London & North Western Railway History Group
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Gauge 1 Models Constructed by David Viewing
Page 2

Photo of Model locomotive 4-4-2 Megatherium at Kidderminster LNWR open day 2015

Megatherium is a ‘Crewe Passenger’ 2-2-2 very similar to the surviving Columbine in the Science Museum, London. The original engine was built by the LNWR at Edge Hill, Liverpool, but the intention in the model is to show it as a Grand Junction Railway engine might have appeared. So it is portrayed ‘as built’, as closely as possible, with flared chimney cap and horse-hair stuffed buffers. An LNWR minute of the period mentions boilers being clad in canvas sheets and painted. So rather than varnished wood the model shows cladding sheets, which could be either canvas sheets as in the minute or thin iron sheets! The model also incorrectly shows the engine number on the chimney in Southern Division style, even though it is a Northern Division engine. The builder makes no apologies for this, since it looks good, but an alternative chimney is available. The name Megatherium (a type of extinct South American giant ground sloth) was chosen to complement Mastodon and itself is a subject of contention, being so spelt by authorities such as Locomotives in Profile, while others such as Baxter give the spelling Megatherion. The model uses components supplied by John Dale and like Mastodon is a working model with the same drive and control equipment and with several hours’ running time. The chassis is fully sprung (essential for a single wheeler) and the engine can operate as a ‘double header’ with her consort as in Wishaw Railways of Great Britain.

Photo of Model locomotive 2-2-2 Mastodon at Kidderminster LNWR open day 2015

‘Crewe Goods’ 2-4-0 Mastodon at the LNWR Society Open Day at Kidderminster Railway Museum in 2015. It has a Ramsbottom chimney and original four-wheel tender as modified about 1860. It is recorded in ‘Locomotives in Profile’ as built at Crewe in 1849. Some of these engines survived into the 20th century and a photograph shows one of them out of use in a siding in the 1920s. Mastodon is in the green livery used by the LNWR until 1873. The exact shade is in doubt, but the colour used here is that recommended by Kenneth Wood, who has studied the subject extensively. The model is built from a kit of parts supplied by John Dale of ‘Old Originals’ in the late 1990s using etched nickel silver and lost wax castings. It is a working model with helical drive gears and LiPo battery with radio housed in the tender, giving up to four hours running time. There are plans for this model to be made available once more by Mercian Models. The name with a natural history theme was chosen as reflecting the spirit of the age and intended to partner sister engine 2-2-2 Megatherium.


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