Double Fairlie from Bachmann

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Bigmet
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Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Bigmet » Wed Nov 03, 2021 10:28 am

https://www.bachmann.co.uk/product/cate ... en/391-100

So Bachmann have gone for THE obvious and most lovely of the UK's narrow gauge locos. Took a long time for a manufacturer to dare this, but sure to be popular even at the price advertised.

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Mountain
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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Mountain » Wed Nov 03, 2021 11:31 am

I am surprized that they have not also made models of the two earlier examples which wer both standard gauge.

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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby b308 » Wed Nov 03, 2021 3:34 pm

Probably because there's a bigger market for a loco that still exists than one that was scrapped soon after it was built? I suspect the market may be bigger for the Fessy ones as well!

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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Mountain » Wed Nov 03, 2021 3:55 pm

They were not scrapped soon after they were built. Part of them survive to this day. Their boilers.

The railway used them for a number of years as heavy shunting locos for in and around the docks. As far as I am aware they could not use them up their main running line because the line was built on an old canal so had a restrictive height and these locos were built without that in mind and offered to them cheaply as they were built for customers abroad who for one reason or another could not buy them, which is why they were offered at a very attractive price.
The very large volumes of wagone in and around the docks that needed to be shunted were ideal for these locos to shift. The smaller locos used up the line were usually double or triple headed, and therefore the long rakes of wagons shifted could be shifted with a single loco when it came to the more powerful Fairlies.

The docks themselves were quite ahead of their time having wagon lifting facilities which raised individual wagons to tip them from a height so the coal could go straight down into the ships holds which was something almost unheard of in those days, and looking at photographs, the sheer size and scale of these wagon lifts was impressive.

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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby b308 » Thu Nov 04, 2021 8:33 am

Fine, Mountain, but my point still stands... Why on earth would they bother making one when there's virtually no market for them!

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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Bigmet » Thu Nov 04, 2021 9:49 am

b308 wrote:Probably because there's a bigger market for a loco that still exists than one that was scrapped soon after it was built? I suspect the market may be bigger for the Fessy ones as well!

I'd big that up way beyond 'probably'! A very distinctive and attractive narrow gauge loco type, running on one of the great successes of UK railway preservation, that has been drawing in generations of visitors to enjoy the scenery and quaint little puffers.

The obstacle to getting these made in RTR has been the necessary price, they will be expensive because a commercial concealed mechanism design to run well on tight curves and pull decently will need skilled work to achieve; and the anticipated sales volume is small, narrow gauge is a resolutely minority interest, within a minority hobby. (Of course it may be about to grow a bit, on the basis of these very interesting locos.) Now that prices have generally much increased there's scope for more like this, if sufficient buyers can be found

(If asked to name a candidate for a small standard gauge articulated steam loco model in RTR OO, I'd nominate the Beyer-Garratt 'William Francis' built for Baddesley colliery, still at work within living memory, and now preserved. Ideal KR Models territory?)

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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Bufferstop » Thu Nov 04, 2021 10:31 am

Agreed, with the exception of one 20th century new/rebuild the Ffestiniog double Fairlies tick all the boxes. charm, widely known, still existent and in operation. someone else is putting the money into a companion product (Little Englands).
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b308
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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby b308 » Thu Nov 04, 2021 1:55 pm

Bigmet wrote:they will be expensive because a commercial concealed mechanism design to run well on tight curves and pull decently will need skilled work to achieve;


£234 in DC, which has already been discounted below £200 by one or two of the boxshifters so not too bad. I'm not so sure about your second point, they are, in effect, the same as a diesel or electric bogie loco with valve gear so very easy to make. They'll run around 9" curves as well.

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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Bigmet » Thu Nov 04, 2021 4:43 pm

b308 wrote:... I'm not so sure about your second point, they are, in effect, the same as a diesel or electric bogie loco with valve gear so very easy to make. They'll run around 9" curves as well.

Total agreement that the 'centre motor with shaft drive to both bogies' mechanism principle is very well proven.

It's the 'fully concealed packaging' of such a mechanism inside the more constricted space of this style of steam model, while meeting all practical requirements, that strikes me as the source of challenges: easily assembled in the factory, easily disassembled for user servicing, ensuring that the bogies can swing sufficiently for the very small radius curves, sufficient weight in the complete item to deliver the expected traction. These will give the designer a work out, compared to the spacious cuboid interior of the D&E types in which it is more usually deployed. (I could be wrong of course, and it's actually the easiest thing in the world.)

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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby b308 » Thu Nov 04, 2021 5:08 pm

If you look at the prototype it's got tanks on both ands and decent sized boilers, it's also in OO scale, not N so there is plenty of space, probably more so than an N gauge diesel or electric loco, we've been fitting BoBo chassis into whitemetal bodies which have even less space than plastic ones for decades on 009! I believe on RMWeb there's photos with the body off and it confirms what i said, it's not difficult. I'd suggest that the Heljan 2-6-2T with outside frames and full valve gear was much more difficult than the Fairlie.

Bigmet
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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Bigmet » Thu Nov 04, 2021 5:38 pm

b308 wrote:... I believe on RMWeb there's photos with the body off and it confirms what i said, it's not difficult...

There are too, thanks for the pointer; and you are right, all achieved very neatly.

I have memories of Bachmann's over complicated assemblies on the BR stds class 5 4-6-0 and class 4 2-6-4T, and was thinking 'probably more of the same' when confronted by something different. Anyway having proven themselves with this, now let's have a centre motor U1 from Bachmann.

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Bufferstop
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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Bufferstop » Thu Nov 04, 2021 8:20 pm

The central double ended firebox is just right to hide a motor, then there's the arrangement of the "power bogies", everything swivels, wheels, cylinders coupling rods and valve gear. I'm not sure what the minimum radius can be, there's a limit to how far universal joints can bend, I got the full running commentary by my father on the development of a driveline production line when he's was Mr Fixit for GKN's campaign to break the Hardy Spicer monopoly in the late 50s. Accomodating a flexible enough UVJ as close to the bogie pivot point will be critical.
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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby b308 » Fri Nov 05, 2021 8:13 am

Bufferstop wrote:I'm not sure what the minimum radius can be


9"!

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Bufferstop
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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby Bufferstop » Fri Nov 05, 2021 12:22 pm

9". achieved or predicted? I suppose if a centre motor. N gauge diesel can manage 9" then it's been done. The engineering samples for the proposed quarry Hunslets suggest that a two motor version would also be possible.
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b308
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Re: Double Fairlie from Bachmann

Postby b308 » Fri Nov 05, 2021 1:30 pm

9" is what it's being advertised as being able to negotiate. It was a question posed on NGRM and answered quickly so someone is in the know. Many N gauge diesels will go round a lot less than 9", especially the Japanese ones!


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