45655 "Herts Wanderer" Tri-Tandem Roller

General History of Type

Built as a conventional Tandem roller (see 42693)


....as manufactured by Robeys

Not built as a Tri-Tandem by Robeys. Instead, the company supplied the parts to enable the conversion to be done by Goodes of Royston.


This engine Engine Book entry

Number; Machinery; MO; Delivery; Name

45655 (entry blank)



A standard Robey Tandem roller (see 42693) which was converted to a Tri-Tandem configuration by the addition of another rear roll, the theory being that, to achieve the greater degree of flatness a fast road such as motorways require, three rolls in line ought to be better than two. The rearmost roll could also be driven, by a chain on the opposite side to the drive chain from the crankshaft. However, in practice it was found that the chassis, with the extension welded on to the rear end, wasn't strong enough to cope with the extra loads imposed, and so numerous strengthening pieces were inserted, as was an extra length of channel, to strengthen the whole chassis from end to end. Eventually, by all accounts, these rollers gave good accounts of themselves.



Cylinder (hp) 4 ¼" dia. (lp) 7 ¼" dia. x 7" stroke. Boiler pressure 250 lbs.sq.in


Known history in its working life

Wirksworth Quarries bought 3 Tandems new: 43755/1929 (now scrapped), 44083/1930 (in Sudbury) and our 45655/1930, and had them converted into Tri-Tandems by Goodes of Royston using parts supplied by Robeys. 45655 is known to have rolled the Hertfordshire section of the M1 - Britain's first motorway and the M6 at Sandbach as well as various by-passes and trunk roads.


History in Preservation

In 1965/6 Walter Lisles, an employee of Wirksworth Quarries, bought 45655 (and 43755 for spares) on his retirement. He took 45655 to rallies from around 1967 onwards; it was based in a yard in Great Wymondley. Due to ill health, Walter sold it between May 1976 and July 1977 to a dealer called Richard Parkinson who was based in the Exeter area. The engine was then bought in 1977 by John Woodley of Ipplepen. When John wished to sell, it was offered to the Trust [which couldn't afford it], so a share issue was launched in 1992. The Tri Tandem Partnership was established, raised the purchase price, and 45655 was delivered to Tavistock on 4th April 1993.


Known others in existence


The trust owns a large number of parts from the scrapped 43755.

Total 2


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