Trader's Wagon Registration

Any aspect related to the prototype stock.
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caleyJim
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Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

The Caledonian Railway registration plate illustrated in the attachment sold recently for about £60 on eBay. Can't convince myself if this is a fair price or not. It is certainly more than an LMS one would fetch but I suppose you should expect a premium for pre-grouping (and it sold in a few days). Anyway, that is by-the-by, my real question is: Is there anyway of tracing a wagon from its registration plate? In this specific instance the salient points in case not clear from the photo are: Registered in 1918 to carry 14 T, registration number 26247.

Jim
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MIKEWILLIAMS
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by MIKEWILLIAMS »

Ronnie Cockburn compiled lists of traders wagons registered with the Scottish companies, which I have on disc. The CR register is mostly based on information from the R Y Pickering order book records. Unfortunately 26247 doesn't figure, although I can tell you that the wagon was registered in July/August 1918.

Best

Mike
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

Mike

Thanks for that. As I read it this means it wasn't built by RYP but it could have come from, say, Hurst Nelson or even one of the English builders? My knowledge is limited, but were there other large(ish) Scottish based wagon builders apart from RYP and HN? I remember RYP well - it was on the road directly between my two Grannies who lived in Wishaw and Overtown. Their sentinel (RYP no. 4) looked rather out of place (or time) shunting 100 ton oil tankers!

Jim
MIKEWILLIAMS
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by MIKEWILLIAMS »

You're right in your interpretation, Jim. Pickering records are complete from 1898, but Hurst Nelson's records haven't survived, as far as I know. Other Scottish manufacturers were the Motherwell Wagon & Repair Co. and the Hamilton Wagon Works. Both built small numbers of wagons for the CR towards the end of its existence.

Best

Mike
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

Mike

Thanks for the info.

Jim
dunalastairv
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by dunalastairv »

I saw this as soon as it came up on E-bay and, were it genuine, £60 would be a fair price. However, I'm convinced it's a modern copy of an original and thus to be avoided. There wasn't a speck of paint or rust on front or back, and it just didn't look right. You have to be very careful in the wild west that is E-bay these days...
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

Very interesting. So... Can anyone post a picture (or give a reference for a picture) of a real plate for guidance ?
MIKEWILLIAMS
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by MIKEWILLIAMS »

Three of Michael's genuine plates are shown in the Wagon Book, p.117

Best

Mike
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

Thanks - should have known that. So, none of the styles illustrated but, apart from the registration date being straight, not dissimilar to the 1903 one. One major difference I see is the omission of the top and bottom bolt holes which are present on all 3 illustrated in the book. Would I be correct in thinking that these plates would be cast by the wagon manufacturer rather being supplied centrally by the Caley with a local difference in interpretation causing at least part of the differences rather than an evolution of style over the years?
dunalastairv
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by dunalastairv »

Hello Jim,

I think I ought to answer this: without wishing to brag, I now have 15 Caley registration plates, including an identical example to that illustrated at the start of this thread. The common feature of them all is how different the styles are, with variations in the hole locations, lettering design, shapes, etc. I suspect they were made by the companies who supplied the rolling stock in many cases, and by different works of the C.R. in others - St. Rollox, versus Perth for example... In short, there is no one definitive design, rather variations on a theme.
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

While I can see what you mean about it being too clean, I can't help but wonder why someone would go to the bother of counterfeiting something like this. Obviously it would cost a good few bob to set up the mould, make the casts etc. and if GBP 60 is the going rate you'd need to knock out a fair few to get any sort of return. I've seen no evidence of a glut of these plates on the market. Am I missing something?

Jim
jimwatt2mm
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by jimwatt2mm »

Could the absence of any paint be because someone has had it sandblasted to' clean it up'?

Jim W
Mike 1
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by Mike 1 »

It might be useful to know one dimension exactly - e.g. the overall width. Somebody could have made a new pattern, but that's expensive and/or takes a long time. Most modern copies (of other plates) I've seen have used an original plate as the pattern, with resultant shrinkage.

Mike
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

Sorry, dimensions weren't given on the listing as far as I recall.

Jim
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

MIKEWILLIAMS wrote: Sat Oct 30, 2021 6:43 pm Hurst Nelson's records haven't survived, as far as I know.
Getting back (sort of) to the original theme about tracing wagons, I recall a conversation with a librarian at Motherwell library probably 35 or more years ago during which he told me he had had to rescue glass plate negatives from a skip while the HN site was being cleared. It appears little thought was given to preserving their records.
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

I'll admit to having a bit of a soft-spot for Hurst Nelson and to owning the plate shown in the attachment even though it is well out of period for me. I've no idea what it was originally attached to but it was not the only thing to come out of Motherwell in 1959.
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caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

Two cast iron wagon registration plates for traders' wagons registered by the Caledonian Railway sold on eBay this evening. Both are from 10 ton wagons, the 1900 dated one reached just over £80 while the 1901 one fetched a remarkable £231. Does its style, CR rather than Caledonian Ry Co, make it rarer and thus more collectable?

Jim :D
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CR_1901.jpg
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Last edited by caleyJim on Sat Apr 01, 2023 12:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
caleyJim
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by caleyJim »

I am assuming CR does mean the Caley and not, say, Cambrian Railway BTW.
dunalastairv
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by dunalastairv »

Good morning, Jim,

I'm afraid I know a great deal about these! I bought the first one and I also put a ridiculously high bid on the second - and still didn't win it! I've never seen a Caledonian registration plate lettered just 'CR' before and obviously someone else recognized its rarity. It could well have been a replacement plate in fact, hence the unusual design. There is no doubt it was Caledonian: neither the Cambrian, nor Cardiff Railways ever registered anything like this number of wagons and also the sequence, 13335 follows on to 13511.

Best wishes, Michael.
MIKEWILLIAMS
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by MIKEWILLIAMS »

Both these plates were attached to 10-ton cylindrical tank wagons, built by R Y Pickering for the Edinburgh & Leith Corporations Gas Commissioners. 13335 was attached to tank No. 9, 13511 to tank No. 14.

Best

Mike
Last edited by MIKEWILLIAMS on Sun Apr 02, 2023 2:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Mike 1
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by Mike 1 »

I'd be interested in the experts' opinions on the very different fixing holes.

The Caledonian plate looks normal except for the two additional holes (why?). The lugs and holes in the CR plate look completely different?

Mike
jimwatt2mm
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by jimwatt2mm »

Mike 1 wrote: Sat Apr 01, 2023 3:55 pm The Caledonian plate looks normal except for the two additional holes (why?). The lugs and holes in the CR plate look completely different?
It would appear to have been fitted with coach bolts, judging by the square holes.

Jim W
dunalastairv
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by dunalastairv »

Caley registration plates were made by a variety of different wagon builders and repairers. There are huge variations in the exact size, number of fixing holes, type face, etc. On the face of it the variations between these two should come as no surprise but I'm convinced 13511 is a replacement plate.
Mike 1
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Re: Trader's Wagon Registration

Post by Mike 1 »

Sounds like a subject for an article in True Line? :)

Mike
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