By Tim Gregson
A long time ago before I had fully discovered the delights of 16mm modelling I happened to pick up a copy of Issue 100 of GardenRail in and on page 25 discovered a rather delightful Garratt locomotive built by a Mr. Peter Angus.
The article proudly proclaimed “To commemorate the momentous milestone of issue No.100 of GardenRail magazine the publisher took the opportunity to commission Peter Angus and his team to construct a distinctive and handsome locomotive”.
I duly filed the issue of GardenRail away with thoughts that I might one day aspire to building my own line in my garden. Wind forward several years when I was (and still am) part way through completing my 45mm gauge line and I noticed what looked like the same locomotive listed by Chris Moody on his 16mm Garratt website www.16mmgarratts.co.uk for sale.
The locomotive was being offered for sale by Trevor Ridley the owner of Atlantic Publishers through Simon Whenmouth of Anything Narrow Gauge. At the time Simon still lived fairly close to me in Kent and I contacted him to arrange a look over the loco which then duly joined my small fleet of locomotives.
The model is based on Beyer Peacock Works Nos. 5702 & 5703 of 1913. These locomotives were supplied to the Arakan Flotilla Co. Burma and were the lightest and only tramway Garratt’s built by Beyer Peacock.
These locomotives were the 10th and 11th Garratt’s built by Beyer Peacock and were the second smallest, being half a ton heavier than those for the Congo Mayumbe Railway but with an axle load of less than 4 tons. The cylinder, motion and Walschaerts valve gear was enclosed to comply with tramway regulations and both engines were equipped with steam brakes to all wheels and handbrake to the rear bogie. Water was carried in the front and rear tanks and also unusually, in a tank under the boiler.
My model of these very attractive Garratt locomotives is Peter Angus works No.119, and is built to the scale of 16mm to the foot for operation on 45mm track. At 19” between the buffer beams, this model illustrates that a Garratt locomotive is not too big for the larger garden railway and its width of 4 ¼“ is less than many of the more popular models available in 16mm scale.
According to Peter in his original article “The minimum radius of 4’ is larger than I would have preferred” although this is fine for my line which has a minimum radius of 5′.
Works No. 119 was the second of Peter’s locomotives to use a ceramic gas burner mounted with the mixing tube just off the vertical. The centre flue boiler is 6.5in long and 2 ½“ diameter with a 28mm flue and having water tubes close to the burner end of the flue. With the boiler entering approximately one inch into the cab, followed by the burner, Peter found it necessary to increase the length of the cab in order to accommodate the vertical gas tank. Even so, there is not much room and small fingers are required to access the blow-off valve and water gauge blow down valve.
The cast spoked wheels were from Walsall Model Industries. Finescale Engineering provided the front working headlight, which unfortunately didn’t work when I bought the model so I modified this to operate from a battery box in the front water tank powering a new LED bulb.
As with other Peter Angus Garratt/Kitson-Meyer locomotives all is not as it may appear under the skirts!!! The tramway arrangement with all cylinder detail and motion covered up, lent itself to Peter building a mechanical shaft drive to each bogie from a twin cylinder marine engine which is located in the dummy boiler firebox.
Only the coupling and connecting rods along with the reverse crank and eccentric rod are visible beyond the skirts. This obviated the need for cylinders and flexible steam connections to the bogies. There is also an exhaust water separator in the long exhaust steam pipe between the marine engine and the chimney.
The locomotive was named “Trevithick” after the famous Cornish engineer Richard Trevithick and I have seen no reason to change this.
On receipt of the locomotive running appeared to be rather lumpy with only one of the bogies running properly in both directions. This was diagnosed down to failed and failing universal joints on the drive shafts from the marine engine to the bogies. A quick call to Peter Angus informed me that in earlier locomotives he had used plastic/nylon universal joints which could fail over time. I decided to replace these with steel equivalents and since then “Trevithick” has been a reliable and consistent performer.