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GWR Gunpowder Van No. 105777

An original gunpowder van

Tim Cook - An original gunpowder van

This vacuum braked van is probably unique because it was built to carry gunpowder. Most were converted from GWR Iron Mink box vans, rather than specifically designed for the purpose. The GWR telegraph code for gunpowder vans was Cone, with a TOPS code of CXU.

105777 was built in 1939 and was designed for safety. It has a wooden 'non-spark' lining, and hooks for the hanging of nail-less leather over-boots for the operatives to cover over their hob nailed boots, inside the doors. Brass or copper screws, hinges and kick plates were used to avoid danger of sparks. Loads were securely roped to special cast pockets on the inside walls in order to avoid the danger of an explosion.

Since construction, 105777 has had vacuum brakes fitted, modifications including a tie-bar and heavy duty type axle boxes fitted.

This particular example was last used on traffic to the Gypsum mines in Mountfield in East Sussex, before being withdrawn with another van at Tonbridge. This other vehicle was an ex-LMS example which was lighter and more corroded than the GW van, which is in remarkably good condition. The van was delivered to Quainton on 24 July 1981, initially in the ownership of the Ivatt Trust. It is now owned by the Quainton Railway Society.

Three More for the Ivatt Trust - Quainton News No. 44 Summer / Autumn 1981

Origin :- GWR Date Built :- 1939 Number :- 105777
Diagram :- Z4 Lot :- 1346 Tare Weight :- 7 ton
Type :- Gunpowder Van Builder :- GWR Swindon Wheelbase :- 9' 0"
Owner :- QRS Status :- Restored Location :- Up Yard
Accession No.: W/0144 Arrival Date :- Ivatt Trust 1981
QRS 2009

Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
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Page Updated: 26 September 2017