What Do I Set A 17.5 To For Stock Class BR Standard Class 4MT 4-6-0

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BR Standard Class 4MT 4-6-0

The BR Standard Class 4MT 4-6-0 locomotives were introduced in 1951. They were designed for mixed traffic use by Robert A Riddles, who held several posts in the railway industry between 1909 and 1953, interrupted by military service during both World Wars. His career began with an apprenticeship at Crewe Works of the London and North Western Railway as a premium apprentice in 1909, included working as Principal Assistant to the great Sir William Stanier in the LMS days and ended as Chief Mechanical Engineer at the newly formed British Railways.

Designed at Brighton, with input from Swindon, Derby and Doncaster, a total of 80 Standard 4’s were built between 1951 and 1957 at the BR Swindon works. They were designed for mixed traffic use on secondary routes where the otherwise ubiquitous BR standard class 5 and their predecessors, the Black Fives, would be too heavy. A comparatively low axle weight of 17.5 tons made them suitable for almost all routes and regions. The Class as a whole were fitted with rocker grates, hopper ash-pans and self-cleaning smoke-boxes which helped make the end of run disposal of steam quicker and cleaner.

Essentially, the final design for the lightweight Standard Class 4’s were driven by the post war necessity to improve availability and reduce maintenance costs with both manpower and finance being in short supply.

Some locomotives and all the Class 4’s allocated to Southern Region received double chimneys, following trials at Swindon which proved that steaming capacity was much improved. The final 9 due to be built were cancelled under the British Railways ‘Modernisation Plan’

Numbers 75000 75064 were allocated to the London Midland Region and Western Region fitted with BR2 or BR2A inset tender of 3,500 gallons as standard.

Numbers 75065 75079, allocated to Southern Region, came with BR1B tenders of 4,725 gallons due to the lack of trackside water troughs.

The first to be withdrawn was 75067 in 1964 and by August 1968 all 80 had been withdrawn. Five of the six surviving Standard 4’s have been restored, two of which have been on main line service. The sixth has still to be restored.

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