A 2’6″ gauge diesel mechanical loco built in 1971 for the hot strip mill at Shotton Steelworks in north Wales. Based on a Hudswell-Clarke mines design, with the addition of a large cab. Now preserved at the Statfold Barn Railway in Staffordshire, where it caught my eye on my recent visit.
Reasons why I like this loco:
- Long and low. Mines locos are often, by necessity, long, flat machines and this is no exception. The airy cab on it only highlights the effect.
- Big jackshaft. These are always good.
- A distinctive, modern design.
So it’s too modern for Cranbrook, but since when did logic ever get in the way of a good model railway idea? If I rule out using it on that layout, it would still make a great addition to a hypothetical future preservation-era project. Even better, that short wheelbase with jackshaft is likely to match one or more 4mm scale industrial diesel kits, so there is some scope there to modify one down from EM gauge to 17.5mm as the basis of the mechanism.
Because 17.5mm gauge is accurate for 2’6″, of course. Never has to be simple, does it?!