GWR STELLA CLASS LOCOMOTIVE KIT
BRIEF HISTORICAL DETAILS
In the period 1884-87 Dean carried out an interesting standardisation scheme involving four classes of engine, passenger, 2-4-0, tender and tank and goods, O-6-O, tender and tank. All had identical cylinders and motion, double frames of a neat and attractive design and coupled wheels of the same size with springs hung underneath the axles.

Hence, from 1895 there were 25 basically similar 2-4-O tender engines which, depending on their origin, had significant differences depending on their origin. These differences have been captured in this kit. As is usual for Great Western engines the most obvious variation is in boilers. S2 boilers were fitted until the S4 and B4 boilers included in the kit were used from around the turn of the century. From this kit any of the class can be built from circa 1900 to 1933.

For a detailed history of this class, including details of boiler changes, Part Four of The Locomotives of the Great Western Railway published by the RCTS is essential reading. Great Western Engines - Vol 1 by J.H.Russell on pages 151 - 156 has some useful photographs.

VARIATIONS POSSIBLE WITH THE KIT
Cabs.   The cabsides of Lot 65 had a very large cut-out whereas the new cabs of the rebuilt engines had a smaller cut-out which gave more protection to the crew. With the fitting of Belpaire fireboxes the cabs were raised to allow the spectacle windows to be refitted. Cab roofs were latterly of steel replacing the earlier canvas covered wood.

Steps.   There were many different arrangements, determined by the origin of the engine.

Smokebox.   Latterly many acquired new/overhauled smokeboxes with snaphead rivets and some Churchward type smokebox doors without the ring. 

Frame patches.   These were fitted to many in later years.
 
Firebox side brackets.   These were fitted with a cover on some engines in later years. 

Lower front wheel splasher.   Removed around the time of the Great War. 

Coupling rods.   Originally these were plain but some engines were subsequently fitted with fluted rods.

TENDERS 
3201-3205 were initially fitted with standard, Dean 2500 gallon tenders.  
3510-3520, when rebuilt, seem to have been given old iron frame Armstrong tenders. From the early years of the 20th century many were paired with Dean 2000 gallon tenders originally fitted to 'Dukes' and indeed some kept such tenders until withdrawal. In later years the majority had the Dean 2500 gallon type and at least one (3515) had a tender of 3000 gallons capacity.