Monday 21 September 2020

It's been a while.....!!

While the blog has lain dormant for many months there has been a lot of activity with CR 828. Her boiler ticket expired on April 14th 2020. We had altered our plans regarding the loco's heavy overhaul at the start of 2020. With the agreement of the CR 828 Trust 9the legal owners of the loco) the SRC proposed to carry out a fast-track boiler overhaul with minimal work to be carried out on the 'bottom end' as the loco remains in good mechanical condition. This would do two things 1) Bring the loco back into operation very quickly; 2) Allow an extended period of operation of at least five years wherein sufficient money could be raised to pay for the planned renewal of the cylinder block, drag box, frames, etc. What we didn't expect was a global pandemic...! Despite the problems caused by coronavirus the team at Aviemore Shed with great assistance from Adam Dalgleish and Northern Steam Engineering Stockton have turned the loco around in an incredibly short period of time. Notably this is the first major boiler overhaul that has been completed entirely at Aviemore Shed (over the years there have been several retubing jobs done in-house but 828 is the first time that major stay renewal has been successfully carried out without sending a boiler away to a 3rd Party works). 

The next steps will be to carry out loaded test running to make sure that all is well with our 121 year old icon. Operationally she is pencilled in as the main steam loco for use during the provisionally planned Santa and post-Christmas services on the Strathspey Railway.

Here's our old friend raising steam outside Aviemore Shed
in early August 2020 after her successful boiler overhaul

Boiler Pressure being brought up nice and slowly..
Fire burning nicely..
A wee test run with the Boiler Inspector in attendance
A few days earlier - refitting the cab fittings. Not the easiest job...!
Lifting the overhauled boiler back into place...
Blast pipe and chimney petticoat back in place..
Exchanging views on boiler overhauls with 46512 (whose turn comes next)
The new boiler tubes - all 273 of them
Cladding partially refitted and wing plates still to be refitted..
Awaiting a loaded test run...!