G Scale Model Train Forum banner
1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
202 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For several years I've wondered whether the plastic static model of the Stephenson Rocket could be adapted to run on 45 mm track. I ran across a kit at a swap meet and took it home. The model is 1-26th scale and the section of plastic rail is about 3/8 inch wider than the 45 mm rails. Can I use a driver from a "G" gauge loco and position it so that it will straddle the rails without tangling with the boiler? As it turned out, it IS possible.

Someone posted pictures of a project a while back that showed a Bachmann loco wheel that had the plastic filler removed. This results in a wheel with slimmer spokes. An axle and drive wheels from a late version 10 wheeler was found in my wheel box and work began. Some filing reduced the crank pin bolster to make the spoke look like all the others. The hole was filled with putty. .This is the first picture (taken 11-15-08) which tells me when this project started in earnest.

The plastic spacer that separates the two wheels broke up (Chinese plastic) so I made a new one of square styrene tubing and some tiny brass nuts and bolts. There was need to cut away some of the frame and rebuild the journal to accept the larger axle shaft.The wheel JUST cleared the boiler.



The only place that a motor would possibly fit was in the tender. I chose the Hartland power unit from a Woody that has sat unbuilt for several years. Carbon pickups were installed above the axles. The motor stands erect and goes into a hole that was cut in the bottom of the water tank. The wheels in the tender are Hartland's. The spoked units were turned from the all plastic wheels from a Bachmann 10 wheeler (battery version from long ago) painted and glued onto the solid wheels.



A styrene tube and cap was fitted inside the tank and lead shot filled the tank. That added enough weight to provide traction.


A number of the parts that came from the original model were worked into the operation. The side rods, crosshead and guides all work after a bit of adjustment.


Just enough weight was added to the boiler above the driver axle to assure smooth operation. Notice that the drive wheel on this side was worn to the point that it shows a brass finish. I don't have a replacement. If anyone has a spare wheel from one of the latest versions Id be happy to accept it and replace the one that is on there now. I hope this inspires someone else to do this job for themselves. I'm amazed at how well it runs. If you'd like to see it run, you can find it on the Door Hollow Shortline website. The link is in my signature space. Thanks for your interest.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,500 Posts
Bob,here are some pix of the OS live steam Rocket's valve gear if you want to fabricate one for yours. (please ignore the dust bunnies) It's just a bunch of rods and levers with handles. A visually fascinating nightmare, but quite simple to build (3/32" square basswood and 1/16" brass rod and a bit of plastic tube for bearings would do it....) I think the engine looks kind of naked without it.

Left side showing the rods. the lower end is two concentric rocker shafts behind the large water pipe. The reverse gear itself is a simple shifting eccentric set up between two collars on the drive axle


Upper end, again concentric rocker shafts with hand levers...


Kind of fuzzy, but looking over top of the tender. This shows the upper pipes that connect the firebox to the boiler, and the huge throttle valve. The steam gauge would not be there on the original, it used a long pipe along side the chimney with a pointer and scale at the top.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
202 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Mik, Thank you for the pictures. They're in my file and if I ever finish the passenger car that I'm building to follow the loco I'll add some of the details.

What is OS? What scale is that thing?

Do you have pictures of the coach I see behind the loco? I can't seem to find any decent pictures of the car that is in the museum in York. I'm building the coach from this picture.


Dave Crocker and I agree that your "unsupervised children" notice is our favorite!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,500 Posts
OS is a Japanese company that makes top of the line glow engines for R/C aircraft, and VERY spendy bolt together live steam locomotive kits. The Rocket is 1:12 scale (4-3/4" gauge), coal fired, will pull something like 180 lbs, and has never been run -- and belongs to a customer who asked me to hold it "until he remodeled his vacation house" because his wife found out that he bought it -- that was something like 8 years ago......

To give you an idea of size, the Lonergan whistle on the right is 5 inches in diameter


The matching first class riding car you asked to see... Third class is the open carwith red trim in your pics.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
202 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Information about the details of the Rocket is a bit sparse. I get the feeling that the loco didn't stay in the form that we see modeled for very long. It worked very well in the Raintree Trials but they apparently started making "improvements" very quickly. They changed the angle of the cylinders and stuck a modern style smokebox on the front. The final version, or what's left of it, is in the Science museum in London and it is anything but pretty.

The loco in York is a reproduction of the original. I can understand why no one has made a model of this one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,500 Posts
I have a video someplace of an OS model running. The inclined cylinders made it waddle like a goose. As I understand it they layed the cylinders down because the motion made the crews seasick.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,716 Posts
Cool. I'll have to get mine back out to work on it. That heartland drive suits it nicely.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Bob,

Thanks for posting the build pics and video. That is really something different! I doubt I'd ever have thought to put spokes in front of a plate wheel, but I can sure use that idea!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Bob,

Can you point me at a link where this engine is described? I have a number of questions. One is, I don't see a connecting rod on the wheel--I assume they just left it off, or was the thing turned into a crank-axle arrangement? Another is (and admittedly stupid) --but design data's hard to come by--what exactly is the gainer on having a smoke box, besides allowing the cylinder discharge to act as a draft inducer?

Thanks for the pixes, BTW.

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Torb,

Is this engine still commercially available, in something near unto 20.3? (NOT steam! I already know I can't affort that!)

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,296 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
6,296 Posts
Is this engine still commercially available, in something near unto 20.3?


Les,

This is a standard gauge engine, so if it was 1:20.3 scale, it would need 70 mm std gauge track. For our 'large scale', gauge-1, 45mm track it ought to be nearer 1:32nd scale. Here's a 3 1/2" gauge model that must be about 1:16th scale: PPS Steam Models Second Hand Page.

OcCre's model is 1:24th, which makes it a bit bigger than scale, is said to be for 45mm track, and comes with a motorisation kit.
See http://www.occre.com/index.php?option=com_productos&task=showProduct&idproducto=95



Historicships.com in Florida sells it. See http://www.historicships.com/MiscItems/RocketLocomotive/RocketLocomotive.htm
This Euro site has a bunch of photos of it under construction - neat! Guinea Hobbies, Vizcaya, Spain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,500 Posts






What's wrong with this picture? At first I thought they had made a HUGE error and put the crosshead pump on the wrong side (the loop of pipe sticking up in the middle of everything is the pump's discharge) -- then I noticed the engine's name was spelled something like TEKCOR, strange that...

Les, the remains of the Rocket are incomplete -- for instance the entire firebox except the backhead appears to be missing, as well as the connecting rods. Museums are kind of funny, and feel it more important to preserve or 'conserve' the original fabric in the incomplete state in which it was acquired, to them replicating the missing parts or doing anything resembling a restoration would absolutely destroy what they feel is the historical value of the piece.... Even if by doing so it leads to misinterpretation by the 'unwashed masses'. In this case, I think a quarter sized, sectioned model beside the conserved original would be the best way to show off it's features... but it isn't my call

Bob, one note on the coach, I don't know if it was a feature of the original design, or something OS cooked up, but - on the car I have here - compressing the buffers applies the brakes
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Thanks, Pete! I went to the OcCre site, where the specs indicated the gauge was 65mm. Or were they taking the crankpins into account? Didn't look so, from the picture.

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Pete,

I went and looked at it, and it's a steamer gauged at 3-1/2". That sorta lets me out. BUT, I looked around and got some dims from either that site or another, and I bet it wouldn't be all that hard to fab up. The kit out of Florida sells for $139, not at all bad when you consider all the thinking is done for you, and the parts are right there to assemble. They even offer a motorization kit for the tender, which is in the $90 range. Scratchbuilding one seems my best avenue--if I could find a pic of the controls, which the static models all seem to lack. Compared to the one shown in the museum, the models' operating controls are bare. On an open-cab engine, I think that's a serious drawback.

Well, I'll keep it in the back of my mind--I have the site in my folder now--and see how the summer goes.

Thanks for your efforts.

Les
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,500 Posts
"controls"???? This is one of the first successful commercial locos..so they are spartan and dead simple... There is a bypass valve for the pump. And a foot operated reverser on the left side of the footplate -- push it down and it shifts the eccentrics to engage the collar for reverse -- let it up, and with the help of a spring, they slide over to engage the collar to go forwards. The throttle is the lever in the middle above the firebox (It's still in place on the original if you look). Brakes? there ain't none. Pressure 'gauge' is this loooong pipe beside the stack which has a scale on top and a weighted plunger with a pointer (the Bourden tube hadn't been invented yet). Two brass faucet looking things on the side of the boiler are your water level trycocks. The two brass things on the cylinder heads are your cylinder lubricators. the long lever with a weight hanging on the end is the safety valve.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,500 Posts
Here's a 3 1/2" gauge model that must be about 1:16th scale: PPS Steam Models Second Hand Page.






The 3-1/2"gauge Hornby model was/is a disaster from the word go (I imported a couple for resale years ago).... All the money they spent on it nearly wrecked the company when it flopped. Even with an unprototypical 2:1 planetary reduction built into the drivers it could barely pull itself and one car. The small butane tank and inefficient boiler meant it had a really crappy run time. The 2" (yes, INCH) long sectional plastic track was a joke. AND the little plastic butane tanks are now made from near unobtanium. Because some enterprising feller bought up all the remaining spares off Hornby for a song, then crushed most of them so the rest would be worth more.....
 
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Top