North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group

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Q6 3 May 2022

As Ian records, here we are at 3 May and time is moving fast - soon be the longest day! It was a cool, overcast morning at Grosmont on Tuesday, but it got milder after lunch for Bill Dobson, Steve Hyman, Nigel Hall and Ian Pearson.

The Q6 was in steam that morning on No 5 Road inside the MPD, with Andrew Jeffrey repacking the valve glands and oiling up in readiness for swapping the Q6 with No.29, once the latter arrived at lunchtime with leaking tubes. Bill had been notified about leaking cylinder oil on the running plate near the smokebox saddle from the lefthand check valve which feeds that cylinder. The valve was quite slack and, when tightened, it was out of line with the feed pipe. After removal, various thicknesses of copper washers were tried but it would still not line up. The valve has a sleeve around part of the valve body which sits onto the top of the cylinder casting, so Bill took the sleeve to Barry Nesom who took off a few thou and tried fitting it again. However, it still wouldn't match up with the feed pipe, so, as time was getting on and the loco was due off shed, PTFE tape was put around the top of the thread, it was lined up, and connected to the oil pipe. The Q6 was then moved up to the head shunt and then down to the water column where the rostered crew took over, topped up the tender, and worked the 12.30 to Pickering and back, and later the 16.30 to Pickering (see photo). It was also noted that the PTFE repair was good with no oil leak.

63395 and 65894 being prepared at Grosmont on 3 May with Bill Dobson, Andrew Jeffery, Paul Whickham, Nigel Hall, Ian Pearson, Chris Cubitt and other MPD staff - Steve Hyman

63395 storms past Grosmont MPD on 3 May with the 1630 Grosmont to Pickering service - Nigel Hall

In the meantime, another issue with the Q6 tender was brought to our attention. The lefthand tender centre trailing spring hanger threads are getting worn. As a result, both the main nut and locking nut are becoming loose and need tightening on a regular basis. At the top of the head shunt there is an old North Eastern tender which had its tank removed many years ago and was possibly used in the steel industry for carrying steel ingots. The spring hangers are identical to those on the Q6 tender. Bill, Steve and Ian therefore spent the afternoon removing one of the spring hangers. Easier said than done of course. The nuts were rusted up and took a lot of effort and WD 40 to remove them. Once removed, Ian shot blasted and NDT tested the spring hanger. Some work is required on the threads next week to tidy them up, and when the engine is out for washout it should be possible to remove the defective spring hanger and replace it with the one recovered from the old tender.

Nigel Hall meanwhile glossed the tyres black on the Drewry diesel, which is currently on No 7 Road in Deviation Shed. Then it was tidy up time, giving the workshop floor a good vacuuming and cleaning the long bench at the north end of the Shed. He also took the table cloth home for washing. The monthly Defibrillator check was carried out this week.