VR S Class steam streamliner

 
  Spiritman Train Controller

Location: Camden, NSW
Hi All

Not sure if I should of ask this on the Victorian forum...but mods please feel free to move it there.
My question is:-Are there any original plans/blueprints of the S streamlined casing that were added to this loco?
I'm assuming that there are surviving plans in the archives of the original un-streamlined versions.

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  M636C Minister for Railways

I don't know the answer to this question.

I hope T Woodroffe will answer, since he almost certainly knows.

There is the locomotive diagram which provides a simplified but generally accurate idea of the shape of the casing.

There is a complete (if worn) streamlined tender at Seymour.

The casing was pretty simple, except for the nose doors.

There were several distinct components.

The "skyline" casing which covered the stack and the dome and safety valves.
The two large side valances that were the majority of the "streamlining".
The two nose  doors that covered the smokebox front.
The lower front casing that faired the nose doors into the buffer beam, coupler and pilot.

The pilot itself changed from solid to a curved version of the steel bar pilot originally fitted.

The side valances were originally faired into the pilot but were cut back to the buffer beam in the 1940s.
(The recent Trainbuilder model represents the cut back version)

It is possible that there were no detail drawings prepared for the S class streamlining. Certainly the first Gresley A4 was built up from basic sketches and drawings for later locomotives were prepared based on the work done on the first locomotive. In fact the first four had an incorrect radius on the front "wedge" that resulted in the casing being too long at the buffer beam, corrected later.

The S class streamlining was much simpler than the A4, being largely flat surfaces added to the existing locomotive.

One S class was damaged in a level crossing accident about 1951 and the nose doors and fairing were removed and repaired or replaced. Photos of the loco running with the front of the casing removed showed how little the basic locomotive was changed, since it ran with the original buffer beam exposed and a flat pressed steel pilot attached. Beyond the side valances, only short side plates beside the smokebox faired the nose doors into the existing boiler.

M636C
  t_woodroffe Assistant Commissioner

AFAIK the original tracings for the application of streamlining to the VR S Class 4-6-2 locomotives are held by the Public Record Office (PROV). Full. detailed drawings were prepared by the VR Rolling Stock Branch Drawing Office.

The Trainbuilder S Class model represents the later cut back streamlining but the valancing around the cylinders and the headstock to footplate plan view are not good. The headstock (narrower) to footplate (wider) was tapered and there was a distinct swell of the valance over the cylinders and these features are poorly represented by the Trainbuilder model.

TW
  M636C Minister for Railways

The headstock (narrower) to footplate (wider) was tapered and there was a distinct swell of the valance over the cylinders.....

TW
t_woodroffe

In different photographs it appears that the valances were continuous over the cylinder casing but in others, it appears that the valance was cut away around the cylinders, although the lower gold leaf stripe continued across the cylinders.

Were there two different layouts or was the casing always cut away around the cylinders?

M636C
  t_woodroffe Assistant Commissioner

The valancing was (always) cut away around the cylinders but swelled to match the cylinder casing at valve chest height which was wider than the footplate. The drawings detail this and it is quite noticeable from photographs and, indeed, from Spiritman's avatar.

TW
  M636C Minister for Railways

The valancing was (always) cut away around the cylinders but swelled to match the cylinder casing at valve chest height which was wider than the footplate. The drawings detail this and it is quite noticeable from photographs and, indeed, from Spiritman's avatar.

TW
t_woodroffe
There were significant variations in the way the valance was interfaced with the cylinder covers on the streamlined S class.

As first converted when painted red, 301's valance was pretty much flat except for the transition to the buffer beam as indicated by TW above. The cylinder casings on both sides were proud of the valance except where the curve of the casing around the piston valve disappeared below the flat valance above. There was a clear break line around the cylinder casing on the three sides and the cylinder casing was 30-50 mm wider than the valance.

This can be seen in the VR official photos in Mark Bau's website:

http://www.victorianrailways.net/motive%20power/ssteam/ssteam.html

Check the second and third photos on that page.

When the second locomotive was streamlined, it was painted blue to match the Spirit of Progress and a number of changes were made to the shape of the valance to give the impression of continuity around the cylinders, in particular the valance was brought out to align with the cylinder casing, including a pressed "bulge" forward of the piston valves. The valance was (apparently) attached to the top of the cylinder casing with a thin cover strip not seen on 301 as first altered.

This with the painting, gave the impression of the valance extending over the cylinder. The fourth photo on the link above of 302 as completed with streamlining shows the difference in the two valance arrangements very clearly.

Other photos suggest that 303 was streamlined exactly like 302, and if the identification of the locomotives in the first photo at the link above is correct, 301 was brought into line with 302 and 303, and 300 was converted with the arrangement on 302.

303 appears to have had a deeper opening under the coupler on the pilot as converted as an early stage in the aerodynamic changes to reduce dust affecting the inside rods.

M636C
  Spiritman Train Controller

Location: Camden, NSW
AFAIK the original tracings for the application of streamlining to the VR S Class 4-6-2 locomotives are held by the Public Record Office (PROV). Full. detailed drawings were prepared by the VR Rolling Stock Branch Drawing Office.
t_woodroffe
Many thanks...you are a wealth of information. ARHS archives have some drawings ".....but not a full set. In addition many are in poor condition.." and needing restoration according to an emailed reply I sent them.

TW you suggest the streamlining plans are with PROV... guessing they would have a set of the pre streamlined loco as well.
  Valvegear Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Norda Fittazroy
There definitely were drawings done for the streamlining of the S class. Many of them carry the legend: "DRAWN: H.G.S"
"H.G.S" was my father.
  Spiritman Train Controller

Location: Camden, NSW
There definitely were drawings done for the streamlining of the S class. Many of them carry the legend: "DRAWN: H.G.S"
"H.G.S" was my father.
Valvegear
Valve that's awesome mate!

My father worked at Clyde Wagon Maintenance (Clyburn) in the 70's and 80's and the very first long distance train journey we made soon after arriving in Australia in 1974 was on the SOP...even though the steamers were long gone by then we both have a connection to this iconic Australian train.
  t_woodroffe Assistant Commissioner

The drawing detailing the valancing around the cylinders is S 5883.87 to .94, drawn by HGS. It is annotated "Panel dished to match up with cylinder cleading" and "Cleading to fit against cylinders." It also has an amendment dated 20 June 1950 for the valancing to be cut off at the headstock at the request of the Superintendent, Locomotive Maintenance.

Incidently, S 302 re-entered service after streamlining application on 17-8-37 painted red. It re-entered service on 10-11-37 painted blue and gold.

TW
  Michelle12 Moderator Photo Overlord

Location: Melbourne
The big pity with the S class was that none of them were preserved.
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
The big pity with the S class was that none of them were preserved.
Michelle12
Yes, and the haste with which the VR proceeded with the scrapping suggests they were trying to avoid any being preserved.
  Spiritman Train Controller

Location: Camden, NSW
The big pity with the S class was that none of them were preserved.
Yeah...at least the plans are preserved.

Was there a reason for the difference between the grille like fender (cowcatcher) and the solid one?
  michaelgreenhill Administrator That's Numberwang!

Location: Melbourne
Yeah...at least the plans are preserved.

Was there a reason for the difference between the grille like fender (cowcatcher) and the solid one?
Spiritman
Improved airflow for cooling purposes, as I recall.
  Valvegear Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Norda Fittazroy
Improved airflow for cooling purposes, as I recall.
michaelgreenhill

My information is that it was because the solid cowcatcher travelling at speed induced a low pressure area behind it, and this caused dirt and other detritus to get sucked up into the valve gear and piston rod/packing of the inner cylinder.
  HUDS761 Station Staff

Location: Werribee
There is a live steam, I believe 7 1/4 gauge, stored at Scienceworks.  How accurate is the streamlining on this model?

I remember seeing it at the museum in Russell Street in a glass case in the late sixties / early seventies.  Now it is in the back room at Spotswood wrapped in plastic with asbestos warning labels attached.

It would be great to see this displayed with Gerald Dee's collection.
  t_woodroffe Assistant Commissioner

The streamlining on the live steam pacific model in Scienceworks is more representational of the VR S Class than an accurate portrayal. I understand the model was a generic pacific locomotive that had the streamlining attached after the SOP was introduced to service. Somewhat similar to the work of the TGR .....!

TW
  Valvegear Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Norda Fittazroy
Whilst on the subject - happy 76th birthday to the Spirit of Progress.

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