Report from Dave Clark
With several of our regulars away, either on holiday or on Guard (Bob Mac), on TTI training (Jeff) and family duties over the weekend, it seemed rather quiet at times in the Workshop and Barn. There were actually 15 in, but we were somewhat scattered about during the day.
The Monster Van
Cheryl and Martin started the day with a massed attack on the remaining ceiling areas that required sanding down. Bob Keyte later joined the group and continued with painting the cleaned-up sections of roof.
Grenville resumed his work boarding up the area which had previously had its loose planking secured and the gaps filled with sealant. Towards the end of the day I completed the job of sealing up any outstanding cracks in the body side planking.
When the interior has been completed it will store the contents of TSO 4869 while that is restored.
During the week we were asked by Richard Summers (Head of OTC) to install a shelf in the upper half of the large fridge, and a ‘floor’ between the upper and lower halves of the fridge. John Osborn is in the process of making the necessary shelf and divider supports.
Meanwhile, John Hamer fixed the last of the underframe leaks, the water tank was refilled, the system re-pressurised, and ... yippee, all is well!
RBr 1672 was then shunted out of the Barn, and our new gleaming coach received many admiring looks from the passengers on Platform 1 and in the service train as we moved into Platform 2. Richard uncouples 1672 from the 03 shunter, ready for the run-around when the service train has departed for Cheltenham.
1672 was eventually placed at the front of the Maroon rake, all ready for some test runs to Cheltenham either on Wednesday or Friday this coming week.
TSO 4869 was then shunted into the barn ready to be emptied.
With all the west end panelling now completed, Phil Jones continued the filling/sanding/greying-up process around the wallside end window.
At the east end, Steve Barnfield made the large wooden base plate for the corridor end, while John Osborn begins the rebuild of the final corner. The main prefabricated corner section will be mounted next week.
The Upholstery team are now working on the first class seating. John Hill uses an electric carver to shape the foam padding - apparently when John contacted the manufacturer this is the tool that was recommended and it works a treat!
(I've done this myself its easier than carving the meat! - Peter)
With the old moquette stripped away, the moulded foam used for the side panelling can clearly be seen. That carving knife will be ideal if any of this has to be replaced!
Meanwhile, at the west end of the CK, Derek Clark continues his battle with the vestibule floor. His investigation has not surprisingly revealed that some of the metal cross spars under the flooring will need to be replaced when the coach comes into the Workshop.
Dennis Richards continued with his regular rake inspections, and arrived back with another split vacuum hose, which he then bound up to be used as a spare. Here he is cleaning up a connection prior to making up a new hose.
Later in the day, John Hamer completed the electrical wiring for the new battery charger under the Elegant Excursions coach "Margeurite". John's long-running job of sorting out all the batteries for our running rakes is now almost complete.
Peter Bennett (our Blog Master), his wife and their grand-daughters visited us during the morning and I was able to take a lovely family picture of them in the Workshop.
We also had another visit by Barry Cordell (MD Riviera Trains), his wife, and two friends.
I also took another visitor round who's wife is a member of the ladies choir singing in the GWSR Benefit Concert in Cheltenham Town Hall during the evening
Titanic Commemorative Special
Finally, a wonderful ending to the day. The large circular board produced by C&W, and beautifully painted by our railway artist Fred Lea, proudly sits on the front of "Foremarke Hall" at the head of the Elegant Excursions special train. For the lucky diners waiting on Platform 1 the train looked a splendid sight as it pulled into Winchcombe station at 6.30 on the chilly, but delightfully sunny evening.
John Hamer took this superb picture of the special train as it headed through Bishops Cleeve on its first down run.
Thanks Dave for again doing the honours and to John for the final picture reminding us all why we do it!