Sunday, 21 June 2015

Achilles Report No70: CMES June Steam Day 2015...

Hi there everyone. Today saw "Achilles" being present at CMES for their first 'Steam on Sunday' event of 2015. This event sees steam locomotives ruling the roost on the standard Sunday afternoon public running session. Despite the forecast through the week and the appalling rain yesterday, the sun shone today and four locomotives were in attendance to strut their stuff on RPMR metals. These were, in no particular order, Brian's popular LBSC 'Pansy', modelled on the Great Western's 5700 Class Pannier Tank of which I am quite fond...
The second engine was one of the club's Jack Buckler designed Sweet Pea's. This example is the stalwart 0-4-0 No2 "Diane"...
"Diane" is spotted here, raising steam with a good wood fire raging away in the box...
The third locomotive was a much larger type. A 5" model of the popular rebuilt Royal Scot, with taper boiler. This model has the traditional three cylinders...
The fourth and final engine was of course my trusty 0-6-0 tank "Achilles"...
The plan for the afternoons activities would be simple. There would be three train rakes in operation with two of the engines being double-headed. The double heading went to "Achilles" and "Diane". Though not entirely practical or realistic in miniature, double-heading lightens the load on engines and allows smaller engines, like "Achilles", to take part hauling heavier overall trains. Todays double-headed rake consisted of 4 cars which, admittedly, "Diane" could have handled all on her own. With the unlikely pairing joined together, 5717 "Victoria" and the rebuilt Scot took up their place on their own individual sets. By 12:40pm, the double-headed pair were simmering in the station...
The afternoon seemed to go off quite well, with just over 200 passengers being carried in the 3-hour stint. Considering that the engines were in steam well before 12:30, they all seemed to slog on quite well. "Achilles" performed well despite her intrusive spark arrestor hat, with 70psi seeming to be a popular choice whilst working against the axle-pumps. The engine is seen here taking water before another round trip...
On the last but one trip at around 3:50pm, I opted to leave Emma and "Diane" to it, allowing the smaller tank engine to take a breather and be disposed. No problems had been encountered with the loco but I think I'd had enough of trying to keep ahead of No2! "Achilles" is seen here, blowing down on one of the steaming bays...
All in all this was a very pleasant afternoon with four engines in steam on the Ryton Pools Miniature Railway. The locos had all run well and had given lots of passengers some very pleasant trips in the sunshine. The public seemed genuinely pleased to see the engines in action and some couldn't really believe that they were 'real engines'. Hmm, I'm not sure I all together like that term! All the best guys, Sam...

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Sam,
It was a great afternoon running, with an all-steam cast! I really enjoyed myself, and our double-header handled the day's passenger loadings with ease! It was nice to not have to really push the 'Pea, with the piloting proving a real boon from "Achilles". Thanks for your support on the event, it's not always easy to find enough steam locos for the Sunday afternoon Steam events. There's still another two to go, if you fancy joining us again?
Kind regards,
Emma-claire.

Sam Brandist said...

Thanks for the comment, Emma. Glad you had a good time - I did too. The whole thing seemed to go off quite well. As regards doing another, well, we'll have to see. The engine is currently undergoing some more maintenance though it may be ready by the August one. All the best, Sam