Shortest steam up in history

Discuss park gauge trains and large scale miniature railways having track gauges from 8" to 24" gauge and designed at scales of 2" to the foot or greater - whether modeled for personal use, or purpose built for amusement park operation or private railroading.

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Topics may include: antique park gauge train restoration, preservation, and history; building new grand scale equipment from scratch; large scale miniature railway construction, maintenance, and safe operation; fallen flags; track, gauge, and equipment standards; grand scale vendor offerings; and, compiling an on-line motive power roster.
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Re: Shortest steam up in history

Post by rkcarguy » Sun Aug 19, 2018 5:20 pm

That makes sense, and yes that's a good sized cylinder. Your locomotive sat a long time didn't it? It may just need some run in time.
Most of the kits I've seen are meant for 2" bores. I wanted to make mine 3" x 4", but got a lot of flak for it in another thread for being too big. I'm not so sure about this to be honest...seems like I could use less throttle yet have the capability for more power with more displacement, and not be too wasteful on steam/fuel.

Glenn Brooks
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Re: Shortest steam up in history

Post by Glenn Brooks » Sun Aug 19, 2018 8:26 pm

Conservatively It’s been out of service for 5 years, maybe longer. never got a clear answer how long it had been sitting from the prior owner.

3”x4” isn’t to big if you scale the boiler size properly- say 12” to 14” diameter- which means a larger size engine. Say something over 2.5” scale. No reason you can’t go with a larger Loco if you want to. There are some formulas you can use to determine to size the boiler, cylinders, firebox, etc. it’s all related...

Even most 15” ga locos don’t work any where near full capacity- as there aren’t any long distance runs, or working freight requirements anymore, save for a couple of legacy operations in U.K. Remember also, none of these smaller 1.x scale locos ever get out of first gear due to speed restrictions at club tracks, hence people’s perception of required engine size are very often colored by operating constraints.

And always Remember the first rule of life steaming: build what you want!

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Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

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Re: Shortest steam up in history

Post by rkcarguy » Sun Aug 19, 2018 11:41 pm

In 2" scale the 0-6-0 would have a 10" pipe boiler(10-3/4" OD), I'd like to stay that size so all my rolling stock matches. I'm not so concerned with speed but will need pulling power and traction. Now that I've mapped out my route more closely, I'll be looking at a 2.5% grade through the loop to the "house spur" and 3 to 3-1/2% from the house spur up to the garbage drop. Not so great, but at least the firewood hauling portion of the route is flatter due to the loop and hauling the garbage and recycling is going to be like running nearly empty.

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Re: Shortest steam up in history

Post by Pontiacguy1 » Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:10 am

I would guess that you will need more than 5 HP to run that locomotive at anything above 35-40 PSI.

The locomotive you are referring to was owned by a Dentist outside of Nashville. It was a 4-8-4, but not as big as the L.E. old northern, if I recall correctly. He ran it off of an air compressor at the back of the train, and I believe it was about 12 or 13 HP, somewhere around that level, but I don't recall exactly. I remember being surprised at how much HP the air compressor was that was running the locomotive, and how much air it consumed. You could hear the compressor loading and unloading all the time when he was running it, but it didn't unload very often at all when he was running up-grade. He ran hoses along and under his train up to the boiler, and actually pressurized the boiler with compressed air, using it as an auxiliary tank.

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Re: Shortest steam up in history

Post by rkcarguy » Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:12 pm

There is losses unfortunately, each time one form of energy is converted to another. I'm not surprised that it takes that much compressor to do the mechanical work of what would be maybe 6-8HP.

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