Saturday, 29 October 2016

class47peter's Top 10 Favourite Diesel Locomotives

I've done a top 10 blog post on my favourite Steam Locos so now its time to do a post on my top 10 favourite Diesel Locos

When it comes to Diesels whilst in a way they don't have the same charm or character as Steam Locos the heritage Diesels do have character to them in a way that you don't get with the modern traction, and lets be honest the classic traction is miles better than the modern stuff we see so much of today.

In the same way as in the last top 10 you will know my favourites or in this case at least one of them but even so you won't know or probably don't know why these specific locos are my favourites so that is why i have rounded them all up into this blog post to explain away to you all why i love them.

10. class 31s

One of the many classes commonly seen from my era until their withdrawal which has seen less and less of them on the mainline nowadays with the exception of DCR, the only operating company at this time who still keep them in service, Network Rail in the past have used them but these are now on the brink of being withdrawn which as of this point the fate of these engines is unknown, lets hope they don't go for the chop.

But what i love about the 31s is the front which gives them an expression, look at those headlights and the position of those handrails and then take a look at those black squares (not sure what they are for) on the front of the loco above the centre headlight, it gives it a sad looking expression and its things like this that you don't see with modern era locos as things like this give the locomotive character, and of course lets not forget the thumping burble and thrashing sounds made from the engine just like any heritage traction, how can you not love that?

and the class 31 has a very interesting body with the headcode panel box on the front of the roof above those windows, all those grills on the side of the loco and i like how the body has that dip in the middle where the fuel tank is.

9. class 60s

I've yet to come across anyone who doesn't love these, yes these were only introduced in the 90s so compared to the 47s, 37s etc they aren't as old but they are still considered as a classic form of traction. Probably one of the finest looking freight locomotives out there that ever graced the rails in terms of diesel locomotives.

and how can you not love the steady slow beating sound from the engine of this locomotive, its a sound described by some enthusiasts i have spoken to as a sound you cannot beat, and there is the power of these locomotives which these locos are very powerful possibly even more powerful than a 66 or a 68. Those of some of the modern examples of freight locos but even they don't seem as powerful as that of a 60, its no wonder why some companies have still kept them on even if some are still stored, maybe the other operating companies ought to take note and bring them back out into service again so that they can show what they do, and even to this day they are still proving there use.

8. class 52 Westerns

Whats not to love about the Western Hydraulics? okay yes they may have been successful but even these locos had their problems and they only had short working lives but that doesn't mean you can't love them.

The Westerns have always been my choice of the Western Hydraulics, nothing wrong with the others but with the Westerns it should be noted that D1068 achieved a speed of 110 mph whilst working a Reading to Paddington service, that is not something the other Hydraulics have achieved and also with the Westerns that look more graceful and elegant than the Warships, Teddy Bears and the Hymeks, they've always been popular with enthusiasts and it isn't really hard to see why.

and lets not forget that D1015 is still able to run on the mainline to this very day, that shows you doesn't it

7. class 40s

Another elegant looking machine is the class 40, that distinctive sound (though name a heritage loco that doesn't have this) and those characteristic noses at each end and the many nose ends that these had, particularly for me its the split headcode boxes as seen in the image above that i like.

Yes by the time the last examples came out they were already been replaced such as on West Coast Mainline until being replaced with electrics and then when cascaded to the Eastern Region were replaced with the more powerful Deltics and 47s and by the 70s the class 40s became freight locomotivesbut they clinged on in service til 1988 when the pioneer class 40 D200 (40122) was given to the NRM.

and there is quite a few in preservation with 40145 being able to run on the mainline, its been tough and come for them but they have come a long way

6. class 55 Deltics

I'll be surprised if i come across someone (who is a fan of Diesels) who doesn't like the Deltics, i have yet to meet that person, everything about these East Coast giants is to love, the sounds, the look, the noses at each end etc, it should be noted as well that the Prototype Deltic survives into preservation and that is something you don't get with very many diesel locos in preservation.

But what i find interesting with these is that the engines which is where they get their nickname Deltics were originally designed to be used in Motor Torpedo Boats, the Royal Navy later used these on their Dark Fast class boats as well as PT boats and other vessels. Its an engine thats been used by rail and marine, how may Diesel Locos have engines that have been used to power marine forms of transportation or being given marine use full stop? Probably none other than the 55s so that makes these locos unique and significant.

5. class 50s

You cannot deny how popular the 50s have been and were with enthusiasts so much so that 18 of these are now in preservation with three being able to run on the mainline. The front ends of the 50 is also what gives the loco its expression with that bit of detail (not sure what it is for) under the front headlight, its like the 31s in the sense that the front end gives the loco a facial expression.

They have also undergone changes whilst in service as opposed to how they looked when they first came out such as the front headlight, one window blanked off etc. They still weren't without there problems but no locomotive is and they still proved reliable whilst they were in service with BR and Network SouthEast, nothing or anybody is perfect but it doesn't mean they cannot be reliable or successful.

and like with other classic locomotives you get the characteristic sound from the engine that in its own right gives the locomotive more character than the modern era traction and this is the sort of traction that you will hear it before you see it, very much like the 20s, 37s, 40s and 31s.

I'd be very surprised if someone who likes their Diesels out there doesn't like the class 50s as i haven't come across anyone who seems to dislike these. One other thing that probably makes these unique was the cooling fan mechanism making the suction sound which gave them the nickname Hoovers, it was replaced but that nickname still stuck with them afterwards

4. class 20s

We now come onto the 20s with the sounds of a Helicopter and the looks of Doctor Who's enemies the Daleks.

What makes the 20s unique from most classes of Diesel Locomotive is the fact that they have only got one cab which in turn was the only issue found with these locomotives which when driven bonnet nose first the visibility was poor so this meant they would often run in pairs of two, sometimes three or even four, despite that though these locos were still a success and were regardless very reliable.

The fact they only have one cab is something you don't get with many Diesels and this design enabled Steam loco practice of sorts. Yes people will start bringing up the class 17, 14 and shunters at this point but the shunters were designed for shunting and aren't really mainline locos, the class 17s were considered failures as they weren't very successful and the class 14s once entered service had their duties taken away from them immediately and they only had 2-3 working lives in service before withdrawal.

Plus the class 17s and the class 14s cab is located in the middle of the loco it isn't located on just the one end like on the 20s. The fact is with the shunters, class 17s and 14s the cab being in the middle meant they didn't need to work in pairs often, with the 20s they did work in pairs so they could be driven both ways without poor visibility for the drivers.

They are different from any other Diesel loco so thats why they are in my top 10 list for Diesel Locomotives

3. class 37s

Whats not to love about the Tractors? that distinctive sound that makes them heard before they are seen and those noses at each end of the loco along with those light configurations very much like the 47s on each end.

But the 37s are one of the few locos that are still going strong on the mainline today, they are in use with Colas Rail, West Coast Railways, Europhoenix own a couple, one preserved example is mainline registered, Network Rail have a few that have been classified the 97s, Rail Operations Group own two of these fine machines and to add to that DRS own several of these.

Yes with DRS one is preserved and many others have been given the chop but they still own plenty of these which many are now in BR Blue Large Logo livery and are working on the Cambrian Coast Line, i must get down there at some point to see them, also many in preservation were sold to Colas to work on the mainline, this just goes to show you that even after being withdrawn (some of them) and that they are now ancient it shows they can still do their job well and with new traction coming over to the UK but with still a shortage of locos maybe its finally time to get the stored classic traction out of storage and put them to use because they are far from life expired and why buy new Diesel Locos when older ones which are much better and just as reliable if not more reliable can still be put to use.

To all operating companies take note of this, its the perfect solution to the problem of lack of Diesel Locomotives, just bring out the older stuff from storage and you'll be amazed and what they can do. They are still continuing to turn heads even on heritage railways.

2. class 56s

In second place on the top 10 it has to be the class 56 Grids. They are one of the more finer examples of a Freight Locomotive in my books, i love the grid styled horn cover on the front ends, the body, those big grills on both sides of the loco and those characteristic screams you get from the engine is not something you get with many locomotives.

I love the Grids on the whole whether its the looks or the screams of their engines whilst working hard pulling long trains, and they are still being put to use today with DCR, Colas Rail and UKRL as well as a few knocking about in preservation and a few recently were sent abroad, and they are showing what these machines can do and what they do best, not many Locos have been sent abroad in recent times well nothing that isn't Modern traction anyway.

It just shows you that it doesn't matter how old something is, it can still work and still do the job it is supposed to do. and i will tell you what the Grids can give the modern traction we see today a run for its money

1. class 47s

You all knew this one was coming from a mile away, anybody who knows me well will know that the 47s are my all time favourite Diesel Loco, a big giveaway is that my channel is named after the 47s.

So why are they my favourite? Well firstly they like many locos in my era where a common sight, they could be seen anywhere and they are still going strong today being used with West Coast Railways, Rail Operations Group and FreightLiner and Tyseley each have one registered for mainline use. DRS up to recently still had them in service but they have know been stored with two being preserved although from time to time the stored locos have been dragged back out for use. Plus the 57s they use are technically 47s but with just different engines and altered bodyshell. A couple of others are still knocking about in service to in various places.

But thats not exclusively what makes them my favourite, i love the looks and the sounds of these locos, plus the big reason why they are my fave is because my great great Granddad worked on the railways both with Steam and Diesel, and the very Diesel he drove, yep you guessed it, it was a 47, i as a matter of fact have a photo of him on my bedroom wall standing next to a 47 that he would have drove and on that particular day he had retired from working on the railways which is when that photo of him was taken and it was even put in the newspaper.

and that is why i love the 47s which is what makes them my all time favourite

Other Favourites/Honorable Mentions

class 58s

Another fine looking Freight loco is the class 58, its bodyshell is something to admire how the body itself is thinner than the cabs giving it that bone shaped look which is where the nickname Bone came from.

Its a Diesel of days gone, seen regularly during my childhood though sadly no longer in service especially since they were withdrawn when they weren't even life expired, so this remains a mystery to why they were withdrawn because they still had lots of years of life left in them, then they were sent abroad with some staying in the UK or eventually brought back over and again stored out of use. Even the ones abroad now have been stored out of use, or at least the last time i heard of them they were and there has been persistent rumors of them repatriating them for engineering work for the HS1 or HS2 route, something like that.

Three are preserved with one going to be used for parts for a replica of LMS 10000, I can never understood why they were taken out of use because the 60s were still in service and when stored they where then took back into service and are still proving reliable so why not have done the same with these? Yes they suffered from wheel slip and weren't terribly successful but they still proved to reliable regardless.

class 28 Co-Bos

If you were to ask me what the most unique class of Diesel Locomotive is i would chose the Metrovick class 28 Co-Bos, there wheel arrangement is what makes them unique. Yes they were withdrawn within ten years after they entered service because the Crossley 2 stroke engines were unreliable and they also had the cab windows falling out though that was later fixed as well as the engines prone to unacceptable levels of exhaust fumes which were smoky.

How despite this the Co-Bos still proved otherwise reliable despite the unreliability of their engines. One by historical accident even survives today as D5705

class 45s

Known to you and me as the Peaks they have those distinctive noses which you can have different varieties and the nice engine sounds and like with the 40s have that 1- Co-Co -1 wheel arrangement.

But when it comes to the Peaks there is something about them that makes me like them, can't quite put my finger on it, maybe its just the different nose ends they had, or just the overhaul looks of them, i don't know

class 25s

Now the Rats have just got to have a mention on here, whats not to like? The sounds, the looks and the sights of this loco are all to admire. None are mainline registered but there are several of them in preservation even though only a few at the time of publishing this blog are in service perhaps its now time to get the others back up and running.

and i suppose i should mention that back in the 70s they could be seen at Bescot, i really do wish someone would invent a time machine

So that brings me onto my top 10 list of my favourite Diesel Locomotives

Until next time, have a good weekend

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

class47peter's Top 10 Favourite Steam Locomotives

There is no doubt about it that every rail enthusiast out there has a favourite locomotive of some form, whether it be Steam, Diesel or even Electric. But one thing that is certain is that Steam locomotives have a lot more character to them than a Diesel, a Steam locomotive is more like a living breathing thing that responds to you if you talk to it (so to speak).

Yes i do think the heritage Diesel locomotives have more character than the modern ones because they do but they are not like living breathing creatures like a Steam loco, that isn't to say i hate Diesels though because i like both Steam, Diesel and Electric

So which Steam locomotives are my favourites? Okay well if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook you already know what they are...... but you don't know why the locos that are my favourites are my favourites (if that makes any sense) so to find out what makes these engines my faves scroll down the page to find out

10. GWR 5700 Pannier Tanks

Of all GWR Tank Engines in preservation the 5700s are some of the more unique, look at those water tanks at either side of the locos boiler and the sound the inside valve gear makes, can't get enough of that, now there are other Panniers that have a similar design to the 5700s so you may be thinking why favor the 5700s out of the rest of them.

This isn't to say i don't like the other Panniers, its just that there is something about the  5700s that gives them more charm and character, its worth mentioning as well that a few 5700s have become TV and Film stars the most notable being 5775 that starred in my all time favourite film The Railway Children film from 1970 which is one of the reasons why i love them so much so i also own the Bachmann limited edition Railway Children Train Pack.

5775 also appeared in an episode of Last of The Summer Wine in LT Maroon livery and 5764 appeared in The Signal Man television adaptation and we cannot forget the fictional character from a certain Kids show that was based on this engine.

Plus as a kid i also got to go into the cab of one of these and i didn't remember this til years later looking back on family tapes of this, also two of these are allowed to run on the mainline with the exception of 9400 Pannier 9466, these are the only tank engines of any sort that can run on the national network work. I've also hitched a ride behind these locomotives (not on the mainline) on heritage lines as well. The 5700s are not my all time favourite but they are a favourite of mine and they always will be on my list of top 10

9. 9Fs

These locomotives are magnificent, no other word for them, of all the BR Standards i find these the most interesting not to say all other BR Standards are disinteresting but i just find these more interesting because for a start the middle drive wheels are flangeless so they can go round tighter corners and then theres the gap between the running plate and the chassis, i don't know why but i find that interesting.

Also knowing these engines were built for speed and seeing how strong and powerful they are it makes them all the more awesome, now at this point some are probably shouting other locomotives at the screen that are probably just as or more strong than these the WD 2-8-0s and the LNER P2s to name a few but the WDs were withdrawn in 1967 a year before the 9Fs and the LNER P2s when in service with the LNER never pulled goods trains because they were express passenger locos, yes they were considered the most powerful locomotive probably the most powerful passenger loco for that matter but when Edward Thompson came along and had them rebuilt they became significantly a lot less weaker than they were so they were no longer as strong as they were. I have always considered the 9Fs as the most powerful steam loco (British) and seeing them do what they were built for in person and seeing archive footage and pictures i can see that and the sight of seeing one of these in person has always brought a smile to my face

The 9Fs are therefor my choice of the BR Standards, they always have been and they always will be

8. LMS Duchess Coronations

These locomotives are handsome, everything to say about the Duchesses are all compliments, these are like beautiful women, they are good looking, they are attractive, they're gorgeous and i will admit these engines are also sexy. The Duchesses are basically the female equivalent of the steam locos just like the Princesses.

and these locos are much better off without the streamlined casing, i have nothing against William Stanier but these engines look so much better without the casing, it was considered as a publicity stunt especially since the streamlining never made the Duchesses go any more faster than they already could and because it got in the way of maintenance it was removed. Streamlining a Duchess is like putting a body kit on a Lamborghini in the sense of if you do so it ruins the look of it.

As they are some of the finest express passenger locos out there even if back in they day they were neglected from cleaning like other steamers they are a firm fave of mine, i have yet to see someone who doesn't like these.

7. LNER A4 Pacifics

Now this is one loco which the streamlined casing is suited to even though if the casing is removed then the engine looks odd to say the least, and i have seen a few pics of them without it and it does look weird but the streamlining is what makes them not only unique but also iconic.

Lets not forget three have set world records, 4464 Bittern at 90 mph (the preservation speed record) 60007 Sir Nigel Gresley at 110 mph and of course 4468 Mallard with the world speed record for steam locos at 126 mph that to this very day is still unbeatable and is still the worlds fastest steam locomotive.

not to mention i haven't seen or come across anyone who has a dislike towards the A4s, its a locomotive that everyone loves and it isn't hard to see why. Yes the streamlined casing ws used on other locos such as the P2s, the experimental W1 and bizarrely the LNER B17s but with the B17s it by far doesn't suit them, with the P2s it doesn't look right and as for the W1.... well i preferred it when it wasn't rebuilt and i don't think it was ever successful either, with the A4s its a very different matter entirely. I think the question of who doesn't love an A4 is non existent as its a well loved loco and its definitely one of Gresely's finest. For me i wish i could see them in real life more often but that could change in the future but when i have seen them i have always been impressed. There is no other loco around quite like them.

6. City of Truro

I am sure you're thinking why favor City of Truro of all GWR City Class locos, well it simple, its the only one left of its kind. So why do i favor this loco?

Firstly its subject of chicken and egg debate of which went 100 mph first, Flying Scotsman or City of Truro, its debatable and it still remains unknown let alone a debate but whilst there is evidence of Scotsman;s behalf especially since it was the first to officially do so but even though Truro's was unofficial and that there is no evidence that doesn't mean she didn't go 100 because as the old saying goes truth can be stranger than fiction!

That isn't exclusively why i favor her though, she is a unique loco and very Victorian style esque like the Dukedog, not many locos like this in preservation. I have also had the pleasure numerous times to see her when she was in steam. She isn't anymore and whilst it seems a shame at least she is still with us and also we can stand to one side as enjoy her as a static exhibit and remember all the fun memories of when Truro was in steam but you never know what the future will bring

5. S&D 7Fs

Only recently have the 7Fs appeared on my list of top 10, so what makes them a favourite of mine? Well they are unique, firstly they ran on the famous Somerset & Dorset Railway (S&D) which is where they were built to run but also just look at the running board how it bends up and over the slopped cylinders (slopped so it can go through platforms) that is a feature not seen on many locos

I have also had the chance to see both of these at the same place and at the same time this year at the West Somerset's S&D Closure 50th Anniversary event especially since i got to see a memorable double header of the two double heading in BR Black livery and thats the reason why they are favourites of mine

4. Flying Scotsman

In this day and age with the amount of negativity surrounding both the NRM and this loco i am sure a lot of you are questioning why this loco is on my top 10, firstly i'll use this time to thank both Ian Riley and the NRM for restoring Flying Scotsman back into steam, otherwise she would still be in thousands of bits on the floor and i thank the man Alan Pegler who made it all happen, what would you have Scotsman in steam and in preservation or not at all? I know what i would pick because preservation for steam locos wouldn't be the same without her, it would be like a jam roll without the jam, its nothing.

To those who have its all very well bashing the NRM and the loco but this is the peoples engine, it belongs to everyone whether your an enthusiast or not. Lets not forget it could have been scrapped if Pegler didn't buy her in the first place but i am not going to keep drowning on and on as there are too many silly and childish debates and arguments out there that i am not going to go into, onto what makes Scotsman a fave of mine.

I have always been fascinated by Flying Scotsman since i was a small boy, this is afterall the world famous locomotive as everyone knows about this locomotive and i haven't come across anyone who hasn't heard of it and if i did i would be totally shocked.

Flying Scotsman was the first Steam loco i saw on the mainline when in 1998 my Dad took me to Wolverhampton to witness this fine locomotive pass through the station, it was a truly magical and magnificent sight that i still remember to this very day, seeing this loco for the very first time is something you cannot forget, i even have footage of this on tape that i uploaded on my YouTube channel as an 800 subscriber special

and to see it three times this year is something rather special, i think its overhaul was totally worth it and if you don't then thats tough

3. GWR 1400s

Whenever it comes to personal favourites nearly everyone seems to have a place in their heart of favor the GWR 1400s, there are a couple of reasons why they are one of my favourites.

Firstly two of them appeared in The Titfield Thnderbolt and that is one of the reasons why i love them, Titfield Thunderbolt isn't my all time favourite film but it is one of my favourites so in a way it makes sense to favor them.

Like the 5700s these are some of the more unique GWR Tank Engines perhaps more unique than the 5700s, of all the GWR locos in preservation these are not identical to any other GWR loco or has a loco in preservation based on this design, least not in preservation as this loco was based on a previous design of GWR loco but in preservation no other locos are identical or look similar to them which is what makes them different.

But one of the main reasons is that what sets them apart from other Tank Engines in preservation is that they have the Auto fitted equipment so that they can run on Auto trains which allows the driver to control the engine from the coach, yes the 6400s and some of the small prairies have been Auto fitted too but the small prairies were not designed for this duty to begin with and the 6400s were built after the 1400s, plus the 6400s didn't just pull Auto trains, they also handled other passenger duties and the occasional goods train where as the 1400s were built strictly for Auto trains, in preservation they have on occasion handled other passenger trains and been in a few double headers but they have mostly and more regularly been used on Auto trains and in their heyday they were used on Auto trains and weren't used on anything else as far as i am aware unless i am wrong.

I think we can all agree these are cracking little machines and the sight of one sandwiched between two Auto coaches is always a thrilling and interesting sight to see.

2. LMS Princesses

Just like the Duchesses these are the female equivalents of Steam locomotives, you cannot deny how stunning these locomotives are they are simply marvelous and magnificent, you could argue its a shame two are preserved with only one in steam but it doesn't bother me as i am thankful two were even preserved. All compliments in fact are the same as said earlier with the Duchesses.

There isn't much else for me to say so i'll let the photo do all the talking

1. Bulleid Pacifics

You all knew this was coming, anyone who knows me well knows that the Bulleid Pacifics are my all time favourite Steam locomotive especially since i have regularly stated that they are my favourite but what makes the Bullieds my all time favourite?

Firstly there is the chuffing sound which isn't like any other sound of a Steam loco and a whistle that you cannot beat, okay thats debatable but thats just my own opinion but you also have the Firth Brown or box pock wheels which were used on the locos to save weight, these design of wheels isn't featured on any other British Steam loco that isn't designed by Oliver Bulleid, although being American influenced as the wheel design was used on American locos only Oliver Bulleid took on the idea for British locomotives.

Also these locos have been seen in two forms, the air streamed/air smoothed version known as the Spam cans and of course the rebuilt version, this is what makes them unique as this doesn't or hasn't happened with any other locomotive that has been preserved and i love the design of the air smoothed casing.With all Merchant Navies they were all rebuilt, with the West Countries and Battle of Britains it wasn't the case due to lack of time but i am glad they all weren't rebuilt because again it is what makes them unique and it offers variety.

Also when i was a small boy (forget the age i was) i got to stand on the footplate on one of these namely 34027 Taw Valley on the Severn Valley which at the time was in the guise of Westward Ho, the year was in 2005, speaking of the footplate in 2013 i got to drive and fire one of these locos in the form of Sir Keith Park on the Severn Valley during a Footplate Experience course which was a matter of luck due to issues with the other locos and the certificate i got is framed and proudly hanging on my bedroom wall. I've always loved the Bulleid Pacifics, there is nothing quite like them anywhere else in steam preservation or back in the days of Steam.

and that is the reason why i love the Bulleid Pacifics so much and why they are my favourite

Other favourites/Honorable mentions

Heres a list of other favourites that aren't in or made it into my top 10

Black Fives

The versatile go anywhere machines with the exception of one or two places but i digress.

Black Fives are not everyones cup of tea, and they are not on everyones list of personal favourites and they certainly aren't on mine. But that isn't to say i dislike them because in my list of other favourites they are there, its just that they are not a personal favourite of mine nor one of my choice for my top 10 but these locos are not bad.

That isn't to say many enthusiasts don't admire them because in some way i reckon they do regardless even if they aren't there favourite, yes this isn't the most handsome looking machine produced by Stanier that is both the Princesses and Duchesses but the Black Fives in there own way are quite good looking machines, some might find them a tad boring because they only wear Black liveries though one in preservation has ran in BR Brunswick Green but maybe that makes these more unique as such, yes there are other machines out there that have only been seen in Black liveries as well but lets be honest Green Five or likewise doesn't have the same ring to it as Black Five does it?

I like them for what they are, and they are certainly a good mixed traffic machine, possibly one of the best

LNER B12 8572

Okay i'll be honest this loco was originally in my top 10 but Flying Scotsman knocked it out the list because of my childhood memory of seeing it for the first time, Scotsman is a loco i have seen where as this particular loco i haven't yet seen for myself in preservation.

So why is it in my list of other favourites then? Well this locomotive is very significant, its the only one of the B12s in preservation but isn't exclusively the reason for it being what it is, its how it came to be preserved and the restoration it went through to bring it back into steam which in its own right tells a story, you can read all about it here

Yes Scotsman has been through more overhauls than the B12 and in many respects it has been through a lot more than 8572, but what the B12 went through is something that cannot simply be ignored or turned away.

When it comes to 4-6-0s at least LNER 4-6-0s this is the best looking of them all, not the best looking of all 4-6-0s in the world but definitely the best LNER 4-6-0 out there and its a loco i really do hope to see in the future, a visit to the Midlands is in order i think, Great Central and Severn Valley take note.

Stanier 8Fs

Considering the 8Fs were built primarily as freight locos although on occasion in the Steam days they would pull Passenger trains and in preservation they regularly pull Passenger trans these engines in their own way are handsome machines, just because it was originally a freight loco doesn't mean it cannot be attractive in some way, yes like with the Black Fives they aren't the most handsome but regardless with the 8Fs in their own way they certainly are attractive.

and when it comes to 2-8-0s these are probably the best looking if not one of the best looking, some might say otherwise but still, this is afterall my list. But one thing that drew me into liking these was my first visit to the GCR allowing me to film my first 8F, round that time 48624 was running round in BR Crimson Lake livery which it carried til recently when painted into BR Black.

The Crimson livery for this class is fictitious because the 8Fs never wore it when they were in service, i have bumped into people who didn't like the livery but i personally did, in my books fictitious liveries like this do suit locomotives really well and just because one or few don't like them doesn't mean others don't. Don't ask me why it was a livery like this that drew me into them because i don't know why, its not to say i didn't like them before its just that there was just something about it that drew my attention.

GWR Castles

If you were to ask me what is my personal choice of GWR 4-6-0 it is the GWR Castles

Okay some might say Kings, others may say the Manors or choose any of the other 4-6-0s but out of all the GWR 4-6-0s out there or even in general the Castles are the more exciting ones out there, not to say i don't like the other 4-6-0s because that isn't the case.

I mean who doesn't love a GWR Castle? They are elegant and majestic machines, they have always been my choice of 4-6-0 and lets not forget Pendennis Castle has been to Australia which is where it spent most of its preserved life before coming back to the UK and Pendennis Castle also took part in the 1925 exchange trials with LNER Gresley A1 4474 Victor Wild, Pendennis Castle went to the LNER with Victor Wild going to the GWR and the Castle proved competition to the A1/A3s and you  might even say that they were and still are better than the LNER competition.

LMS Jubilees

Taking one look at these and people may think that these are basically just Black Fives, whilst there are both similar looking there are differences between the two that makes the Jubs different to the Fives but i won't be talking about those in this blog post, i'll leave you all to research that on Google.

But my reason for liking them is because they are beautiful locomotives, still not the most beautiful but still a beauty in its own right. Yes when they first came out it took them ages for them to become what they are today but that shouldn't and doesn't stop anyone from liking or favoring them and it doesn't make them bad either because they aren't.

SR Maunsell U classes

Another Southern locomotive has got to be included and what better choice than the Maunsell U classes, better known to you and I as the U Boats.

For a Tender Engine the U's may be small but they are an example to show that great things come in small packages, what i find interesting about them is that some of these started of as the K Class Tank Engines which were not stable in service and after the crash at Seven oaks with one of these it lead to them being rebuilt into the tender engines they are today all though technically 31806 is the only K Class rebuilt example there is the others have always been Tender Engines as after the K rebuilds further U's were built from fresh.

How many Tender Engines started out life as Tank Engines and were rebuilt into Tender Engines? there isn't anything like the U's anywhere else and that is what makes them unique and that is one reason why i like them.

But also take a good look at these locomotives, the proportions and looks of this engine are certainly smashing, in which case the photo does all the talking as a photo is worth 1000 words.

So that rounds up my top 10 list and the list of my other favourites, do you have any favourites? Feel free to drop by a comment on here or on Facebook and Twitter

Until next time i'll see you all soon

Monday, 10 October 2016

Great Central Railway Autumn Steam Gala 2016 Saturday 8/10/16

Ivatt Tank Sold and Revell Canadair kit has 1 day left

Firstly i am pleased to report the Ivatt Tank has now been sold, it has been packaged up and will be ready to be dispatched soon to its new home

Also the Revell Canadair kit doesn't have long left now, it only has a day or so left until it ends.

For the price of £20 this is an absolute bargain, its the second time its been up for sale so it must be sold


Money is also going to a Hornby class 50, was gonna for a Bachmann class 40 but decided to knock that on the head in favor for getting a second class 50

Want to see a class 50 in the next review video? Well be buying the Revell Canadair kit you will be able to make this happen

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Ivatt Tank up for sale again and 7 days left for Revell Canadair kit

Firstly there are only 7 days left now for the Revell Canadair kit, price of this kit is now at £20, an absolute bargain and a Buy it Now to


Also the Bachmann Ivatt class 2 2-6-2T Tank has now gone back up for sale, its still the same price as it was before but now it has 3 watchers, again an absolute bargain and a Buy it Now to

Now the reason why i am selling them. Well i am selling these items off so i can get myself the Bachmann class 40 in BR Green with the split boxes to go with my split box BR Blue version of the class 40
If i can sell both these eBay items off this week then i will be able to buy this class 40 next week, also one of the many things i have planned is to double head this with my other class 40 which can only be done if those eBay items sell.

So get over to eBay now and grab yourself some bargains!