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4" Fowler Road loco

fully overhauled



Year Built: circa 1980
Steam Certificate Expiry: January 2021
Hydraulic Expiry: 2030
Location: Hadleigh, Suffolk



We are extremely proud of this engine and the way it has turned out. When we purchased it we knew it could be something quite special so commissioned our friend and well respected engine builder Dave Tucker of Norfolk Loco Works to undertake a complete overhaul. The result both mechanically and aesthetically has surpassed even our high expectations.

What we started with was a well-made example of the Plastows Fowler R3 design, but with a number of improvements over the original design. One being much improved porting in the cylinder block which has sorted the "breathing issues" many engines of this design have. It was pulled off the road in 2011 for a new boiler to be fitted however due to illness the engine was never fully completed. During this time it also looks to have received new vulcanised tyres as they look to have never been on the road.

The boiler was supplied by AJB in 2012 and has only seen a handful of trial steamings, as such is in as-new condition. The new boiler was built slightly longer than the standard Plastows design which has greatly improved the engines overall proportions making it more akin to the full size. To improve steaming extra tubes were fitted and the boiler pressure up'd to 175PSI from the standard 150. Water feed is through a crankshaft driven pump and effective steam injector which reliably picks up at full working pressure. 

The overhaul meant stripping the engine right back to just a bare boiler and cylinder block and rebuilding it from the ground up, work includes but is not limited to:

- Re-machined crankshaft eccentrics and big ends.

- Bushed and re-pinned little ends

- Re-machined main bearings and other shaft bearings

- Work on the differential bevel gears

- Reconditioned steering assembly

- New gear on the third speed for quicker road speeds

- New boiler and cylinder block tins

- Replacement pipework where necessary

- New pressure gauage and gauge glass fittings

- Complete repaint using top quality paints

The engine passed a full hydraulic and steam test from an independent inspector and is now undergoing rigorous road testing to ensure years of reliable service for its new owner. As mentioned above a new higher ratio 3rd speed has been fitted to give the engine longer legs on the road, this gear is a modern pitch to get the correct spacing and ratio. Should you prefer to fit the standard gears these will be supplied with the engine. 

With the new boiler, new vulcanised tyres, new paint work and extensive mechanical overhaul it would be fair to say this is as close to a new build as you can get.

A full days training is included with the sale along with a set of firing irons, extension chimney and tarpaulin sheet. As always, we are happy to consider all steam engines and other vintage vehicles in part exchange.

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