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Member postings for julian atkins

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

Thread: Vertical Injectors
19/02/2019 20:42:35

Hi Stew,

I have a bit of experience making new steam cones for the Gordon Chiverton vertical injectors so am quite familiar with them.

A vertical injector will work no better than a horizontal injector, and has the disadvantage that the gap in the combining cone cannot be accessed for inspection and cleaning. The Gordon Chiverton design also has the added disadvantage that the delivery cone cannot be removed.

I have never fitted vertical injectors to my own locos.

It is not widely known why Don Young marketed only the vertical Gordon Chiverton injectors for many years. Don Young started his own business around 1971 selling boiler fitting and injectors, and published his vertical injector design for 'County Carlow' in ME in 1970 (which incidentally doesn't work).

He had a gentleman's agreement with Arthur Grimmett, both on the Isle of Wight, that he would not make horizontal injectors that Arthur made in the thousands for Reeves and Kennions.

Don Young via Gordon Chiverton only started making and marketing horizontal injectors after Arthur retired.

As you say, there is a lot more work involved in making a vertical injector (especially of the Gordon Chiverton vertical type), plus I have outlined the disadvantages if they need cleaning or dismantling.

Cheers,

Julian

Edited By julian atkins on 19/02/2019 20:44:27

Thread: Fixing axles to wheels
21/10/2018 22:05:07

Brian (BDH) above refers to what is sometimes known as the 'cotton reel' method, which is highly recommended.

I have always used 601 loctite for wheels to axles, but I think that 638 is regarded as better if the axles get hot due to being under a firebox on a loco. I have not the slightest idea whether 601 is still available, or whether 638 has been re-numbered. I used 601 because I could get a bottle free from Canton Works stores if I explained what it was for.

The last time I built a miniature loco with an axle underneath the ashpan it had press fits for the wheels.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: injector drawings
20/10/2018 21:55:41

"Lawrie said he always had to open up LBSC's cones to get them to feed"

Nick, where did Laurie ever state this?

Derek A G Brown's book is the way to go, published by TEE, as referenced and linked by Simon. My own copy is heavily covered in pencilled notes cross referencing and adding to my own rather large file of my own experiments and construction notes.

A ward of warning - miniature ejectors are rather forgiving. Miniature injectors are a different kettle of fish altogether and require considerable precision and a lot more tooling.

Good luck!

Cheers,

Julian

20/10/2018 21:55:40

"Lawrie said he always had to open up LBSC's cones to get them to feed"

Nick, where did Laurie ever state this?

Derek A G Brown's book is the way to go, published by TEE, as referenced and linked by Simon. My own copy is heavily covered in pencilled notes cross referencing and adding to my own rather large file of my own experiments and construction notes.

A ward of warning - miniature ejectors are rather forgiving. Miniature injectors are a different kettle of fish altogether and require considerable precision and a lot more tooling.

Good luck!

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Oil gauge on Backhead?
16/10/2018 23:03:14

It is the late Roy Amesbury's 3.5"g Brit, and Roy described it in ME in 1966 or 1967. A search of the Index will provide the relevant MEs.

I cannot recall from memory whether Roy explained the 'oil - no oil' gauge, but he later described for his later GWR loco making all his own pressure gauges around 1972 and a duplex brake valve gauge. He later described his GWR President loco around 1982 with his homemade gauges. Roy worked at Rolls Royce in Derby.

Hope the above is some interest.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Vertical Boiler Fittings
07/10/2018 20:32:31

Hi Gary,

Well done! I enjoyed your clip! Nice to see someone make their own boiler! And Jolly Good Fun too!

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Designing Model Boilers (Thermal Design)
25/07/2018 21:56:37

Hi Martin,

I have read your paper with much interest, and having had a sort of preview by our mutual 'Speedy' builder friend of your correspondence with him (not Bill Hall who is no longer with us).

3 superheater elements can be fed into and silver soldered direct to a plain wet header considerably simplifying the pipework in the smokebox. With 3 x 1/4" dia return bend type superheaters in 3 x1" dia OD superheater flues I have found this more than adequate in a medium sized 5"g loco. The whole superheater assembly and wet header can easily be removed via the smokebox door opening if ever this were required.

I have also used 2 x 1/4" dia superheater elements of both LBSC type and radiant stainless type in 2 x 3/4" OD superheater flues and 2 x 3/4" OD superheater flues on smaller boilers, with again the wet header pipework being very simple and easy to remove if required.

A double flanged throatplate of traditional type is a must IMHO as this aids water circulation, with a generous flange to to the throatplate where it abuts the rear of the barrel, and the barrel lower half can be belted to suit and relieved locally after silver soldering.

One of my earliest experiences was with LBSC's Maisee design. There is the combustion chamber boiler in the construction book with 4 superheater flues, and the much simpler 2 superheater flue design of 1936 with no combustion chamber. I can state quite categorically that the original 1936 simpler boiler was as good if not better in steam production when compared to the later construction book complicated design with combustion chamber.

In the above examples, both had LBSC type superheater elements.

The 1936 design with just 2 superheater flues made of radiant type out of stainless would be something else yet again!

I have always taken a keen interest in smokebox draughting. In my first loco I departed from the drawings quite considerably for the smokebox innards. I have never been a slave to drawings.

It takes a lot of skill in miniature to fire a sloping narrow grate. And a lot of clubs have coal nothing like the quality I remember of in the 1980s and what was carefully acquired or stocked up from the late 1980s in certain clubs. I have Welsh steam coal in my coal shed that dates back 30 years and some huge lumps from Rhymney depot that date back to pre 1964.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Balancing full size locomotive wheels
21/07/2018 20:17:32

Hopper's British Pathe clip shows the GWR King wheelsets at Swindon being balanced.

One would think that with all of Churchward's experience of the French Compounds he might have got the balancing of his big locos right, but no one has yet mentioned hammer blow, and the restraints imposed by the Civil Engineer.

So, even at Swindon balancing was a compromise, not helped by the divided drive on the 4 cylinder locos, and each pair of outer and inside cylinders working 180 degrees out of phase.

Harold Holcroft's 'Locomotive Adventure' Vol 2 describes how Ashford had only parallel balances, and wheelsets being send to Swindon to be balanced on the machine seen in Hopper's clip. The net result was that the Swindon machine gave no better results compared to Ashford. (Incidentally this shows that what Swindon did was not kept secret, and was shared with at least the SECR and SR).

Anyone who has set up a miniature locomotive chassis and run it on air at speed will be aware of the considerable fore and aft vibration, which has always indicated to me that balancing 3.5"g and 5"g miniature locomotives ought to require much greater attention. And as we don't have to worry about hammer blow, even more reason to do so.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Vertical Boiler Fittings
26/06/2018 22:07:18

Hi Gary,

The proper repair would be to thoroughly clean and flux generously all over and re-silversolder the leaking tube. This is not difficult to do on a boiler like yours, though expanding the tube is with hindsight is not the correct procedure, and you will probably not get a penetrating joint, but you should aim to form a generous fillet. A loop of copper wire around the protruding end of the tube might assist in this.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: LBSC 3 1/2 Britannia
25/06/2018 22:05:36

Hi John,

I seem to remember something about the expansion links being difficult to assemble in the expansion link trunnions if built as per the drawings and 'words and music'.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Couplings - How did they make them?
13/06/2018 00:24:30

Hi Nigel,

I did not know you were building a 5"g O2 to Don Young's design. I have made the SR type coupling so if you want any details happy to assist, plus I have the original drawings for the Drummond chimney that show that Don got this detail quite wrong.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: signal box bell codes
13/06/2018 00:19:54

Hi Duncan,

This is quite an involved topic. It was vitally important for the box receiving a train to know what type of train this was on absolute block working with double track and refuse sidings and loops etc and also possibly relief lines.

A slow 'fly' goods might hinder an express service. Suggest you read the report on the Quintinshill disaster.

http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/docsummary.php?docID=158

When I worked on the railways in South Wales on The Valleys, the bell codes were still as per GWR despite no freight then being worked, but we had light engine movements when we worked LHCS, and ECHS workings, failures in section etc. Although no freight, we had track cleaning trains, and also engineers trains from NR.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Cost and Weight: 3 1/2 vs. 5 gauge
11/06/2018 23:28:59

Hi Jon,

I shall not waste too much time over this because you really ought to get more actively involved in your local club and get to drive a few miniature locos before you decide. And assist as best you can in unloading them and loading them in other members' cars etc.

LBSC's 'Speedy' 5"g design one could write a lot about. It is an old design hastily done with poor drawings and a defective valve gear. The valve gear has been corrected by Don Ashton.

I will trot out my usual advice for tyros not to build a loco with piston valves or a tapered barreled belpaire firebox boilered loco. The latter excludes 'Firefly', and the former also excludes other designs. 'Speedy' falls into both categories.

I agree that considering the long timescale of a build, cost should not be an issue especially if you plan ahead.

My own advice would be to build a 3.5"g LBSC 'Maisee' with the original boiler not the later combustion chamber boiler. Don Young's 3.5"g LMS 4F is also a good contender. My own first loco was Don Young's 5"g Railmotor which in my case was a modified Railmotor No.2 chassis with a No.1 boiler.

Don't try to lift any miniature loco on your own. I injured my back in 1995 doing this. With your disability, don't even consider assisting, and get others to do this for you.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Minnie Traction Engine - Water Gauge
11/06/2018 22:59:03

Hi Malcolm,

Why not make your own water gauge? I am quite sure you will be able to make something far more satisfying than a standard commercial fitting, plus with your 7/32" x 40 TPI ME thread.

They are not difficult to make.

I have always made my own boiler fittings, and have never bought commercial products.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Tornado Recent Failure
06/06/2018 14:46:24

https://www.a1steam.com/2018/06/05/repair-progess/

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Austerity Locomotives
30/04/2018 10:57:04

Hi Jon,

Blackgates now market the Clarkson range, and included is the 5"g 2-10-0 WD Austerity loco. You can download the Clarkson catalogue on the Blackgates website.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Roller Clutch Lubricator Drive
26/04/2018 21:34:32

Hi Clive,

There is some advantage to having a wheel on the end of the hardened shaft so you can turn it to prime the system and also give the cylinders a dope of oil before a steam up and run, though if your's is on a 5"g POW, then the oil will just collect on the steam chest cover.

The driving shaft must be hardened. By a few spare roller clutches. Carefully set the spring on the oil check valve to just above working pressure. This will reduce the system getting strained on a mechanical lubricator.

I prefer the Sight feed hydrostatic/displacement type for cylinder lubrication.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Help making model of Walschearts valve gear.
07/04/2018 23:59:58

Hi 'Redsetter',

That last post of your's was out of order. Duncan is a highly respected miniature locomotive builder with considerable practical experience, as well as understanding the theory of what we make.

I have never made cardboard and pin templates for my valve gears, and I doubt they will give you any understanding of 'backset' for the expansion link connection to the expansion link, or any understanding of the 90 degree components via the (1) eccentric movement, and (2) the combination lever out of phase with the above by 90 degrees to provide the lap and lead component.

The computer simulators allow us to do this in a matter of minutes as Duncan states. The work of Don Ashton is invaluable in understanding 'whats what' and what makes a difference to good Walschaerts valve events.

Simon,

If you want a simplistic explanation just read LBSC's TICH construction book on the valve gear.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: Gordon Smith safety valve spring
03/04/2018 22:32:34

Hi All,

I can say without a shadow of doubt there is an error in the drawings for Gordon Smith's 'squat valve' PSV#2E from Polly. I had to go back to Gordon's original EIM articles to work out what the error was as the valve would not close till pressure dropped to 50 psi, working pressure being 90 psi. The answer was in Gordon's original articles and taking 10 thou off the bottom of the shroud resulted in perfect performance.

I have not seen the drawing that John has worked to, but in the light of the above the drawing I was making them to had an error.

The springs supplied by Polly were spot on and excellent in my case.

The parts do need to be made to a very high degree of accuracy, especially the body internal bore around the shroud retaining the ball, and the shroud itself.

Cheers,

Julian

Thread: How do you fix a leak in steam loco copper fire box?
18/03/2018 00:26:57

Hi Simon,

Most if not all older miniature locomotives will have crown girder stays between inner firebox and outer firebox. These are secured in position by a few or more rivets on the inner firebox crown before silver soldering. These rivets are silver soldered in the course of the above, but sometimes they are missed or the silver solder does not penetrate properly.

Any repair attempt is determined by whether any of the adacent firebox stays are either comsoled and nutted threaded stays, or silver soldered.

Crown stay rod stays as opposed to girder stays are quite another matter.

A very careful examination of the inner firebox crown is required.

This requires the attention of an experienced club boiler inspector and his assessment and any repairs are going to be difficult.

Depending on the design of boiler and it's detailed construction (which you do not state or the design of loco or it's age, history and usage), and any inward bulging of the inner firebox crown on discovery of the leak, I would have serious doubts about an easy repair.

Usually such a leak would condemn the boiler.

Cheers,

Julian

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