Progress November 2020

Week Four

Tuesday was spent working on the one-way walkway posts which was a shame given that, on Wednesday, Kent was placed in Tier 3 so the Santa trains have been cancelled.  

Not only is that work down the drain but so is our last opportunity for some much-needed fundraising in 2020.  Progress on 5668’s tanks continued with brackets to attach the baffles being made and drilled.  

The rear panel had yet more holes marked out. was then taken down to be drilled before being put back in position.

The baffles were also marked out and drilled.

Work on 4253 included preparations for fitting the pistons with sections of the front running plate removed for access and the bores cleaned of all the old oil and accumulated debris before being re-oiled.

The Stay With Us Sponsorship Appeal has got off to a good start and if you would like to help keep the restoration on schedule then please go to the Stay With Us Sponsorship Appeal.

Week Three

Excellent start to the week as we’ve managed to get 4253 back in the shed which will make life a lot easier as we approach fitting the pistons, rods and crossheads.  Also, being over a pit will allow us to start a front to back checking off of suspension and brake gear to ensure everything is properly adjusted, tightened and pinned as necessary.

More of the laser cut panels for 5668’s tanks were delivered with this shot showing the shaped baffle sections

and this one, the back panels receiving a coat of red oxide.

Within a few days the driver’s side tank was getting reassembled for marking out of yet more rivet holes to be drilled.  

By week’s end it looked like this.

Additional work involved slightly increasing the gap between the driver’s side slide bars which involved removing the existing spacer shims from the bottom bar,

milling new ones to size

followed by drilling them for the 1” diameter fixing bolts to pass through

before reassembling it all and realigning the top and bottom bars.

The second edition of The Life & Times of 4253 book is currently being dispatched to all shareholders and is available for non-shareholders to purchase via the ‘Shop’ link.  Also, if you haven’t already, please take a look at the Stay With Us Sponsorship Appeal link to help get 4253 back into steam as soon as possible.

Week Two

First bit of news is that the second edition of Phil Edwards’ excellent book, The Life & Times of 4253, is currently with the printers and a free copy will be sent to shareholders once we have them.  For non-shareholders the price will be £9.50 including p&p. With Lockdown2 upon us there is not currently much activity.  A few of the team have been working on safety kit for the Santas which will hopefully be going ahead in December.  The poles for the one-way system at the station have been cleaned up

followed by being painted in various bright colours.

Our sales stand and tombola will need perspex screens to keep everyone safe so these have been ordered up and the mounting brackets have been shaped, drilled and tapped to attach them to the tables.

The crossheads machining is almost completed so hopefully we can get on with those once released from Lockdown.

As our sales stand has been confined to barracks throughout the year as a result of Covid19, our fundraising for 2020 has taken a huge hit and fallen substantially below our expectations.

  Accordingly, to try and keep the boiler refurbishment on track, we have today launched the ‘Stay With Us’ sponsorship scheme to pay for the firebox stays.  For full details and to see how you can help, follow the link below.

Week One

As Lockdown2 approached, the emergency exit steps for the camping coach were finished and taken back to the coach to free up space for the impending start on the riveting of 5668’s new tanks.  The handrail is seen here receiving its final coat of gloss.

Additional painting involved spraying another batch of clock bodies before they go off to be assembled and also the staff transport got its first top coat of green.

Other jobs have included giving the shed staff a hand to remove all the bits of old scrap and rubbish from the workshop pending a redesign of the interior to improve working room.  On the assumption that the scheduled Santas for December will actually go ahead, other members of the team were cutting up tubes to be used as poles for chains to be attached to lay out a one-way system on the Station.

On the 4253 front, machining of the last rocking shaft cap has recommenced

and the machining of the cross head slipper blocks continued.

Given the price of white metal, the shavings are caught in paper ‘trays’ to be melted down into ingots for future use.

An order has been placed for the forging of the missing connecting rod and coupling rod and another for the remainder of the platework required for 5668’s tanks so it’s been a bit of an expensive week.  The other bit of news is that the second edition of the book, The Life & Times of 4253, has gone to print and will shortly be distributed to all shareholders.