Friday, 27 February 2015

February News Part 4

Midland Railway (later M&GN) 1886 6 Wheel Picnic Saloon 3

The team have been well and truly framed this week (£250 cheque in the post) with the addition of four period pictures/adverts inside the saloon. These look very smart indeed and are a sign that the interior is approaching the home straight.

On the exterior, the first gloss paint has been applied which has once again changed the appearance of the two ends of the carriage. Moving downwards, the Holt end brakes have been adjusted which concludes the braking system until such a time that it can be tested and any other adjustments highlighted. The buffers have been fitted. A safety sling has been added to the vacuum cylinder (these are fitted to catch the cylinder in the unlikely event of it coming off its mounts for whatever reason) and a white star has been painted on the chassis to denote the position of the vacuum cylinder (pull chords).
First gloss being applied to the carriage end

Great Eastern Railway 1899 4 Wheel Brake Third 853

Our “number one” project, the urinal, has progressed with the all important drain hole created in the bottom of the bowl which has also been attached to a pipe. The bowl itself has been sand blasted and the whole assembly is now resplendent in grey primer.

British Railways 1957 Mark 1 Tourist Second Open E4641

As suggested last week welding work has turned to the Holt end saloon on the seaward side of the carriage. This is in much better condition than the landward side of the same saloon which had to be re-panelled from the windows downwards. So far we are in the rot removal stage with two door pillars and a rotten section all the way along the bottom of the coach about 5 inches high sliced away for repair/replacement. Much of the rest of the panels below the windows appears to be sound: their good condition was revealed in previous weeks after volunteers removed the old paint and filler from these areas. In the toilet, the lino flooring has been fitted and about 50% of the skirting and wall beading has followed. All of the wooden components (towel rack, toilet seat etc) are now rubbed down and have had two coats of varnish. Finally the woodwork varnish stripping has now spread to the toilet bulkheads and Holt end vestibule. This was a very dark area previously so we’re hoping to really lighten it up and show off the grain of the wood.
The Holt/seaward section of E4641. In this view, you can see the currently very dark vestibule woodwork on the left, and the doorway steel has been cut away, as has the lower 18 inches of panelling

British Railways 1957 Mark 1 Gangwayed Brake M81114

Just a picture this time of the vehicle, as mentioned last week work has been completed.

British Railways 1956 Mark 1 Suburban Brake Second E43357

Work continues to focus on the guards van interior. This week, a visual step forward has taken place with the fitting of the plywood ceiling. This is now being followed up by more cable trunking (described last week) attached to the ceiling itself. Work has now also started on some odds and sods such as restoring a sawdust bin, an example of which was fitted to all guards compartments.
A fine worker attaching trunking

British Railways 1954 Mark 1 Suburban Second E46139

Cleaning and painting of the bogies, described last week, continues.

British Railways 1955 Mark 1 Suburban Second Lavatory Open E48001

Seat end stripping of varnish continues for the Sheringham saloon seat ends.

British Railways 1958 Conflat & Type AF Container B502824 & AF65970B

This week saw the fitting of the vacuum cylinder to conflat B502824. The system has been completed by adding the flexible pipes to the ends (which are now also painted the correct red) and testing the cylinder/pipes with the help of Eeyore, the yard shunting engine. As with M&GN No3, the chassis was then embellished with a vacuum denoting white star. The conflat is now ready for traffic once more, but will be held in the yard until the AF container can be positioned onto it.
View of the newly fitted vacuum cylinder and "white star" on the chassis

Hurst Nelson 1944 Fuel Oil Tanker 5304

With work on the conflat drawing to a close, there has been room for some smaller projects that have been on the list for some time. So the team got “tanked up” and have made a start on getting this oil tanker suitable for use in a (partially) fitted, or braked, freight train. At present the tank wagon is known as “loose coupled” i.e. it is hauled by a locomotive and has no operating brakes, the locomotive alone providing the braking. Here on the NNR we have a roughly 50/50 proportion of freight wagons that do/don’t have vacuum brakes. Current thinking is to slowly fit the wagons with no brakes with “through pipes” (vacuum brake pipes that pass right through the un-braked wagon without braking the wagon itself). This will allow vacuum braking to be used throughout the freight train, with the vacuum applying on the wagons which have brakes and passing through wagons which don’t. All the Shell/BP tanker requires is one of these “through pipes” fitting to the underframe. A suitable second-hand pipe has been sourced from a condemned wagon and has been in the workshop this week for patches where the pipe was visibly thin.


A “new” A frame has been set up in the workshop to aid the lifting of parts in/out of bogies during mechanical overhaul (and for similar jobs). It is ex Chatham Steam and had become surplus since the company integrated with the NNR. The frame can be moved around on its wheels and should be most useful.

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