Sunday 29 September 2013

Maintenance Update

Weds 25th
Bruce decided to tackle the leaking steam heat valve.  This is an on/off valve that admits steam into the Mason's Valve.  The latter adjusts the steam pressure, taking it down from 225 psi to 40 psi max, to feed this steam into the coaching stock.  Because the on/off valve was leaking slightly, the pressure was gradually building up in the Mason's Valve.  It didn't matter when steam heating was in use.

So, Bruce removed the handle and plunger part and cleaned up the face of the plunger.

Then he examined the seat inside the valve body and discovered that it was this that was pitted.  To re-grind the face, the valve would have to come off.  It was a challenge to get a (large) spanner onto the retaining nut in a confined space near the cab roof!

Also, it was a double-threaded nut, and we didn't know for sure which way to turn it to undo it. Nevertheless, the two of us managed to persuade it to come off.  Bruce was then contemplating how best to hold the body and tidy up the seat.

Most of the time, I was fiddling around with boot scrapers.  Three immediate (staff) sales; plus: two to top up the trolley in the F&W and 4 to top up the trolley at Winchcombe!

Gil was floating about, too, though I'm not at all sure what he was up to!  I think he was cleaning up the thread on a bolt for the Siphon van.  He also arranged for Neil to fit a hose connector to the ash pan sprinkler system, so that we can hook up a hose and observe the spray pattern.  Crews do not use it, because water pours out of the ash pan when they do!  It might be a tad over enthusiastic in its spraying!  Fred plus Colin & Ann Bennett were all working on the Siphon.

Saturday 28th
Although I went to Todders, my state of unwellness caused me to to have to abandon it.  At that stage, Bruce had spoken with Carpo about the steam safety valves, and Carpo agreed to let Bruce do some lapping on them.  At best, this would show that no cutting was necessary; at worst it would highlight where cutting was needed.  Gilbert supplied the folowing:

Bruce got Rod to machine the seat of the steam heat valve to Carpo's satisfaction, The valve was then re-assembled and re-fitted to the locomotive.

He then got Carpo to let him have a look at the safety valve seats. He gave them a light clean-up and could not see any obvious fault which required them to be re-cut.  Carpo took a further look at them, and agreed that there was no obvious fault.

The concern had been that one of the valves feathers a lot more easily than the other one suggesting that it is not correctly seated. Because of this the valve plugs have been interchanged, and the problem has persisted.  (The valve plug is a loose piece that goes into the orifice of the valve and is held down by the spring and the spindle against the fixed seat)

Since the seats were considered satisfactory the valve plugs were scrutinised carefully and compared against the spare units. It was found that one of the existing plugs had been machined eccentric. This was seen by examination of the top of the plug where the land on the top surface appeared uneven at opposite sides of the plug.

Further scrutiny revealed that the centre bore which locates the bottom of the valve spindle was off-centre by approx. 1/16". The plug and spindle were set up in a lathe and the eccentricity was confirmed. The four guide vanes on the underside showed rub marks on two but not on the others, indicating that the plug was not lifting vertically. The conclusion was that the machining error was causing the plug to tilt when it tried to lift.

After discussions with Carpo, Bruce made arrangements with Rod to re-drill the centre in the top of the plug in its correct alignment.

On completion of this work it should be possible to re-assemble the safety valves.


Wednesday 25 September 2013

Aerial Views

There's an interesting video here showing the GWSR, including some views of No. 2807 at various locations on the railway.

(note our disclaimer that "The content of external web sites linked to from this blog is not the responsibility of CSP Ltd.")


Sunday 22 September 2013

Maintenance Update

Wednesday 18th
Bruce & Gilbert removed the centre damper door.  These doors have always warped badly.  Part of the problem was that the cast steel stiffening bar across them had to be cut down to fit our narrower firebox.  It was cut in the centre, and this formed a weak spot. The door tended to bend on a line through that cut. Today, Carpo welded the two halves together.  Let's see if that helps!

Meanwhile, Bruce removed the steam safety valves.  We've had these new springs acting as paperweights for months.  Finally, we are fitting them.  Naturally enough, the hole through the centre of the springs is not the same as the originals - nor is it quite the same on the two new springs!  So, Bruce is making a shim for each one, so that they fit properly.
I just pottered about doing some boot scrapering - but we had run out of brushes, which limits progress.  However, the Coffee Pot had sold 6 last week and the F&W sold 4.

Thurs 19th
Stuart & I met up to examine the emergency supply of brushes.  They will tide us over for 3 weeks, I hope!

Saturday 21st
Bruce brought his shims, and the picture is them on the table in the TPO.

It wasn't clear if Carpo had re-ground the valve seats or not.  I hope we get the steam valves fitted next week.
Carpo welded an angle-iron on the bottom of the damper door to give it additional strength.  Later, Bruce & Gil re-fitted the door to the loco.

Steve & I did a bit more towards boot scrapers - me completing four orders and Steve painting brushes.


Thursday 19 September 2013

Maintenance Update

Tuesday 10th
Did a spot of painting!

Wednesday 11th
Gilbert, Colin & Ann Bennett were at Winchcombe working on the siphon van restoration.
Bruce & I mainly continues preparing rail chairs.  Having run out of brushes, it was all I could do to re-stock the F&W.
A punter saw me heaving the trolley of boot scrapers to the F&W and commented, "Oh, you do them too!".  It transpires that he has seen similar boot scrapers at other railways - including at Llangollen !!!
Another chap commented that there was no GWR one, so I explained why I do not put them out on display, but could have one for him within 20 minutes.  He accepted the offer.  At end of day, I collected money for 6 boot scrapers from the F&W.

Friday 13th
John decided to while away the hours at Toddington.  I quote:
"Not the best of weather, but I managed to:-

Clean 6 BR(W) and paint their bottoms
Paint 5 with green undercoat
Place 4 undercover on the bench
Cut off bolts on some GWR and BR(W)

There seems to be a few interesting chairs in the recent PW delivery, amongst all the BR(W), e.g. BR(S)."

Saturday 14th
Report from Bruce:
"I was on my own today except when Gilbert turned up for a brief spell. (we had lunch together)

I Painted top coat on 5 chairs and undercoated 6 others.

I then tackled several items reported on the loco defect sheets, all boiler related, so it was under Carpo's supervision.

!     Replaced the gland packing on the right side injector steam valve.
2    The 'Y' splitter for the lubricator condensing coils (on steam fountain) was leaking, so the 'Klinger sleeve' retaining nuts were nipped up to hopefully stop the leak.
3    The steam heat isolating valve is leaking internally so I tried to dismantle it, unfortunately it resisted all attempts to remove the cover. Carpo suggested leaving for now as the steam heating will be needed from now on.

The operating lever on the left side tender water valve had worked loose (not reported) so it was tightened.

There is no roster yet for next week but the loco is serviceable if required."

Sunday 15th
Glyn rang to say he'd sold the last boot scraper at the Coffee Pot!

Monday 16th
The roster is now posted up to 28 Sept.  2807 is not required.


Monday 9 September 2013

Maintenance Update

Monday 2nd
Just a bit of boot scraper painting (again).

Bruce & I continued with cleaning and painting rail chairs.  P-Way delivered about 40 more BR(W) ones, so I diverted to cutting off bolts.  I must take a photo and explain the drawback of these through-bolted two-hole chairs.
I went to grab a wodge of brushes for Bruce to paint, only to discover we only have 4 left!  A quick e to Stu was in order (i.e. Stu does the ordering and collects from Cheltenham when he's there on business).
I noticed several people working on the siphon restoration at Winchcombe.

I was on my own at Todders, doing the lettering on chairs painted during the week.
Gil was on his own at Winchcombe tinkering about inside the siphon (playing at furniture removals, it seemed).
Feeling lonely, Gil came up to Todders for morning tea break!

It was good to hear 2807 chuffing by - you get used to the slight difference in whistles but most noticeable is the beat.  Foremarke Hall almost sounds as though it is straining, because of the longer time between beats - ours just seems to storm away from Todders box!

I had a phone call during the afternoon enquiring about a Southern boot scraper.  Luckily, over the months, I had discovered two and squirreled them away!

Our loco headboard (Heavyweight Champion) had gone AWOL after the Supporters' Special.  Gil had done a search, so I did one too.  No sign.

Sunday 8th
Found Carpo and enquired about the headboard.  He thought he'd seen one on top of the cupboards in the Loco Dept Mess Coach (but couldn't say which headboard it was).  Sure enough, it was ours!  Thanks, Ian!

Painted the bottom of an SR rail chair.

2807 is not in service this week.  The roster is only showing one week at time, so no info beyond next weekend.

Outstanding issues on 2807's log are:
28: RH middle brake block not touching wheel (I think this is the tender, and we know the new brake blocks need to wear-in).
29: Top test cock on gauge frame faulty.
30: RH injector steam valve spindle needs re-packing.
31: Rear packing nut on Y-splitter on top of steam manifold leaking. [Category 2 = fix ASAP]
35: RH trailing spring striking forward hornstay stud. (Bruce figured this out, and I did a diagram to explain the problem).
38: RH injector steam feed pipe leaking at a joint.
39: Steam heating valve is leaking by.  There's a build up of pressure and evidence of water in the steam pipes.
Memo: Loose brake hanger - all need split pins in bolts.  Weekly inspection enforced.

We wish Geof a speedy recovery from his recurring lung problem.  It flared up while he was on holiday, and he's landed in Cheltenham General Hospital.

Commiserations also to Dixie, whose back is playing him up (many of us suffer from back complaints - it being a design flaw at the pre-upright perambulatory period in our evolution).


Sunday 1 September 2013

Maintenance Update

Monday 26th:
Eleven black bottoms.

Eleven primed tops.

Carpo had told me that he wanted to work on boiler-related issues on 2807, including change over the steam valves and fir the new square-section springs.  Carpo was actually driving.  Breweries sprang to mind.

Gil & Fred took the opportunity to pack up the spare scaffolding and cart it off to Winchcombe, where they played with the siphon restoration.  Also there were, Ann & Colin, John Tyler (the roofing material had been delivered) and John Giles.

Meanwhile, Bruce applied top coat to 7 of the 11 chairs, having mistakenly assumed the four lighter green (GNR & LNER) were in top coat already.  Then the two of us cleaned up a further 8 chairs, and Bruce blacked their bottoms, too.

John Mayell was working with P-Way replacing rotten sleepers on the main line, so he popped in to collect a black boot scraper that he had ordered.  Casually, he mentioned that if ever we came across a January 1947 one, he'd like it.  I searched the GWR pile (1947 would be GWR, or possibly LMS/LNER but we have very few of those) and found none.  However, Bruce checked the unsorted pile of recent deliveries and ... ;-)

Upon the point of departing, we had a visit and a further request for a 1944 boot scraper.  I laughed (expecting to get a specific year is a tad hopeful).  Bruce checked the stock in the TPO, and there was no 1944 ready.  I said it would be GWR if we had one, and once more began sorting through the pile of ("raw") GWR chairs.  Would you believe it?  The very last one that I turned over was 1944!  Lucky old David Mansfield!

Lettering completed on GWR & BR (crimson) chairs.  Chairs with (dry) black bottoms inverted & sorted in case the Saturday chaps have chance to paint some tops.

Report from David:
We had a team working to repair the crack in the left hand running board support angle. This had been noted by one of the crews some time ago. I arrived and began removing the dome headed bolts and nuts which I had previously loosened and re-tightened. I was joined by Ray, who offered to assist and then by Matthew. Gilbert and Bruce also arrived and joined in.

The bolts were all removed, including some stubborn ones, which succumbed to a pair of mole grips with someone standing on them, whilst someone else turned the nut beneath. One particularly awkward one was half hidden by the firebox cladding, so this had its head removed with an angle grinder and then knocked through. Needless to say, this one was not replaced, but there are plenty others to fasten the plate. The oiling box and lamp support were also removed to release the plate completely. Unfortunately it could not be removed completely, as the splasher was caught by the wheel flange, so we had to settle for lifting it up as far as possible and supporting it with blocks of wood. Shaun, who hovered off and on all day, assisted with this part, as it was quite heavy.

Bruce then settled down to renovate all the nuts and bolts so they would refit easily. Ray and Matthew went to do other things and Gilbert did some work on the tender, not quite sure what. I ground out the crack and welded it, finally grinding it back to the original profile. Ray took some pictures for the blog. The strange thing about the crack is that it went from the edge of the angle to the bolt hole, then continued on the same line from the other side of the hole. Holes are usually drilled to stop cracks, and they don’t usually continue across holes. I have a suspicion that the crack might have been there in the original plate in some form, then opened up more subsequently – we will never know!

The welding complete, a coat of black paint was applied and a green dab where I caught the bottom of the firebox with the angle grinder (sorry Geof). It was all put together again, with Ray and Matthew helping. We put copper grease on the bolt threads in case it has to come off again in the future. The bolt heads were painted black and all was cleared up. Gilbert left before the rest of us to rejoin Fred at Winchcombe, where he had been working on the Siphon.

Took the last 6 chairs from Winchcombe to Todders.  Had to remove two loco buffers blocking the path to the TPO before I could get there with the trolley!  Noted that no one had had time to paint any chairs on Saturday.  Fitted brushes to 4 BR(W) and 3 BR (crimson).  Fed the mouse.  Collected money for 4 boot scrapers from the F&W.

2807 is rostered to be in service on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday this week.