Chatham Historic Dockyard Railway
four wheeled flat wagon

This four wheeled wooden wagon was used for the carriage of light stores.

The wheels, as with the cast iron, had flanges with a width of 1 1I4il1, the wheelbase was 2ft 6in and diagonally opposite wheels were loose on their axles, which, as with the cast iron wagon, were allowed 0.625in lateral play.

The wheels were cast with six T -section spokes and their nominal diameter was 17 1/2in.

The axles were 1 3/4in in diameter on the central-shank and this was reduced to 1.625;n through the wheel boss and 1 1I2in at the journals which were supported by cast iron plain bearings.

The chassIs was 5ft 2in long and the oak. main frames were 3in wide and 4in deep, with the same material being used for the end cross-members.

The main frames were strengthened by the use of additional side members 2 1I2in wide and 3in deep through which four cross-tie bolts passed, these being 0.625in diameter at their extreme ends.

Rather strangely, there do not appear to have been any iron h001)S surrounding the buffer ends of the main frames for strengthening purposes and this suggests that these wagons saw less locomotive haulage than the cast iron variety, although they were fitted with eyes for towbars.

The superstructure consisted of a teak platform of 1in thickness and side and end pieces of 1in thick red pine with the end components being, rather strangely, of ogival configuration.

The side and end pieces were strengthened by vertical stiffening irons 11in high, 1.l25in wide and 1/4in deep, secured by bolts 1/4in diameter at their outer extreme ends.

The tare weight of this design of truck was 560 lbs.

A simpler wooden frame truck designed purely for hand propulsion had similar side and cross framing but wheels of only 9in diameter and a platform of spruce boarding with a thickness of 1.1/2in and a side overhang of 6in beyond each main frame.

The tare weight of this wagon was 504 lbs.

Another variation on the wooden framed four-wheeled wagon, which possessed the same wheels, axles and axleboxs as the larger type just described but the structure of this general purpose wagon was rather more complex in its nature.

The chassis assembly had no less than five longitudinal oak members, the outermost pair were 6ft 1.1I2in long 2in wide and 3in deep, the innermost pair, [upon which the lower platform was mounted, and to the underside of which, the axleboxes were secured by means of bolts of 0.625in shank diameter] were 3in square cross-section.

The centre member was 4 1I2in square in cross-section and the same length as the outermost pair, these all terminating at the inner ends of the cross-members.

The inner pair of longitudinal members were extended to form the buffers and it presumed that the cross-members were 'halved-in' to the inner pair of longitudinal members.

The cross members appear to have been of the same section as the outer pair of longitudinal main frames and they would have been of such a width as to give an overaU chassis width of 3ft 6in.

The lower platform of these wagons was made of spruce boarding 3/4in thick and the whole lower assembly could be utilised as a flat wagon in its own right, without using the turntable and upper platform.

The upper platform was constructed with a similar arrangement of framing to the chassis, in this instance, however, the outermost pair of longitudinal frames were constructed of the same material as their counterparts on the chassis, whilst the same material was used for the innermost pair but rotated through 90 degrees so as to give a cross section of 3in wide and a depth of 2in, the centre member was 4 1I2in wide and 2in deep, the upper platform was made of spruce boarding, but this time with a thickness of 1in.

The bearing surface for the turntable consisted of two circular rubbing plates, 2ft 6in diameter and 1I2in thick, one being secured by means of screws to the underside of the framing, on the upper platform and the other being similarly fixed to the appropriate supported portions of the lower platform.

A captive pivot in the centre frame member for the upper platform could be lowered into a hole passing through the lower rubbing plate and its associated platform and centre frame member when it was desired to fit the turntable platform.

This pivot had a shank diameter of 1 1I2in and a length of 9in, in order to prevent the turntable revolving when it was not required to do so, locking pins could be engaged at either end of the upper [turntable] platform, these passed down into suitable lugs on the chassis above the drag irons for the towbars, these latter components were secured to the chassis cross members by means of bolts O.625in shank diameter.

The tare weight of this type of wagon, inclusive of turntable was approximately 889 lbs.


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