Sunday, 19 July 2015

Maintenance Update (hammer, felt, block)

Saturday 11th
Board Meeting, so no work done!

Sunday 12th
Stuart held a tombola stall at the bus rally.

Wednesday 15th
I had a boot scraper order to fulfil.  Uniquely, the purchaser wanted one unpainted.  "Rustic", she said.  As it was being collected on Friday, I had to tackle this first.

Gil, John G and Howard [Loco Dept] attacked issue 36: "Rivets to die blocks loose".  They started by removing the Left-hand side radius rod (that connects the lifting link to the combination lever, and ultimately to the valve spindle).  This didn't appear to be too difficult .. and then it was elevenses time.

Shareholder Ken and his mate Rob popped in to say "Hello".  They were using their free GWSR tickets and took a break.  Much nattering ensued.

Tim [Loco Dept] joined in when they attempted to remove the expansion link.  It is held in place by a tapered pin, and you know what they are like!  Gil was between the frames, bashing away, while the others were giving moral support (plus handing him spanners, lump hammers, etc. as appropriate).

I figured that there was room for me (just) and I could tackle issue 28: "All eccentric straps loosing oil via felt pads".  So, I began removing split pins and lock nuts and took off the first strap.  Gil assisted me by holding the lower one up when I removed the upper one (else when the two halves split I need 4 arms).  Well, blow me!  It was plain to see …. no felt pads at all !!!  Whoever assembled them forgot to fit the felt pads in.  Felt pads lovingly created by Bruce, who had the foresight to make spares.  So, we fitted pads, oiled up and reassembled.  Ditto the second strap.

Meanwhile, the tapered pin was refusing to budge for Gil.  So, I assisted him … but to no avail.  Obviously the pin was beginning to get worried by all of our forcing and bashing because when JC [Loco Dept] came along with his great big lead hammer, the pin gave up immediately.  However, by now it was almost teatime.  So, the expansion link came off and was moved into the TPO.

Thursday 16th
I popped down to make a few wooden wedges for boot scrapers while no one was about.  I won't use the band saw when folks might be trotting in & out focussed entirely on finding a one-and-thirteen-sixteenths Whitworth spanner!  An accidental nudge of my elbow could break the saw blade!

Saturday 18th
The main objective of today was to extract the rivets from the die block so that it can be freed from the expansion link.  Bruce and David tackled that.  The rivets did seem to be fairly hard, so David attacked them with an angle grinder.  Of course, that knackered the side plate, but luckily we have two new ones.

David & Bruce took a million measurements such that the block can be skimmed to best fit the expansion link, and the holes all made to suit the rivets.  This was left in a box for Gilbert to collect and take to his "man" who does things.

Meanwhile, John T and I disassembled the right-hand eccentrics rods, which allowed the eccentrics to rotate.  We could then access the split pins, lock nuts and finally the nuts to remove the eccentric straps (two semi-circles clamped onto the eccentric sheaves that are attached to the loco driving wheel axles).

Sure enough, there were no felt pads in these, either!  We fitted pads and reassembled the eccentrics.  Fitting the rods back was highly amusing, as we had forgotten which came of which!  By trial and error (i.e. 3rd time lucky) we got one right.  The inside rod (marked only as "R1") connects to the bottom of the expansions link and is the backward gear.  The outside rod ("R2") connects to the top of the expansion link and is the forward gear.  We confirmed this from a diagram.  It could have been fun if we'd got them the wrong way round!

Other little jobs took place from time to time: David painted "2807" on his newly-built & painted chimney cap.

Bruce and David both examined the blower in the cab with a view to removing it and thence to skim the internal face in the workshop, rather than the previous attempt at cutting the face in situ.

John cut off some bolts from a few rail chairs that had mysteriously appeared (P-Way were working in  the yard, so it was not really that mysterious!).  I finished off the three boot scrapers in the production line.

We have about 10 days in which to get the die block machined, riveted and reassembled.  2807 is next due in service on 31st July.

Next weekend is the diesel gala.  If Gil gets the work done during the week, the chaps can do the riveting and assembly on Saturday.  I'm on duty at Winchcombe station (someone has to volunteer to assist these diesel chaps!).

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Maintenance Update (cap, steam, reverser, pony)

Saturday 4th July
David and John T were first to arrive.  David immediately tackled the chimney cap that had lost its handle.  The square-section handle was too thin to rescue, so David found a length of hollow tubing to replace the handle.  Once he'd welded it and tested it, he figured that it would be good to give it a coat of paint.  Then, he hung it up outside to dry [see photo].  Sadly, as I was snapping it, I spotted a bit he'd missed!  So, David got the paint out again … Then, he asked: 'Does it need to have this rope attached?'  Well, it does - to tie it down & stop the cap from flying off the chimney when it's windy!  So, David fashioned a loop from the original, and welded it onto the handle … and out came the paint again!

I had arrived with half a dozen rail chairs from Winchcombe, and John set to, cutting off the bolts.  It was a bit like firework night watching him.

Then we had a look at the remaining issues list to see what to tackle.  John took on issue 10 (LH intermediate underkeep retaining bolts too short.  Lock nuts not fully on thread).  Grovelling in the grime under the loco, we could see that, indeed, the lock nut on one was only half onto the bolt thread.  After John had removed it and examined the situation, it became apparent that there was an ill-fitting washer.  John gave it a shave with a file, and that fixed the problem totally.

When John & I clambered down into the pit to suss out this issue, I noticed a huge hole in the steam heating hose on the tender.  So big that I could get a finger into it.  Now, how come someone can raise an issue to say that the leaves of a spring are not perfectly in line, and yet there is no report of this religious hose???  Steam would have gushed out if the heating was used!  I wonder if it relates to issue 22 (Rear steam heat connector blowing.  Replaced seal, still blowing steam)?  Perhaps the blowing of steam was from a small hole, that has subsequently got bigger?  Certainly, replacing the seal would have had no effect …

John tackled this issue next.  In due course he had stripped the old hose of its connections & clasps.  After looking for a new hose, and not finding one, we did find a 10ft length of hose that appears to be identical to the old one, so John cut off 25" and it is ready to assemble (but time ran out today).

Bruce drilled and fitted the new pin for the reverser lever handle.  David painted that part of the handle in signal red [pin arrowed in photo].

Bruce was investigating issue 33 (Vacuum pump release valves (both ends) hot.).  We could not understand how these could get hot, as they only allow air to escape from the vacuum pump.  So, he met 4270 as it came back into Toddington and examined its vacuum pump.  It was almost too hot to handle!  David gave a second opinion, and Bruce estimated it to be about 50 deg.C.  So, it would appear that they do get rather warm!

Bruce's brain was almost continuously trying to work out what might cause the pony axle to get hot (issue 33).  He didn't solve that mystery!

David had another go at the blower's seat (issue 24 Blower blowing by).  He & I had had a go before, but spent all day getting nowhere fast.  David and Bruce had another go, using hand tools (as opposed to the electric drill that we had previously used).  Whilst this had some effect, their view is that the blower needs taking off and machining in the workshop.

Mostly, I seemed to paint chairs & assemble boot scrapers.  The F&W sold two today.

Tony Soughton came to Todders to the P&O AGM.  Tony used to be 1/3rd of the Sunday Gang restoring 2807 during the final years.  Now he works at the Dean Forest Railway.

Wednesday 8th

The pony truck axlebox came under scrutiny,  Bruce's brain was still trying to fathom out how the axle could get hot.  So, he and Gil, aided by Graham [Loco dept] in the morning and John G late in the day messed around with it all day.  The underkeep could not be removed.  There was some debate about the design of it - it differs slightly from that on the 42xx, which can be removed.

At one point, Bruce was blowing through a length of hose pipe into the axlebox.  I'm not sure that this proved anything (other than his puff also came out of the axlebox).  The final decision was that the pony will have to come off completely over winter and the axle and boxes be removed for thorough examination.

John G spent the morning playing with the holey steam heat hose.  Firstly we couldn't find any decent clamps to hold it on; secondly Carpo said it was the wrong sort of hose!  Well, it was identical to that which came off!  Hopefully Gil will buy a correct one.

After this, John painted the three remaining rail chairs in the production line.

I began by painting the lettering and fitting brushes to half-a-dozen boot scrapers.  Then got sucked into the hose issue.  I dug out a pile of (old) hoses that we had squirrelled away, and decided to chuck the lot of them!  So, I cut the fitments off (where there were any) and Mike [Loco Dept] disposed of the rubbers.

We have been informed by the railway that … " there is a considerable amount of movement of the cheek plates caused by the rivets being loose" [in the LH die block].  We are going to have to attend to this immediately after the weekend's running.

2807 is in service this coming weekend, but then not until 31st July.  Note that it is a bus rally at Todders on Sunday.  On Saturday we are having a board meeting (so not much work would have got done, even if 2807 were sat idle!).


Thursday, 2 July 2015

Maintenance Update (flat, pony, damper, lubricator)

Friday 26th
Woe, and thrice woe! Carpo's message says:

"… on the second trip out of Cheltenham Racecourse on today's F&D course the crew failed to fully release the tender handbrake before departure. They did not realise their mistake until approaching the foot crossing at Bishop Cleeve when, having shut off, the rate of deceleration indicated the problem."

Carpo carried out a detailed examination of the tender wheelset and there appears to be no major problem: 

" I am relieved to be able to tell you that no major flat spot developed and that there is no evidence of the tyres having shifted on their wheels."

However, some damage was caused to the tyres on the rear wheels.  He put 2807 out on Saturday, and will examine the tyres again at the end of the day.

Saturday 27th
I popped down first thing and examined the rear tender wheels.  They were quite noticeably scoured, especially the RHS.  Furthermore, when 2807 left the yard, there was a very audible thump-thump-thump.  Methinks there is a flat!

Sunday 28th
Sitting on Winchcombe station as 2807 pulled (and then out), I could not hear any thumping sounds at all.  Later, I spoke with Jon W (driving) who said that the tender flat had more or less rounded itself.  It was only noticeable at speed.  Similarly, there is an occasional "thunk" from the rods, but not a consistent knocking.

New issues raised:
39 [JC]: Excessive side play in all gradient pins.  Serviceable until all rods overhauled. {I have to admit that I don't know what a "gradient pin" is!}

40 [IW]: Flat on rear tender wheelset.

41 [IW]: Front damper door linkage bracket loose. {Driver obviously has not passed his spanner operating exam}.

42 [IW]: LT {left trailing} spring leaves out of alignment.

43 [IW]: Lub{ricator} shut off on lubricator not working. Operates in mid position.

44 [IW]: Lub{ricator} sight glass leaking oil, left glass R/H cyl feed.  {Presumably he tried tightening it?}

Wednesday 1 July
Bloomin' warm today!  The workshop was the coolest place.

Anyway, 2807 was standing still all day, so we decided to tackle some of the issues on the list:

18: Cannot always engage full forward gear.  This is first on the list, but was almost last of the day!  We had discovered that the central support bracket was the cause, preventing the operating rod from moving fully forward.  So, Gil & I removed the bracket, and then worked out where it ought to be when the reverser is full forward … about 1/4" further forward!  What were our options?  Drill out the holes (they'd become oval, of course) to suit; Fit skinny bolts and hope no one notices; file down the end of the  slot in the rod; or simply remove the roller in the bracket, thereby yielding a good 1/4" extra space.  We played with the reverser while watching the roller, and it didn't seem to be doing a lot of good, so it is now deposited in the box in our TPO which is marked "A Safe Place".  No probs now in engaging full forward!

27: Pony truck pivot pin very loose; & 32: Pony truck axle hot. 
Gil & Bruce spent a lot of time watching the pony as JC pulled us to & fro with his diesel shunter.  I'm not sure if that helped, but the two of them then removed the pivot pin and measured its diameters.  Either it is oval or the hole it goes into is, or maybe both are!  It does allow sideways play.  Also, Bruce recalled that when we weighed the loco, one side appeared to be 5 tons heavier than the other.  Could that cause the pony to veer sideways? If so, could that cause friction (e.g. on the flange) and heat up the axle?  The only decision was to carry on to end of season and then bore out the bush and make a new pin to suit.

34: Pin through reverser lever handle had dropped out {and been replace with a nut & bolt}.  John G and I played with this.  The pin came flush with the handle body - nothing to hold it in place, seemingly!  So, we decided to make a new pin, 3/8" longer and with a split-pin hole through it!  John asked Rod (in the workshop) who machined one for us by end of day.  I checked the fit (and adjusted the handle's hole to suit the pin!).  It still needs the split-pin hole drilling, and then Gil will get it hardened.

36: Rivets in both die blocks loose.  Bruce checked them both and whilst we knew those in the LHS are loose, those in the RHS are not!  We only had that remade over winter.  There is some play between the die block and the slot that it runs in, but the rivets are fine!

39: Excessive play in gradient pins.  These pins join the sections of the coupling rods together.  Gil confirmed that there is play in them, but no action proposed until winter maintenance.

40: Flat on rear tender wheelset.  While JC was shunting Bruce up & down, I watched & listened to the tender wheel.  There was no sound of a flat at this speed.  However, the pitting in the tyre surface was noticeable.  Speaking with Carpo, the decision is to run the tender to end of season and then assess the tyre wear and decide what action is appropriate.

41: Front damper doo linkage loose.  Actually, UI noticed it was loose during winter maintenance.  However, the nuts are "welded" onto the bolts and I could not tighten them.  Today, Bruce and I had another go.  We could not budge them.  So, yes they are loose, but there is no chance of them coming off!  We could cut them off and replace them, but I argued (successfully) that in doing so we would be fitting nuts & bolts that could come loose!  :-)  No action currently proposed.

42: Left trailing driver spring leaves out of alignment.  Gil & I inspected the spring, and we agree that the leaves are not neatly stacked - they could have been assembled better.  But there is no sign of a broken leaf nor the central pin being broken.  Bashing the leaves just to get them perfectly aligned didn't seem to be a good idea - what if we broke one in doing so?  No action proposed.

43: [Hydrostatic] Lubricator shut-off not working; operates in mid position.  This is puzzling.  The shut-off is a simple screw-it-shut device.  There is a 3-position lever on top of the lubricator that opens one or other of the condensing coils (on the cab ceiling).  This must be what was meant.  I tightened it.  Don't know if it will do any good!

44: Lubricator sight glass leaking oil.  John G and I removed the offending sight glass regulator valve, and could see that the packing in it was in a poor state.  John took it away, thoroughly cleaned the valve and discovered a brass ring inside.  This is supposed to compress the packing.  Gil found the right sort of packing and John wrapped some round the thread and then reassembled it.  Let's hope it works - you can't tell until in steam!

Apart from these, John also fitted the ferrules in the cab (which he's been wanting to do ever since the wash-out, but 2807 didn't stand still long enough); he also painted the rail chairs in the boot scraper production line; oh, and he was brakeman during the rolling inspection.

Gil tightened up the clips on the steam heat hose.  A wisp of steam had been seen emanating from the loco end of the hose twixt loco & tender.


The roster now has 2807 having a rest, and then in service on Friday 10th through to Sunday 12th; and then a BIG rest until 31st July.


Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Maintenance Update (Henry, noticeboard, pony, hanger)

Weekend 20th and 21st
It was Thomas The Tank Engine weekend, so (as predicted) no one went to Toddington.  Anyway, 2807 was in service (still) as Henry.  Thomas was very poorly and had to be assisted by 4270 all of the time, so we were holding the fort between Cheltenham and Winchcombe all day each day.  On Sunday, Ray O'H (firing Thomas) said he was keeping him at 90 psi so that he could blow the whistle!  I noticed that his left-hand injector was permanently piddling.  The 04 shunter was playing with the Troublesome Trucks at Toddington, and laying a trail of sand up & down the track from its LH sandbox (it sure was, I was on it all day Saturday - Steve).  Driver SO threw a very public wobbly at a certain photographer who was standing in the middle of the track trying to get a full-on photo of Thomas approaching.  :-)

Gil & Fred went to Winchcombe on Saturday to continue with siphon restoration.  I took the time to re-do our noticeboard.

Wednesday 24th
Much to our surprise, 2807 was still in service!  There are a few new issues raised since last week:

32 [JCh]: LHS pony truck axle (inside) running hot. No oil in axlebox underkeep at end of day.

33 [JCh]: Vacuum pump release valves (both ends) hot.  {Now, we can't see how this can be, because they don't move (well, they open & close only) and the pump only pumps air.  So, they let air out to enable the creation of a partial vacuum.  So, "hot"???}

34 [JCh]: Pin holding reverser release handle to reverser has fallen out.  {replaced with a bolt.  Needs correct pin.}

35 [JCh]: Hole in front vacuum hose.  {Hose replaced}

36 [MY}: Rivets to both die blocks loose.  {We knew LHS one was loose, but only this winter replaced the RHS die block!}

37 [MY]: LH trailing tender underkeep T bolts loose.  {Nuts tightened & all checked}

38 [MY]: RH rear brake hanger (on loco) top pivot nuts loose.  {Nuts tightened.  Others OK}

As 2807 was still chuffing up & down, there was little to do but boot scraper production.  John G got stuck in to painting chairs - tops & bottoms.  By end of play, he'd painted about 14!

John T wielded the needle-gun and wire brush, cleaning random rail chairs.  Bruce assisted him during the afternoon.

I sanded and stained 12 brushes, and then applied black enamel to two rail chairs.

The two Johns and I assembled the noticeboard and fitted it back into position in the car park.  A gentleman from Milton Keynes was reading it as I left (so it was worth doing!).

Bruce investigated issues 27 & 32 concerning the pony truck during the morning, but despite clambering beneath the 42xx couldn't see what the cause of it running hot might be.  But until we can get beneath 2807 (when it stands still long enough!) it is hard to guess.

Oh, Gil was around (from time to time); but went for a ride on the footplate (ostensibly to check issues 32 & 33).  Also, Geof popped in to say "Hello", having discovered that there was no one working on the siphon today.

It would appear that 2807 is in service until the end of this month.  The 55xx will join it over this weekend (but was having a wash-out today).  So, the Saturday work party would best focus on the siphon restoration at Winchcombe … or else will be assigned to rail chair painting!


Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Maintenance Update (regulator, DOWT)

Saturday 13th
John Tyler reports (on his lone presence at Toddington):
" I was at Toddington on Saturday, in the expectation of better weather! However the morning weather was adequately fair to clean four chairs before lunch. Afterwards as the weather had deteriorated, I used the air-chisel on some encrusted chairs, painted the four bottoms and then went home.

I'd earlier helped Carpo find our regulator spindle support jig, but it wouldn't fit 5542, so that's something we've learnt! "

Sunday 14th
As things stand today, Carpo is struggling with the 55xx.  Therefore he is planning on running 2807 during the week and also next weekend (which is the Thomas weekend).

Therefore, activities at Toddington on Weds & next Sat are expected to be associated with the production of boot scrapers (unless you want to help out elsewhere in the department).

Wednesday 17th
The 55xx went away (for the weekend).  2807 is holding the fort!

Bill arrived first, shortly followed by Bruce.  For want of something to do, we attacked a few rail chairs.  Bruce was needle-gunning them; I was wire-brushing them, and Bill painted their bottoms!

We did 6 today (to add to John's 4 from Saturday) and called it a day.

New issues raised:
27 [AM] Pony truck pivot pin very loose; excessive play.

28 [AM] All eccentric straps losing oil via felt pads (dry after 2 trips).

29 [AM] LHS big end has excessive side play. w{hite} metal warm {or maybe "worn"?} on outer face.

30 [AM] RHS big end has excessive clearance in bore, knocking badly.

{Interestingly, three days after this latter issue was raised, the Inspection sheet signed by the crew of JP, JC and NC ticked everything as "OK" and fit to run!}

31 [BE] Gauge frame when shut down leaks by - takes more than 1 minute to fill glass but water can be seen inside glass.
{This is quite common, and in fact it is acceptable provided the glass does not fill quickly - e.g. less than a minute}

It looks as though 2807 may have a rest after Thomas (when the 55xx comes back), and we'll take a look at 27 to 30.

Thomas Weekend
It's a DOWT weekend, so access is restricted and 2807 is in service on Saturday & Sunday.  See you next Wednesday, then?!


Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Maintenance Update (diesel, Thomas, chairs)

Wednesday 10th
I arrived at Todders to the sight of 2807 blowing off!  Not quite what I was expecting.  The plan had been to light a warming fire this morning and do a steam test later in the day ….

However, it all changed circa 8 am.  It seems that 4270 is unserviceable (awaiting parts); 5542 was failed with what may be a leak on the regulator; presumably, we don't have any right to steam Wells (which is still here, allegedly because of a bridge problem en route) for contractual reasons … so, 2807 was the only loco available to steam!  The first train had to go out diesel-hauled, while they got 2807 ready and tested.

So, with no loco to play with, Gil buzzed off to Winchcombe to play with the siphon, while Bruce John G and I offered our services to Carpo … and then to John P  … and finally, to Neil C! 

John P was checking the springs on Thomas, and Bruce and John G did provide some assistance.  No spring problem was found;  however …

The three of us then assisted Neil, who was clipping up the rails on Road 7 of the shed.  These are just past the new pit and will be concreted in place to form an apron.  We completed this before lunch.

As we had run out of things to do, we had lunch and then melted away.  I finished lettering on 6 rail chairs and then tackled Maurice's cubby hole (i.e. the toilet cubicle in the TPO).  He'd left it in a bit of a mess .. but so had we (all sorts of electrical kit "stuffed" inside).  I tidied up, hoovered up and threw out the junk.

As far as we can tell, 2807 will run the service train on Thursday; the Fire & Drive on Friday and the service trains on Saturday & Sunday.

… As I was leaving, John P was just finishing checking over Thomas.  Unless some pretty smart action is taken, it will not so much be a "Day Out With Thomas", as a day out with 2807 looking at Thomas sitting sad-faced in a siding!

So, Saturday currently looks like a relaxing day (!).  I will take Saturday off.  So, if anyone does turn up hoping to do some work, there is a pile of rail chairs on the bench outside …

Have a nice weekend!


Saturday, 6 June 2015

Maintenance Update (doors, plugs, bags, bricks)

Wednesday 3rd
It was all hands to the loco, today!  Bruce arrived first, and Carpo said to him that he wanted a quick turn-round for 2807's boiler wash-out!  Like, he wants 2807 ready for action next week!

The first task we attacked was the removal of wash-out plugs and mudhole doors.  The plugs are tapered and although they have only been in for a couple of months, they don't want to come out!

It is a three-man job removing one.  A bar fits through the extractor and two of you lever each side of the bar, while the third man holds the extractor onto the plug.  Fortunately, carpo didn't want all of them out; just enough to inspect in between the inner & outer firebox wrappers.  So, we removed 27.  Any that fought too hard stayed put! 

Mudhole doors are tricky but don't test the super-human strength that is needed for plugs.  The doors fit on the inside of the firebox (between the wrappers) such that boiler pressure holds them tight.  They are oval, which means that they can be manipulated and pulled out of their holes … provided you remove the gasket material from them first (they are that close a fit, that the thickness of the gasket prevents them from passing through the hole) .. and provided there isn't an oil pipe in the way!

The tricky bit comes when removing those on the top edge of the firebox.  If you let go while they are still inside, they go walkabout.  Getting them out then is worthy of a TV game show!  So, we have a loop that screws into the stud of the door and is too big to fall into the hole.

By end of play, all 27 plugs were cleaned and all 8 mudhole doors were cleaned; ready to go back in … once the boiler has been washed out.  This we couldn't do today because the tank wagon in the yard was empty and Bruce & JC had to hook the hose up to it and fill it.  It still wasn't full when we went home!

Meanwhile, Loco Dept chaps cleaned the grate; cleaned the smokebox, and emptied the ash pan.
John G removed various ferrules from with the cab (he's numbering them all so that they go back in their right places).  There's not enough room to insert the plug extractor (sort-of spanner) with these ferrules in situ.

John G also primed four rail chairs.

Many thanks to Loco dept chaps: Nigel, Andy, Howard and Chris S.

Here's a list of the most recent issues logged against our engine:

21 [JC] Regulator blowing by.
   {I think this simply means that there is a wisp of steam from the snifting valves.  If so, that's fairly normal!  We won't take any action over that.}

22 [JC] Rear steam heat connector blowing.  Replaced seal, still blowing steam.
   {This is puzzling.  It appears to mean the connection to the coaches.  They can be awkward to couple properly and may leak steam; or steam could have been coming out of the pressure relief valve.  Either ways, we're not likely to do anything about it}

24 [BE] Blower blowing by.
   {the blower valve in the cab does appear to be leaking quite badly, leaving white streaks down the petticoat in the smokebox.  The seat will need recutting.}

25 [RO'H] Centre brick of brick arch missing.
   {There's a comment saying "IC happy to run on".  We didn't get time to inspect it today.  Maybe it has simply slipped down?  One would think that the row of bricks would collapse if the key brick was totally missing?}

26 [NJC] Intermediate steam heat hose burst.
   {There is a split in the steam heating hose between loco and tender.  JC said he'd see if there was a spare in the stores, but didn't get back to us}

Saturday 6th
Just David and myself today … plus Carpo, Andrew, Clive and Eleanor from Loco Dept!

The Loco Dept chaps (and chapess) attempted to wash out the boiler … but the pump had run out of petrol!  David & I replaced the split bag (steam heat hose) while we had the chance.  {That's Issue 26 fixed}

Carpo went and got some petrol, and I think that he, Andy and Eleanor squirted water in (and out) of most of the holes (with occasional assistance from David).  While water was flying everywhere, I applied top coat to five chairs in the boot scraper production line.

Then David & I tackled the blower issue.  In fact, we spent the rest of the day trying to cut the seat and get down to a smooth face.  It was far from perfect by close of play, but it is bound to be better than it was.  There are still some depressions in the face, and we ought to have another go at some future time.  {That's issue 25 fixed as good as we can for now}

Meanwhile, Carpo & Andy boxed up the loco and filled the boiler with water. 

Clive and Eleanor spent happy moments in the firebox repairing the brick arch.  It would appear that some over-enthusiastic person had clobbered the brick arch with a fire iron, and had broken the centre brick.  Furthermore, when Clive and Eleanor removed it, a side brick fell in half!  It had also been cracked.  {Thanks to them for fixing issue 25}

Finally, Andy walked Eleanor through the process of fire lighting and they put a warming fire in.  The plan now is to light another warming fire on Wednesday; do a steam test on Wednesday or Thursday, and be in service on Friday.

Oh, and Andy produced a curious piece of metal that he thinks might once have been welded to something inside the smokebox … answers on an email …

2807 is now scheduled to operate:
    Friday 12th = Fire & Drive.
    Saturday 13th, train 2 (dep. Todders at 11.10am)
    Sunday 14th, train 1 (dep Todders at 10.00am)

Work continues on restoring our siphon van.  Today, for example, Fred, Bill and Geof were working on it.  Bill sends the following report on progress:

"Siphon restoration work at Winchcombe has continued with emphasis on the following activities:
o         Sanding down, priming, undercoating and painting interior area at end of the Siphon vehicle
(selected cream colour), including wood filling and improvement of existing wood
construction as necessary
o         Carpentry work involving disassembly, renewal and re-assembly of existing door posts,
including necessa
ry remedial work and filling areas of rotted wood, and fabrication and fitting
of replacement wood sections as necessary
o         Work involving renewal, re-assembly and installation of existing wood door frames and
doors, including replacement and filling of rotted wood sections with new wood as necessary
o        Sanding down, surface preparation, priming, undercoating and painting existing wood louvre
slats, including replacement of rotted slats and louvre frames with new wood as necessary
o         Breaking out and removal of existing exterior wood cladding sections on vehicle
o         Measure and cut to size replacement T & G wood sections required for replacement exterior
icle cladding
o         Fitting and installation of new exterior replacement T & G cladding panels
o         Application of primer, undercoat and top coat paint finish (selected GWR chocolate colour) to
new exterior wood cladding panels."


Saturday, 30 May 2015

Maintenance Update (piston, gland, blower, injector)

Wednesday 27th
Bruce & Gil arrived first.  It seems that there was a minor issue with the brakes: the diesel shunter had struggled to move 2807 because the piston inside the vacuum cylinder was reluctant to drop down (under its own weight).  The crew had to clamber underneath and help the piston to fall!  So, Bruce & Gil began by adjusting the brakes.  The gland where the piston rod passes through the bottom of the vacuum cylinder was adjusted such that the piston would fall.

Whilst playing with the brakes, it was clear that the new brake blocks had worn in, and Gil took up the slack in the brake linkages using the King Dick spanner on the bottle screws.

The two of them later compared the height of the running board on each side of the loco.  The main reason for this, apparently, was that when Gil weighed the loco, it was heavier under the left side wheels.  Bruce pointed out that the front cross-beam with which we had so much trouble earlier in the year, does now look level.  Anyway, there was no more than 1/8" difference between left & right, or front and back.  The right side is the lower.  Logically, right-side being low implies that the centre of gravity of the boiler shifts to the right, which suggests the right side should be the heavier.  Hmmm.  The back, by the cab, appears to be about 1/8" lower than the front, too.  Of course, with a 110 year-old frame, what are the chances that it is still straight anyway?  And, this assumes that the track over the pit is absolutely level.

When John G arrived, he could see that Gil & Bruce were in control of the loco issues, so he valiantly began painting rail chairs in the production line.  He applied Deproma primer/undercoat to four and a top coat to five more.

I arrived at lunchtime, and apart from doing some tidying up sanded and stained eleven brushes ready for boot scrapers.

2807 is currently rostered for Thursday and Sunday.  Then she is to have her boiler wash-out, returning to service for a Fire & Drive on Friday 12 June.  Chris B [Loco Dept] offered to light today's warming fire if I light the one for him on 11 June!

Two known issues that we hope to tackle before return to service are steam passing by the blower and the right-hand injector steam valve.  Both probably need their seats recutting.

Saturday 30th
2807 is to be in service on Sunday, so there was little that we could do on her.  After Sunday, she is due for a wash-out.

John T and I turned up and worked on boot scraper production.  We knocked off early, leaving four black bottoms facing upwards plus about six further completed boot scrapers on the shelf.