About usFollowing concern about the availability of plans, castings and tracks on which locomotives could be run, Paul Wiese arranged for a meeting in May 1975 to which all interested parties were invited. The result was the founding of the Association, the stated aims of which were to promote interest in the gauge.
- Drawings and construction details of most of the published designs are held in our library and can be viewed on request. Some of these can be supplied in either printed or 'soft' form.
- Hundreds of different castings (including a very large range of wheels) are now available, enabling almost all of the existing loco designs to be constructed.
- Drawings for a number of new locomotives have been designed, including an easy to build beginner's type (called Toby).
- Locomotive rallies and meetings are held regularly in various regions of the UK.
- Members now receive a journal (Steam Chest) printed in colour throughout 4 times a year.
About 2½" gaugeSometime around 1900 a set of track gauge standards was formulated. Thus tracks with a dimension of 2.500 inches between the inner rail edges was designated "GAUGE 3". At that time, this gauge was fairly popular for garden or scenic model railways, with the engines using clockwork or meths powered. Certainly none of them were capable of hauling the driver, let alone a driver and passengers ! Such capabilities arose from the work of (arguably) one man, Lilian (Curly) Lawrence, who wrote under the pen name of LBSC. Initially, the scale used for standard gauge locomoltives was half inch, but this was changed to 17/32-ins. (about 13mm) very early on. A typical loco and tender is 3ft long, and looks very large when stood next to OO or O gauge models. Narrow gauge locomotives are beginning to become popular and drawings for such designs as the Lynton & Barnstaple Manning Wardles and the Leek & Manifold engines are in preparation. Drawings for the Hunslet Quarry engine "Penrhyn" can now be purchased, and the castings required should be available in the New Year. Electric powered locomotives are becoming popular and these too have been or are being developed. The Association has promoted two coal-fired locomotive designs suitable for beginners.
You can contact the Association by sending an e-mail to :
This website still undergoing development. You can visit the old website here.