Eight Years of Summerlands Chuffers
It doesn't seem possible, but eight years ago Nigel Garrett and I launched the Summerlands Chuffer. We had three designs and thought we might sell a hundred or so. Eight years on, there ore more than 65 versions for probably 150 locos and we have just passed the 6,000 sales worldwide. So a big thank you to all out customers and fellow enthusiasts who have made this possible! And amazingly we have absorbed every cost increase swince then and the Chuffers are still just £25!
SSP Slomo for Roundhouse "Lady Anne"!
The long awaited Slomo for the six coupled Lady Anne is finally sorted and ready for production. Terry Robinson of Small Steam performance in Australia sent me the little video (see right) and tells me that the price will be AU$ 340 plus shipping (and UK VAT), with a lead time of about five weeks. I have always been a huge fan of the four coupled versions on my Katie and Jack and can see from the video that this is every bit as good!
New Accuraft 3 Ton Decauville - 7/8ths scale
Thanks to vital assistance from Jay Kovac of The Train Department, I can confirm the the correct Chuffer is the latest version of the SCAC29 which has an 1/8" copper connecting tube. Versions with the 5/32 brass tube will not be suitable owing to the narrow base of the chimney.
Accucraft Hunslet No.14 Chuffer available!
Dave Mees of Abbeybach Engineering Services tested the revised design today and it was fine - so SCAC42 is now available to order
Accucraft Lyn - First Batch Chuffer
I have recently learned that the first batch of Lyn's had very restricted smokebox breathing (none!) and that some folk have had burner trouble when fitting our standard SCAC5 Chuffer. We now have the SCAC5FB for these first batch locos whic cures the problem. If you have removed an SCAC5 and would like the new version to replace it, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Roundhouse Garratt Chuffer
We can now offer two versions of the SCRH7: These will be SCRH7-RH, which mimics the Roundhouse exhaust dimensions (though slightly longer) and SCRH7- FX which uses the 7/32" Chuffer and is fitted with FX Control as standard. The FX allows you to make the best of the prodigious steam plume! Tests have shown that lighting is absolutely normal with RH version and better done at the base of the smokebox with the FX version.
These Chuffers will only be made to order as the manifold that they fit into varies in height (the locos are, of course, hand made!) and customers need to be aware that fitting either type goes against the manufacturer's warranty on the exhaust and burner. If concerned, please discuss with Roundhouse or your dealer.
To order one it is necessary to measure down from the top of the chimney to the manifold where the exhaust screws in. This is easily done with the rod on a digital caliper or by slipping a tube over the existing exhaust and lowering it until it stops. Mark the tube at the top of the chimney, remove the tube and measure. The measurement will be between 60mm and 70mm.
We have now supplied over 6,000 chuffers worldwide.
The Summerlands Chuffer website has had over 629,000 page hits in eight years.
Summerlandsteam (my Youtube channel) videos have now been viewed over 844,000 times.
There are just two of us in the Summerlands Chuffer business. Nigel makes and supplies them through his one man D P Supplies business and I do all the design and marketing from my home.
You can contact me (Chris) at coxhillcottage(at) yahoo.com
Fitting a Chuffer to most Accucraft locos is only a five minute job? And it is the same for the Roundhouse VoR and Silver Lady!
That it is important to always read the instructions if fitting to Roundhouse Twin exhaust locos - even if you have done it before. The cutting heights for Russell, Bertie and the Darjeeling B are non standard.
I recently received a query about a "Chuffer" fitted to an Accucraft loco. The loco wouldn't run and it was found that the thread obstructed the exhaust passage. I knew this could not be a Summerlands Chuffer, and was not surprised when the photo showed an incorrectly designed and poorly engineered copy that had caused the problem.
Genuine Summerlands Chuffers are guaranteed to work correctly and are beautifully made by Nigel Garrett. If you are in any doubt about your Chuffer, please get in touch.
Fitting to home builds - warning!
I have just worked on a fine model of a Hunslet Jack which had recently had a chuffer fitted to the twin exhaust. The chuffer was correct, but the fitting wasn't - the twin pipe adapter was mounted so high that it was blocking the chimney! The problem was made worse by the loco only having very little air hole in the bottom. I shortened the pipes by about 8mm and substantially enlarged the hole in the base and now all is well. It is essential (and easy) to fit them correctly so if in doubt - please do ask!!
Brian Wilson's "Jack" Articles
For those who missed Brian's series in Garden Rail Magazine, or who want a little more detail from the great man himself, we are publishing a re-edited version on the Garden Railway Club over the coming months. The first two sections are already there - so click here to go there. You will also find my article on the build there and more detail on this website here.
That this site hosts web pages for other Garden Railway Traders. Look under the Other Stuff button to find:
Anything Narrow Gauge (secondhand)
Modelearth Design (inc. Talisman & Busybodies)
Small Steam performance (SSP Slomo)
Here is a little film from John Robinson in Tawa, New Zealand, featuring his highly modified Accucraft leader running on his bush railway. The Chuffer is fitted with FX Control, but here is running with both holes closed for maximum Chuff.
Here is another video of my Brian Wilson Jack "LIZZIE" running on a chilly November morning. The FX Control is open on the small hole and the low sun makes for some great steam effects.
Here are two rather special little films from the wonderful Pinetree Junction studeo to show off their new Chuffer with FX Control and their new Chuffer on the Roundhouse Garratt. Many thanks to Lindsay Newton!
And here is LIZZIE, running at Doc Turner's Dingle Leigh Railway in the Spring
Eight Anniversary celebrations at Summerlands!