Bananas and fish ??

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manna
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by manna » Fri Aug 07, 2015 10:21 pm

G'day Gents

I am learning a lot, through your posting, up until now a van was a van :oops:

manna
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manna
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by manna » Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:42 am

G'Day Gents

Time to drag this thread back to the present, I did buy a Parkside pre-war fish wagon, which I'm only just getting round to building, a very easy build, but the bodywork is in a fetching shade of white, were these in white or were they in standard bauxite. Thanks,

manna
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jwealleans
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by jwealleans » Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:46 am

Bauxite. Only refrigerated vans were white.

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manna
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by manna » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:15 am

G'day Gents.

Thank you Jonathan, Banana van next :lol:

manna
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manna
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by manna » Tue Mar 27, 2018 12:48 am

G'Day Gents

Almost finished the building of the Parkside fish van, so I took it out to the layout to see if it runs OK, (it did) then put it next to a Bachmann fish van, the Parkside vans a lot longer, so is the Bachmann fish van a fish van or is it something else ? or were there different sized fish vans.................

manna
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Woodcock29
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by Woodcock29 » Tue Mar 27, 2018 5:46 am

Terry
The Parkside kit is Dia 134 with 12ft wheelbase - built 1938, whereas the Bachmann van is a Dia 83 with 10ft wheelbase built from 1932 - 1937.

There were several of each in my fish train you would have seen back in December when you visited, along with a range of earlier LNER and pre-grouping vans

Andrew

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manna
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by manna » Tue Mar 27, 2018 5:52 am

G'day Gents

Thanks for that, Andrew, so I suppose I should have a few more of the Dia 83. pre grouping fish wagons are going to be a bit rarer.

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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by Stafnes » Thu Mar 29, 2018 1:10 pm

Good morning, as someone who spent some years on Grimsby fish market from 1960 to beyond the abandoning of fish traffic by rail I recently came across these pictures on a Flickr site called "Harry's not quite model album" and I wondered if they may be helpful to anybody. I do recall banana vans in the towns general goods yards with the banana merchants only a stones throw from the yards but they were really far and few between. But, not ALL the vehicles used to convey fresh fish would be insulated or specially designated "Fish Vans", especially on the "bass" traffic, not the fish "Bass", but the hessian bags used to convey fresh iced fish for pick-up at designated stations. Ordinary box vans being used in small numbers for this traffic. The track curvature being too tight for the 15' vans at the "Bass House" (Bass House Corner) These ordinary vans, when loaded, would be attached to the tail of various passenger trains at Grimsby Docks station for distribution en route. Ordinary box vans also featured in busy periods ie. Easter and summer. However, I never witnessed any six wheeled vehicles alongside the Fish Market because of the track geometry, even the long W/B vans used to squeal like hell negotiating the market lines! The general exterior condition of the vans was exactly as shown in this album, even the later "ice blue" efforts soon got a coating of grime and on many model railway layouts the "fish trains" look unreal! Being far too clean! This just didn't happen, even after the fish merchants complained to the railways about their appearance but I can assure anybody that the interiors would be meticulously cleaned. There is a good example of an express fish train on page 122 of Peter Costers "Book of th V2's" and that is a "clean" one! All white (ish) no blue ones yet! Cheers. Stafnes. Sorry for not giving a proper link to the Flickr album but there you go! I very rarely use these forums other than being an observer so perhaps I'm not as savvy as I should be.

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S.A.C. Martin
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by S.A.C. Martin » Tue Feb 26, 2019 12:43 pm

Small bit of necromancing, if I may...!

I have now built around 10 of the Parkside LNER fish vans. I believe I'm right in saying that the diagram 134 vans are bauxite as they are not refrigerated vans?

My rake of fish vans contains the Bachmann RTR ones and now the Parkside vans. In many of the photos I am looking at from the 1940s, there seems to be LMS fish vans present too.

I know it's a "my railway" sort of thing when putting trains together, but my initial thought was that it must be more accurate to have a few of the other companies vans in a trains, more often than not, surely?

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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by Hatfield Shed » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:25 pm

Fact. You definitely want a mix of company vehicles in any goods train containing common user wagons. So the question then becomes, at what date(s) did banana and fish vans come under common user agreement(s), and between which companies? Specific to banana vans the LNER and SR transferred ownership of some of these when one of the major shippers switched from landing at Southampton to Liverpool - I don't recall in which direction!

(Opinion. In the interests of avoiding the classic laughable GWR modeller blunder of 'all company wagons GWR' as if that system was hermetically sealed off from the rest of the UK railway network; on LNER lines I would tend in the direction of including other company's vehicles unless there is good evidence that this was not the case.

Given the nature of the fish traffic in particular, unpredictable quantities landed in combination with the high perishability of the product, and that the overwhelming tonnage of the landings was exclusively in the ambit of the LMS and LNER, I would expect a common user agreement was formed quite early, at least between these two companies.

My reason for suggesting this is that before the 1920s were out, the LMS and LNER were jointly standardising on specialised wagon designs for key freight traffics. Despite being direct commercial competitors, that makes it clear that they both saw their interest best served by having an adequate supply of uniform wagons available, for whatever loads were offered.)

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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by Woodcock29 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 2:28 pm

I have spent quite a lot of time over the years studying photos of LNER fish trains and I'm not sure I agree with you. From what Is seen they comprise a vast mixture of LNER built fish vans, LNER constituent fish vans and other LNER or LNER constituent vans not specifically built for fish traffic. Certainly this seems to be the case up to WW2.

I'd be interested to see if I'm proved wrong as I've just bought a nice secondhand LMS 6 wheel fish van but plan to run it on the LMS part of my layout.

Andrew

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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by Hatfield Shed » Tue Feb 26, 2019 5:47 pm

I would be equally interested to know. Sadly I suspect we may be just too late to get the answer directly from those wth operational knowledge. But if the photos of operation up to WWII show nothing but LNER group design fish wagons, then the likelihood would be that they were not common user at that time.

Edit.Just thought to check in Tatlow, and fish vans were not common user; so there we are, LNER fish trains very likely to be LNER wagons only. Banana vans went common user during 1940, but then the sea import of bananas ceased some time after hostilities commenced in 1939, for the remaining duration of the war. (Inevitable next question, given the general pressure on rolling stock availability during the war, were the banana vans redeployed as common user fitted general merchandise vans?)

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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by Seagull » Tue Feb 26, 2019 10:00 pm

Hatfield Shed wrote:
Tue Feb 26, 2019 5:47 pm
Inevitable next question, given the general pressure on rolling stock availability during the war, were the banana vans redeployed as common user fitted general merchandise vans?
Short answer - Yes!...... They just did not connect the steam heating up.

I think it was early 1940 that banana imports were stopped principally to ease the pressure on space in shipping, bananas being more bulky than oranges and other types of fruit. (Bananas are actually a herb by the way).
They decided to ship only one type of fruit to make it easier to enforce rationing and avoid waste of transport space and administration time.
I believe the theory at the time was that vitamin C in oranges was more beneficial to reduce the likelihood of colds and thus lost time in the workforce.

Alan
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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by drmditch » Wed Feb 27, 2019 12:23 am

Interesting information regarding fish trains. I would presume that fish traffic originated at specific ports, so vans would travel loaded from port to a market destination, and then be returned empty.

I have read somewhere ( will try to check the source) that fish vans were contracted to particular merchants, and depending on catches etc, might travel the length of the ECML carrying only a few boxes of fish. A lot of tare weight wasted!

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Re: Bananas and fish ??

Post by Hatfield Shed » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:56 am

The fish traffic was highly organised on the railway side of necessity by the perishable nature of the product, so far as was possible given constraints of weather affecting when the boats made harbour (or if they had to divert elsewhere) and the variability of the catches. The sea has a way of making fun of human plans...

That was my understanding, the vans were typically contracted to merchants. Tatlow states and illustrates the LNER tried higher capacity vans quite early, but apparently found they were 'too much of a good thing' for most of the trade.

A factor directly affecting van loadings was the timetable departure necessary for the fast run to the destination wholesale market. A boat delayed making port landed and got loaded what it could - the most profitable items from the catch - apparently practically until the guard's green flag was waving. Current H&S would probably not look with approval on this. But I expect those about the work knew the drill and were usually cautious enough.

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