The Micrometer

A two-monthly review of the engineering of time

Issue 8   November - December 2017

The locomotives of 'LBSC'

 

Before I embarked upon clock construction and repair, my main passion was making miniature steam locomotives.  And like many, the first live steam locomotive I constructed was an 0-4-0 tank locomotive to the Tich small boiler design by LBSC, the pen-name for Curly Lawrence of Purley Oaks.  Now this really was an advance from anything I had done before, and it was pretty much made entirely using Sievert propane burners and a Flexispeed 2 inch centre height lathe.  Cowells make something not dissimilar in design today and, with enthusiasm, it is amazing what one can do with incredibly modest workshop equipment.

     Tich was not easy to steam as the tiny firebox needed constant attention if the anthracite or Welsh steam coal fire was not to go out, and soon after its completion I started on my second LBSC design, the 2-6-2 tender locomotive Betty.  Betty was steamed many times by me and my brother, and quite a few admiring drivers took their turn at the regulator.  After a break of a few years to make a 5-inch gauge 78XX class locomotive, a third 3½-inch gauge LBSC design was constructed jointly by me and my brother, and by this time I was pretty competent (if I say so myself) at most of the processes, not least the manufacture of the copper boiler.  The loco - an 0-8-0 tender locomotive named Netta by LBSC - is shown on the Home page of this edition of The Micrometer, while the construction of the boiler is described in a download.  The photo below was taken a year earlier on steaming trials before final strip-down and painting.

 

A mystery clock

 

Something that fascinated me for many years is the mystery clock, by which is meant a clock that tells the time with no visible connection to the hands.  I designed and made mine some fifteen years ago and it has been in constant use ever since.  I used a mains (50Hz) synchronous motor primarily because I didn't know what power level would be needed to drive the clock, which is no disadvantage for a desk clock.  However if one could estimate the power needed, perhaps the more skilled might wish to use a mainspring and platform escapement - or even a quartz battery movement?  While I did not make any engineering drawings, I hope the downloadable article may inspire some readers to experiment.

Guy Gibbons

 

Copyright (c) 2017  G E Gibbons     If you do not see the updated pages you expect, try again after by-passing or clearing your browser cache.  Guidance may be found at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Bypass_your_cache

The Micrometer

A two-monthly review of the engineering of time

Issue 8   November - December 2017

The Micrometer

A two-monthly review of the engineering of time

Copyright (c) 2017  G E Gibbons        If you do not see the updated pages you expect, try again after by-passing or clearing your browser cache.  Guidance is at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Bypass_your_cache