Sold March 2011 Back to Archive

2 1/2 inch gauge 4-8-4 "Helen Long" - stock code 4950

I think I’ve only had one “Helen Long” in before, so long ago that I couldn’t even find mention of it in the archive this morning. A collaboration between James Joslin of Canada, who produced the original general arrangement, and LBSC who did the rest, including building a chassis for Joslin, this is a large three cylinder 4-8-4T “might have been”. Without going and digging out the “Model Engineer”s covering the build (late 1920s I think, somebody will no doubt correct me) I can’t remember the exact wording, but basically It was along the lines of “not a design for the beginner” – which probably explains the rarity of seeing them today, I suspect few were built and fewer survive.

This is a largely complete, dismantled engine with a complete, assembled chassis, a boiler was hydraulic tested back in 2001 – presumably when the engine was dismantled – and platework which has been stripped and repainted into black primer. The rear bunker is in brass, obviously newly made.

If you aren’t already a reader of John Baguley’s inspirationally good website, it’s worth having a look – he has built a Helen Long (amongst many other things), documented in a blow-by-blow photo diary. Beautiful quality work and highly lucid writing, gives me something to aspire to.

gauge 2 1/2 inch