Welcome to My Steam Locomotive Construction Page.
If you are interested in Steam Locomotives, Confectionery
Capers has on display a partially completed live steamer that is the most
ambitious project we have ever undertaken. It is quite possibly the only one
of its type in Australia. It is a 1/8 scale
4-8-4 based on a large American Northern Class locomotive (quite common in the
U.S. but rare in Australia). The Northern
(4-8-4) class was a dual purpose
and could handle a 5,000 ton freight train as readily as an 80 m.p.h. express
passenger train. The Northern was, in fact, the most successful locomotive type
in U.S. history.
The 1:8 scale model being constructed is based on original
plans as supplied
by Little Engines of California and is more specifically based on the Union
Pacific Northern (800 Series). It is
designed to run on 7 1/2" rail which is
the largest gauge commercially available. It has taken over 5 years to reach
it's current stage of manufacture including the 3D
modeling. The pictures show the
lower half of the locomotive construction
including all the drive wheels, lead truck and trailing bogey wheels,
suspension units and drive cylinders. Other than those seen here in the
photos, there are many more ancillary parts
which have been completed ready for final assembly. Overall the locomotive is approximately 50% complete. This type of
locomotive employs 2 large drive cylinders as can be seen at the front of
the main frame. These operated on the
double acting principle as
can also be seen from the steam engine
in the Old Engines section and were used in
almost all steam locomotives.
Some vital statistics of the finished model will be (in imperial units
to be fair to it's era):
||4-8-4 Northern Class.
||1:8 (1 1/2" model in American
||Runs on 7 1/2" rail.
||13'6"(162") engine and tender.
||2 3/4" x 3 1/2"
|Lead & Trailing truck wheels:
||5 1/4" diameter.
||Coal (or oil with conversion).
As most of the plans for the model were
received as copies of old blue prints and difficult to read the decision was
made to completely
the entire design into a 3D engineering model using ProEngineer.
itself is a vast project with every nut, bolt, screw, beam, rod and frame
having to be recreated in 3D to get the complete locomotive assembled on
The purpose of this is two-fold......
........Firstly, once all parts are in 3D
form, 2D drawings can be created easily direct from these models (in
either Imperial or Metric dimensions.)
....... Secondly it creates a superb analysis tool
that allows for the
investigation of fits and relationships of parts and can highlight possible
problems before the parts are manufactured. This was done
on the crank/valve
linkages where a dynamic analysis was created to ensure proper operation. Click on this
picture to view the animation.
Be warned though, due to the
size of this file it
may take some time to load. Please be patient, it's
The long term plan once the locomotive is complete is to construct a
rail line around the property of Confectionery Capers. This model will have
the capacity to pull up to 100 people in 10 trucks, but don't hold your
breath - this could be many many years away !!
Here is a
website suggested by Linda Fuller and her students who are researching
the history of steam power and its applications (with thanks).