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Fowler 0-4-0DM No. 20067 Osram

Osram stabled in the Up Yard

Robert Frise - Osram stabled in the Up Yard

Osram was built in 1933 by Fowler for use in the Osram Ltd, later Osram-GEC, glassworks at North Wembley in London, where she was delivered in the October. Here she was known as Miss Osram, though the official name was always Osram. The locomotive was kept in a shed until one day a driver reversed out the wrong way and converted the shed into a car port!

After closure of the glassworks, she continued to be used for shunting in the GEC factory yard until 1969 when rail traffic finally came to an end. Purchase by two QRS members took place in that year and they immediately commenced restoration. On completion of the work the locomotive was delivered to Quainton in October 1971. Osram was donated to QRS in 1985.

The power unit is by Ruston and Hornsby and has three cylinders, each 53/8" bore x 8" stroke, developing 50 hp at 900 rpm. This oil powered unit is type VQ3 and it has Ruston fuel injection equipment. Drive is mechanical through a multi-plate friction clutch to a three-speed forward and reverse gearbox, and hence by bevel and spur gearing to a jack shaft. This is located in front of the carrying wheels, and drive is to all wheels by connecting and coupling rods.

Electric start is provided via a starter motor. Two six volt batteries are provided with a gear driven dynamo for battery charging. However, as Osram never ran far, auxiliary battery charging equipment is provided in the form of a separate CAV-Bosch battery charger with a socket in the cab. Another modification made to account for its short journeys is that the radiator fan has been removed, and the radiator partly blocked off. Whilst this allows the engine to warm quickly, there is a danger of overheating if ever used on long trips with heavy loads. Circulation of coolant is by a gear driven pump.

This little loco is known to have moved 26 loaded 10 ton wagons on the level with her 6720lbs of tractive effort. With a weight of 12 tons slipping would be easy on damp rail, so gravity fed sand pipes are provided ahead of the coupled wheels and to 'port' and 'starboard' of the rear wheels. Originally the front sandbox valves were linked by levers, but this arrangement was removed at some time. Braking is provided by a hand brake, with brake shoes on all wheels. There is also a brake on the transmission shaft. There is a klaxon horn and a electrically worked brass bell, mounted under the roof in front of the cab.

Inside the cab the layout is for left hand drive for gear change and reversing levers, with the throttle and clutch are operable from both sides, but the hand-brake is definitely the second-mans (firemans) job. There is a half compression lever to facilitate starting. There is electric lighting in the cab, front and rear lights, a mileometer counter, an oil pressure gauge and an ammeter.

In 1967 new bearings were fitted to all boxes and new tyres to all wheels. Thus, Miss Osram was in fair mechanical condition when purchased but she had suffered from exposure since being taken out of service.

At some time during her career, Osram had been over painted in light green, but whilst being stripped down to bare metal for a re-paint, some of the original paint and lining were disclosed. The first appearance was in a dark green livery very fully embellished with straw coloured lining to all panels, sandboxes, cab sheeting and engine louvres. All traces of this livery were photographed to allow restoration to this livery.

Fowlers are better known for their road engines; hence the rather smart chimney, which is similar in profile to the cut down top half of the stack of a Fowler steam roller. Osram is also unusual in that Fowlers only made a few to the design with this engine installed and she is the sole survivor of their 50HP 12 ton class.

Miss Osram - Quainton News No. 14 December 1972

Builder :- John Fowler & Co. Date Built :- 1933 Works No. :- 20067
Running No. :- - Name :- Osram Wheel Arrangement :- 0-4-0DM
Tractive Effort :- 48 hp /
6, 720 lbs
Boiler Pressure :- n/a Cylinder Dimensions :- 53/8" x 8"
Weight :- 12t 0c Driving Wheel Dia. :- 2' 6" Owner :- QRS
Status :- Static -
Awaiting repainting
Location :- Down Yard Accession Number :- W/0024
Arrival Date :- Quainton 1971 / QRS 1985

Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
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Page Updated: 14 September 2017