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The LMS's pre-grouping express 4-6-0s - a question

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by John Petley, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. Spinner

    Spinner New Member

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    You may want to add a revision to that diagramme. The NSWGR P6 (later C-32) Class 4-6-0 of 1891. Built by Beyer Peacock & Co. Initially built as slide valve saturated locomotives. The 191st example was delivered in 1911 as a superheated piston valve locomotive, a configuration to which the other 190 were modified in the period 1911 to 1938. Last one was withdrawn from traffic December 1971. These had some influence on Mr Jones, as did the SAR R Class of 1889.
     
  2. Jimc

    Jimc Well-Known Member

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    I didn't think the comment was worth any greater effort [grin]

    I didn't know that.

    Interesting. For any who don't know, the Chief Draughtsman was typically head of the design department, and, depending on the interests and focus of the CME, quite possibly made a great many of the day to day design decisions. Just goes to show, you really need to understand an officer's past careers if you want to understand their thinking, not just their final job title.

    Jim C
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2017
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  3. John Stewart

    John Stewart Part of the furniture

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    Paget's locomotive was a brilliant concept, let down by a lack of appreciation of metallurgical constraints. Had there been any enthusiasm development work could have seen it bloom.
     
  4. daveannjon

    daveannjon Active Member

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    Absolutely, I believe the Paget put some good performances in, but there was a falling out - just as common on the big railway as in preservation ;).

    Dave
     
  5. paullad1984

    paullad1984 Member

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    Really I always classed it like the bullied leader, a lemon.
     
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  6. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Active Member

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    Never mind their actual performance - it can't matter now, they're all gone - weren't they handsome beasts, those 4-6-0s!?!
    Prince of Wales, Claughton, Dreadnaught, G&SW Mansons, Caley Cardeans, Oban Bogies and Greybacks: some absolute turkeys, some OK but quickly overtaken by events and outclassed, some near misses after improvements...
    But all good looking. Would happily accept a large wall portrait or large scale model of any of them!
     
  7. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Active Member

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    Shockingly, I forgot the Highland locos, which were probably, for the course, the best of them! Jones Goods, Castle, River, Clan Goods and Clan - all splendid and handsome too...
     
  8. Courier

    Courier New Member

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    OK here goes....

    It depends on what do you mean by "best" and at what point in time you are making the comparison. If you mean most powerful and making the comparison in 1948 you are probably correct (ref RS performance in trials that year) - if 1958 (when Kings have double chimney) then I suspect you are wrong. Both classes were vastly improved with DC.

    However - if you define "best" in the way that the operators, shareholders and passengers would define it (safety, reliability, performance, running costs, first costs, etc) then I suspect that the Kings would come out top.

    Also should mention that the "rebuilt" RS were really brand new engines - so that the original RS had a very short life and were actually scrapped not rebuilt.

    They were very useful engines before, but barely big enough on introduction in 1927 and were themselves outclassed by train weights by 1932. I *think* that no turn on the LMS or LNER was as hard as the Cornish Riveria until the accelerations of the early 30s - so incorrect to say the RS weren't big enough when built - they just weren't efficient enough in their original form.
     
  9. LMS2968

    LMS2968 Well-Known Member

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    First off, I should have said the 'best British 4-6-0' tag wasn't mine, although I can't remember where I read it. Personally. I'm more interested in goods traffic workings and their locos; I have no hard and fast opinion on the Scots. I do know that what survived from an original engine on rebuild varied from one member to another. New boilers, of course, and new cylinders. Many were said to have received new frame, but for the most part these were only the frame plates: stretchers, etc., the expensive bits, were often retained. Many also kept their wheels, bogies, cab, running plates and various other odds and sods. It all got very confusing in the end.

    I can't agree with your last paragraph, though. The Dreadnoughts and Claughtons, by 1927, required pilot assistance on many trains and the Scots were intended to eliminate this expensive way of working. By 1932, the Scots were in the same situation. C Hamilton Ellis in 'London Midland & Scottish: a Railway in Retrospect', I think it was, sums it up quite succinctly: "The old Regimental motto, Nilli Secundus, had rather a hollow ring."
     
  10. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Resident of Nat Pres

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    Straying into GWR territory - on that definition, would you not say that the Castles edged it - they dealt with pretty much anything the GWR traffic department could throw at them, but with better route availability than a King?

    Tom
     
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  11. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Active Member

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    The Rebuilt Scots were substantially new, but did include some major parts of the original engines, so a heavy rebuild. Rebuild/new build is really an accountancy question anyway, not an engineering one.
    I am interested if you have any figures to back up your claims that the Kings were cheaper to build, cheaper to run, cheaper to maintain, safer, etc? The LMS certainly had those kinds of figures, but I don't think the GWR did?
    I also think the original Royal Scots were excellent engines, and just right for what was needed at the time. The WCML needed fifty class 7 locos (to use BR classification) which is what they got. Even a decade later only a couple of dozen class 8 locos were needed. The LMS did not run oversized locos, that was policy.
    The Kings meanwhile, although superb handsome machines for which I have great fondness, were really built as one-up-manship (i.e. pissing contest). Did the GWR really need all those class 8 locos? Were loads really heavier than on the LMS? Seems highly unlikely given population distribution.
    Put it this way: In mid-1930s, LMS had 50 Scots and a dozen pacifics, the SR had 16 Lord Nelsons, the LNER over a hundred pacifics, and the GWR 30 Kings and about 70 odd castles? By 1950 there were 50 Scots plus two dozen pacifics on the LMR, 150 pacifics on the SR, 150+ pacifics on the ER/NER and over 200 Kings plus Castles.
    That represents a different philosophy of motive power utilisation!
     
  12. GWR4707

    GWR4707 Part of the furniture

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    I can only base this on what my old man told me of his time working inside at Swindon in the 50's and 60's but from his experiences and discussions with the trials crews at Swindon in terms of 4-6-0's it would be castles followed closely by the Saints, Kings didn't get a look in.
     
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  13. Jimc

    Jimc Well-Known Member

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    Holcroft reports a former GWR colleague as saying that the Castles were "our best engine", whatever best means...
     
  14. huochemi

    huochemi Active Member Friend

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    Seems a common theme here. I was wondering where the superb came from. Anecdotally, the Banbury Modified Halls were fairly regularly called upon to deputise for ailing Kings, whereas this was rare for Castles.
     
  15. LesterBrown

    LesterBrown Member

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    I'm sure I recall other sources quoting drivers as regarding Castles as being the best GWR locos.

    I recollect reading somewhere (don't ask me where) that the best official performance figures for the Claughtons were comparable with the Castles but were suppressed by Hughes as he definitely (and probably quite rightly in view of their inconsistent and often poor performance) did not want to perpetuate them.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017
  16. R.W. Grant

    R.W. Grant New Member

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    Does the cylinder configuration be it 2,3 or 4 have a realistic effect on some of the aforementioned locomotives? Obviously 3 or 4 cyl. means more maintenance but was there a performance advantage that outweighed the additional cost of upkeep? Modified Halls vs. Castles for example.
     
  17. The Saggin' Dragon

    The Saggin' Dragon Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    Station Pilot (ie standby) locos at places such as Reading were normally 'Castles', though what took over from what would usually depend on what was available and in steam at the time :)
    A more relevant comparison might be between the 'Castle' and 'County' classes? It would seem that the starting capabilities of the 'County' were good, but its running at speed less so.
     
  18. andrewshimmin

    andrewshimmin Active Member

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    Sounds a bit dubious to me. The main source for this era, Cox, was a Horwich man and sometimes he slips away from objectivity when Crewe or Derby people are concerned. Although he does make clear that the different companies had quite different philosophies, which all had strengths, but were hard to reconcile: Derby standardisation, robustness and focus on maintenance; Crewe avoidance of overdesign, fast erection and repair; Horwich thermal efficiency (but low boiler pressures and bad valve/piston ring design), etc.
    The LNWR had always gone for working locos hard, to the limit, lots of noise, short life, lots of heavy rebuilds (I.e. paper rebuilds). Some of this continued into LMS practice.
     
  19. Jimc

    Jimc Well-Known Member

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    Maybe not quite as simple as that. Its possible the Castles may have run longer distances between overhauls. The smoother running obviously reduces the wear and tear, but also the power is distributed between 4 sets of big ends and 4 axleboxes, not two. And there could be other considerations too. Cook records that when the running department asked for more 47xx 2-8-0s Collett elected to build Castles instead because there'd be greater versatility for running passenger trains as well, in spite of the greater cost.
     
  20. Courier

    Courier New Member

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    It might have been in an article by J F Clay in "Essays In Steam".
     

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