Friday, 31 May 2013

May 30th - Thursday

Being half term I arrived at Winchcombe in time for lunch, exhausted, having been swimming with the four Grandchildren.

The Rain was pouring down and into the RBr our current mess room. Emergency action was already being taken to try and stem the flow into the carriage.

Dave Hancox and Martin Thornley were investigating and Paul was trying to dry the sodden carpet tiles. The RBr isn't supposed to be this high up the official restoration list but it just jumped to the top of the list.

We can't drink watered down tea after all.

A happier situation existed in the workshop where Ken was completing the corridor connection at the barn end of CK16195


and Pete Lucas were both busy varnishing the workshop side.

While inside Roger Wicker

and Ron Woodruff were both praying to the paint pot .....

or maybe applying finishing touches to skirting boards.

Once again James was skillfully demolishing the latest wagon brought in 774445

assisted this time by Robin and out of shot Dave Hancox.

Fortunately the previous residence had moved out some time ago.
With all the rotten wood stripped from the wagon the skip s full again! |The remains of a wasp nest found inside.

John Osborn was having another bash, literally with the big hammer, at the protective cover from the line side clearance teams machine. Its being to look a little more like the original shape before the tree jumped out and bent it.

Phil Salter was stripping the wall panelling from interior of SK 25501 the hospitality coach.

It's becoming a race to see if we can strip out the interior before the carriage has to move from the jack road to make way for the bodywork completed CK16195 to go onto the jack for its bogie overhaul in about 2 weeks time.

After lunch Ken and I continued the work on the corridor connection at the other end of the CK. by the end of the day it was only lacking the rain cover..... which we found was missing.

Ken stripped one from 25501 for now. We can make a new one for that carriage later.

Having had several vacuum hoses blow out recently John Hamer is investigating all the vacuum hoses and appears to have identified a particular set with a different construction to the other. The question is how many did we buy and how many are left.

Earlier in the day Pete Fisher and Dave had visited Toddington to look at there gantry. We want to see how the gantry locks into place before lifting. We need to make sure ours is assembled correctly!

more proof of my magnetic personality. OK maybe not but rather nice to see.

The Wednesday gang had been busy again leaving proof for all to see. New tables for I'm guessing Elegant Excursion

along with the painted and varnished shelves.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

May 28th - The Gala's Over

The gala's over but the paint shop goes on! On a day out with the Grandsons we parked at Winchcombe and having completed the I spy book we spied something that's not in the book.

The first loads of blocks for the paint shop walls were being delivered under Mark's supervision.

Apparently there will be one delivery each week for four week with the blocks being laid as we go along.

Saturday, 25 May 2013

May 25th - Saturday Gala Day Two

Having the Gala in full swing you would be forgiven for thinking C&W would not get much work done.

The standard tank sporting 'The Red Dragon' headboard and with  Ben smiling from ear to ear and beyond there was plenty of distractions.

The crowd that gathered at Winchcombe was large and full of anticipation

with plenty to see not all on the track.

However, C&W did get some work done! Jobs were tailored to the Gala in that we went for things that could be abandoned at the sound of a whistle and everybody rushed out to see what was going on.

Ken and I finished mounting the second corridor connection. Having lost the Toad Guards Van finding an immovable object to jack against to get the connection springs compressed into position was more problematic.

However, the newly delivered and still wrapped 'new to us' lathe sufficed. Following the jacking and after some machining the lock keys were in place.

with the keys in place Ken mounted and painted the top sprung brackets.

while I painted the J sections that help to fill that tantalising gap in the above picture.

Cheryl did some more varnishing on the inside of the compartment sliding doors. Hence the picture is taken through the glass of the door.

and Dave was touching up the door frame.

Bob started on the varnishing completing all the panelling on the wall side.

Hopefully with the prep for the Gala over we can get back to finishing CK 16195 in the next 3 or 4 weeks.

Good progress was made with the Monster Van with Steve attaching the new battens to both ends, and completing half of one of the sides - once battened down, the canvas is then trimmed.     

When completed two coats of white textured masonry emulsion will painted on the canvas, providing a good flexible waterproof covering.

Work started on cleaning and painting the new A frame.

Phil Jones, Pete Fisher and

Martin Levie hard at work.

Work if you can call it that also started on stripping the Banana van that brought into the barn on Thursday.

Dave and James gave a few planks a light shove and they fell off. So we won't be using those planks again then.

When his work with John Osborn was completed, James had a field day and removed much of the rotten timber on this van. 
We are still trying to locate the number, which should be somewhere on the chassis.

(its No. ROF81266 also listed as 774445

John Osborn was endeavouring to straighten out a protective cover from one of the machines used by the line side clearance group. Apparently it lost the argument with a tree.

Surely the tree jumped out in front of it.

Didn't it?

During the afternoon, an axlebox on one of the large Macaws in the freight train developed a pronounced squeak. Following the receipt of 7 bells, the signalman red flagged the train at Winchcombe and when stopped in the platform an inspection was made where the axlebox in question was found to be warmer than the others. However it was decided to complete the run to Cheltenham and Toddington, thus ensuring that all the brake van passengers completed their journey.
On returning to Winchcombe, the squeak by the way had largely disappeared! However with still two days of running left the decision was made to remove the Macaw in case the problem worsened.

So, a late shunt at about 7 pm ended with the Macaw placed in the Mess Coach siding and the train recoupled.

In the photo, Phil peers out of the 04 shunter while waiting for the ground signal (dolly) to change to enable the shunt to begin. An interesting end to a very successful day.

Friday, 24 May 2013

Thursday, 23 May 2013

May 23rd - Thursday

This was a different day! with the Gala on top of us the preparation work in the department has been completed as far as is possible. So today the focus was on shunting everything into place and doing the final test runs.

It was also an opportunity to test out another recent acquisition from a near by establishment. I could say where but then I would have to shoot you.

You may think we were just wasting time.

However, there was no clear timetable for today's shunting operations.

We were there just in time for the arrival of the B12 from Toddington with the Queen Mary Guards van for the freight train.

Later in the day the upholstery team tested the benches out. Well we may need cushions.

The B12 having collected the freight headed out to Cheltenham for a test run of both engine and wagons and to do some shunting. The shunting to reorganise the wagons into two distinct sections one BR and one GWR.

This revealed a couple of problems in that we hadn't replaced all the vacuum seat washers on the wagons. so when the train was uncoupled at certain point the vacuum hoses would seal properly. A problem quickly rectified by John Hamer who had travel with the train equipped with a number of various spares just in case.

It appears we have had a batch of rather dodgy new hoses delivered. They split out on the side.
Richard Bates and the maintenance team were on hand to replace the latest one.

Back in the workshop the split is clearly visible.

John Hamer moved the fittings to a new hose. We keep several made up ready to go. If there is an issue its only two bolts to replace the hose. A quick switch over that helps to prevent train delays.

We did actually do some work not related to the Gala today.

We had the benifit of Steve Warren joining us with the JCB today to help us set up another new gadget in the form of a gantry for bogie maintenance.

It was a long process having to first move the component parts into position.

The A frame sides were moved from storage to the barn entrance and laid down.

The top rail was trollied into position

and the final bolt holes drilled.
picture J Osborn

The whole thing once assembled was lifted back up.

and, conveniently while the Monster van was out of the way having been shunted to get the Toad Guards Van out of the workshop, the gantry was moved into position at the inner end of the jacking road in the Barn. Yes the carriage will actually fit through the gantry although its not intend too.

While we are on Gantries. we also shifted Geoff's Gibbet (the door and gangway hoist) through to the workshop with the second corridor connector for CK 16195.

John Osborn completed the final bit of welding repairs

and after the usual up a bit down a bit Ken and I got the positioning arms slotted into place.

Dave repaired a chip in the window edge of one door and declared a detention for the paint team. They missed a the top coat on the inner edge of the door! Standards boys and girls, standards.

Dave Hancox sorted out the skin on the top of the paint

and painted the end capping bars for the Monster Van

In the Hospitality Carriage 25501 I removed the final fitting. The shower tray or rather 4 shower trays. It seems that when the first one leaked a new one was built on top of it. A process repeated three times!!

While the shunting continued Richard decided we could do with another challenge having space for a van after the Toad Guard Van had gone.

He selected this.

and it was brought into the barn. Yeah.

The best place for moist of the wood on this van is the fire box of the B12 or something similar.

as part of the tidying up we recovered a buck eye coupling from the yard using the P'Way trolley. Well somebody has to keep the brake off or the trolley won't move and Steve who squally works with the P'Way gang is well used to the trolley. Thanks Steve for ALL the work you did for us today.

During the shunting this rare sight was seen. All the wagons and carriages out of the far side of the yard. The only thing remaining was the Elegant Excursion Rake.

another brighter note was Steve Smith with his latest version of an upgrade for the carriaqge lighting.

Once connected

they give out a very good light.
They are LED lights that use much less power and last longer
putting much less strain on the carriage batteries.

and finally a little progress. The flange grove in the paint shop, or as it appears in the latest Cornishman 'The Finishing Shop', floor has been cleared.

and the french drain completed track side.

I gather the block work should start by the end of the month.