Today’s bit of fun was to change the leaking vacuum hose that was causing issue 23 - reservoir not building up to 23”.
The hose forms a U-bend horizontally, connecting vacuum cylinder (at the bottom) to the driver’s brake valve pipe. In the side-view photo, left, the hose goes away from you and turns back towards you. The yellow is sticky tape that had been applied to the hose as a temporary fix!
Main access is through the cab floor below the shovel plate. Bruce & Gil undid the clamp on the upper connection, but the lower one would not undo. I joined in and thrust a hacksaw through the side access and showed the clamp’s bolt who was boss!
When we attempted to bend a new hose into U-form, it kinked in the middle, destroying the profile of the internal metal wire. We had to bung up one end of a second new hose and fill it with boiling water to soften the rubber. Then we could gradually form the U-bend using anything to hand of a suitable diameter! It was still a challenge getting the hose onto the pipe ends, lying prone across the cab floor, but Bruce & I succeeded eventually.
Bruce also fixed issue 21 - the leaking condensing coil union. He’d been on the footplate last week and was shown exactly where the leak was. So, he dismantled the two unions, cleaned them, fettled one a little and reassembled it. It seems that one nut was being interfered with by the flared end of the pipe.
Gil tackled issue25 in which a driver had felt that the regulator was stiffer than usual. Gil greased the slide and oiled the plunger. It all seems to work absolutely fine.
Responding to a plea from Alex, John G spent the day working on King Edward II, getting it fit to view.
The pannier had arrived, and half of the Loco Dept seemed to be inside the smokebox (or watching from outside), where there was clearly water dripping from where it shouldn’t!
John P was beneath our loco, where there were some nuts & bolts that had worked loose. It had been reported that the rear frame stretcher was loose. It was yet another challenge getting a spanner onto these nuts, as they are bolting an angle to the frames and stretcher. The positioning of the bolt holes could have been better - staggered, for instance - because one set of nuts was interfering with the adjacent ones! All tucked away in a corner and with pipe work in the way.
It is pretty grotty under there - not only are the frames covered in oily muck, but you are standing in ash all of the time when the ashpan has just been emptied [again, thanks to Loco Dept chaps].
Gala: work day cancelled. Peter Todd took a couple of photos, though:-
Today we were supposed to be preparing 2807 for her washout (scheduled for Saturday). Gil & Bruce liaised with MY to determine what has to be done - there’s a new document covering the boiler washout process - 9 pages thereof! They then commenced: Bruce opened the blow-down valve to let water out, and opened the blower valve to let air in; Gil began removing specific washout plugs, and spent the whole day doing this. Bruce then removed the upper mud hole doors.
John G and I decided to tackle the issue of two split pins missing from the tender spring hangers.
The hanger pins through which the split pins pass and secure, would not rotate with the weight of the tender on them. Having to release the weight on the springs necessitated jacking the tender up. Finding packing pieces (off-cuts of sleeper) for beneath the jacks all takes time. Once we had relieved sufficient weight, one of the hanger pins was able to be turned. We had to do this in order to line up the holes in the hanger ends and that in the hanger pin in order to get the split pin through. I measured the split pin diameter of the other end of the spring and acquired two new pins to fit. However, they didn’t fit! Try as we could, the holes would not line up sufficiently for the split pins to pass through! We adjourned for lunch!
After lunch there was a fire drill. [Something of a first, methinks.] Then JG found a couple of rail chairs in need of a primer coat on their tops, and took time out to do that before joining Gilbert at removing washout plugs.
Bruce joined me and we attacked the spring hangers once more. The outcome was that the poor alignment of holes had led to the original split pins being sheared off. We found the end of one still in situ in the second hanger pin. There was nothing for it but to extract the hanger pins and sort them out. The first photo shows the end of the spring through which the hanger pin passes. In the second photo, Bruce is demonstrating where the split pin passes through the hanger link. The third photo shows the corresponding hanger pin. Note the groove along the length of the hanger pin. This was caused by the end of the spring (arrowed) wearing into the pin. It also explained why the pin would not rotate. Unfortunately, the end of the spring should be completely encasing the pin (full circle) - it had fractured and part of it has broken off!
We filed off the roughness on both pins and drilled slightly larger holes. It is fair to say that assembling them was by far the easiest task of the day! A touch of graphite grease, and all went together happily. We shall have to replace the spring, even though this particular break does not appear to present a danger in any way.
By now, it was 4 pm and it had taken the whole day to fit two split pins !!!
Here’s Olly reversing up to the shed at the end of the day.