Friday, 30 November 2012

Exciting times and MORE WORK

I have just received a news briefing from the Board.

I was aware of the proposal to buy two more open carriages, that proposal we were aware of in C&W.

However, the Board's news release details the purchase of three! The two above are being purchased for the railway by the trust. The third is being purchased by the board from the sale of other caching stock the no longer matches our needs.

I will include pictures of the carriages ASAP.

Before pictures that is, how long you will have to wait to see the after shots we shall have to see.

We have a lot of work lining up to pass through the workshop and the new paintshop.


No sooner had I posted the above than Rod Wells came up with this photo of TSO 4440 the third carriage. It was taken some years ago but is we think still a pretty good representation of the carriage.
So lots of work for us. It's not a quick paint job. Thanks Rod.

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Thursday - November 29th.

During the day we had a total of 19 volunteers in today. Of course they weren't all there together so it was very much a rolling program of activities, as usual.

Robin was in early action lightly sanding the roof section painted yesterday and applying a second top coat.

There was a large cloud of dust in the air not just from Robin but several others as the order of the day was sanding and filling on CK 16195.

Well it far to cold early on the venture into the barn.

Ben who just happens to be studying car body filling on his course at the moment was getting plenty of practise!

Micheal Jackson, a somewhat older hand at this, was focused on wood trim sanding.

More filling of a number rough spots and rivet heads followed by more sanding! 

While Ken was addressing some dodgy looking capping strip.

John Osborn continued the restoration work on the barn end of the CK by tack welding the replacement vertical panels and positioning the studs for the corridor connection.

Just the final completion of the welds to go.

At the other end of the carriage, I was also sanding and filling along with drilling 6 stud positions for the top corridor connection woods and one replacement stud to secure one of the water tank filler pipes.

Avoiding the dust Jeff was again trying to sort out things in the store room. A valiant effort when the rest of us keep putting thing away in the wrong places.

Pete Lucus did venture out of the way of the dust to paint the curved roof section of the main vestibule on SO 4790.

After lunch and with much of the dust now settled there was a wipe down of the CK sides and a veritable swarm of painters went into action.

This came as something as a surprise to Dave who was well please to find that by the end of the day both sides of the carriage were completed in light grey undercoat.

We didn't do the doors. They have to wait until they have been properly serviced first.

So Saturday it will be back to sanding and filling all the chips and dents that show up much more clearly once the undercoat is on.

and Robin's Chair also had another coat of paint.

What a transformation in one day. (the carriage not the chair although that's looking pretty good as well!)

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Wednesday 28 November

Wednesday 28 November Report by Dave Clark

We had 16 in today, plus Richard Bates and Ted Ellis from the Maintenance group who were working with Steve Smith installing the new battery charging control systems on the Chocolate and Cream rake.

CK 16195

Given the go-ahead from John Hamer, Tony Shilham secured the capping strip on the right hand side of the door frame at the Barn End/Workshop side. He then added filler to the area complete the dent repair.

By the end of the day, the whole corner was much improved.

Maurice and John Groom top-coated the ceiling sections for SO 4790. They then painted the wooden base supports for the Park end corridor connection gloss black  Later on, with the paint dry, Ken put these in place.

Dave and Eddie prepared the heavy top wood sections for the corridor connectors.

Dave is cutting the channel for the communication cord apparatus in one of the new pieces. The grove can be seen in the old piece in the foreground.

New internal wooden bases are being made for the doors where required. Eddie is just completing the curved channel that runs along the length of the wooden base.

The problem with metal doors is that in time the screws "weld" themselves into the frame and become difficult or impossible to undo This means the panelling has to be levered off, which rips the wood around the screw heads. To avoid this happening in future, wooden inserts around the inside of the frame are secured and the panelling screwed to these instead. Mike attaches the final wooden insert on this door.


Craig then sets about repairing the ripped parts. this is a door pull.
The top part of the window frame needed more major repairs to the ends.
While the main panel simply required some wood filler.

UpholsteryJohn Hill and Penny Dron were busy cutting new pieces of material for one of the second class seats from the CK.

While Dave Dron re-attached the seat spring mesh to the repaired metal base.

The superbly repaired driving compartment seat from the DMU.

SO 4790
Russ made a very good job of carefully priming the two curved roof panels in the new vestibule. Not a drop spilt - well done Russ!

On the two new removable tables, the wooden base pieces for the folding legs were painted in black gloss.

China Clay Wagon

The wagon has suffered a very heavy shut in the past. To realign the buffer Eddie prepared two hardwood wedges to be bring the wonky buffer back into alignment.

Here Ken and Dave Landon remove buffer and lifted it clear of the buffer beam.

The buffer was then carefully refitted with the two wedges in place.
With the buffer tightly rebolted onto the beam. The new wood was then primed, ready for painting in gloss black.

MiscellaneousJohn Hamer had a very busy day, initially resolving some defects that had been reported by our Cleaning Team when working on the Chocolate and Cream rake Monday.

The stuck half-open window on SO 4787 was caused by the lazy tongs jamming when fully depressed - John subsequently fitted a replacement set of tongs and the window now opens and closes correctly.The apparently locked sliding corridor door was found to have dropped, which prevented the fastening mechanism from working properly. SO 4787 is due for a full refurbishment and will be replaced by SO 4790 as soon as it is completed.

John also visited Toddington to do some wheel tyre measurements on the spare rake coaches that were marooned when the Chicken Curve slip occurred. He also viewed some other freight vehicles that had been listed for possible inclusion in next years gala.

The Old Mess RoomBy the end of the day, the roof slates and underlying felt had been removed, and our massive Carriage and Wagon name board had been taken down.

Strange Tea!

Finally, Penny had done a splendid job being our tea lady throughout the day.

However, there was a general complaint that the afternoon tea tasted somewhat strange. It was only when she said that she had used tea bags from the small flat box that we realised what had happened. Cheryl, Penny said she is ever so sorry and promises not to accidentally use your special organic tea bags again!

Cheryl. Just to re-iterate Dave does the photos, Dave does the report :"Strange Tea!"

Monday, 26 November 2012

Saturday 24 November

Saturday 24 November 2012   Report by Dave Clark. Thanks Dave

After all the heavy rain on Thursday evening and on into Friday, it was a relief to find that there had been no further flooding and be greeted by a dry Workshop floor. Following our usual early cuppa in the RBr, we got stuck into our busy day.

CK 16195

Cheryl continuing the sanding down of compartment doors.

With most of the veneer panelling in the corridor and vestibules found to have been previously coated in layers of coloured varnish, and thus not easy to remove completely without damaging the veneer, the decision has now been made to use a gloss wood stain (deep Mahogany) in place of our normal Colron wood stain and clear varnish.

This will include the doors.

On the Workshop side/Barn end corner, the large dent, about 10 inches long and over half an inch deep (not caused by us!), had been partially hammered out on Thursday.

Ken completed the job, and this can now be filled.

Ken then began working on the internal wooden support from behind the corner, to replace the broken pieces onto which the veneer panelling is attached.

Later in the day, Ken and I removed the door to enable John Osborn to replace the corroded lower sections of z bar and panel on the left hand side of the door frame.

The long section of top hat bar enables Ben to keep a very straight line as he uses the plasma cutter to produce another section of sheet metal for the Barn end of the CK.

John Osborn, having welded in the new section, cleans up the weld with the angle grinder.

The first of the two wooden base supports for the corridor connection is put on to check for correct fit. As it turns out, this one will need a small piece taken off at the base. 

At the park end of the coach, John Squires begins refitting the heavy external filler pipe.

Martin carries on the with filling/sanding and greying-up process on the wallside. He was later joined by Bob Mac, who sanded off the remaining parts at the Barn end where the old paint still existed.

Earlier in the week, John Hamer had been along checking all the window frames, re-riveting where required, and he has now given the "all clear" for the windows and panelling on this side of the coach. This means the painting prep can start in earnest.

Later in the day Bob Mac and I did more panel preparation on the workshop side of the coach.

11:00 break 
Happy and contented, our Saturday group enjoying the mid-morning break in the old RBr.

Eddie Paddon, in his peaked cap, is also present. Although he normally works Wednesdays, he frequently pops in on a Saturday to liaise about progress on the woodworking front and discuss next steps, which in turn often means that we can prepare things on Saturdays to be ready for the Wednesday group.

Looking out of the end window of the RBr we can see our old Mess Room, now surrounded by scaffolding ready for the piece-by-piece demolition.  In the foreground are the 03 shunter and the newly refurbished Kohler Mira wagon.  

Somebody has to do the washing up! Paul is nearly always the star when it comes to making the tea and clearing up on Thursdays and Saturdays.

He also looks after all the essential supplies, as well as bringing in cakes, which occasionally includes the wonderful lemon drizzle cake made by his wife Helen.

No wonder we all have happy smiling faces in the mess room.


John Hill surveys the heavy metal seat frame for one of the second class seats from the CK. The frame was subsequently taken into the workshop to enable a small weld to be done by John Osborn.

SO 4790

John Squires, again, this time continuing the fitting of a new sections of steam heat pipework underneath the north end.

Besides the lengthy section being placed in position, the various pieces and connections can be seen on the bogie frame.

Steve prepares the final section of ceiling for the new vestibule.

The back of both this and the other two central sections of ceiling were then coated in PVA solution by Bob Keyte. Bob later painted the main sides with wood primer, and then white undercoat. The curved sections, already fitted in the new vestibule, will be (very) carefully primed and painted in situ. 

Externally, the coach body is essentially finished. All the windows have been scraped clear of any paint and any minor touching up just about finished. Richard applies "Disabled" transfers to the entrance doors of the new vestibule. He also attached signs and stickers to the internal wall of the new wheelchair area.

Vacuum brake testing

We took the opportunity to test the vacuum cylinders and brakes on the china clay wagon in the Barn, conflat wagon in the Workshop, and the CK. With the 04 shunter fired up, Phil initially removed the other conflat out of the Barn, and then moved back in to begin the three tests. Unfortunately the china clay wagon failed the test, so some investigation will be needed before this can be released.
However the conflat in the Workshop worked satisfactorily despite the fact that it hadn't yet been overhauled. I believe the CK was also successful, but I was suddenly called away so Richard, Ken or Phil, please correct this if I am wrong.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Thursday - November 22nd

A thankfully uneventful day. So with 14 in attendance we got the usual range of jobs done.

Paul and his team of carriage cleaners took advantage of the main rake being in platform 2 to wash the 'other side' of the rake this morning.

The only attention to SO 4790 in the barn today was me scrapping surplus paint from 2 of the large windows and the associated top windows.

Pete Lucus was the only other brave soul facing a stiff wind blowing into the barn. He was sanding and then painting the conflat wagon.

John Osborn started on the fitting and welding of replacement panels at the barn end of CK 16195.

Then handed over to Ben for him to have some more welding practise filling in the hole John had left (bottom right).

In the corridor Roger decided a sweep and hoover was in order.

However, Cheryl was still sanding all be it further down the carriage. He did collect a lot more dust than she created though.

It was my first visit to the new 'Mess Room' namely the old RBr. Everybody agreed it was a much better place to watch the train from while having lunch. the only problem is they have stopped running train while we are there on Wednesday and Thursday. So we had to make do with watching the scaffolders preparing for the old mess room demolition. 

Malcolm finished painting his air valve protection brackets

and moved on to cleaning the bogie frame.

Robin and Ron were again address the needs of Santa working on his cabin.

Robin started the day working on a chair not sure if that was for Santa as well. I hope not I think Santa may need a larger chair.

Tony was again filling and sanding on CK 16195. This time on the other side.

It did reveal this hole. Being a CK carriage it was originally fitted like 7221 to carry stretchers that would be loaded through the window. The frame for this one has been replaced so we will just have to patch the holes ( one each side of the window and one underneath). The holes were for the external window locks.

That me done now I am dashing of to London for the week-end so the blog for Saturday won't be available until Sunday afternoon.