Saturday, 29 December 2012

Saturday December 29th

So back to the British weather. Rain, rain and more rain. Still 15 turned up for C and W duties today.

On CK16195 there were four basic activities. Preparation work also known as filling and sanding was the main focus wall side. This was in the hands of Dave,

Alan Baugh

Tony Barnard and Alex his son. Alex has just joined us as the newest apprentice.

while on the workshop side undercoat painting was the main activity. Cheryl was working on the window surrounds.

and when Bob had finished playing with his tights he was completing the same. He says he is straining the paint!

I started on the ends fixing the second set of corridor connection woods.

While the final activity was fixing new window glass to two windows. This was to replace two 'blown' double glazed units in the first class section. Richard Ken and Andy were carefully fitting the units.

On the conflat wagon and container Grenville finished the first top coat on one side and stated the second on the other while I worked on my sign writing by touching up the lettering on the wagon.

Steve has now started on the entrance flooring for the CK cleaning the rubbish and dust out to ensure a flat working area. Then cutting the main wood sections to support the floor.

John Hill was again busy on the seating for the last but one compartment working on the arm rests. he has obviously been practising on the turkey.

Finally there was some shunting and vacuum brake testing being conducted by Phil and Richard.
The china clay wagon brakes thankfully worked this time and the wagon was parked out by the Rbr.

The Monster Van has now replaced it in the barn where we can fit an new roof covering to it.

Its brakes also proved to be fully functional.

Friday, 28 December 2012

December 27th Thursday

report from Dave Clark

The first day back after Christmas saw 11 of us in on yet another wet day. Happily the weather didn't prevent a good showing by the general public and we were very pleased to see good numbers present on the DMU as it came by the RBr during our lunch and afternoon tea breaks.

SO 4790

It's amazing just how many little jobs make themselves known as a refurbishment nears completion, and 4790 is no exception. Robin spent a lot of his day cleaning all the windows inside, removing odd bits of varnish, paint spots and other marks as necessary. Paul - please note that Robin put down dust covers when he entered your "Keep out" zone (Paul has deep cleaned the floors in the central vestibule and workshop end compartment ready for sealing on Saturday). Later on Jeff continued the window clean up process on the outside.

Other little jobs were done in the corridor ends. Ken completed some black glossing in the north end, while Robin painted the chequerboard plates in silver Hammerite at both ends.

Conflat wagons
In the Barn, Pete Lucas completed the painting of the edges of the non-container conflat wagon in Freight Brown (Bauxite), carefully going around all the transfers.

He later moved into the Workshop to paint around the transfers on the wallside of the second containered conflat.

China Clay wagon
Very frustratingly, despite being given a thorough overhaul, the brakes failed to work on this wagon when tested a few weeks ago. As such Phil begins dismantling the brake mechanism again in preparation for the removal of the heavy vacuum cylinder.


Using the mobile hoist, Ken and Phil moved the cylinder into the workshop and once more gave it a very thorough overhaul. Here Phil guides the piston into the cylinder as Ken slowly releases the pressure on the hoist.

With the piston firmly reseated on its rubber seal, Ken carefully tightened each perimiter nut. By the end of the day, the cylinder was back in place under the wagon. This will be given another test, probably on Saturday, and hopefully it will be successful.

CK 16195

The day started off with Peter Fisher carrying on with the filling/sanding work on the wallside of the coach.
With so much loose paint needing to be removed around most of the windows and under the gutters when we started working on this coach, initial bodywork preparation has been a somewhat lengthy process to say the least. However, if a job needs doing, then it needs doing properly.
With the lines taped up on the Workshop side, Bob Keyte continues applying the lovely undercoat Madder that he started putting on last Saturday.

(it looks rather stricking with the grey window surrounds)
Bogies need cleaning too, and having done a grand job on the ones for SO 4790, Malcolm turns his attention to those on the CK.  Having scrapped all the muck off and given a good brushing down, he will begin applying Underframe Black - this particular paint has an oil resistent ingredient and is thus not as glossy as the black used for the sole bar, buffers, coach ends, etc.
Using an enormous bit, John Osborn carefully drills rebates in the supports for one of the two water tank filler pipes. He later reinstated the pipe at the park end of the coach.
There is still a lot do inside the CK. Having cleaned up and stained another panel strip from one of the second class compartments, Michael moves it up to the ever growing pile in the office for safe keeping (we ought to change the chalked "4790" to "16195"). 
Meanwhile in the last of the second class compartments Jeff completed the careful sanding down of the corridor window frames and other narrow strips of beading.

Santa Trains

So having arrived at Saaraselka Lapland the first 'train' to be organised was the toboggan train of grand children.

The temperature was -18C

Health and Safety Note:  The proper protective clothing was worn at all times.

Then there was the Husky train.

This was much faster than expected.

However, it was rather stop-start.

So many huskies, so many trees.

Then the sedate Reindeer train. Elegant to look at.

However, the view from it wasn't always that good.

Then there was ski train. It was much more fun getting to the ski slope along the flat if grandad was pulling.

Then we met up with himself.


The heating was not working in the station buffet. Perhaps that was a good thing although they did have a fire extinguisher

and emergency exit.

(in case you can't read it it says 'in case of emergency break ice')

Now there are some ideas on how to cope next time it snows on our Santa specials!!!

No I haven't gone off the rails.

We will be back to trains later.

when Dave has sent the promised update from Thursday.

Happy New Year to all my followers.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Festive Greeting.

Thank you all
for your support and encouragement
through the year.

Wishing you all 
a very happy Christmas 
a peaceful new year. 

Now Chicken Curve has reopened

and with the celebration Gala scheduled for early May there is a lot to be done. 

So to my friends in the Carriage &Wagon Department thanks for your support and long sufferance when we take pictures for the blog and rest up and fuel up ready for the challenges of the new year.

I am going to check on Santa's Sleigh seemingly the heating pipes need a check and as for the air brakes well!!!

So the next blog will be after Christmas.

Thursday December 20th

Another wet day but with the work starting on the new paint shop we should avoid more flooding in the main workshop at least for the moment.

The hole for the footings will not only hold water we also now have an earthworks embankment to keep it out!

When I arrived Roger Wicker had started on painting the ceiling of the centre entrance on 16195.

For some reason it was a spectator event. The others were actually supposed to be rubbing down corridor panelling. I guess they did get some done.

Dave was again taking the opportunity to do a little rubbing down but the focus has now switched to the wall side.

He was joined at various times by John Hughes

And Tony Barnard

While Jeff Broderick was doing some filling

Pete Lucus having done a stint of sanding one of the doors took time out to attend to a section of the container on the conflat wagon.

John Hamer set about making some identification plates for the BR bogies. They never had them but with the likely hood of doing one or two switches its a good idea to keep a proper record of what is where. Later bogies come with either a plate or a cast number as identification.

John's first challenge was to modify one of the stamps to make a letter 'C', which he needed. Fortunately in the set of stamps we have while not having a 'C' we had three 'O' stamps so with care he modified one. Then set about making the plates and stamping them all. The only job left is to fix them to the appropriate bogies.

Malcolm came in to finish the clean and repaint of the bogies now under 4790.

He left early with a satisfied smile job done. So it will be back to the Saturday crew to lower the carriage back onto its bogies if they have finished the pipe work for the radiator. I know Ken was working on it at one stage  as he came in search of some pipe.

Dennis Richards, well rapped against the elements, was again checking over the running rake and changed yet another steam pipe connector.

I spent the day working on the corridor connection woods at both ends of the carriage. At the barn end I had to drill the nut recesses deeper and then paint them.

At the other end it was a case of fit check and drill various bolt holes. then refit and check/adjust the holes until all the studs and bolt fitted. This end is now ready for the corridor connector to be refitted.

Pete Fisher was also working at this end of the carriage refitting the mount brackets that secure the inner support posts and panelling.

Even in the picture one can see why we have to take extreme care when the welders are about. To get this shot I was standing round the corner and just held the camera out sideways and clicked!
On Wednesday a lot do the panelling and wood sections for the doors was attended to and Rod Wells started on the tape for the lining out. The catch we have with this carriage is that being maroon it will have a 1.5" wide line rather than the 1" line of the Chocolate and Cream carriages and our current stock of tape is the 1" variety. I think Dave needs to go shopping.

During the day we had the steady sound of the digger outside which by the end of the day had I suspect just about finished excavating the footings of the paint shop. Either that or we are having a new an even larger swimming pool! It was starting to fill up nicely.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Monday 17th December

This is the last full Carriage Clean of the year (the sets are in use for the remaining Mondays) so as a special end of term treat Santa had left his Chocolate and Cream sleigh at the North Pole for us, just one more set of his many unknown helpers.

This week the team was Roger & Kath Bush, John & Anne McMillan and Philip Moore.

Rumour had it that there was another sleigh somewhere and sure enough he had left a note to say the maroon one was at the magnetic north pole, just up the road. 
So after completing this one we organised a road-train across the (not very) frozen wastes to the other set.  Like the first set there was a good sprinkling of remains of mince pies etc so a good brush of seating, floor sweeping, table and window cleaning was carried out on this sleigh as well.  There was also another surprise. 
Usually the toilets are not too bad, and there are only two in action on each sleigh, but one set at the North Pole was not good and had required more than usual attention.  Must have been the excitement of seeing Santa, as this sleigh had both loos needing attention! 
There was a note left to say unfortunately this set had run out of the flushing water, but you can guess the rest!  Suffice to say they had to be flushed and cleaned, not recommended when standing in the station.  So Philip (you remember, our toilet specialist) after cleaning the loos went down on to the track to sluice it down to make it presentable.  As a reward he was unanimously awarded double wages for the day! (Lucky fellow you spoil him!)
But like on previous occasions, there are unexpected rewards for volunteering.  In this case it was hearing a steam whistle during the morning, which turned out to be No. 15, EARL DAVID.

The end of term also marks the end of John & Evelyn Tucker’s long association with carriage cleaning.  With their retirement and double the number of coaches to clean next year we need additional volunteers to present the coaches in the best possible condition to our visitors.  Not everyone comes every week but the bigger the “pool” of volunteers the easier it is. If you would like to join us you will be made very welcome.

That’s it  - school’s out!  Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and here’s looking forward to a great 2013 on the railway.

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Saturday December 15th

With the weather warming up life seemed so much better. It meant work resumed in the barn on SO4790. Andy Thompson took on the cleaning and greasing of the bogies

while Steve Barnfield completed the trimming in the outer end vestibule having done some fancy work with the band saw.

This just leaves some tidying up work in the corridor to be done.

Paul was also out with the vacuum to clean up throughout the seating area.

John and Ken were also busy underneath trying to sort out the pipe work for the radiator being fitted in the main entrance of the carriage.

Dave had another good day of doing things, all be it more sanding and rubbing down but it keeps him happy.

The reward for his efforts was that when Bob Keyte arrived all was ready on the workshop side for the next coat of grey undercoat.

This side will be ready for the tape to be applied.

John Hill continued working his way through the seats. Once this seat is done there is one compartments seats left to complete.

I spent the day dealing with the woods for the corridor connections. At one end with the studs all in place I drilled the new woods and after a little adjustment ans some assistance from Chris we had them fitted and in place. So then I had to remove them again to paint the central section.

At the other end having removed one side section for John Squires to fit the water tank filler pipe. He had to lengthen the thread to do so.
I started to fit it back on only to realise that the counter sinks for the nuts are not deep enough. The nut must be fully sunk into the wood or the connection unit won't mount flat to the wood. So that's a job for Wednesday or maybe next Thursday.

Chris when not being interrupted was busy trimming a new finger pull for a door to fit with and match up to the rest of the door trim.

Grenville was again working on the Conflat wagon and container. We can't neglect this area of work if we are to get a goods train ready for the Gala.

Operationally the story of steam heating continued. The wedge put in place as an experiment to hold the control value fully open was found to have worked with the carriage warm after only a few minutes instead well over an hour with little affect. So the wedge stays until we have a chance to investigate the control unit further when the rake is not running.

The maroon set had another fault with one compartment becoming a sauna. So the offending radiator  was removed during the run round while the children visited Santa, it was taken back to the workshop repaired, it was another gasket issue, and it was replaced on the next arrival back at Winchcombe.

Phil Salter was tidying up the electrics after disconnection of the loco teams temporary mess coach.
he then also sorted out the various barrels or grease in the barn getting every thing straight again.

Another result of the loco teams stay at Winchcombe is our new swimming pool, a little narrow but a convenient hand rail both sides. I wonder if we can get it heated.

Then there are the socks to contend with. I will leave you to guess who is wearing them!!