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Restoration diary

Reports of restoration work on 50029 and 50030.

June 7th 2009

Mark B & Ian were having a general tidy up of parts from the latest scrapyard hauls, then after lunch they removed six gudgeon pins from spare pistons & con rods, greased the pins, stored them & the pistons & marked the conrods for future scrapping. I brought up various items from my house for storage in the coach then wired in another three cab warning light resistors.

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May 9th-10th 2009

As I am taking some time out from the project to re-join my old American Football team for this season, Chris Thorn again reports: "Saturday 9th saw John Pinion, Tom and Chris at Booths to process new arrivals 37692/37798. Whilst already stripped they did yield some promising brake cylinders. The afternoon saw Dave join Chris and Tom at Rowsley. Dave continued making piston lifting brackets, Chris sorted new spares arrivals and Tom continued in the cab. Sunday saw Mark, Ian and Pete join the overnight trio. Two more pistons were refitted on Sunday and more spares were delivered from Mark's. Tom wired in the new cab lights and refitted the new fault light panels and AWS horn, all overhauls from recent ex Booths components."

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April 19th 2009

As I was unavailable due to having a bad back, this report is from Chris Thorn. "Dominic, Tim and Mick Ratledge cleared the roadway to the shed and re-graded the surface. They also sorted the scrap pile ready for collection and helped little Chris refitting cubicle doors to Renown. Tom completed painting the cab vestibules, refitted overhauled ceiling vents and the warning light cluster. Dave opened up all the loose brake cylinders and added the corroded ones to the scrap pile. Ian and Pete sorted the latest arrival of new engine parts and refitted some more pistons. I brought up more parts from home, continued sorting our spares and shifted the heads in the shed to clear the floor space ready for new arrivals."

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April 10th to 14th 2009

Chris Thorn & his brother Tom spent four days doing a marathon session over the Easter weekend, making great inroads into cleaning back loose paint and sanding on the entire interior surfaces of No.1 cab, fitting better wooden shelving to the pallet racking in the coach, did further sorting of spares, listed what we are still missing, removed the remains of the brake frame piping and cleaned & painted the frame & structures behind.

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April 5th 2009

For various reasons, the last two work parties had to be cancelled. We decided to postpone the one that fell on Mother's Day to the following weekend, but in the event that one had to be cancelled too, so today was our first visit in nearly a month. As Ian's power unit parts have not yet arrived, he, Dave & Pete fitted two cylinder heads. I tidied the elec workbench in the coach and found homes for many items, then wired the first three warning resistors described above.

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March 8th 2009

Due to inclement weather, Ian & Pete spent the day removing cut pipes from the latest haul of air system spares, while Chris T continued his cataloguing of spares. I fitted & wired the resistor board, then fitted the left-hand cab warning light resistor board on top of the cubicle & Chris B helped me laying in cables for it.

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February 22nd 2009

As the next batch of new power unit parts have not yet arrived, Dave, Ian & Pete mated the remaining 12 pistons to their conrods, then sorted the unusable cylinder liners separate from the good ones and did further tidying of the container. Chris T did more tidying & sorting of 37 & 50 items in the coach, while I dismantled an old telecoms terminal board to retrieve useful terminal bars. Tim & Dom arrived at lunchtime & assisted with various things during the afternoon. I attempted to mount the resistor ladder network board I had made, but it was a case of one step forward & two back, as I had not accounted for a bundle of cables that run in front of where the board will mount & which fouled the bottom resistor, so I had to remove the resistors, re-drill the board & re-assemble it all. Sounds simple, but getting the resistor brackets mounted square is most difficult, as they tend to rotate when tightening their fixing bolts & we ran out of time before I could attempt to re-fit it.

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February 15th 2009

Dave was bored so he took me to Rowsley today. While he cleaned off & painted one set of side, top & intermediate cylinder head covers, I marked & carefully drilled the board for the resistor ladder network on the pillar drill. After lunch, I dismantled some old terminal bars while Dave washed all the cups & plates that had been used & left, then we tidied & swept out the room in the coach which will be the changing/eating room.  Apart from a few little jobs, the coach is now completely sorted.

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February 8th 2009

We had more or less decided to give this one a miss with the threat of more snow as Rowsley usually gets more than lower-lying places, but Dave decided he was going anyway, so I went with him. The roads were clear & there was about 2-3 inches of snow on site. Dave started to fabricate a device to compress piston rings as the piston is lowered into the liner, as we had one ring break last workparty. We fitted the last two fluorescents in the coach & I did some more sorting of items in the coach & measured a paxolin board to be cut down to make what is known as a 'ladder network' of spare resistors to replace the Z71 earth fault de-sensitizing resistor. We were missing this item & the one I was given last year was open circuit and thus useless. The ladder network will be fitted in the redundant space next to the main start contactors.

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January 25th 2009

Chris & Tom Thorn continued sorting spares in the coach and the shed, then made an inventory of what equipment we have for the brake frame, and found we appear to be missing nothing for Repulse and have a good quantity of spares. Pete & Ian were intending to fit B3 piston & conrod, but discovered the oil ring was damaged, and as we have no spares at the moment, they decided instead to fit the cylinder head to B7. Chris Bodell & I cleaned the steel workbench, then we all moved it over to the coach and manoeuvred it inside to its allocated spot. Chris & I then re-built the 'Dexion' racking and secured it in place, then I fitted the last socket. Apart from two more fluorescent lights still to fit, the coach is now usable as a workshop.

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January 11th 2009

Dave, Ian & Pete removed the piston & conrod they were using as a test for the new stretch bolts, then successfully fitted A8 piston & mated the conrod to the main crank, but not before discovering the snow that had fallen on site had pushed the tarpaulin down into the Vee & frozen, leaving a 21/2" thick six foot long iceberg which we had to smash up & remove, and then had to bale out gallons of water underneath the ice, which fortunately was contained by the tarpaulin & had not got into the power unit. Mark Burrows continued weatherproofing 29's no.2 cab. Chris Thorn & his brother Tom did a sterling job continuing to sort the spares in the coach (they had also attempted to do the same yesterday, but found the lock on the coach frozen, so they tidied up the shed & started assessing repairs needed to 29's cabs), and by the end of the day, the coach is now much tidier. I continued installing sockets and lighting in the coach and successfully tested what I have so far fitted.

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December 14th 2008

While Tim, Neil, Chris B & Alex cleaned No.2 cab & the visible side of Repulse, Ian, Dave & Pete connected another piston & conrod & fitted it into the power unit. John Pinion & I did more tidying of the coach & I showed two of my ex-GWR colleagues round Repulse. We then retired to the pub where Mark Burrows joined us for a drink before consuming the by-now traditional crimbo ruby.

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November 30th 2008

Ian & Pete fitted another piston to its conrod then fitted the piston & rod into the power unit, not so easy in the cold weather. Mark Burrows continued repairs to Renown's No.1 cab, after which he helped Ian & Pete put the new tarpaulin over the power unit & moved the old one into Repulse to cover her power unit as we have yet to repair the corroded central roof section. Chris Thorn, his brother & I continued sorting equipment in the coach, dismantled two more sections of pallet racking from the container, re-erected them in the coach & moved the equipment into the coach.

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November 16th 2008

Pete & Ian attempted to refit the first of the large new shell bearing caps onto the piston conrod they inserted into the block last time using the traditional method of a piece of rope suspending the cap beneath the crank shaft to align it. However, even with much greater room with the power unit out of the loco, this proved difficult, so they devised a tool to aid them, which worked well & the cap was successfully mated to the conrod. No electrical work was undertaken as Chris T, Chris B, Tim & Dom & I amalgamated the items in the coach into 50 & non-50 parts & cleared one side of the coach for racking from the container. We then cleared one section of racking in the container, dismantled it & reassembled it in the coach & transferred the electrical parts into the coach. Tim & Dom also removed the rubbish mentioned last time from the coach into the PR skip.

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