So, what’s next?

Just noticed that my last post was over a month ago, so it is definitely time for a quick update. As mentioned in my previously, I was not that pleased with the shape & size of the piston cover, so I have been trying to reshape it in my 3D-model. Believe I am almost there, but it also requires modelling new and larger pistons … and it takes some time to make them look good.

Mapleton general store

I also received “The Mapleton Tramway” by John Knowles, a great book that includes a detailed description of the route and gives an interesting insight into the strengths and weaknesses of the little Shays. Train operations are described, including the excursions operated at weekends which connected with QR trains.
An interesting feature of the line was the private siding to the general store at Mapleton, where goods were unloaded from the daily tram across the store veranda.

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Bloody warm …

Modelling has been a bit slow for the last couple of weeks, as we are in the midst of summer at this side of the globe. It’s bloody warm and the temperature in my workshop is close to 45º Celsius. So that gave me some time to surf the web, while sitting outside in the garden and being wirelessly connected to the internet. And that’s where I found this little gem … a beautiful 2′ gauge Shay that’s fully operational!

The Foster Brook and State Line Shay

It is a 10 tons “Class B” Shay, which means that it has three cylinders … just like my HOn30 model will have.
This little locomotive with Shop Number 3118, was built in May 1920 and is one of forty 2′ gauge Shays constructed by Lima Locomotive Works. It is also one of the only two known surviving 2′ gauge Shays … the other one is Mapleton Shay S/N 2800.

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Britannia Creek

The Icelandic volcano fallout unfortunately delayed the delivery of the printed parts from the United States, as the airspace above most of Northern Europe had been closed down.
It however gave me some time to look for more information about the narrow gauge tramways in Australia.
I found another “creek” layout … but this one has a different scale (On30) and is called Brittania Creek. It is freelanced log tramway that is set in the late 1950s.

Brittania Creek Reight Depot
The blog shows some great scenery and kitbashing examples, like the freight depot shown in the picture above. It’s a Rusty Stumps model that has been “Australinised” by using corrugated iron instead of shingles. Definitely something I could do myself with an HOn30 kit …

Here we go!

A couple of months ago I stumbled upon a website about the Mapleton Tramways. The site covers the history of one of the Sugar Cane and Shire tramway in Queensland, Australia. What made this tramway even more interesting, was the fact that it ran on very narrow 2 feet gauge and used a couple of 13 tons “Class A” Shay locomotives.

A Mapleton Tramways Shay in 1940

These engines, with builder’s no. 2091 and 2800, were probably the smallest Shays that the Lima Locomotive Co. ever produced. Their boilers were only 2 feet 5 inches in diameter and they weighed about 13 tons in working order. Top speed on the flat was 10 mph, 11 with a following wind … Continue reading