While some of us were sunning ourselves in rural Charente others were getting on with the job...!
Nathan Lightowler, Bennie McInnes, Dave Green and Roddie McRae to name but a few have carried out great work on the loco and the tender. The end result is that the loco is approximately 95% complete and only needs a few small pieces of work to bring it to 100%. After the guys had rebuilt the inside and outside motion the loco was towed out of the yard and run over the weighbridge. Nathan reports that the crankaxle weight is about right but we need to swap about one ton between the leading and trailing axles. This is a relatively straightforward job once we have the required hydraulic lifting jacks back from overhaul. Very encouragingly Nathan reports that the loco rolls very freely with no indication of tightness in any of the refurbished bearings. The big ends are feeding oil satisfactorily; likewise the eccentric straps that Nathan put so much time into hand fitting.
Dave Green reported that the rebuild of the loco brake rigging was a bit like a chinese puzzle but eventually all of the parts went back where they came from....! One interesting discovery was to find that what we thought were slack rivets on the RH leading wheel brake hanger support were actually slack patch screws. These were refurbished and fully tightened into their tapped holes in the frame plate and secured permanently to stop them from moving again.
The tender brake rigging has been fully cleaned up and inspected and is ready for refitting.
The newly cast crown plates for the tender axleboxes have had their sliding surfaces machined true and the lubrication grooves cut. We'll skim the top of the axleboxes to give a flat and true surface for the crown plates to bear on.
And the big question...! Where are the tender wheel tyre forgings...? Ian Riley has confirmed to Colin Vaughan that he anticipates delivery of the forgings at his Heywood works on August 23rd. Assuming that this is correct we hope that he will proceed with fitting and machining the tyres without delay. Colin will continue to liaise closely with him on this one.
|Now moved over to No.2 Road an almost complete loco stands happily under the smoke hood.|
|The RH view - note that the steam chest cover and piano lid are still missing - we need to do some final checks on the valve setting before refitting the covers..|
|The inside motion all back in place..|
|The tender axleboxes with their newly cast and machined crown plates..|