The 'company's original desire was to use one standard type of locomotive, but the decision to ‘go electric’ meant that two types of locomotive were going to be needed instead of one, with the first type powered purely by electricity, and the second powered by diesel. The diesel type would not only be used for both line maintenance purposes and ore-loading duties at the mine, but it would also need to be sufficiently powerful to be able to step into the ore production cycle should the electricity supply become unavailable.

A ‘committee’ of both ‘drivers’ and ‘company management’ quickly came to an agreement as to what was required, and the first decision to be made was to include the ‘Australian’ type of cab on all future new locomotive designs – As both types of the new locomotives would need to have their main parts totally interchangeable with each other, they would need to use the same control systems, traction motors, gears, and wheel-sets, even though they were going to be ‘powered by two different sources’. It was also a requirement that they should be able to work in service in multiple with each other by means of standardised jumper cables on the end of each unit, without the need for any other special equipment (as is the case on other heavy-haul railways elsewhere in the world) - One other thing also emerged at the early stages of design, and that was the fact that as the locomotives were going to have to traverse tight curves in both the mine and the port areas, two ‘plug-in’ types of bogie were going to be needed as well. These bogies would have to be self-contained units, with the buffing, draw-gear, and jumper cabling all incorporated into them, a major departure from previous practice, as all of this equipment was previously attached to the locomotive chassis.

Negotiations between the ‘company’ and its main ‘contractor’, Millfield Workshops soon got underway, and by the end of 2013 construction of the two loco types began. The first locos to appear were the two diesel outline ‘ORE MASTER’ locos, with No.7838 emerging from the ‘Millfield Workshops’ in February 2014, and 7839 following shortly after - Wearing the new CSM corporate maroon livery with yellow warning panels, these two locos were immediately put to work on the construction of the ‘company’s new railway, and, before the completion of the new line, the opportunity was also taken to subject the locos to some very serious testing on the nearby Abercanyon Railroad - With their ‘Australian’ cabs, narrow bodies, flared radiators, and tremendous power; the ‘company’s crews’ were naturally very proud of them!

In the late spring of 2014, the ‘company’ was somewhat astounded, as when way ahead of schedule, their three new electric outline, ‘ORE MOVER’ locomotives suddenly emerged without warning from the ‘Millfield Workshops’. This left the ‘company’ in the embarrassing position of having a fleet of new electric locos but with no line to run them on, as the work on the new line’s electrification project had yet to commence……… However, this electrification work has since been completed.

Although both types of loco are fitted with the same type of cab, they are actually quite different from each other with regards to the rest of their appearance - Firstly, as the electric outline ‘ORE MOVER’ locos are essentially a main line design, they are not fitted with a shunter’s veranda as is the case with the diesel outline ‘ORE MASTER’ locos. Secondly, although both types of loco are single-cabbed machines, the electric outline ‘ORE MOVER’s, unlike the ‘ORE MASTER’s, are fitted with full width car-bodies for their entire length. One striking appearance of these electrically powered machines though, is how their roofs have been lowered extensively at the No.2 (non-cab) end to accommodate the heavy-duty insulators and solitary large ‘box-kite’ style pantograph that has been provided to collect power from the overhead wiring when in service.

 

The ‘driver’s control stand inside the cabs of each type of locomotive are also different – As the diesel outline ‘ORE MASTER’ locos are designed for both shunting and mainline duties, they are fitted with a central dual control stand so that the ‘driver’ can ‘drive the locomotive’ from either side of the cab. They also have windows provided on the corners of the rear wall of the cab so that the ‘driver’ can see alongside the loco when it is being ‘driven’ ‘Long Hood First’! – As has been said earlier, the electric outline ‘ORE MOVER’ locos have full width car-bodies, and as such they are fitted with a single conventional driving desk and control stand on the right-hand side of the cab, as any reversing movements with these locos in either the mine or port areas are always conducted over the radio with either people on the ground or through the yard’s Shipping Supervisor. They are also ‘fitted with video and radar assistance from the loco itself for these movements’. Both types of locomotive are fitted with ‘VDU screens’ instead of dials to show both the loco and the train’s performance to the ‘driver’, and they are also fitted with the necessary ‘in-cab signalling equipment’ that is required to work with the ‘company’s’ signalling equipment……

Left: The cab without the shunter's veranda as fitted on an 'Ore Mover' Locomotive - Right: The cab with the shunter's veranda as fitted on an 'Ore Master' Locomotive.

Note the full-width carbody on the 'Ore Mover' compared with the narrow hood and flared radiators on the 'Ore Master'

 

Left: The single control stand as fitted in an 'Ore Mover' Locomotive - Right: The dual control stand as fitted in an 'Ore Master' Locomotive.

 

The control, traction equipment, and electrical circuitry have been standardised as much as possible, and each locomotive and each electrically associated item of rolling stock on the railway is equipped with jumper cables and associate plugs, together with live and dummy receptacles at each end, so that multiple-working in ‘consists’ with other locomotives and electrically associated items of rolling stock can be performed on the ‘company’s’ railway.

By using the jumper cables at the end of each locomotive, up to five locomotives can be connected electrically in multiple, together with any other electrically associated items of rolling stock that may be required to make up a ‘consist’.

When driving more than one locomotive in multiple, it is imperative that the ‘consist’ is driven from the lead locomotive at all times, and that the traction control switches on each the trailing locomotives are all in the ‘Out of Phase’ positions - Failure to do this can result in circuit breaker activation and possible damage to the cabling!

 

Before entering service the traction batteries in each equipped vehicle must first be charged via the 2.5mm ‘Input’ socket provided, with the vertically mounted double pole double throw main isolating switch in the up or ‘Charge’ position. - Both this 2.5mm socket and the switch, which is of a larger sliding type, are mounted below the sole-bar on the left-hand side of the vehicle involved. – When the traction batteries are ready for use, switch must be set to the down or ‘Discharge’ position.

 

Connected to the ‘Positive Discharge’ contact on the main isolating switch is a self-resetting circuit breaker. - This device is placed in series with a red positive feeder cable, and protects any on-board cabling and equipment from overload or general misuse.
The red positive feeder cable from the output of the circuit breaker, and the black negative feeder cable from the ‘Negative Discharge’ contact on the main isolating switch, are individually connected to two of the four sets of cables that form the ‘Train Line’ in each locomotive and associated item of rolling stock.
The red and black sets of cabling provide the power for all on-board equipment, whilst the other two sets of cables (both of which are white in colour), are used in connection with the distribution of traction motor current.

 

All 'Consolidated Shales' locomotives are single (slow) speed in concept, and have bi-directional operating facilities....... The Controls for both type of locomotive described here are identical, and are mounted in a recess behind each loco’s cab roof – The traction controls have been kept as simple as possible, and consist of two ‘direction-reliant’ single speed slide switches, both of which must be in the same position for the locomotive to move in the direction selected. Two individual push-button controls have also been fitted in between these switches, one red and one black, for the warning horn and yard bell respectively.

 

It is vitally important that the correct direction of travel is obtained by each locomotive when electrically connected together with other locomotives in a ‘consist’ - The method for setting this up during the construction of the locomotive is as follows:
With the cab of the locomotive facing to the left and looking down from above, if positive current is applied to the traction motor terminal on what in the forward direction of travel would be the right-hand side of the locomotive, and negative current is applied to the terminal on the left, then the locomotive should move cab forwards to the left…

 

All traction equipment has been standardised by using the ‘MFA Comodrill 940D’ motor with its built-in 5:1 epicyclic gearbox. - These motors individually drive each powered axle and its associated 24mm diameter driving wheels through a 13:1 'Meccano' worm and pinion final drive as supplied by ‘Frizinghall Models' of Bradford - Where bogied wheel arrangements exist, the inner axles are powered as usual, but in addition a ‘Delrin’ chain-drive, as supplied by ‘Home of ‘O’ Gauge’ in London, is used to transfer additional power from the inner axles to the outer axles of each wheel-set accordingly.

Two views showing the modular 'Plug-In' design of the Millfield Workshops Standard Bogies as used on all Consolidated Shales locomotives - This is the extended version of the bogie as used on 'Ore Master' Locomotives. Note the MFA Comodrill 940D Traction Motor, Meccano 13:1 Worm and Pinion Drive, and Delrin Chain Drive that connects the two axles. Note the disconnected plugs and sockets in the left image.

 

All head and tail lights are ‘High-Bright’ white or red light-emitting diodes, fed at 12volts DC through 560ohm 0.6 watt resistors - They can be turned on or off by using the smaller horizontally mounted slide switches that are also situated under the sole-bar on the left-hand side of the vehicle concerned. - The top switches operate the headlights which will only illuminate whilst the vehicle is moving in the correct direction, while the bottom ones operate the tail lights which will remain illuminated at all times when they are switched on

 

The subject of suitable names for the ‘company’s locos took some thought, and in the end memories of my early ‘0’ scaling days bought back to mind the names of five absolute Gentlemen who, although they are unfortunately no longer with us, either taught me the skills required or helped and encouraged me with my scratch-building activities during the late 80s and early 90s - And so, as all these new locomotives have all been scratch-built, what better way was there to pay tribute to them! – The loco’s numbers and names are therefore as follows:

5830
ORE-MOVER CARLSSON
(Named after the late Malcolm Carlsson)
 
 
5831
ORE-MOVER PATERSON
(Named after the late Jack Paterson)
 
 
5832
ORE-MOVER ROBINSON
(Named after the late ‘Robbie’ Robinson)
 
 
7838
ORE-MASTER SIMMONDS
(Named after the late John Simmonds)
 
 
7839
ORE-MASTER TYRER
(Named after the late Albert Tyrer)

 

A Short Video will show you around a newly commissioned 'ORE MOVER' locomotive, if you would like to click..HERE!

 

Finally, to ensure maximum locomotive availabilty, at any given time, a Charging Stand has been built in the railway room to faciltate the continuous trickle battery charging of up to eight locomotives in between periods of operation.

Two views of the Charging Stand showing, Left: A close-up view of the locomotive bays and charging plugs. ... and Right: The Charging Stand with the entire motive power roster charging on it - The beige loco on the left is one of the preserved 32mm gauge Diesel outline types which are owned by the Consolidated Shales Historical Society - Note the row of chargers on the front of the structure.