Working Weekend 22-23rd March

This weekend our team was split into two, with most of us staying at Llangollen to get on with the restoration work and some of the team manning the sales stand at the Severn Valley Railway Gala.

The two main jobs to be done were cleaning up all the journals on the driving wheel axles. They had to gleam and have no trace of rust or markings. This will enable Mike Pearce to 'blue' the axles and test fit the axle boxes. We took the opportunity to tap out all the threads for the axle box cover plates and finally clean up and paint the remaining axle surfaces. As it was quite cold and damp the paint was taking for ever to dry, but at least all that needs to be done now is the final top coat of black. The eccentric straps are now fitted onto the sheaves and are a good snug fit!
Axle journals cleaned up
The Axle Journals are now gleaming

The last weekend we left all the brake rods in red oxide primer and they are now all in grey undercoat. Next time it'll be a coat of gloss black.

Last time we discovered that the blower ring was scrap, but Q managed to source one from the SVR and it now awaits machining at Llangollen, but then yet another blow hit us just a week ago when the smokebox was put back onto the front of the boiler. While being checked over for its overall condition, the smokebox door ring was found to have holes in the bottom edge - no good when you're trying to create a vacuum in the front end. To make matters worse the smokebox door itself also produced a couple of big holes! Dave Owen made a couple of phone calls and Bob Meanley at Tyseley loco works had a spare smokebox door ring, so we quickly put our name on it. Dave also ordered up a new smokebox door. 
Worn out smokebox door
The 'old' smokebox door

We now have a very nice item for sale. One smokebox door from GWR large prairie tank 5199. If you are interested in buying it, please let
me know. It would make a great coffee table and talking point for someone's office!

Next job was to get the two connecting rods out of store and clean them up. This is easier said than done, my god they're heavy, but once up on the stands the team set about them and within a couple of hours they were gleaming.

Now for some really good news, the boiler was tested, in steam, last week and was spot on! The boiler inspector should return next week to give it his approval. All the hard work by the lads in the boiler shop has paid off - nice one guys.

The team at Llan this time were - Richie P, Colin, Mick P, Slewy, Richard S, Lynn, Chris, Bill, Maverick, John, Richard C, - thank you one and all for your efforts.

As ever I'm after financial contributions to help finish the overhaul. A share is £150. But if you just want to send a donation, I'd be delighted. Sent it for my attention, c/o 65 Tudor Road, Godmanchester, Huntingdon, Cambs, PE29 2DW, with cheques made out to 'The 5199 Project' You can also use the
form here.

Richard Pumphrey, Chairman.


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