Beyer-Garratts were used in Spain from the 1930s on both passenger and freight services. This is a detailed model of the last freight engine ordered, 282F-0421 of 1961 which survives in preservation, still in working order.
Steve and I took this one to the club on a very cold day last week (well we had to - when would we next get a chance to drive a Garratt?). At the risk of stating the obvious, it is a big engine - not only did we not have enough rollers to run it in the workshop, we didn't even have a bench long enough to stand it on. It's that big.
Loading and unloading is fine provided it's always on a piece of track - once off the track, manoeuvring the three articulating sections is a bit like wrestling an anaconda. Heavy, irritable and with a mind of its own.
The engine is fitted with lights in the cab and along the running boards, wired for an external battery with plug connector at the rear. Controls are all extended to the rear tank, with slide-out regulator handle, reverser and drain cock handle.
Axle pump bypass is mounted on the side of the tank. Starting the steam pump on the move is something only to be attempted if you're in regular employment with Cirque du Soleil - for all others starting it at the station to run at a gentle tickover throughout the next lap is the preferred option.
The engine runs, but itâ€™s fair to say itâ€™s done a lot of work and needs an overhaul. The steam pump leaks, drain cocks are erratic in operation with two so-so, one leaking moderately and another profusely; glands need repacking; valvegear needs some rebushing.
All that said, a remarkable model of an interesting prototype; complete with a large carrying/storage frame on wheels.
|wheel material||cast iron|
|lubricator type||2 x mechanical|
|boiler construction||steel, welded tubes|
|safety valve type||spring|
|mechanical pump||2 x axle|