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."


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