Railway Heritage

AY Week

During the last week we paid special attention to all our mobile AY ballast wagons and…

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What do Reefsteamers get up to when they're not at Reefsteamers

A few of us guys and girls at Reefsteamers have another interest in steam, just in the scale miniat…

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Leon Kamfer’s SAR 15F in 5”gge

I started building locos with a Simplex that took me 5 years. After the Simplex I completed a part…

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Steam News From The Sandstone Steam Railway!

Harvest time on the Sandstone Estates Farms means combining ahead of the clouds. S…

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Andries Keyser's South African Railways NG 6 A in 7¼


We all know the fascinating history of the 2 foot narrow gauge railway that ran from Beir…

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UVE 2 Sugarcane Locomotive in 7 ¼”gge

Building a scale model locomotive from scratch in any scale is not a small job that can be finished…

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Pietermaritzburg Model Engineering Society

Since 2005 the Pietermaritzburg Model Engineering Society has annually hosted the Wings, Wheels and…

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Duplex Steam Pump

Steam engines in all forms are dependent on boilers to supply the steam at pressure to their cylind…

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Nick Popich’s SAR 16DA in 3¼

I went to the annual Rand show in 1971 and found the Rand Society of Model Engineers inside the sho…

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Garry Barns's Bagnall Meyer in 7 1/14

I always wanted to build a GEA Garratt in 5" gauge but after seeing 2-foot gauge locomotives runnin…

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Sandstone Heritage Trust, Bloemfontein workshops.

Although Sandstone is reasonably well known as a destination it is less well known that we operate a major locomotive refurbishment programme at our Bloemfontein workshops. This is located in the old Steam Depot which was the home of constant Steam activity for many decades.








Sandstone has agreed with South Africa's top model makers to host a special section on their web site which would concentrate on areas of interest for railway locomotive model makers worldwide. The idea was proposed by Andries Keyser, whose introduction features below.

One of our most steadfast supporters over the years and someone who has been of immense assistance to model makers around the world with respect to the provision of technical information is Hannes Paling. As a summary to the outstanding contributions that Hannes has made and continues to make he has prepared this introductory statement for us:

Since the start of the industrial revolution man has created many types of machines, the steam locomotive was one of these. The steam locomotive has held a special fascination to young and old for more than a century. With the withdrawal of the steam locomotive from active service a vacuum was formed which was ably filled by the Sandstone Heritage Trust's Unique collection in this country, especially narrow gauge locomotives and rolling stock. It has from the smallest locomotive, a Decauville type 1, which is the only working example in the world, two examples of Lawleys with a rich history spanning more than a hundred years each, again the only working examples in the world and narrow gauge super power in the form of the NG15 and various Garratt classes, which don't need a introduction, with a good spread in between from all major manufacturers world wide.

Sandstone narrow gauge railway and website has been a inspiration to many model builders around the world, examples of Sandstone engines are built in Australia, the UK, the States, Europe, Germany and of course South Africa, from small H0 gauge models to one third size working models are built. Many of the models built in other countries were inspired by photo's on the Sandstone website.

To all model builders around the world, please let us have pictures of your work, perhaps we could share some of our experiences.

Best regards,
Hannes Paling

Please direct all queries, contributions and questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.