Friday, 5 February 2016

February News Part 1

Monkey helps us out with the workshop tidying by pushing a wheel-barrow of waste

Great Eastern Railway 1899 4 Wheel Brake Third 853

A milestone has been reached with the paint stripping, the ceiling having finally been completed in a blaze of glory. Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust, the team can now move on. Gripped with a desire to stay with the heat guns however, the Holt end wall of the guards brake area has also similarly been stripped of old gloss paint. The burning question now is what will be tackled next?

Paint stripping the end wall

Also progressed are the end steps for the vehicle have been painted in primer.

Great Northern Railway (later M&GN) 1887 6 Wheel Third 129

Although the replacement 6 wheel underframe is currently stored at Holt, some more work on the "W irons" which will hold the axleboxes has been done in the workshop. Five out of the six W irons have been built up with weld where they were excessively worn and properly dressed back down to a smooth finish at the correct distance for the axleboxes.

British Railways 1962 Mark 1 First Open M3116

Contract seat re-upholstery is still in progress.

British Railways 1957 Mark 1 Tourist Second Open E4641

A great deal of progress to report this week. On the exterior, the holes found around the corridor connection a the Sheringham end of the coach, sadly, were found to hide a much greater area of corrosion. However this has been quickly tackled with the corridor connection removed and the offending steelwork cut out and replaced with new.

Corridor being removed

The repaired area has already received a protective coat of anti-rust primer.

Some of the exterior window frames had a few holes and undulations still in them, and some hadn’t been restored as far as some others, so time has been spent with further sanding and filling followed by etch priming to try and get all of the windows up to the same stage.

Moving onto the interior, the main focus has remained with the Holt end vestibule and toilet/store cupboard areas. The bulkhead walls and all associated panelling and finishing strips have all now received four coats of varnish heralding their completion. The landward side vestibule doorway has had its woodwork fitted around the aperture and the vestibule steam heater (and its grill) has been refitted into position. The toilet plumbing continues with the hot water tank now installed behind the sink. The ceilings for this vestibule have also been sanded back and repainted ready for refitting.

Inside the passenger saloons themselves, the sliding windows have been painted in primer (this has to be done before they are refitted into position) and the ceiling ventilator grills have been returned to their former glory having had a good wash.

Priming sliding windows

British Railways 1955 Mark 1 Suburban Composite Lavatory E43041

The framework repairs have now been concluded which is a huge milestone for the coach. We are now awaiting the delivery of some pressed window side sections , after which the new panelling can be welded onto the coach.

British Railways 1954 Mark 1 Suburban Third W46139

With the coach back in the staged area, a final push on the interior completion has been made with dramatic results in a short space of time. This week, the brand new lino flooring has been fitted by contractors, who made an excellent job of it.

Freshly laid lino

This was quickly followed by the installation of the heater grills which then allowed the reupholstered seat bases to be fitted on top.

Fitting heater grills

The appearance of the interior was well and truly transformed in just two days!

Freshly fitted seats making the compartment look virtually complete

Further work on the interior has included the painting and fitting of new passenger communication cord “scoops”, which then allowed the chain itself to be refitted and attached to the vacuum apparatus at the end of the carriage.

New scoops being washed prior to painting

The interior is now complete apart from the installation of luggage raking and picture frames. Next week should see the final painting of the vehicle commence.

British Railways 1955 Mark 1 Suburban Third Lavatory Open E48001

More areas of flooring have been painted in black gloss, and the saloons have been thoroughly tidied in readiness for E48001 to take the place of W46139 inside the workshop for further restoration work.

General view of the Holt end saloon
Window woodwork, now 95% complete


More work to ready the dining train for running services to Cromer has been undertaken. SO E4372, FO M3116 and RBR E1969 have all had buckeye couplings changed this week, concluding this particular task.

A Pway trolley and specially adapted jack provides a safe method of changing buckeye couplings, which are very heavy!

A major session has been made on brake rodding adjustment for several coaches which will be in passenger service again before long. M4236, E4667, E4843 and GE21103 were all adjusted improving their braking characteristics considerably.

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