British Railways are sorry to announce that the introduction of a passenger service through Jerusalem, as well as all goods services, will be delayed for an unknown period due to a failed locomotive.As some of you will know I've recently had a birthday, and many of the presents were train related and will probably turn up on this blog at some point. One of those presents was a Mk 1 57ft suburban brake (Graham Farish model 374-312A) which, for the first time, would have brought a passenger service to Jerusalem. Unfortunately the failure of my only locomotive has brought a halt to "playing trains" for a while -- modelling will continue though.
The locomotive failed almost five months to the day after I bought it and so fortunately it is still under warranty. It has run perfectly, in both directions, since it arrived, at least until Friday last week. The first sign that there was anything wrong was when I tried running it in reverse; it had a pronounced wobble and was making a weird clicking noise. Strangely it ran forward without any issues what so ever. From a quick examination, it appeared that as the wheels rotated the rod connected the middle wheel and valve gear wasn't moving properly as the vertical piece it is connected to wasn't moving at all (it should swing left and right). I was going to see if running it forward for a few minutes would help it settle, but it hadn't moved more than about six inches when the connecting rod popped off (as you can see in the photo). Given that I have no idea what the underlying problem was or how to repair the obvious problem properly it has now been boxed up and sent off for repair under warranty. Hopefully it will return soon.
The coach is, however, excellent and I really am looking forward to being able to run it properly; I've been slightly lucky in that I didn't have anything anywhere near as long as the coach to check clearances when building the landscape and it only just clears the tunnel mouth... but just is enough. I will, however, definitely be more careful with clearances on future layouts, although if I can avoid such tight 1st radius curves in future then the problem will (at least partially) disappear.