Minor panic this morning when Stuart noticed that I had got the wrong date in the AGM notification! We had asked for 9th September, but that day was already booked, and we had to settle for the 30th September. I had already drafted the calling notice but then forgot to change the date! 140 letters now need sending out to correct the date!
Down at Todders, John G was quite taken aback when he opened up the container to see 15 rail chairs in various states of undress. He and Steve P spent most of the day slapping primer paint on their tops. By end of play, there were 9 in green, 3 in crimson and 1 in black, plus 2 for which there was no room left on the bench!
Bruce began by caulking the balance weights on the driving wheels. These seem to work loose over time - not very loose, but moveable. So, he’s tried caulking from a different angle in the hopes that their weight throws them outwards, hence he caulked them on the inner edges. He pulled Steve away from rail chairs to paint over the caulking plus other knocked-off spots on the wheels.
Bruce also tackled the slacking (aka “pep”) pipe, which had been noticed (though not reported) as leaking. Removing the innards, he lapped the tapered core into body and fitted new packing.
Alex seemed to spend the entire day in the pit beneath the loco, cleaning everything within reach. She promised to come back later in the week and carry on, using a stepladder to get up higher!
A coal delivery arrived during the morning, and Bruce and I assisted by opening gates and moving cones. We were impressed at this enormous lorry being capable of doing a U-turn in the car park (albeit leaving rubber on the road surface and redistributing some ballast between the rails of the loading line).
I did needle-gun three more rail chairs, and spent some time investigating the outstanding issues:
Issue 1 was the stuck J-cocks. We had decided to take no action on that, so I signed that one off.
Issue 22 said, “Oil corks on motion in pour [sic] condition …”. I checked them all and found them all to be in satisfactory condition. Therefore, someone may have changed them all and just not signed the issue off. So I did.
Issue 26 said, “Vac reservoir slow to build up. Train pipe falling quickly”. Discussing possible causes with Bruce, we felt that the symptoms might point to a fault in the train pipe connections, rather than on the loco. Furthermore, the rubber seals in the vacuum hose ends have been replaced recently, and that could have fixed the problem. So, we signed this issue off with the proviso that the situation be monitored and reported back.
I was first to arrive at Todders and moved an ordered boot scraper down to the Flag & Whistle. Then most of those chairs undercoated by John & Steve had to be moved up into the van, because the container is very dusty and makes a mess of the top coat. I was almost last to arrive at Todders, too, except that Bruce popped in for elevenses! It is still bowls season, though not for much longer. After he departed, I simply slapped enamel top coats on one MR (crimson lake), one LNWR (black), three BR(W) and about five GWR rail chairs. The rest will have to wait!
2807 is rostered to be in service on: 22nd - 28th & 30th August; 2, 3, 8 - 10 & 12 - 15 September.
There was just one complete boot scraper on the shelf, which I took to Winchcombe for the Coffee Pot café. Whilst there, I decided to call in at our siphon van to see how the chaps are getting on with its restoration. What did I find?
Empty! No one there either! That’s a dummy at the far end (seriously!).