Progress to date


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It has been a few weeks since my  last update , things have been happening,  but the pace has been  slower than we would have  liked.
 What have we been up to? The last update ,  thanked all  , who contributed to the Wheelset and axle fund. This is closed, aswe raised the quoted price . Special thanks to Caleb, John R ,Don G, tim H Chris P,Mathew R. Paul S. ( My data protection man advises this is safe policy ). I managed to borrow an original wheel from early 'The Prince' when I met with Jon Whallry at Boston Lodge. The wheel is being scanned and finely measured for detail, ensuring an authenticly  styled  wheel. The drawings  of several early locos  have insufficent detail ,and I suspect ,were drawn after or during manufacture.  Graham of NBR will complete new instructions for CNC maching . Materials have been ordered ,and I hope to parade two complete axles in the near future. The original wheel will be returned to the heritage group, although I have been offered v, good money for it!.
  In earlier emails I stated,  that the next stage would be frames ,axle boxes, rolling chassis ,followed by the Casting of the cylinders. I have been driving my team crazy  ,to produce estimates for both of these  stages.
 The cylinder team  won the race.  My trip to Boston Lodge included ,  relieving the FR of the complete set of casting patterns. We can now produce the cylinders and valve chests. We received quotes from Cerdic in Somerset and Peak Pattern Foundry of Sheffield , Peaks being the succesful tender.  £5000 plus VAT will buy the castings , Machining costs of £7000 plus VAT from NBR.  Total cost £14,000.
 This is the second most expensive unit on the loco , once completed , will show that our dream , is fast  becoming a reality. There will be,  an original  George England loco pulling the Heritage train within three years.
If you would like to contribute , there are several ways of helping.

1. A monthly donation is a consistent and  predictable line of income , very much appreciated.
2. Sponsor machining tine,  £35 per hour is our volume rate at NBR ,we need 200 hour to fully machine those cylinders.
3. Sponsor specific items, cylinder covers 2@£200, 2 @ £400 or any other item that you may want to own.
4. Make a general donation,  via
Paypal.me 1863 mountaineer locomotive.

 5. Call me  01904 633000 10-6 most days or email
chairman@1863moloco.com 

The management of our company is unsalaried ,we do not take any expenses, wages,  or compensation for fuel costs or phone and computing.
All of your very kind donations are spent on the loco, 100%
I am really exited to have reached this stage ,and hope you are too.
I launch the Cylinder Fund today and will inform our facebook followers next week.

David RC Wood Chairman 1863 MOLOCO
August 2020

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We recently announced the completion of the boiler, (except for final steam test ). Which leads us to Stage 2 in the construction  process.
For several months, I have been consulting with Paul Lewin, David H. Smith, Chris Jones, Jon Whalley , Mark Ashton of NBR Engineering about a suitable design and construction process for the wheels and axles of our loco.

Prince and Palmerston both, have had replacement wheels, so modern drawings are available.
Close examination of original wheel sets at Minfodd yard,  shows many differences between the old and new , particularly the method of construction of the early wheels,  being unacceptable in 2020.

This has helped us to confidently  conclude the obvious, we will now generate new wheels  in their earliest form, using modern production methods to  create  viable period replicas of the 1863 pattern.

We believe the early wheels were Blacksmith forged, with steel tyres and slender spokes, this method will not pass the scrutiny of the insurance body.
Cast iron wheels and steel tyres , would be acceptable, but expensive, and non prototypical.

Plasma cut wheels from solid discs with fitted tyres have served, Prince and Palmerston for many years,  they can be re-profiled or have new tyres fitted, but their design is  far from prototype, particularly in the crankpin webbing,  for us to consider using  on Mountaineer.

In choosing the following production method, we have taken in to consideration,  the relatively light loads and low usage of Mountaineer.
 NBR Engineering, have produced an estimate for two complete wheel sets, complete with axles, keyed wheels and crankpins.
Four solid steel discs of 50D steel will be CNC machined and two axles of EN8 steel will  be heat shrunk on  and quartered.
The discs will profiled with the current tyre shape use by the Ffestiniog Railway and will have the appearance of separate tyres.
This allows a significant saving during construction, with the later option of having the wheel sets turned down and conventional tyres fitted.

To produce a working replica of  an 1863 designed steam loco, many compromises have had to be made to allow it to exist. The company is committed to produce an engine which  has the appearance, features and  where applicable, engineering, of the prototype,  complete with working Salter valve.

We need to raise £8,280 for the wheel sets.  Several people have requested a list of components for them to sponsor.
If you would like to assist in this project ,then you could sponsor an axle @£500, or one of 32 spokes@ £100 or a complete wheel @£1500.



Would you like to help create a historic steam locomotive? If so read on!


Back in 1863 the Ffestiniog Railway took delivery of the first of four engines from leading builder George England & Co. The first was Mountaineer with its three siblings, The Prince, The Princess and Palmerston. The last three were substantially modified out of recognition so much so that the original design has been lost. They amazingly still exist, but Mountaineer was worn out and was dismantled in 1879.

Our task is to build an accurate replica of the original design and allow Mountaineer to live again. The painting below is an accurate picture of what, with your help, we will create.



Festioniog Railway George England Loco 'Mountaineer (red) ref.433
If you would like to be part of this journey click here . If not, thank you for reading and please pass on the information to others.