Friday, 29 May 2015

Definitely back to normal

     Report by Dave Clark

With most of us still on a high after such a great Gala weekend, normality definitely returned with some great progress. The Santa coach has lost its patchy appearance with all the preparation fast disappearing under paint, and the same could be said of the LNWR van and Toad brake van. The appearance of TSO 5023 both internally and externally is also improving rapidly.

Jeff spent the morning black glossing the south end of the Santa coach, leaving just the area above the corridor connection which requires a scaffold.

Whoops! We started glossing the Cotswold side of the coach and then I remembered we hadn't given it a light rub down first! Pete races ahead of Jim with 120 sandpaper.

Later in the day, with their reflections clearly showing, Jim and Alex were on their way to almost completing the first of the two maroon topcoats. A small area remains to be done at the north end.


On the Malvern side, Bob completed the first top coat where still needed, and then gave what he had done last Saturday a light rub down before starting on the second coat.


At the north end Richard Hoy vacuums up any remaining dust before coating that in black gloss.

With his work on the Santa coach completed, Pete transferred to the LNWR van where he repaired part of the door frame.


A change of colour for Alex, when he similarly moved onto the van, completing the first top coat on the south end and then painting the completed half of the Cotswold side.


In the Workshop, John pauses his welding on the final wood storage frame to allow me to take his picture.


TSO 5023 continues to make good progress with Alan and Roger completing their rebuilding of the north end toilet compartments.


Later they varnished the panelling in the central vestibule.

John Hamer was having a battle with the right hand capping strip on the Malvern side, south end door frame, trying to get it to fit properly within the rebate on the curved wooden pillar.


Moving into the Barn, more progress with FO 3132. Malcolm, with harness securely attached, walks along the roof to where he was last chipping off old roof paint. As anyone working on metal roofs will testify, the kneeling pad in his left hand is a very necessary aid.


Inside the coach Paul vacuums throughout to keep down the dust and debris from the various restoration activities.

More progress with undercoating the GW Toad, with both Robin

and Dave Hancox busy. Much of the this has now been completed, and once done we will tackle the roof re-covering before adding the top coat.


We have received four somewhat battered pieces of furniture from the Broadway Group, which we have been asked to restore as far as possible. It wasn't long before some wag added this note, giving us all a good laugh.

Fear not, the note has been removed because you never know!

We look forward to seeing just what can be done with these pieces over the weeks ahead.

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Wednesday - back to normal, nearly.

Some time yesterday we passed 400,000 views of the blog. Many thanks for your support!

With things starting to settle down again after the gala it was back to work in force today. The key job for the woodwork team is the last two doors for 5023.

Derrick was doing some final sanding od the wooden side rails on one door while Mike (not pictured) was restoring another side rail.

In the workshop Ralph started cleaning and stripping the first door from the BSK 24949.

Clive started the undercoat on the brake van in the barn

while Richard started on the side.

In the workshop Kevin was painting the undercoat on the last window frames on the wall side of 5023.

On the other side Russ undercoated 2 of the doors and the corner section.

On 3132 back in the barn Steve was checking on the strip light connections. He is working on a design for an alternative lighting system for the carriage to reduce the electrical load.

I was filling and sanding round one of the windows that doesn't have to come out.

Joining us today was Nick Evetts. He started on removing the hone guides from the spare bogey then cleaning it all up ready for re fitting.

The upholstery team were not having an away day at the station but waiting for the DMU to arrive.

On arrival the now restored seats were loaded in the guards van.

Thanks to Roger Bush for these 2 photos.

Real rail freight for delivery to Toddington and then fitting in the DMU when the owning group have an opportunity to fit them.

Off they go. We have a few more to work on but the sooner we get the replaced seat back the better! Its a rolling upgrade.

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Tuesday - a quiet day

First a quick reminder of the week-end.

We had many visitors including Dave from Massachusetts who just happened to have a free week-end between business meetings in this country. He also happens to publish a transport mag in his local community. Nice to see you. He found a great vantage spot to take a few photos as 2807 was parked up in the C&W yard at Winchcombe a very good location for photos.

And so to today-

Somewhat reduced!    Report by Dave Clark

Just 5 in today, not really that surprising after the efforts of everybody over the week-end. I only stayed until lunchtime, hence a somewhat short report. 

Having just acquired 10 window sliders, Des set about cleaning them up as all were in a filthy state.

However after a good wash, followed by a powered brush clean, they began to be transformed.

With the south end of the Santa coach ready to paint, Richard was busy working on the north end.

In the Barn, Roy was undercoating the underside of the Toad van roof.

Dave Dron was tackling yet another DMU seat.

The pile of seats and backs ready for fitting in the DMU. 

With Andrew Marshall looking out of the cab, we all watched as "P&O" was returned to Toddington, hauled by the Class 73.

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Saturday 23rd May - Gala Day

Report by Dave Clark

A fantastic first day for this year's Steam Gala, with large numbers of visitors to the Works, keeping our guides very busy.       

Last minute preparations! With the standby loco being located for a short time at the end of the Barn, Richard Stone photographed Alex and I extending the tape barrier.

Despite all this, we still managed to get a number of jobs done during the day. Meanwhile, on shutting up the Works at the end, we discovered that our feathery (friend) was back - this time in the Paintshop!

Richard was the first one working today, cleaning up another window frame on FO 3132.

John Hawkins was exposing more huge ares of rusted panelling at the north end of the coach.

While Ken was loosening the corridor connection ready for eventual removal.

At the other end of the coach the water tank was installed having had a final successful water test.

It being a replacement tank not everything was a perfect fit. I did have to drill a new hole about one inch away from the original for the breather pipe.

There were some surprised faces to see me, in harness on the roof. - Peter 

In the Workshop, the south half of TSO 5023 was opened up for our visitors to view, while in the north half Paul has yet another clean up.

In the Woodwork shop Steve Barnfield prepared more door frame fittings for 5023. Although the Woodwork and Upholstery shops were not generally open for viewing, escorted groups were taken in. Many of our visitors were fascinated by the levels of work we now undertake.

A lovely father and daughter scene with Chris and Nicky Taylor working together on the final door for TSO 5023.

It is always a great pleasure to meet many of our visitors and give them a tour around the Works. In this particular instance it was real treat because both of them had worked at Swindon in the 1960s on Mk 1 coaches!


There were three working on the Santa coach today. Paul Ellis had a change from working on the compressed air system and continued the repairs to the north end corridor connection.

Bob was back on the Malvern side, initially wiping down the remaining areas to be painted. By the end of the day, almost all this side had received the first top coat of Maroon paint.


At the south end Phil Jones completed the remaining bits of sanding and began adding the black gloss paint.

One of the quieter moments in the viewing area at the end of the Barn, with the well filled maroon set passing by. For much of the day, this area was packed with a line of photographers, especially when the two visiting Bullied Pacific's were pulling the trains.

Now we didn't know you had to use hand signals to turn left on a train or is he just waving?

Andy Thompson guard and otherwise member of C&W.

Picture by Dennis Richards


A final postscript to a job well done.

The completed headboard made in C&W, mounted on "P&O SN Co" and now covered with the "Canberra" destination.

P&O was not often pictured one picture was with such headboard.