Progress July 2023

Final Week

Lot more work achieved on Charwelton this week with many more running plate sections painted, the sanding and drain cock levers all re-assembled onto the cab side sheet

and the cab received more paint and a cleaning of the brass window frames.  In the background of this shot you can see the skip we filled and sent off for weighing in which put a few more quid into the coffers to keep paying the bills.

Other team members were carrying on various jobs on 4253 including reaming out the smokebox holes to take the bolts that anchor the support bars,

cleaning and painting the operating levers and frame for the drain cocks,

and painting the rings that fit in the cladding sheets through which the washout plugs are accessed.

Sunday mainly involved machining the big end bushes that fit in the connecting rods.  First the inner, white metal ID was machined 

and then trail fitted to the crank pin before being trimmed to the correct length.

After that it was back in the lathe for the outer diameter to be machined to fit the rod.

And here are both bushes with just the keyways and felt oil pad slots yet to be machined.

Week Four

Tuesday saw more work on Charwelton with the cab getting all the remaining old flaking paint removed, imperfections filled and then rubbed back

while the reversing lever and other bits were cleaned up and repainted.

The cab side sheets had a coat of Crimson Lake gloss on the outside and black on the inside.

More insulation panels for around 4253’s cylinder block were made and some of the cladding parts fitted

and work started on stripping yet another of the track laying units for the P Way department.

Also, the completed Projects 1 & 2 were loaded onto a Hi Ab, transported to their new home and dropped straight into place with all the attachment points lining up without issue.

Friday’s team continued with the painting of Charwelton parts and we also get a skip delivered to take all the scrap metal we’ve accumulated over the last couple of years and that’s a lot so it took quite some time to load it all in.  Not only will it clear a space but also provide some much needed extra cash for the project.

Sunday was spent trial fitting the original support arms between the front running plate and the smokebox which, as the latter two are all new, took some drilling, reaming and fettling.

At the other end of the loco, the bunker received a further rub down and coat of paint and,

finally, a few more clock bodies were welded up and given an initial spray coat plus the new crown stay nuts were collected and have been packaged up to send to HBSS in Liverpool.

Week Three

This week saw a full set of coupling rods trial fitted to the fireman’s side of 4253 which is the first time for decades that they’ve all been in place.

The new steam heart drain valve has been fitted and the painting of the inner frames finally completed.

The replacement lamp brackets that were started last week were heated and bent to shape

before having the mounting holes drilled.  The vacuum pump was stripped, cleaned and reassembled, the recently made clock bodies were spray painted and have now gone for assembly.

The painting of Charwelton continued with the vacuum tank cleaned and painted and the cab side sheets being rubbed down

and then given a coat of gloss

On Sunday, the intermediate and trailing rods were removed from each side of the loco which was then barred back to gain access to the driver’s side crank pins on the leading and driving axles.  Once positioned, the front coupling rod was offered up

but declined to fit so it had to be taken down again, moved to the machine shop and placed on the milling machine

where it was bored out a fraction before being hauled back and offered up again whereupon it finally slid into place.  Sighs of relief all round.

While the loco was being moved about, Paul and Jake were trying to put another coat of paint on the cab.

Week Two

Tuesday saw a continuation of the painting of 4253 with the underside of the frames where the tanks sit being done and the wheels getting checked for missed bits now they’ve been turned for fitting the rods.

The cab platework from Charwelton had years of crud scrapped off before the paintwork was rubbed back

followed by filling all the resultant imperfections.

Running plate sections were also tackled as were some of the operating levers for sanders, drain cocks etc with the latter getting repainted.

On Friday Charwelton’s cab platework had all the filler rubbed down followed by a coat of primer

while the cab roof had all the loose and flaking paint and dirt removed.

Additionally, we spray painted all the newly made clock bodies for the sales team.

On Sunday, the fitting of various cylinder cladding parts continued,

another gloss coat was put on the bunker

and we started on making the last three lamp brackets we’re missing with the first job being milling tapers onto the steel plate prior to it being bent and drilled.

The main task of the day was trial fitting the fireman’s side front coupling rod which had previously refused to fit on the two wheel’s crank pins.  Measurements undertaken with a trammel 

revealed an error of some 0.100” so one of the rod bushes was pressed out and partially re-white metalled

prior to being placed in the lathe slightly off-centre and re-machined to move the bore to one side by the required amount.

After that, the bush was pressed back into the rod which was then offered up and slid into position instantly.

The driver’s side rod will require the same adjustment and work on that was also started but we ran out of time.  All told, a satisfactory day’s work.

Week One

During the week, still more painting was done with all of the black sections of 4253’s underside finally finished and the cab side of the bunker getting its first coat of gloss.

The spacer plates for the front lamp brackets have been finished and all the front running plate sections have been fettled to align properly.  Charwelton’s bumpers have been finished and were palleted up to await collection.

This provided more room for the bunker and side panels to be unloaded from a storage wagon and the latter bought inside for cleaning and painting.  The bunker itself is just too wide to fit through our double doors so will have to be done outside.

The P Way’s track lifting parts are still being gradually stripped, freed up and cleaned 

and some of the finished parts are now being painted.

Sunday involved a bit more painting by way of a change with the rear and sides of the bunker receiving another gloss coat.

We are missing one of the lamp brackets for the front of the loco so another was made by heating and bending a thick bar, drilling the mounting holes and then milling the necessary chamfers on the sides.