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Alexandra Palace Model Engineering Show

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  • Alexandra Palace Model Engineering Show

    A friend of mine wanted to go, so we took a quick trip down the M1. Roy had never been to Ally Pally before and it's quite a spectactular building;

    Just after we'd entered the display hall, I found an old aquaintance;

    It's a Myford capstan lathe that I bought over 20 years ago. I gave it to a friend to take out to Africa, but it never went and some years later he gave it back. I eventually got fed up of tripping over it in the workshop and sold it on ebay. That must have been at least three years ago. The new owner restores machine tools as a hobby and had brought this one along as a 'before' example. It appears to be a variatoin of an ML6, but the foot at the tailstock end doesn't match that shown in any literature.

    The Gas Turbine Engine Builder's Society puts on a good display.

    This model uses a version of the sectioned engine. The engine idles at 50,000rpm and runs to about 165,000rpm at full throttle. The output drives a 'free power turbine' which runs up to about 10,000rpm drives the wheels through a 100:1 reduction system. The bare engine delivers about 15lbs of thrust. A prop driven by a free power turbine on the outpit would deliver about 50lbs of thrust and installed in the loco it delivers about 7.5bhp. The model is the only known working model of a single protptype gas turbine loco that never made it into passenger service due to poor fuel economy.

    The model engine use cageless full complement hybrid ceramic angular contact bearings with about a 40 hour life. They demonstrated the model a couple of times each day. it's remarkably quiet and you can put your hand into the exhaust gas about a foot above the outlet.

    This is a model of a turbine-electric prototype that did make it into passenger servie, but also prooved too thirsty. The turbine was removed and a diesel installed in its place.
    Paul Compton

  • #2
    Paul, We shared a stand at Sandown two years ago with the guy who built the second model.
    A lot of this was built from prototypes using the 3D printing method and lost wax castings.

    The central and end brackets on the tender ? bottom of the last picture shows the details obtained straight from a casting.

    Very interesting guy.

    Sir John , Earl of Bligeport & Sudspumpwater. MBE [ Motor Bike Engineer ] Nottingham England.


    • #3
      Originally posted by John Stevenson
      A lot of this was built from prototypes using the 3D printing method and lost wax castings.
      I had a chat to the guy from Abbey castings who was on the 3D printing stand. Potentially I can get some motorcycle badges made for less than the cost of resin versions.
      Paul Compton


      • #4
        Paul, the show is advertised as Friday to Sunday, and I can't make any of that ! Grrr !

        I was, however, free today. Did you get in a back way.

        PS I spent my youth missing out on things - never read NME properly, so pals went to the Isle of Wight. What was there ? Oh ! Those bands !
        Richard - SW London, UK, EU.