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Building a Minnie

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Nick Welburn08/01/2022 09:59:55
121 forum posts

I've built a stuart 10v, and I've got an S50 on the bench thats coming together much better.

I have also a part completed Cringle boiler.

Once I've made these would I be broadly in the position to try a Minnie? Obviously its a step up in cost for castings and complexity, and it seems it might entail some gear cutting.

Are my ambitions outstripping my ambilities or is this an achievable goal after my experience so far?

noel shelley08/01/2022 10:37:54
1278 forum posts
21 photos

Hi Nick, There will be a dramatic increase cost and the skills needed ! You will have to make a boiler, so all the gear to silver solder, though you could buy in the gears and also the boiler but then your into serious costs ! You don't say what your skills and equipment levels are ? If you take it slowly and may be join a ME club then you will find people who can help and guide you. Good luck Noel.

Nick Welburn08/01/2022 10:56:11
121 forum posts
Posted by noel shelley on 08/01/2022 10:37:54:

Hi Nick, There will be a dramatic increase cost and the skills needed ! You will have to make a boiler, so all the gear to silver solder, though you could buy in the gears and also the boiler but then your into serious costs ! You don't say what your skills and equipment levels are ? If you take it slowly and may be join a ME club then you will find people who can help and guide you. Good luck Noel.

Cheers Noel,

I have an Amadeal cj18 mini lathe, a sieg sx2p mill, hv4 rotary table and the usual other bits.

I silver soldered the crank for the 10v - it seemed fairly straight forward. I'll do the cringle boiler in the next few weeks.

I've only had the metal munching kit for a year or so, but I have rebuilt a couple of cars and can weld to MOT standard.

Martin Kyte08/01/2022 11:36:05
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2721 forum posts
48 photos
Posted by Nick Welburn on 08/01/2022 09:59:55:

Are my ambitions outstripping my ambilities or is this an achievable goal after my experience so far?

I don't think so (re ambitions). It depends a little on how you like to work but there is no compulsion to employ a step wise approach to what you build. I started out , after building a simple weight driven clock, to build a 5 inch GWR King as a first loco. My logic was that was what I wanted and to build something simpler would leave me with a loco I did not really want and take a deal of time to build. I had already realised that the King was to be a very long term project and that skills would be obtained along the way by making various workshop tools and equipment.

I would say go for the Minnie and if you get to bits that are new to you such as cutting gears take some time out and build something else like the George Thomas geared bending rolls. Gives you the practice on the gears, makes a break from the Minnie and you wind up with a usefull piece of workshop kit which can roll your boiler cladding for you.

Hope these comments help.

regards Martin

PS I still haven't finished the King but as I'm now part retired things are speeding up.

Edited By Martin Kyte on 08/01/2022 11:37:34

JasonB08/01/2022 11:57:27
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22560 forum posts
2634 photos
1 articles

I built my Minnie after doing a 10V and the Beam so it sounds like you are thinking of a similar progression which worked for me.

With the vast amount of parts in a traction engine you can pick and choose what to make so don't have to start with something complex like the boiler, many choose the front end first as the front wheels are a good way to learn wheel building before doing the more complex rears and the hubs, axle, perch etc are all fairly straight forward.

I don't think there is too much cost difference between making some Stuart engines and a Minnie, if you think the Minnie build will be spread over a few years then it's not far off buying a couple of stationary engine casting kits each year and your tooling would grow either way as you come to parts that need a particular tool or cuter.

I opted to buy my gears and boiler at the time but that was when a completed boiler cost me £190!

Nick Welburn08/01/2022 12:01:05
121 forum posts
Posted by JasonB on 08/01/2022 11:57:27:

I built my Minnie after doing a 10V and the Beam so it sounds like you are thinking of a similar progression which worked for me.

With the vast amount of parts in a traction engine you can pick and choose what to make so don't have to start with something complex like the boiler, many choose the front end first as the front wheels are a good way to learn wheel building before doing the more complex rears and the hubs, axle, perch etc are all fairly straight forward.

I don't think there is too much cost difference between making some Stuart engines and a Minnie, if you think the Minnie build will be spread over a few years then it's not far off buying a couple of stationary engine casting kits each year and your tooling would grow either way as you come to parts that need a particular tool or cuter.

I opted to buy my gears and boiler at the time but that was when a completed boiler cost me £190!

 

There is a part completed one, its very local to me - a good start point? or a load of potentially challenging mis made bits? Looks like castings are 450, drawings 50, and a boiler kit 225 - so its potentially a good buy?

I'd be loathe to by a part restored car, do part built steam kits land in the same place?

Edited By JasonB on 08/01/2022 12:06:56

JasonB08/01/2022 12:08:15
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22560 forum posts
2634 photos
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It all depends on the quality of the workmanship. That one doe snot look too bad and even if the boiler did not pass test you would still not be out of pocket.

Dave Halford08/01/2022 12:17:54
2004 forum posts
23 photos

There are various threads on here from Minnie builders, check the start to finish time lines so you don't get surprised by the work load.

Masons book is useful in that it tells you which parts cannot be made in isolation as they need to be made to fit others, like the tender needs to fit the horn plates, which depends on the width the boiler comes out at.

Packmule08/01/2022 12:49:03
121 forum posts
6 photos

Go for it Nick ,im sure you will enjoy the build. It does however take a far bit of time. I started a 2" Minnie which was a long time ago (although it dosen't seem it ) but gained a lot of knowledge along the way. Made quite a few mistakes but learned from them and it is still progressing.

Building first boiler it twisted out of square so started again, more rivets and clamps used and we're looking good, I could have bought boiler but 2 year wait and I think I was quoted £3500 so even though yours will be smaller if doing 1" its well worth having a go just for the experience and saving a few £££s,

I you hav'nt got Masons book I think if memory serves the build is in back issues Vol 135 -137.

Bob

Andrew Johnston08/01/2022 13:13:33
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6574 forum posts
701 photos

I'd say go for it. Apart from dabbling with a loco in my teens, and a part built hit 'n' miss engine, these are my first engine build:

engines_8-1-2022.jpg

I've made everything, apart from the steel boilers and rubber tyres. Also produced a lot scrap, nearly enough for a third engine! Like Jason said I started at the front end, but moved onto the gears qjuite quickly, because I like gears. At any given time I make what interests me, rather than doing things in a logical order.

If I can do it I am sure you can! thumbs up

Personally I wouldn't buy a part built engine, as one is never sure of the workmanship and what changes may, or may not, have been made. I'd rather mess it up myself than buy someone else's mess up.

Andrew

Dave Halford08/01/2022 19:21:25
2004 forum posts
23 photos
Posted by Nick Welburn on 08/01/2022 12:01:05:

There is a part completed one, its very local to me - a good start point? or a load of potentially challenging mis made bits? Looks like castings are 450, drawings 50, and a boiler kit 225 - so its potentially a good buy?

I'd be loathe to by a part restored car, do part built steam kits land in the same place?

Edited By JasonB on 08/01/2022 12:06:56

Based on that picture and words.

If the 'boiler' is just a tube propped up on something and assuming the flywheel doesn't wobble and the wheels are OK then it might be fine.

If there's a boiler under there, the presence of the kit tells you the boiler is likely bad. They have a nasty habit of bending, not being square, just not made properly or getting dropped.

Former Member08/01/2022 19:45:49
1085 forum posts

[This posting has been removed]

Nick Welburn08/01/2022 20:39:37
121 forum posts
Posted by br on 08/01/2022 19:45:49:
Posted by Dave Halford on 08/01/2022 19:21:25:
Posted by Nick Welburn on 08/01/2022 12:01:05:

There is a part completed one, its very local to me - a good start point? or a load of potentially challenging mis made bits? Looks like castings are 450, drawings 50, and a boiler kit 225 - so its potentially a good buy?

I'd be loathe to by a part restored car, do part built steam kits land in the same place?

Edited By JasonB on 08/01/2022 12:06:56

Based on that picture and words.

If the 'boiler' is just a tube propped up on something and assuming the flywheel doesn't wobble and the wheels are OK then it might be fine.

If there's a boiler under there, the presence of the kit tells you the boiler is likely bad. They have a nasty habit of bending, not being square, just not made properly or getting dropped.

Hey chaps. now you have got me worried, as I have a bid in on that .

bill

Hey Bill, you seen it in person? You local? It’s about 10miles from me. So I can go get some snaps if it helps.

Former Member08/01/2022 20:57:33
1085 forum posts

[This posting has been removed]

Dave Halford09/01/2022 11:42:29
2004 forum posts
23 photos

Errm anyone? **LINK** be quick

Former Member09/01/2022 12:17:27
1085 forum posts

[This posting has been removed]

Nick Welburn09/01/2022 14:38:33
121 forum posts
Posted by br on 09/01/2022 12:17:27:
Posted by Dave Halford on 09/01/2022 11:42:29:

Errm anyone? **LINK** be quick

I think pass on that one ?

Surely that’s just scrap?

Former Member09/01/2022 14:43:49
1085 forum posts

[This posting has been removed]

Dave Halford09/01/2022 16:04:35
2004 forum posts
23 photos

Expensive scrap.

Be just about ok if it included all the gears and drawings + a few castings

Nick Welburn24/01/2022 15:10:15
121 forum posts

Well it’s mine, should be picking up tomorrow hopefully. Apologies to BR, alls fair in love and auctions.

As I understand it, I have a black gates boiler and the rest of it in various states of completion. The chap who was building it is well respected at Cinderbarrow for his skills.

Hope he made bits of this once he’d achieved them! It was abandoned due to a change of interests.

I’ll continue this thread once it’s hit my bench.

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