Sunday, 29 January 2012

Saturday - 28th January

(Dave loves it when I'm not in he gets to do the pictures. Thanks for a great set for Saturday.).

Had a good and enjoyable day yesterday running about taking the pictures and hopefully I managed to get some quite interesting ones.

The first thing we did was tidy up the mezzanine above to workshop to make room for the six door skins that had arrived from the West Somerset Railway earlier in the week. We had purchased these on our visit there in October last year. Grenville wipes over the new door skins prior to storage ready for use.

Peter Fisher using the special distance spacer prior to positioning one of the upright top-hat bars

and once welded, he proceeded to fit the cross-bar spacers.

The now structurally and cosmetically sound second corner. A new side panel and the corners done.

(Two to go).

Eddie Paddon brought in the special hardened glass for the internal sliding doors to go at the entrance to the new disabled passenger section in SO 4790

The doors took another step forward when Chris Taylor fitted the glass. Nice job.

Meanwhile his daughter Nicky (one of our young apprentices) made a mallet - her arm rests on the wooden block that will be the new mallet head.

Ben (the other young apprentice) assisting John Osborne, his grandad, with bending sheet metal using the heavy press. The long orange bar is one of the tools made by John when we first acquired the press.

Elsewhere :-
The Upholstery team are continuing to work on the second class seating for CK 7221.

John Hill lays a new pre-cut section of foam padding on an arm rest.

In the fore ground the parts of two seat arms - the right hand one requires a new wood insert, which Steve Barnfield was in the process of making for John.
A close-up of the new foam padding, while in the foreground on another arm, John is in the process of wrapping a length of material prior to being recovered in moquette. The circular pivot can be seen clearly on both arms.

Steve Barnfield in the process of making the new wooden insert for John

The seat back from which came the two swivel arms. The shaped stuffing clearly shows.

Another opportunity to see the scale of the task. We need 8 thickly padded seats (First Class) and 6 standard padding seats (Second Class) for the CK.

One of the most important jobs for this Saturday was to find a good bogie to replace the faulty one under our newly-refurbished RBr 1672. With the head shunt left clear thanks to the good work put in by Neil Carr at the end of the running season, we had space to do a little shunting.

Richard Johnson casts his eyes over the good bogie on the RBr - the one to be replaced is at the far end. Nice paintwork- the new painting team should feel very proud of their efforts!

Andy Thompson guiding Phil Salter on the 03 shunter as the (hopefully) donor RBr is slowly hauled out of the siding.

With that phase of shunting complete where are we shunting the RBr? Phil and Andy discuss the next move.

This turned out to be shunting the RBr further back to get the donor RBr out over the engine pit. We have discovered that it is quiet useful for us to get at the underside of the carriage bogies, necessary to remove the lock pins from the bogies. They can be difficult to remove laying on your back.

A comment on Sunday from Richard:- Apparently one pin came out fairly easily but the other was a struggle. It was a good job we had the pit. If we had had to do it lying underneath we would still be there today (Sunday).

Thanks to the engine lads for digging and building the pit, they need it while the Loco's are based at Winchcombe. Now we have a use for it too.

Chalk marks are put on the guides in the horn blocks to check whether the axle is rising and falling correctly as the coach body is raised and lowered on the jacks, and also when the coach is in motion.


The fitting of the new section of steam heating pipe under the west end of SO 4790 (reported the previous Saturday) was completed when John Squires fitted the pipe bracket and then attached the steam valve.

Here John machining a piece of the steam. The valve was taken apart and this finished the overhauled prior to refitting.
Thanks Dave for great report.

Now what nobody has hasn't mentioned is if the bogie proved to be good for use?

Richard a comment please?

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Who views the Blog?

I was asked today who does view the blog?

Well by country, this week, these are the top 10 places people live who view the blog

United Kingdom
United States
Hong Kong             

Thursday 26th January

Today turned into a cold and damp day that seemed to dull the enthusiasm. 16 signed in but Paul had to depart quickly. We hope all is well Paul.

Dave and I started by inserting a stack of the new GWR Event leaflets into the timetable leaflets. So there are some ready for the rest of you to collect and distribute to friend family and anyone else you can think of.

Dave always starts with the rubbish jobs. It is a good job he did it early as the sunshine disappeared very early in the day.
John Hamer went out into the yard to check on battery charging issues and came back frozen on a few minutes later.

Ron Bennett ventured into the Rbr to finish the pipe work and lagging following the re-installation of the water tank. He then returned to his repetitive task of modifying the light fittings.

While John Osborn fitted a cooker panel in the RBr. It really isn't a carry handle but a very convenient vent.

However, the main focus for the moment is the welding on SO 4790. So it was good to see Malcolm fixing in place the roof section he has been working on for some time and John Osborn (pictured) finishing the second corner of the carriage.

Having finished the sliding windows yesterday, Tony was looking for a new challenge which arrived in the form of the radiator covers. SO 4790 would normally have 16 of these but due to the adaptation for wheelchairs we need to find some additional covers. Whether we have any that will match we shall have to see. John Hamer has his thinking cap on to think where we might find some suitable covers. In the meantime Tony and John Hughes extracted the rest of the existing covers, some were already out. They then cleaned and painted them. As usual with such active ties it wasn't all straight forward with a couple of broken and a couple of detached hinges.

Tony also set about some of the small ceiling lights and set another challenge as we have to decide on the lighting for the disability access vestibule in SO 4790.

Malcolm down to earth from the roof to create an extra mounting bracket.

Best Job of the day that was Jeffs. He sorted out the rota stack of screws in the store.

Why the best job?

It was warm in the store room.

Wandering around the workshop there was more evidence of the Wednesday groups efforts.

Some repaired door finger strips and under the covers new varnished panel.

The plastic is to keep the dust of until the varnish has properly dried.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Wednesday Wanderings

If you understand the chess set you may understand the Carriage and Wagon department.

Up to now we have looked largely at the workshop teams of Thursday and Saturday (cos' thats when I'm in) and even ventured into the upholstery van.

Thanks to Russ we have more recently seen the work in the workshop on Wednesdays but today we venture out into the cold with our real Wednesday Gang. (There is at least one other line with a Wednesday Gang but there's does track maintenance).

Our Wednesday Gang maintains the carriages of the running sets.

So the workshops rebuilds while they maintain. There is a Cleaning Team but they are like the phantom big cats of Briton rarely seen by the rest of C & W because they opperate largely out of Toddington, so I'm told. If anyone has a camera and spots them please let me have the pictures!!!!!!

The Carriage Maintenance Group carry out all the usual maintenance you should do on your car.

Like checking the electrolyte levels in the batteries.

These belong to the RBr in the chocolate & cream set.

Then you should check the brakes.
Here its a team effort for the members of the Carriage Maintenance Group.

Having some spares to hand does help.

A new brake block in place.

Once installed they need adjustment and just like the car you have to get underneath.

Then there is the suspension to check. Here at least the leaf springs aqre easy to get at.

Being out in the yard the Carriage Maintenance Group don't have a useful workbench to straightening a runner from one of the vestibule doors so improvisation is in order.
Now that is alow tech and low level workbench!
If you are saying to yourself 'I don't do that to my car', well when these carriages were built you probably would have.
Back in the warm of the workshop
Grenville Care was still cleaning the table tops for the RBr this time with a with a hot air stripper to get a smooth finish.
Mike Blakeman using a spokeshave to obtain a good fit on the timber which will form a door pillar insert  for the Disabled carriage SO 4790.
Tony Barnard - making a very welcome appearance on a Wednesday - preparing some of the sliding windows for re-insertion into the Disabled carriage. (he was obviously very excited to get the sliding windows finished all 32 of them - great job Tony)

Our thanks once again to Russ Smith for the  pictures.

Monday, 23 January 2012

Saturday 21st January

So Saturdays blog is rather late. It comes to something when Dave on 22 January blames being out in the garden mowing the lawn and doing a spring tidy-up for not getting the pictures to me!     

(Like I can talk while visiting the Grandson for his 6th birthday).

Anyway, with all Dave's gardening and other jobs done, he sent me these. Thank most definatle to him.

I'm often told by others that when they miss a visit its good to see what went on. Now I can also appreciate that aspect of the blog.

Dave said:
We had quite a crowd in yesterday, 21 in total. This included Martin Levie, our most distant member of C&W, who lives in Oxted (Surrey), a drive of 120 or so miles. He was staying in a local B&B and making a weekend of it, spending Saturday in the Workshop and Sunday attending the Volunteers Meeting at Toddington.

So here is Martin Levie in action sanding down the end of the west end panel on SO 4790, prior to filling and greying-up.

This section has been stalled while the door was refitted. Now it can catch up with the rest of the side.

With all the ceilings now fully painted in SO 4790, Cheryl removed any remaining masking tape and tightened up the ceiling light covers.

Phil Jones prepares the central door on the Workshop side of SO 4790, prior to taping the lines and painting the door in undercoat brown and cream.

Alan Baugh cleans up the east end, wallside door portal prior to filling and greying up. Steve Barnfield had previously inserted a new piece of wood in the area of the door pillar which held the receptacle for the door lock.

(You may notice a theme. The doors get left behind. This is mainly due to the work need to ensure the door hinges and edges are sound and then everybody is using them to get in and out while doing the interior, etc etc -- Peter)

Steve Barnfield repairing a section of framing from one of the corridor ends of SO 4790. Some sections of the end framing have been completely remade, the originals having become too rotten to be reused.

John Squires having made a new bracket to hold a new section of steam heating pipe for the west end of SO 4790. Got Martin to assist with fitting the new pipe in it's intended location.

They then set up the next section of pipe using a right-angled corner joints.

(The original pipe has a giant double bend but thats a little beyond the tools we have available. So this is our solution--Peter).

Bob Keyte sanded down both of the large brown panels on the workshop side of SO 4790, in preparation for a second coat of undercoat brown.

Bob went on to apply that second coat in next to no time and as usual it was another superb result. He really is our painter extraordinaire.

During the previous Thursday, some new sliding windows were found for SO 4790, to replace some that were of a poor fit. Having been cleaned up and painted in undercoat grey, Alan Baugh now lightly sands the paintwork prior to adding a coat of undercoat cream. This had dried by the end of the day to allow the cream top coat to be added. As such the windows will now be ready to be fitted by Tony Barnard next Thursday. (I hope your reading this Tony).

In preparing for repairs to the surround for the final window to be taken out of SO 4790, John Hamer struggles to remove the backing screws to the exterior door stub.

Once the repairs have been completed and window replaced, the panel painting on the wallside can also be completed. (Aren't there still some bits around the end doors to do on that side Dave?  -- Peter)

Removing old formica from table tops is always a difficult job. Grenville Care works on the tables from the new RBr 1672.

The leaking water tank in the RBr has now been repaired and is being refitted by Phil Salter, a fiddly job to say the least!

Dennis Richards, having stripped and the cleaned external communication cord apparatus on the RBr refitting everything back into place. In rather warmer weather than when he started dimanteling it.

C & W now has a new apprentice. We are very pleased to welcome Ben Carroll, who is the 15 year old grandson of John Osborn. Ben, who with Nicky Taylor and Chris Stock, is our third apprentice. He will be working with John and learning sheet metal working skills.

Other news.
During the latter part of the morning, Richard held a meeting with Dave Clark, Andy Thompson, and Clive Thomas and the C&W Maintenance team. This was to have a review of our carriage maintenance procedures with respect to reporting and record keeping.

During the afternoon we were visited by Barry Cordell, who is the Managing Director of Riviera Trains, and whom Richard Johnson has known for many years. Barry often visits us and has been of great help to us over all this time.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Thursday 19th January 2012

First of all an apology the next blog probably won't be until Monday. The grandson's birthday is intervening.

It was a busy day for the 18 volunteers who showed up at Winchcombe on a damp day.

Cheryl was in early as usual and completed the ceiling top coat in SO 4790.

It turned into a (predominately) painting day. Russ had taped up the top line on the wall side yesterday and after giving the paint a gentle sand to key in the next coat I taped up the lower line just in front of the flying brush of Bob Keyte who proceeded to complete all the Chocolate underating that was possible on that side of the carriage.

On the other side Rod Wells, John Hughes & Peter Lucus were completing the other side and than assisted Bob with the Cream on the wal side. That takes the main bodywork painting as far as it can go until the ends are ready.

The ends of the carriage are firmly under the control of the welders and today we at last saw some major progress. The cutting out of the body panelling stopped and John Osborn wheeled out the welder. The second corner of the carriage is now tacked firmly in place.

Malcolm started on his corner of the roof only the interrupted by John. Oh well it turned into a day of helping out elsewhere.

Tony Barnard with Paul's help located some sliding windows to replace the incorrect ones that had been fitted. The only problems was the state of them. It really didn't look like glass in the frame!

A before and after.

 After A lot of scrapping and cleaning it became possible to see through them and Tony was busy painting the primer as I left.


On CK 7221 Jeff and Dave continued respectively with the cleaning of the ceiling formica and the sanding of the panelling.

On the RBr 1672 the hot water tank was again tested to positively identify the location of the leak which was the duly repaired by Ron Benett. A little to much air pressure on the retest had the tank creaking but it proved the leak was fixed. Now they have to re-install the tank. Robin took the opportunity of the tank being out to clean up and reprint behind it. Ron and Roger continued with the finishing of the servers area.

Ron praying it will soon be finished I think.

Paul was again dealing with the enamelling of the oven doors.

Today's medal has to go to John Hamer. He treaked down the track measuring the flanges and treads on all the wheel sets. He completed the maroon rake today and a few other carriages.
Overall they are in fairly good condition, there are a couple of concern that will need further checks before the new season. The weather did improve for him a bit but it still wasn't that great when I walked down the track to check up with him on another matter.

As usual Dave started many jobs only to pass them on as someone else arrived looking for work. Finally at the end of the we went home giving him al the odds and end back to tidy up. Well done Dave.