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Snow plough advice needed

posted 26 Jan 2010, 07:39 by John St James   [ updated 29 Sept 2011, 11:44 by bradypus ]
Here's me plough, half finished (looks like the beer's completely finished though... first things first).

All plasticard construction on a spare Hartland chassis which is completely hidden underneath. I thought the short wheelbase might help it to stay on the track(???).

Finish is a bit rough at the moment but that can be fixed fairly easily.

Here it is on the line undergoing a bit of testing. It ran well, even without the lead which will hold it down in a fairly big way once fitted.

It's quite biiiig but that's OK. It's the same loading gauge as Lawley, which is the intended motive power if it's used in earnest.

And here is the one the Midland Railway built, copying the ideas developed on the EMR. They had two and they ran both sides of two 0-6-0s on the Settle and Carlisle. They had problems apparently due to not enough weight. We don't intend that to be our issue.

Now here is the question...

I need to produce the plough blade itself. Plenty of compound curves there, both at the bottom and the top. Now I could carve them out of solid wood, been done before but a very long time ago and I had access to a pattern-maker's full set if tools. I had in mind more of a plasticard solution. Any ideas.

By the way, I reckon the plough will work without the fancy curves, but I want it to look right.

Oh and I know the station area looks really sad at the moment. Needs plenty more ballast. I'm working on that too.

A very, very good question. I'm afraid I don't have a solution - in fact that very question is the reason why I haven't attempted to build a plough, even though I'd like one.
Grant LNR
It's a bit hard to make out the shape at the top, I could only suggest laminating there. It looks like an addition to the real thing, to me. The bottom which looks like a steel shoe, is exactly like a CQR anchor I recently made for one of my boats. Tapped it out of steel, very easily, and it would rust too. Oooh and I do like real rust. If all else fails, do it like the real one I always say. I came back to look at the pic again and I believe that top section is an add on, and is stepped on its underside, (note stepped shadow just down from the top) to break the snow and fold it outwards, instead of perhaps going over the top. Not that I would have any experience of snow ploughs mind you.                                   
The metal blank for the anchor, hope you can make this out. Simple straight fold on the red line. Then the more you hit the area within the blue line, the more concave the red line would become (viewed from the side) obviously more hits along the edge as that has to stretch the most. Piece of heavy steel (angle, flat) in the vice is all I use, or certain parts of the vice itself (if you have a good vice). Metal 1mm thickness minimum, so as you have something to beat. In the words of a furry friend of ours, simples!  Just thought to add, annealed copper would of course be easier to beat, wouldn't rust though.

JSJ here again:
Look what I just found. This is also at Hellifield. And Mel it looks like the MR had issues with compound curves too. This looks like a mackled up version a bit like mine so far. There is another loco and plough at the other end of the train.

Credit: NRM

And here is a link to a Pathe film of a plough being fitted to a loco in 1938 Looks like the plough has had the odd collision with some lumps of something hard. Also at Hellifield. Do you have the feeling snow was a bit of a challenge there?
A bit of real rust added to the front of the plow (rhino's plow) - as they say, these modesl are expected to do some work.
 Just adding my 2 pennyworth. (Bradypus Nick)

My plough is folded tinplate and bolts onto 2 brass angles which in turn are bolted onto the bufferbaeam using the Accucraft bolt holes. Freely adapted from the Isle of Man Railway 'Big Plough' usually attached to Caledonia:

(Image from Gscalecentral .Originally posted by Sealion)

I added the folded over lip to prevent snow spilling over the top.
Proof that it works! Both locos on the same 2.4GHz channel, working in tandem. They really did clear 2in deep snow, but could do with some extra adhesive weight. There was a lot of backing up and charging the drifts!