Peter Nutbrown : No 21 Lady Emily [ or MSS Bashing! ]

Bought in 2003 as an MSS kit and assembled, and operated manually as a meths burner.

2005 On a sunny day a derailment on the garden reverse curved section caused minor burns to the hand and damage to the track when the meths spilled from the reservoir also melting the boiler sight glass. R/C was fitted to slow the loco down. This was a servo mounted on the footplate driving a wire in tube within a brass tube to operate forward/reverse lever. The receiver and battery pack were positioned in a tram style wooden coach.

2006 The brass boiler was replaced with an I.P. Engineering unit which was slightly longer, requiring the R/C equipment on the reverser to be removed as there was insufficient space in the cab. This a similar boiler to that used on the PPS Jane loco and came with a throttle valve and in line lubricator. The gas burner was fitted between the frames and a small horizontal gas tank mounted in an extended bunker.

2007 The Victoria nameplates were removed and a large pressure gauge was fitted from the Regner Willi. The loco was painted with heat resistant black paint and saw very few outings in this manual form.

2019 The front driving wheel was found to be slack on the axle and all wheels were not running true; minor adjustments made.

2021 The loco was stripped down and cleaned, the MSS loco body discarded, and the bare loco test run on the circle. 24 laps were achieved pushing a loaded wagon, but flames were rising above the boiler flame shield and from behind it. A No.3 jet was tried but it was unable to produce enough steam to operate the loco continuously around the circle. A No.5 jet was fitted and with a rear flame shield fitted between the frames sufficient steam was produced without the flames rising above the shield. On radio control trials with a body fitted the No.5 jet produced too much heat, temporarily seizing the servo, so the No.3 jet was refitted. Sufficient steam was now produced to propel the loco and coach on a test run easily up all the inclines with the tram body not fitted.

My old works toolbox was cut up to provide steel for a tram body and buffer beams were made from 5mm thick aluminium plate. A generic style body was formed from the steel with 2 open windows on each of the four plates which are bolted together with 8BA screws.  Two pairs of handrails were made for each side and apertures made for a step below each in the skirt. A pair of steel lamp brackets were made for each end. Holes were cut in the roof for the funnel, safety valve and the water top-up connection. The slip in funnel extension provides positioning of the tram style body on the chassis.

A servo was mounted on the front footplate to operate the forward and reverse lever and its cable was attached to a section of boiler banding to clear the flame shield. A Flysky receiver and an AAA 4.8v. battery box with charging harness were positioned in the tram coach. The throttle valve is still fitted and provides a limiter effect to engine speed.

The frames, gas tank, boiler and flame shield were painted in Hammerite black and the buffer beams with Hammerite red. The tram body is painted in Paragon paints blue with a black roof, finally the name and numberplates were fitted.

The original 2005 wooden tram coach Perspex windows were replaced due to discolouration and the internals repainted with Paragon paints gulf red and antique white. Brandbright wheels and axle boxes from the red coaches replaced the Hudson style boxes. A 3mm steel plate was fitted to the underside and the distance between axles reduced to provide better running. Handles and grab bars were fitted to the doors and a centre buffer fitted to the rear beam.

When the tram body was fitted and the loco warm, minor faults were discovered like the servo arm rubbing on the front casing and jamming on the lamp bracket securing nuts and the body became more difficult to remove due to the position of the servo. The front and rear spacer plates on the lower edge of the tram body were cut out to provide ease of fitting and the nuts on the brackets replaced with half ones.

A test run lasting 20 minutes of the assembled loco and coach achieved 64 laps of the outer circuit of the portable layout with 2 top ups of water required. This was the equivalent of 5.77 scale miles.

November 2021






























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