The nearest we have to an original coal wagon is the mass-produced “Hudson” Tipper, of which we have two on loan to the Society, these numbered 401 & 402.
Hudson Tippers and indeed other Hudson rolling stock were mass-produced in vast numbers for 2-ft gauge industrial railways.
The End tipper is used extensively for transporting and delivering ballast on the Hanworth Loop. It was created from a Skip donated to us by Thames Water and the non-braked bogie from a Hudson Bogie Wagon. First the skip had to be emptied and recovered.
Such a mundane matter as tipping ballast may not give rise to much interest, but it is important to get-it-right. The end tipper was originally fitted with a half-sleeper ‘beam’ across/below the frame end to prevent the whole wagon ‘tipping’, when the contents were tipped too rapidly. This unfortunately fouled some of the point-work and was damaged.
A new anti-tipping system has now been welded in place which also incorporates a proper coupling pin, to replace the bits-of-rope which had been previously utilised.
We acquired another potentially useful tipper, which needed lots of TLC.; this Hudson Tipper has the body and tipping frame turned through 90 degrees and welded back on to another Hudson frame, as you can see. This means that it ‘tips’ along the track – rather than to the side.
It is very useful in placing ballast and constructing embankments etc. You may be able to spot that the wheel-base has been extended to resist the tendency of the vehicle toppling over when tipping heavy loads. The picture shows it “as received”.