Ian Pearson reports another fine cold morning with blue skies and patchy thick fog on everyone's travels to Grosmont. With Bill Dobson, Ian McCall, Neil Smedley and Ian himself. Also Nigel Bill and Steve Hyman were travelling down from Thornaby in the NELPG van to collect the T2 ‘s pistons for delivery to Ian Storey’s workshop. The stove was lit and kettle boiled for a cuppa while Ian P made some wedges to secure the pistons when in the van .
Ian M and Neil completed some outstanding work on the L/H tender water valve linkage. It is now all greased up and secured. Bill removed the pulling equipment from the regulator rod in the dome. Some measurements were taken of the regulator rod diameter at the stuffing box end by Bill for Ian Storey to make a sleeve. Nigel and Steve arrived about 10.30am with the van. The pistons were rolled onto a pallet, then lifted with the JCB front loader over to the van. After being rolled inside, they were secured firmly with ropes and wedges before departure for Morpeth after a cup of tea at 11.30am. Ian M and Neil removed the little end brasses from the con rods by making a pushing device with threaded bar and a couple of plates, nuts and washers. Bill removed the whistle for servicing and repairs. It was found to have a broken spring which Bill replaced with a new one, while the head of the whistle valve was found to be badly scored.
Lunch was had round the stove with Bill's dog, Zack, cleaning up the crumbs and nibbling bits of coal.
After lunch, Neil cleaned all the carbon from the J27 R/H valve which had been removed last Saturday. Ian M skimmed the whistle valve head on the lathe then Bill fitted the whistle back onto the boiler - one job completed! Ian M also did a lot of general cleaning work in the T2’s cab around the valves, including repacking and fitting the left hand manifold valve which has a feed to the pressure gauge.
After a report from Barney late last year that he thought the clunking noise was coming from the motion way shaft, Bill and Ian P checked this out and found significant movement on the bearing shaft. It looks like the way shaft will have to be removed and the bearings re-metalled.
The next working party will be on Saturday 25 January 2020, on both the T2 and J27. For the J27, Chris Henwood has now formally taken over from Richard Pearson as J27 caretaker following approval by the Board at its meeting on 21 January. Congratulations to him and best wishes for his new responsibility. He has a list of jobs for this Saturday arising from last week's working party, so come along and give him your support. TheJ27 is required for a special train on 13 April (more details later) so there is not a lot of time to get everything done if that target date is to be met.