Of Axleboxes and Ashpans and Other Things
You are probably expecting another report about Sir Lamiel’s latest main line trip (11th August, Weymouth to Waterloo on the Dorset Coast Express for the Railway Touring Company www.railwaytouring.co.uk). But this report is about what’s been occurring at Loughborough while you were all looking at main line trips: Craig has now finished machining the axleboxes for the five (Thank you Craig!!) so they can be fitted back onto the frames and the engine re-wheeled in the near future. Then it’s ‘just’ re-fit the boiler and away we go, (I don’t think I really need to explain the 5305la definition of ‘just’ do I? You all know that when it’s typed between inverted commas there’s a whole world of difference to a normal just!)
The last axlebox, fresh off the machine
One of the Five's damper doors in the blast cabinet.
Meanwhile, Hugh commandeered a party of cleaners earlier today and went digging down the side of the shed and brought the five’s ashpan out to near the bridge so that he could set to work cleaning it up. One of the cleaners (Ben) stayed with the ash-pan job while the others disappeared off on other tasks – thanks Ben. One of their first jobs was improving the through-put on the ash-pan washer pipe. Then they set about removing the movable parts and shot-blasting them in the blast cabinet, then they took a cup-brush to the main body of the ashpan. I managed to get a couple of photos of the damper doors, but completely forgot to take one of the ashpan itself, resplendent with new paint on some of the outside. And that was all in a ‘short day’ as Hugh defines days.
14055 a.k.a. 17055 outside the shed.
The next support coach (14055) is now at the back of the shed. This time we plan to do the outside jobs first, then work on the inside, so the first job will be to swap the coach body onto accommodation bogies and overhaul the coach’s own bogies, then bodywork, and only once that’s finished will we do the fancy stuff inside – it’s far less risky to weld body skin if there’s no panelling on the inside!
Meanwhile, at Crewe, work continues on 70013. The boilersmith from LNWR has said that he plans to finish the boiler by October, then it’s ‘just’ put her back together again, I’ll keep you posted about progress as and when I get any further details.