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Member postings for stephen goodbody

Here is a list of all the postings stephen goodbody has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Hieroglyphics on a Wehlen & Co clock face
13/08/2019 16:34:28

I'm inclined to agree with Michael - I suspect that they're a form of symbolic shorthand used by the clock's manufacturer to define what should be written where (what letters, truncation, case, location and spacing). Speculating further, this may have been to allow the dials to be farmed out to piecework sign-writers. Speculating even further, the sign-writers may also possibly have had little knowledge of English.

Each symbol seems to be associated with a specific section of the text, hence "Fr.", "P.", "Whelan" and "Co." each have their own symbol. Although not conclusive, I believe the wave symbol over the "Fr." may indicate a suspended term - a word which is truncated and replaced by a mark. The location of each symbol presumably indicates the desired placement of the word.

The symbol above the W in Whelan seems to indicate the desired width of the letter W in addition to its placement. Presumably nothing else in the word "Whelan" needed further explanation as they were presumably the employer or customer.

The three bars in each symbol seems to suggest the instruction that the first letter should be upper-case.

A quick Wikipedia search for Scribal Abbreviation seems to yield some possible additional clues.

Interesting stuff - good luck with the search!


Edited By stephen goodbody on 13/08/2019 16:38:11

Thread: Closing down sale ,1930's tool catalogue
13/08/2019 13:52:12

Hello Vic,

I have a George Adams round bed lathe from the early 1900's which is used regularly - it's my only lathe. Details and pictures are on Tony's website at: **LINK**

Does the catalogue have any round bed pictures or details? Is there any mention of a Eureka dividing head in the catalogue?

Thanks for posting,


Thread: How long to build?
21/08/2018 13:01:08

As others have said it's tough to distill this down to an 'average' because there are so many variables in play. Examples include, locomotive complexity and size, available equipment, access to materials, access to money, builder's skill, actual time realistically spent per week, acceptable level of detail and quality......

Personally my first loco (an O gauge effort based on a Mamod stationary plant) took about four months - I was 10 years old.

My next one (3 1/2" gauge Rob Roy) took 3 years between the ages of 13 and 16 while at school and interrupted by O levels.

My current one (7 1/4" narrow gauge Elidir) has taken 34 years so far and is not yet finished. It has been interrupted along the way by A levels, university, career, moving continents, marriage, children, two house expansions, and life generally. (I have no complaints about any of this however!)

And I consider myself pretty average!

Best regards


Thread: Pressure Gauge Help
20/08/2018 14:03:07

Thanks Bri, however their catalog lists their gauge as 1/8" BSP.

Best regards


20/08/2018 12:35:48

Hi all,

Can anyone please help identify a source for a replacement pressure gauge to match the one in the picture below?

This is a 1 5/8" diameter gauge but the inlet thread is 3/8" x 26tpi, which I assume to be British Standard Brass, rather than the more usual 1/8" BSP.

The gauge was likely purchased sometime between 2005 and 2009.

pressure gauge.jpg

Many thanks,

Steve Goodbody

Thread: LBSC 3 1/2 Britannia
25/06/2018 18:47:59

Hello Jon,

While I have no direct knowledge of the following, a recent post on the Traction Talk forum mentioned that the as-designed Britannia water gauge dimensions or positioning were incorrect and cause the bottom of the glass to be below the top of the firebox crown. Chances are that's been corrected on the Kennion drawings if so, but it would be wise to check the dimensions regardless and just in case.

Best regards


Thread: Elidir - 3 inch scale Hunslet
08/01/2018 16:23:04

John and Clive - in quick answer to your questions:

John, I configured the smokebox piping to bring the main steampipe in front of the blast pipe (the original design has it the other way around). This allowed me to install this hidden (but easily accessible) commercial ball valve for the purposes of pressure testing, avoiding the need to rely on the regulator as the primary shutoff during testing.

Clive, the duplex vacuum gauge is home-made. I used the two smallest commercial vacuum gauges I could find, stripped them down and mounted them back-to-back and offset to left and right, extended a spindle forwards from the rear gauge, and mounted the assembly in a case. The gauge face is a transparent water-slide transfer on a white-painted bronze disc.

EGA - that's correct, Tony asked me to provide pictures of the lathe a few years ago, the pictures and info are at

Best regards


Edited By stephen goodbody on 08/01/2018 16:40:25

08/01/2018 14:43:21

Hi all,

Thought I'd add some pictures of my 3 inch scale Hunslet (Reeves "Elidir" ), under construction now for over 30 years and finally nearing completion. The loco has been built using a George Adams round-bed lathe circa 1905 vintage, a pillar drill, and hand tools - no milling machine.

The pictures of the spark arrestor may be of interest to some - it's held in place with a single knurled nut at the base of the petticoat pipe and can be quickly removed for cleaning.

The injectors are essentially to the DAG Brown design but mounted in a modified body.

Best regards to all,


front and side.jpg

left crosshead.jpg

main crank - left.jpg

right cyl.jpg














Edited By stephen goodbody on 08/01/2018 14:44:05

Edited By stephen goodbody on 08/01/2018 14:44:21

Thread: 2009 Back Issues - Help Request
01/09/2017 12:48:00

Thanks once again for everyone's help - I now have a copy of the article.

As full disclosure, I am the proud owner of Tony Meek's Allchin "Ruby Swann" and have two of the three lamps described and pictured in his 2009 article. I'm aiming to build the missing tail lamp but was unsure how Tony went about making the intricately louvered chimneys. The article perfectly describes his method and is exactly what I was hoping for.

Best regards,


21/08/2017 12:58:45

Many thanks to all for the responses. To clarify, I would happily purchase the specific issues (or the whole volume) if I could find someone selling them, however I have so far been unable to find anyone (including dealers) with those issues or that volume for sale. Hence my message.

I understand that I could purchase a digital subscription, but that seems to be a bit of a sledgehammer vs. nut option.

Robbo - I have responded to your PM - thank you.

Best regards


18/08/2017 22:16:07

Hi all,

I would like to obtain copies of the 2009 issues of Model Engineer that contained Tony Meek's article on building lamps for his 3 inch Allchin. I believe that this was probably volume 202, issues 4347, 4348, and 4349 but could be wrong.

Does anyone have spare copies that they would be willing to sell? Alternatively would it be possible to obtain photocopies or scanned copies of the article from someone please?

Any help is gratefully appreciated.

Best regards

Steve Goodbody

Thread: Tich Wheels
03/08/2017 16:34:57

Mike -

The Tich drawing extract on the AJ Reeves website gives the wheels as 2 inch diameter over the tread and the flange height as 1/8 inch. Hence the overall diameter over the flange is 2.25 inches.

Best regards

Steve Goodbody

Thread: Building a Rob Roy
08/04/2017 01:27:21

Hi Julian,

I hope that it's of some help to Pete and others - that's what the hobby is all about and Rob Roy is a good design in my opinion.

It's been fun dragging up the memories - the Rob Roy was my first engine - I started it at 13 and finished right around my 16th birthday if I recall correctly. It was in the students cup competition at one of the ME exhibitions at Wembley not long after I finished it, probably the 1984/5 one but I could well be wrong. I remember being in absolute awe when I spotted Martin Evans looking at it but didn't have the courage to introduce myself. An opportunity missed!

Best regards


Edited By stephen goodbody on 08/04/2017 01:32:38

07/04/2017 20:55:12

Hi Pete,

It occurred to me that the late Alan Stepney set up a website that included compiled lists of errors for several locomotive designs. Alan's website is still extant at:

I have unashamedly copied Alan's Rob Roy error list at the bottom of this message and can personally attest that the crosshead pump fouls the cylinder jacket, I ended up cutting away a small portion of the jacket to clear. While I didn't use different valve spindle threads, or add gland locknuts, the suggestion is good.

One other thing that comes to mind is that the mechanical lubricator linkage causes the lubricator to pump far too much oil as designed. I ended up using a slotted rather than pinned connecting arm between the crosshead arm and the pump arm, meaning that the pump is rotated by two ratchet teeth with every wheel rotation. That's still plenty enough oil to get your face dirty!

In addition to this forum you may also want to check out the forum (live steam) which has good information for North American model engineers such as ourselves.

Here's a cut and paste of Alan Stepney's Rob Roy error list:

  • "If built to the drawings (and I don't think they have been corrected yet), the valve gear and the valve spindles don't line up. The difference is 1/8" (?), and the solution is either to make a stepped valve crosshead, or to make the valve face 1/16" further out from the cylinder, and the valve spindle 1/16" higher in the steam chest. (Thanks, to Steve Papworth.)

  • Change the pitch of the thread on one end of the valve spindle, to allow the setting of the valves to be more easily modified.

  • Fit thin locknuts to both valve and piston glands.

  • The bottom section of the crosshead pump is too close to the cylinders.

  • The blast pipe is in the wrong position. Increasing the height of the blast pipe by about 3/8" seems to improve draughting.
  • The dome bushing on the boiler should be 3/4" diameter bore!

Best regards


06/04/2017 17:01:08

As an update Peter, it just hit me that there are two real reasons why the slot is needed.

Firstly, and most significantly, the drawings show 1/4" centers on the cock levers and 5/16" centers on the operating lever. Hence, if built to drawings, the mechanism will bind.

Secondly, the slot allows for some leeway should the final vertical height of the draincocks with respect to the operating lever vary slightly, for example due to slight variation in the cylinder draincock boss heights and/or the final 'screwed in' position of the cocks themselves.

Hence, in further retrospect, I think it would be worthwhile repeating what I did and adding a slot to the connecting arm if you build the other arms items to the drawings. While you could change the center on the operating lever from 5/16" to 1/4" to match the cock levers you would still need to alter the vertical dimension of the connecting arm to suit. I think the slot gives more leeway for 'tolerances'.

Good luck


06/04/2017 14:38:31

You're welcome Pete.

I honestly don't think the slot in the connecting arm is needed - I can't remember exactly why I made it that way but suspect I may have been concerned about the linkage binding if I didn't get the pitch centers of the drain cock levers and operating lever exactly the same. In retrospect I think I was being over-cautious.

Good luck with your build, let me know if anything else comes up.

Best regards


05/04/2017 15:37:34

Hi Pete,>>

Am going to try and attach a few pictures that will hopefully be of help, but if anything isn't clear (or if you have other questions) then don't hesitate to ask. In direct answer to your questions however:>>

1a. Valve stem - I made mine from 1/8" brass. Note that it's tapered - you'll need to make up a little tapered D bit and machine your stems at the same time without changing your cross slide angle, that way the stem taper will match the hole taper. Machine a few extra tapered stems just in case .>>

1b. Valve stem hole - 1 mm is fine. I wouldn't go larger than 1/16".>>

2. The drawing is as you describe and that's what I did (and then silver soldered in place). In retrospect I see no reason why the hole needs to be square as you will be soldering anyway. Drill the drain hole through the stem after you've attached the lever arm, so that the holes are all in the same alignment.>>

3. The drawing shows it venting to the side. I didn't do that and have them venting straight downwards. It really makes no difference to their operation but the side vent is obviously more work.

Please note that there are a couple of mistakes on the drawings. The ones that come to mind are:

a) the cranked valve rod arms that clear the leading axle lie very close to the leading axleboxes and the connecting pin nuts will foul the axleboxes. I modified the pin so that it screwed into the axle-box side of the arm rather than being nutted on that side.

b) the blast pipe is too low and the engine won't steam. Experiment with some different length blast nozzles, I think that I had to raise mine about 1/2 inch or so.

Best of luck,











03/04/2017 13:22:27

Hello Peter,

I built a Rob Roy about 30 years ago and added drain cocks at the time. Although a long time ago let me know the problem and I'll see if I can recall the details. The engine's sat on our mantelpiece and I still have the book and drawings so can probably figure it out.

Best regards

Steve Goodbody

Thread: Burnerd Miniature Quick-set Toolpost Type TP
09/03/2017 22:56:40

Email sent Ken. Let me know how I can help.

Thread: Milling - What am I doing wrong
03/03/2017 18:53:20

Ah - the revised drawing make things clearer. Ignore my earlier post about the workpiece bowing, that's not causing the problem here.

I agree with the other folks, it looks like the cutter's shifting or the table's shifting, likely because the cutter has blunted. As an attempt to provide suggestions (and no criticism intended), the following can really shorten the life of a tool:

- Removing too much metal in one pass

- Feed rate too fast

- Wrong cutter speed

- Lack of lubricant / coolant (squirt soluble oil at the cutting edges from a squeeze bottle or oil can - little and often)

- Tool quality (price is a good indicator of tool quality and life expectancy)

Good luck.



Edited By stephen goodbody on 03/03/2017 18:55:00

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