707 Part of the furniture

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    I can think of at least one poster who I can imagine is very happy that a certain well connected poster doesn't post on here anymore, after they provided some most interesting background explanation for certain matters ;)
     
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  20. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 New Member

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    Interestingly from a look on RTT no following trains were delayed on Shap. The following Pendolino was 3 minutes late into Carlisle (same as it was at Lancaster) and then itself managed to loose another 41 minutes between Lockerbie and Beattock Summit!
    We moan if there is a diesel on the back, or we moan that the train is too heavy. Obviously is not really an option just to reduce the train length once it is sold, (who do you decide to say can not travel?, as was shown from the chaos when a coach was failed & removed at Southall on the morning of departure for a CME a couple of years back.
    I guess if RTC had decided to postpone as no Class 7 loco there would be loads of complaints about that as well!
     

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