In my absence in Australia, Ian reports a mild and overcast day at Grosmont today (only in the low 30s in Sydney!), the first Saturday Working Party for a long time, with James Pearcy, Andy Lowes, Nigel Bill, Trevor Wilford, Peter Ellis, Ian himself, and Gordon Wells later on. Nigel Hall couldn't make it today - vehicle problems. After lighting the stove, a brew was made along with a critical comment from Trevor regarding our biscuit stocks! Apparently I have gone off to OZ and left us in a depleted biscuit situation. Trevor will be having words with me when I get back! Apologies for this culinary disaster. However, he still managed to munch through some rather soft ginger snaps, so it can't have been too bad!
After his wingeing, Ian gave him and Peter one of only two jobs belonging to the Q6 today, which was on the tender. This was to remove the loose studs from the front stretcher plate on the right hand side which they did. Andy then fitted some new bolts, but these are only temporary until we get some new fitted bolt made. James and Nigel removed the fire grate from the J27's firebox after clearing out the leftover ash. This has been done to allow the ash pan sprinkler to be adjusted. Quite a heavy job lifting those grate sections out through the fire hole door! The grate sections are stacked at the side of No 6 road and marked 1 to 7, 1 being at the front of the box. Ian and Nigel B removed both tender water valves, but as some of the flange bolts had to be burnt off it was a good job Trevor was present today. James has taken the valves to Hopetown where he is going to overhaul them and return them before the steam test on 12 February. Andy and James removed both piston covers and these are now stored in the work shop. Lunch was had around the stove again, very cosy.
After lunch, Peter stripped down both Q6 safety valves which are ready for inspection and, with new springs, are in a red plastic box on the work bench. Gordon called in for his conduit, which is now stored in the electrical store. He also repaired one of our stand up lights. Trevor was not pleased with the state of the burning torch nozzle. He said it had been misused and damaged. Ian is going to have a word with Mark O'Brien at the shed who is responsible for these items. He will also let Mark know that Trevor is going to make the tender draw bar pin covers.
The next working party is on Wednesday 16 January - just don't forget the biscuits!