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Author Topic: 2-8-4 Berkshires  (Read 6739 times)
modlerbob

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« on: February 13, 2008, 11:33:12 AM »

With the recent proliferation of HO scale 2-8-4's I cannot help but wonder why the Erie version was not modeled.  They had the most of any railroad, over 100.  As  they appear to have been quite a bit different than the NKP or C&O variants and would have required different tooling I suspect that it was decided not to go that route.
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Bob DeWoody
SteamGene

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« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2008, 12:10:06 PM »

Yep.  With the Van Sweringen (sp) 2-8-4, one has a close model for NKP, C&O, PM, and, apparently, Virginian.  With the Erie, one has a close model of the Erie.
Gene
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Chief Brass Hat
Virginia Tidewater and Piedmont Railroad
"Only coal fired steam locomotives"
Mr.Slate

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« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2008, 07:40:37 PM »

The Virginian BA's were slightly different with the steam dome under the sand domes.  QAny chance Bachmann will produce an authentic Virginian version?
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r.cprmier

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« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2008, 08:38:43 PM »

I agree about the Erie  Berks.  I would have also liked to see The B&A A-6 berkshire modelled; especially as this is the road upon which Lima tested this magnificent steed.  The B&As had a much different look than the NKPs, Nashville, Chatanooga; or the Pere Marquette in that their barrel was broader, the wheelbase was a bit less, they had Trailing truck boosters-Franklins, I do believe-as well as the low-browed brooding look of an elesco feedwater heater.  They were a tough-looking horse, and with a load on makin' smoke, there were a sight to behold.  I own a DVD called  "Whistler's Western" which quite obviously features B&A-with a lot of steam, especially 2-8-4s.
It was either Hunt or Nigel who mentioned to me that the B&A ran a 2-6-6-2(?) across the Westfield-Pittsfield (state line) run, which had one hell of a grade!  Back when I was driving tractor trailer, I used to just watch 3-4 diesel lashups working the run from Wornoco up to Beckett with ponderously long trains.  I t too, was a sight, even though by then it was "worms" on the side.  Really cool, too, to watch that same train growling in to Pittsfield-a half hour after I had taken lunch there!
There were the GE equipment runs from Pittsfield plant to Schenectedy and on to Syracuse also, with some pretty interesting depressed centre cars.  Transformers were made here-big transformers.

The B&M run from Pittsfield to North Adams was no slouch either.  For a long time, the station at N. Adams sported a really neat weathervane-I mean a really NEAT one.  I had made plans to go up some night and "rescue it from the discard" but some other joker beat me to it.  Oh well...

So all of this is leading me to gleam lecherously at the three Rivarossi Berkshires that now slumber solemnently on the dead line (top shelf).  Hmmmmmmmmm.....   lessee:  Grind down the pizza cutters, change the ponies and trailing wheels, deface the smokebox for the (yep; you guessed it) Gene; are you ready for this?   Elesco feedwater heater.   Same tenders-peish the thought I change them for Hickens...  New motors ala NWSL, and of course, Tsunami.
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
pdlethbridge
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« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2008, 11:12:58 PM »

How off would one be to model a B&M berk, Except for the coffin FWH weren't they similiar to the B&A Berks?

« Last Edit: March 27, 2008, 11:17:23 PM by pdlethbridge » Logged
Guilford Guy


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« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2008, 11:14:54 PM »

How off would one be to model a B&M berk, Except for the coffin FWH weren't they similiar to the B&A Berks?
AND~!
They were later sold to SP and ATSF!
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Alex

pdlethbridge
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« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2008, 11:20:04 PM »

The B&M got rid of them because of problems with the way the trailing truck was mounted, I think it was actually a part of the main frame
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r.cprmier

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« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2008, 07:18:53 AM »

PDLethbridge;
I am not sure of the dimensions of either the B&M or the B&A berks.  The B&M type is one I saw a lot of as a kid when visiting Memere in Arlington (her house was just up from the Brattle street overpass); I believe that is part of the Woburn loop.   At any rate, I think I will take a serious look at the conversion this weekend.  I will probably do a "prototype" of the Portsmouth Terminal and Hoosic railroad...if I do.  Right now, I am closing in on the F&M resin kits I had mouldering away on some obscure shelf.  You know, the detail on resin kits is nothing short of phenomenal; but building them...something else.  Marty mcGuirk came up with an idea I like:  As the parts are generally cast inclusive of a main "sheet", it is easy to just sand the sheet down to the thickness of paper.  Easier to remove that way.

Back to the Berkshire:

Gene mentioned once or twice that the C&Os were called Kanahwas.  What is interesting about that (he is quite correct) is the amount of references I have heard made to [them] as "Berkshires".  As I saaid before, I believe the boilers of an NKP Berk are a little smaller in Dia. than the B&M or B&As.  That may just be an optical illusion.  We shall see.
I wonder just how much hell I would raise with the prototype police if I were to leave that great looking [Riv] sand dome intact.
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
SteamGene

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« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2008, 08:45:53 AM »

Rich,
Two points about the Van Sweigerin (sp) sand domes.  It appears from the photos that the B&M/B&A sand domes have somewhat the same shape - rectangular rather than round - they seem to be about half the size.  The other thing is getting rid of have the sand pipes.
Since that family began with the NKP, I wonder why they were given sanding equipment that is obviously a C&O design. 
Gene
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Chief Brass Hat
Virginia Tidewater and Piedmont Railroad
"Only coal fired steam locomotives"
r.cprmier

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« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2008, 09:33:31 AM »

Gene;
Copyright/patent infringement aside, why not?  I am by far, not any expert on locomotive design; but that sand dome/sander/valve arrangement looks well-designed and capable, so why wouldn't someone want to use that same design?  I have long admired that particular design of engine; whether Berkshire or Kanahwa for their effeciency and durability.  I am sure that if steam were contemporaneously  viable economical alternative, they would still be pulling freight today.

As  modeler, I do not neccessarily have to bother my head with engineering issues; I simply have to think that they look "cool" and go with it.  In good consience, however, I tend toward having to have some logical mechanical legitimacy in running an engine on my layout; which [is] in an area of the country (New England/New York) that would mandate efficient power in order to be pulling the equivelent freight out of Mechanicsburg or Oak Point to Boston;  both of which encumbered long fast freights.  This, I suppose, is the biggest reason for my engine reconstructions I have done, which you and a few others have seen.

Back to the B&A A-6s:  The A's all had square sand domes, albiet different design from the NKP/C&O types in shape and sander configuration.  I  do not believe however, that I will rot in hell for taking that liberty; I have taken others in life I think I would be more liable to be held accountable for...So  I will trot merrily on my derranged way and make Berkshires that look like a cross between B&A and C&O (ooops; excuse it:  C&O Kanahwas...)  I bet they will also look cool...

Rich
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
SteamGene

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« Reply #10 on: March 28, 2008, 09:52:19 AM »

Probably.  Any anything looks great with an Elesco perched on the front! 
Gene
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Chief Brass Hat
Virginia Tidewater and Piedmont Railroad
"Only coal fired steam locomotives"
r.cprmier

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« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2008, 11:38:02 AM »

Gene;
Take a look at the two pictures on Lethbridge's post.  Both of these bespeak of a powerful handsome beast.  One of my best friend's father (who has a brass collection that would make either of us sick) has a B&M Berk, resplendant in the Coffin design parameters.  he is a big B&M nut, having worked for them as a younger man, before getting his degree(s).  He also has a slew of pictures of Mechanicsville, New York.  What a time that must have been!
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
Guilford Guy


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« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2008, 03:56:24 PM »

Rich, Arlington was on the Bedford Branch of B&M. The woburn loop split off the Northern in Winchester, and reconnected at North Wilmington Junction. The 2-8-4's were used exclusively on the Fitchburg Division, from Boston-Mechanicsville NY. 4-4-0's, 4-4-2's, 4-6-0's, 4-6-2's, 2-8-0's, 2-6-0's, and 2-8-2's were the common power on the Bedford, and Woburn branches. To my knowledge the 2-8-4's were too heavy, and were strictly assigned to the Fitch.
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Alex

pdlethbridge
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« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2008, 04:00:28 PM »

In fact, one of those berks broke through the track and road bed, it was so heavy. I had that picture in a scrap book thats now long gone.
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r.cprmier

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« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2008, 04:40:48 PM »

Alex;
Thank you for correcting me.
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
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