Great Eastern Railway 1899 4 Wheel Brake Third 853
This really is an a-door-able coach to behold! But seriously, some excellent work continues to go into the doors, with more repairs and resin protection now being applied.
Great Northern Railway (later M&GN) 1887 6 Wheel Third 129
Despite being moved around a little, progress has continued on the underframe project unabated. One (axe)man and his Monkey have been busy preparing brackets which will support the six leaf springs that are now back from the spring emporium. Said brackets were then attached firmly in place on the underside of the underframe before painting, thus ticking off another item from the list that needs adding to the chassis.
British Railways 1955 Mark 1 Suburban Composite Lavatory E43041
The exterior of the vehicle is now on the cusp of completion, having been flatted off (again!) and the second (top) coat of Crimson gloss applied. The rich red colour does look gorgeous when it is new, far superior (in my opinion) than the maroon livery we normally deal in. Alas if only the red weathered as well as the maroon in service! With the painting completed, some finishing touches have been able to be added such as the grab handles next to each door and the brass tread plates in the doorways.
Moving downwards, the carriage has been moved out of the staged area meaning the underframe is now accessible once again. A corroded vacuum pipe has been extracted from the Holt end bufferbeam and will require replacement next week if the brakes are ever to work again. The coach has been lifted once again on the carriage jacks to facilitate this work, and the bogies will be rolled out shortly to have the brake gear (restored some time ago and featured in these pages) fitted into position.
Inside the compartments, the heaters have been installed and several of them piped up to the main steam heating pipe which runs down the centre of the vehicle. Upholstered side panels are also starting to appear, and have been fitted in half of the compartments. Work in the upholstery department itself continues at excellent speed. Four compartments have upholstered seating ready to fit, with the latest area of focus being the rather plush separate cushions that live in the First Class areas.
The aluminium luggage racking has also been cleaned up and are all ready for brand new rope nets to be strung onto them. Approximately a quarter of the coach has strung nets ready for fitting now.
Whilst all this is going on, cleaning of Formica panelling and building up coats of varnish on the wooden panels has continued, the former task having reached completion. Painted beading pieces are now being attached in the Formica areas which covers gaps and adds the finishing touch. The ceilings, mentioned last week, are now all completed and are resplendent in cream gloss. Toilet fitting out also continues with more odds and sods being fitted into position. Now that the coach is in the air again the final pipe runs can be checked and the toilet plumbing tested to ensure the thrones are live! As I'm sure readers can gather by the comprehensive and list-like report on this coach, it is still very much the priority for the department, in its huge push to get the Suburban 4 project completed.
British Railways 1958 Class 101 Railcar Driving Trailer Second Lavatory M56352
The front end welding work introduced last week has continued steadily, we are grateful to the Locomotive Department who have been providing extra labour that has enabled these front end repairs to progress this week. The bottom edge is now nearly complete and some work around the cab windows has also been done. The more metal that goes in, the less body filler will have to!
Down the sides of the vehicle, specifically the rear part of the seaward side, the previously chipped out areas of loose paint are starting to be filled and sanded for a smooth finish in which to paint on.
On Friday, during a big shunt about to get this vehicle into the staged area, the opportunity was taken outside to remove the corridor connection, which was required in order to attend to some serious tin-worm around that area. The rear end is now sulking awaiting its repairs!