Friday 26 April 2024

Wolf Cub Mystery

Wolf Cub Weird Connections?

fbb used to be a Wolf Cub, carefully adjusting his woggle and chanting "dib dib dib" with enthusiasm and vitality! He even managed to win a few badges but cannot remember what they were.

The UK version of the wolf ...

... and her cubs caused a bit of worry at Brighton Station recently as she had set up shop under a shed quite close to the side rail electrified lines.
Where is this supposedly public transport blog going? 

Well, what seems like a decade ago, fbb ordered a tank wagon for his collection.

The manufacturer was Dapol and the wagon was an "Air Ministry" 14 ton tank used for various petroleum products including aviation fuel. The name may tell you that the full sized wagons were a wartime construct, the first arriving in 1939,
The majority of these tank wagons were built by the Air Ministry between 1939 and 1944 as Class A wagons for aviation fuel, being 17ft-6inch long on a 10ft wheelbase fitted with RCH either side braking and split oil axle boxes. The tank was 7ft-2inch diameter containing 4275 gallons saddle mounted with two small platforms on the top of the tank. 

In a move to confuse old people (like fbb) TEN different model versions were offered ...
... and when fbb checked his pre-order list on-line he found he had ordered THREE at different times.!

Thankfully Rails of Sheffield accepted fbb's plea of insanity and reduced the order to one, this one!
fbb was intrigued with the name and liked the livery. The "stone" base colour with the red line was an early attempt to allay the railway companies' health and safety concerns. Tanks painted thus would contain highly inflammable products and could be highly explosive. So the red line was a warning.

The model is due in "May or June" but fbb was already VERY intrigued.

Lobito is Spanish for "small wolf" or maybe "wolf cub" being a derivative of "lobo". So how come a UK fuel company is named after a little wolf?
The Cheshire address was authentic but a search on-line found scant evidence of this company.  But there is some!
Not fat from the refinery address is a filling station and tyre fitting garage at Holywell ...
... but nowhere else was there a UK version of the name - and anyway the video shows the establishment selling Esso fuel.

And so to a wider search!

Lobito is a town in Angola ...
... which looks quite pleasant.
Lobitos is also a small community in California ..
... which warrants very little information c/o Google.
But a district in Peru looks a little more hopeful.
Slowly the truth is unravelled,
Peru's importance in the early 20th century oil industry is clear from this picture of a Lobitos oilfield from back then.
So, probably, Lobitos succumbed to the global aspirations of Esso and ceased to exist, almost certainty pre WW2 or immediately post WW2. But the brand had a dynamic logo (?) ...
... petrol pumps ...
... and oil cans!
There is even a picture of a lorry for road deliveries.
Sadly we can no longer buy "wolf cub" petrol anywhere in the world ...
... pause for plaintive howling from petrol heads! 

But fbb (and others like him) can have a tank wagon to remind them of Peruvian lupine fuel!

Of course, fbb will report (excitedly?) on his new tank wagon when it arrives; but he can be certain it will have far better detail than his 1939 Hornby Dublo 3 rail model.
Dapol definitely offers intricacy and quality in response to more pennies from the fbb piggy bank. (Approx 3,780 pennies RRP!!) ...
... but fbb is paying nearly £6 less. (He hopes!)

Air Ministry 14 ton tank wagon

Extremely detailed and accurate 
     body shell and chassis 
Many separately added  fine details,
       including separate platforms 
       and ladders
NEM coupling 
Finely profiled wheels (front and back) 
Full sprung chassis
      a first for OO Gauge RTR models 
Superbly applied livery 
Three link chains supplied in accessory bag   

Incidentally, "Power" tank wagons were never green in reality. They would have been in the red stripe standard livery until that scheme was abandoned, colours as illustrated on this Bachmann model of a different prototype.

P.S. The Wolf Cub picture at the head of this blog is NOT a sweet 10 year old fbb! It was sourced from an internet postcard. fbb always wore specs!

 Next Variety blog : Saturday 27 April 

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