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A Garratt In Miniature

Category Archives: Progress

January Update

After the Christmas break (And a family wedding!) its time to get back to building the Garratt. I have been concerntrating on the front end components, mainly the drag beam/coupling, cow catcher fixings and front pony truck centering spring. The image below shows the brass tube and attachments which will contain the springs, which centre the pony truck. All complete, they just require some suitable springs to finish them. This assembly is secured directly to the coupling/drag beam above. The unpainted strip of metal running between the brass cylinder and buffer beam is the top beam of the cow catcher…

This is the pony truck centering and drag beam/coupling assembly out of the frames…

This front shot shows the start made on the cow catcher assembly. Top and bottom beams are done, leaving only the vertical bars to be inserted between the two. These will be constructed from 10mm steel tube…

A similar view to above, but without the lower cow catcher assembly…

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December Update

Here’s a brief update for December. Been dragged around too many city centres on shopping expeditions this month! Anyway, work is progressing on some of the smaller pieces. The rear balance bracket is well underway. This connects the rear pony spring with the rear driver spring, through a swinging beam. The three holes in the side are to be slotted, when my long series cutter turns up, and will provide a home for the swinging beam…

The image below shows the rear frame stretcher. This will sit between the two rear balance brackets above. The frame work above the 3/8 plate is to support the rear pony truck pivot and the two large holes will house the equalizing spring which will centre the pony truck. There’s still some work to do on these pieces, but almost completes the main frame components!…

No doubt there will be no update until the New Year now, so here’s wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Cheers, Chris

Hooray! November Update

After a few months off, work has once again kicked off!

Work has now started on putting all the key frame pieces together. Buffer beam angles have now been drilled and secured, although there is still some work needed to attach them to the frames. The image below shows the angles mounted to the frames and buffer beams, ready to be setup and drilled. The cylinder relief valves start to make it look like an NGG16!…

Another view of the assembly, showing some of the laser cut parts, test fitted to the frames…

This is the beginings of the main pivot point of the frames, seen in this picture, upside down! The round hole in the vertical plate is for an axle water feed pump, the bigger hole is the pivot for the main boiler cradle…

Below is a laser cut bracket, which will mount the motion bracket to the frames…

And finally, cut by hand (not laser!) the raised buffer beam section (shown in cleaner etch primer!)…

Cheers, Chris

Release Valves Part 2

I’m back from the great American Roadtrip and barely made it back before they closed the airports because of Irene!

Anyway, a parcel was waiting when I got back and the results speak for themselves…

Release Valves in 3D!

Many moons ago, I used to build locos for Microsoft Train Simulator. Like everything, this was put to one side some years ago and things have gone from virtual to real! During that time, I used a program called 3D Canvas (Now called 3D Crafter) to build these locos. I thought that I would never use it again, but 3D Crafter is getting some use once again!

Whilst watching BBC Click last week, they had a segment on 3D printing and how the price was being driven down and is now affordable to joe public. After a bit of research, it turns out to be a viable proposition now. So as an experiment, I opened up 3D Crafter and started to draw out a cylinder release valve.

I’ve sent the model off to the 3D printers and I’ll wait to see the results! The prototype will be printed in a granular textured aluminium, which looks similar to a cast texture! All interesting stuff, so we’ll wait and see what it looks like when it turns up.

Anyway, soon be holiday time, so i’ll return in a month – hopefully with a present on my doorstep!

Cheers, Chris

July Update

At the moment, I’m working on finishing the main attachments for the frames. This involves some fabrication of stretchers at three points across the frames. I’m waiting on a few more laser cut bits to get these finished. Pictures, will of course follow. In the mean time, i’ve been making a start on the main driving wheels. Its been a slow process, as the blanks I’ve got vary in thickness and “trueness”! All drivers are now bored, with a start made on shaping them.

It’s pushing the boundaries of my lathe, but they are coming together. 9 down, 3 to go!..

As you can see from above, 9 of the wheels are faced and bored both sides, leaving the tread and wheel webs to cut on the faceplate…

More than likely, there will be no update next month, as I’m off to the US of A for a long earned break! Normal service will resume in September!

Cheers, Chris

June Update

Not as much progress as I’d of liked, but still progress afterall! Can’t really call this a March, April or May update, so i’ll bundle it up under the title of June Update…

As far as i’m concerned the cylinder bodies are now complete, apart from the fitting of a few ancilary parts – These have now been stripped to their bare bones ready for a good soaking in paraffin to clean the inner ports. Now that these are out of the way, its time to start on the frames. More to the point, drilling lots and lots of holes!

On the whole, this has been an easy process. Caution is certainly needed when drilling/tapping laser cut plates on their edges, as the cutting does leave a hard suface to drill and tap through. Luckily, this has gone without a hitch and all major holes have now been drilled and tapped as neccesary.

The picture below shows the frames and buffer beams drilled and tapped. The cylinder mountings were all drilled from a jig, manufactured whilst the cylinders were in their infancy. You’ll also notice that the axle box keeps are now in place, drilled and tapped 2BA. The plates are basically finished, but there are plenty of fixings/angles to make to join all the pieces together…

Looking along the frames, you’ll notice the addition of another cylinder in the middle of the frames. This is for the inclusion of a steam brake. Slightly different from the full size design, but there was always going to be design tweaks along the way…

How the frames are looking after drilling and a test fit of all of the pieces…

What a lovely pair! February Update

A small update on progress. Both Cylinders are now at the same stage – virtaully complete! Some fittings and pipework are needed to complete the set. These might be undertaken later in the project, as they’re not necessarily needed at the moment. The valve endcaps will be primed at some point soon though…

Work has also started on figuring out where all the holes on the frames will go and a start has been made in TurboCad to plan these. Below is the buffer beam outline in TurboCad…

January Update (Just about!)

Finally got chance to progress the 16 today – but only for a good 6 hours. Unfortunately, I don’t have the luxury of a well insulated workshop and heater yet and so can only really work when the weather is warm enough! So, given how cold the weather has been, time on the project has been limited – hopefully this will get better soon (fingers crossed).

Today, I completed the drilling of one cylinder set (hooray!) and the other one isn’t too far behind now. You can see the state of the cylinders below. Machining of the piston valves, valve inspection plugs, some pipework and a few miscellaneous jobs still remain. Hopefully, the pictures speak for themselves…

November Update

Well, after a month off, i’m back at it once again! Work has started on the valve components, these include the endcaps, rod support and valve bobbins. Below is the valve rod support/endcap, with completed gland and support bushing. These are handed components, as the fixing holes are not straight to the frames, but centred to valve and main cylinder centres…

Top hat endcaps. Although not a feature of the original design, some Cockerill variants did carry them. I liked the feature and so, instead of the flat endcaps design, I decided to add them to my version…

How the components are starting to add to the look of the cylinders (and the weight!)…