10 1/4″ GNR Atlantic

10 1/4″ GNR Atlantic 4433

Built in 1964/65 by David Curwen for Lord Braybrooke’s Audley End miniature railway, it proved to be a very fast and powerful performer and consequently a firm favourite with Robin, Lord Braybrooke.  This loco was Curwen’s first ‘scale’ model locomotive, although not in fact a true scale copy of a full size GNR Ivatt Atlantic, the loco is in fact essentially a 3 times scaled up version of LBSC’s 3 1/2″ gauge ‘Maisie’ design.  Here are a few photographs of her being built in David Curwen’s workshops in 1963/64.

She ran in pretty much original condition at Audley for 54 years before joining our fleet of historic models here at The Steam Workshop in 2019.  We’ve included a few photos below of her running over the years at Audley, often with her owner Lord Braybrook at the controls.

We have made a few subtle alterations, which we thing are both sympathetic and practical.  At some point in the early 2000s a slightly clumsy looking large lubricator was added for practical purposes to lubricate the inside valve gear.  We’ve removed it to push the locomotive back to it’s original form, as we don’t intend to use it in anything like the same, heavy commercial way that she has been run in the past.  We decided that the rather crude painted steel oil pots on the top of the splashers weren’t particularly pretty, and the full size prototypes had distinctive brass pots there, so we took the decision to re-locate the original steel ones to positions inside the frames, and make new deeper brass ones for the top of the splashers.

The original steel oil boxes were re-located to the front of the frames, to feed the valve rod, and just inside the frames between the splashers to feed the two axle boxes.

The new brass oil boxes were then made and fitted, each having two chambers creating 8 independent oil wick feeds to each motion point between the frames.

The seating position on the model was a little too cramped and too high.  In order to re-locate the seat without cutting any original metal, we have unbolted and removed the original tank top (safely stored at the works), and built a new one where the seat is dropped a few inches into the water space, and moved a good 4 inches backwards.  This reduces both the coal and water space but feels a lot more comfortable to drive!  We have added a sump under the tender to replace the reduced water capacity, and tweaked the coal space backwards and around the driver’s back to maintain sufficient coal.

The draw bar length between the engine and tender has been reduced so that the loco now runs closer coupled to it’s tender, giving a more prototypical gap, the fall plate having consequently been removed and placed into store.  Some nice ‘Steam Workshop’ lost wax cast gun metal valve hand wheels have replaced the plumbers fitting hand wheels, and all the black paint has had a bit of a freshen up for it’s new lease of life as one of our toys!

 

Here’s a little film of her running for the first time under our ownership, first on test in the workshop following our work, and then up at Newby Hall near Ripon.