James Spooner 1872 : Andy Cooper

Building James Spooner 1872 FR No 8

[Please also see "James Spooner 1872 FR No 8" and "Building James Spooner's boiler" projects]

Ref: Fairlie Locomotives of North Wales: David Payling : Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways 2017. There is a drawing in this book which needs to be compared carefully to the photos [ postcards below ]


"James Spooner" has a gas tank, safety valve, water filler and gas burner for each boiler. It has one lubricator in a side tank and one regulator which is hidden behind the cab side sheet. The regulator servo, battery, gas tanks and large lubricator are in the side tanks so that the centre of the loco can be kept clear for scale details. There are two boilers joined by a single pipe from which there is one steam take off. [ See Making James Spooner's boiler in Projects ]. The boilers have main steam pipes so that each bogie has its own steam supply.

The receiver and switch are housed in the "ashpan".

Where [TO] appears in the text, Trevor Oughton took the pictures and made the parts. His skill to make such detailed parts gives James Spooner a scale quality.

Footplates with rivet detailing : 1/16 brass flat with 1/8 square edging

centre section of the chassis showing the ashpan space for the radio gear

..a very heavy and rigid footlate

Completed footplate stripped for painting showing bottom of ashpan

Boiler resting on Roundhouse "Taliesin" bogies [TO]

Taliesin bogies are longer than those used on the original JS. Thus the drawings had to be modified to make sure that the central section was wide enough for the two gas burners.

Early chassis development [ minus ashpan ]

burners in place...the gas jets can be removed separately [ just!! ]

Plan view showing two gas tanks and large lubricator

Gas tank parts [TO]

Gas tanks [TO]

The gas tanks have threaded "upstands " to which the tank tops and tanks are attached for easy removal

side tank rivet detail.."real" 3/64 rivets used

footplate rivet detail and end of tanks

smokebox prepared for detailing

Detail of switch side - receiver is in the ashpan-

back to back burners

Regulator side - the regulator is mounted at floor level to be hidden behind the cab side plate - the servo is to the left of the lubricator

rear smokebox rivet detailing [TO]

Coal loads cover the tops of the gas valves so that the open centre section is available for detailing including here firehole doors catches and hinges, handbrake for the stoker. In 1872 the driver controlled the water injection.

He also had half firehole doors to keep an eye on the fire.

The cab end sheets fix on one side only so the tanks can be removed

without removing them. Half round was added plus window surrounds and glazing.

Finished filler caps [TO]

Filler cap parts [TO]

Scale oval buffer and also cut outs in the footplate underneath the smokebox for the exhaust to move from side to side but morte importantly to allow the burner to "breathe". I have found that because on Fairlies the bogie is directly under the smokebox, burners go out if there is insufficient airflow.

Notice the main steam pipe emerging to go down the side of the boiler to attach to "flexible" silicone pipe

In this picture of A Roundhouse Taliesin the exhaust arrangement can be seen. The "swansneck exhaust pipe fits over the pipe from the bogie and pivots inside the smokebox as the bogie moves ...very clever.

Also Roundhouse fit small brackets on the side of the smokebox . The first boiler bearer has 6ba threads in the two sides which you can see in this picture. So the smokebox can be fitted and removed very easily without removing the bogie which is fixed from the top.

Chimney [TO]

Smokbox hinges [TO]

Smokebox door showing milled slots for hinge parts [TO]

Chimney and door fitting [TO]

Gauge glasses were painted inside so that the water level could be seen easily . The fitting joining the main steam pipes from each boiler with the lubricator can be seen to the right of the regulator which has been shortened. Note cooling holes in the ashpan floor.

switch side pipework showing the pipe from the rear of the regulator to the steam turret

James Spooner's famous bells which are mounted on the sand domes and have a lever actuation from the cab for the whistle and the sand

James Spooners snap box or that's what we think it is!

Maybe it was for the token.

and reproduced on the engine [ Gerv Wright did the printing which says "James Spooner No8" ] I have added the controls for the driver: two regulator handles one for each bogie and one wheel to open both regulators at the same time. The wheel did not appear on the rebuilt locomotive ]

Correct detail and size plates came from Slater's.

Victorian maroon livery and lining by Matt Acton - Berry Hill Works

Slaters also produce the maker's plates which identify the boilers separately: No 929 and No 930. JS was the built by Avonside Engine Company [ late Slaughter and Gruning ] Important to get the correct boiler on the correct end!!

Sand domes conceal water filler valves Goodall -type.

The domes are secured to the wrappers by silicone [TO]

These pictures show some of the intricate detailing done by Trev.

Stages in Dome making [TO]

Here the Salter valves have been fitted. The rods to the whistle valve can also be seen.

The valves are offset to avoid the regulator to dome steam pipes

James Spooner at Elsecar 2019























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