Saturday, 5 August 2017

Maintenance Update (TPO, hydrostatic, valves, firehole)

Friday 28 July
Photo received from Brian showing “our” TPO finally leaving Toddington.

We had a loan agreement for the use of the TPO as a storage facility and workshop. So, it came as something of a surprise when we received notice from the owner, as the board minutes of 9th July 2016 say: “A letter was received from Andrew Goodman (AG) and circulated to all Board members offering the opportunity to purchase the TPO (Post Office Stowage Vehicle) or to vacate it by 31st July 2016.” It was “all hands to the TPO” in order to clear out everything - and find somewhere for it all!

And so, the TPO has sat in sidings at Toddington for almost a full year before it was finally taken away.

Saturday 29th
It was a diesel gala, hence 2807 was accessible. However, I was on crossing monitor duty and Bruce had a bowls match, so our chaps were thin on the ground. As John T reports:

“Gil and John T worked on sorting Defect Report 28, concerning an intermittent fault on the hydrostatic lubricator, where the glass 3rd from left sometimes wasn't feeding oil. Firstly the end plugs on the oil supply gallery were removed and the gallery rodded - it was clear. Then the reported glass, seals, and adjusting valve were removed and examined. The packing in the adjusting valve gland seemed suspect. It was removed and 3 staggered rings of 1/8" packing inserted. The glass was cleaned and the unit boxed up.

Later, Gil was in the office archiving drawings, whilst John did a little needle gunning. Only 3 chairs cleaned, because of getting the repaired hand back into use! … (and the dreadful state of 2 of the chairs).”

[Note: John has had some tendon issues in his fingers, which has now received attention; but obviously one always has to be careful to allow a repair to heal in its own good time!]

Stuart was manning a stall inside the diesel shed.

Wednesday 2nd
The current GWSR regime insists that 2807’s safety valves should blow at 225, and not 215. So, Bruce removed the spacers and took them home to machine a few more thou off.

He was back later to refit them. He spends a lot of time up on the top of our engine!

Meanwhile, John G was applying a top coat to 7 chairs and black bottoms to John T’s three from Saturday. He also escorted a couple of chaps around the yard - which is good PR for the railway.

Over at Winchcombe there was a hive of activity in the siphon van:

Bill painting!

Fred & Gilbert putting finishing touches.

Thursday 3rd
Two emailed requests for GWR boot scrapers plus a phone call from the Coffee Pot café (only one boot scraper left!). So, a trip to Todders was necessary and I took the remaining two boot scrapers (an LNWR in black and a BR in crimson) over to the café. It was an ideal time to cut more wedges, too, as I avoid using the bandsaw when other people are trotting about!

Saturday 5th
Boot scrapers were my priority, as I had a gentleman coming to pick up his ordered GWR one, and both cafes were down to only 3 each. So, I completed the 8 that John G had been working on and then applied primer coat to the three that John T had previously cleaned up. I then restocked the cafes. That LNWR one had gone already!

Gilbert wandered down, having discovered that he was on his own at Winchcombe. When Bruce arrived, the two of them played around on the engine. Bruce had made a 37 mm shim to slide behind one of the wedges that prevent the boiler from moving sideways. Although it chose not to slide in immediately, judicious use of the copper mallet persuaded it to go home!

The two of them spent much of the day investigating the firehole doors, which have a tendency to stick. Partially dismantling the mechanism, they discovered that the doors could slip out of the top runner, especially if the handle was pulled towards you while opening them. A solution was devised whereby a thin piece of metal (3½ mm deep and about 16 mm wide) would be inserted into the lower runner, thereby raising the doors. Gilbert was tasked with finding one during the week!

Cotswold Steam & Wildlife Preservation Garden.
There are tiny seedlings popping up in the garden! Not sure what they are, but hopefully they are from some of the seeds that I have scattered.

I scattered some poppy seeds there today, and some seeds from a variety of cranesbill that happily grows between the bricks on my driveway.

There are hundreds of varieties, but this photo (from Wikimedia, seemingly by an Alves Gaspar) is a close representation of my one.

Oh, and the three or four shoots of bramble that are sneaking through the soil got a shot from the Resolva gun!


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