I think this must be the nicest Suffolk dredging tractor we've ever had, a combination of a good quality build, an interesting variation on a thoroughly practical design and a really well-sorted engine make it a delight to drive.
Originally serialised in "Model Engineer" magazine in the early 1980s by John Haining - well known by that time for his ploughing engine and tackle designs, along with the Durham & North Yorkshire agricultural engine - the Suffolk dredging tractor made up to a good-sized engine in 3 inch scale. Went surprisingly well too, with a twin cylinder double high engine giving instant starting with no dead centres to worry about, coupled to a free-steaming coal-fired cross-tube boiler.
I particularly like this one which has forsaken the "Robot Wars" type back end with ground anchor and heavy duty winch for a short bed wth wood decking, the whole thing running on rubber tyred steel wheels. With well-placed footrests slung forwards and low down, it makes for a comfortable driving position.
We all had a go on this one last week, finding out, to general amusement, that you could make a circuit across the yard, in through the boiler shop, across unit 17, through into the main workshop and then back out. I'm told Connor posted fastest lap of the day - there's some video of his practice lap here.
|cylinder material||cast iron|
|CE mark||n/a - pre-2002|
|boiler type||water cross tube yorkshire|
|boiler construction||silver soldered|
|hydraulic test valid to||18-Mar-2023|
|steam test valid to||18-May-2020|
|safety valve type||spring|