Ian was a late comer yesterday, arriving about twelve o' clock just in time for lunch, to find me cleaning the cylinder cladding sheets (having spent much of the morning chatting to the public and MPD staff!) and Steve Hyman drilling out the sheared cladding bolts, with Nigel Hall prepping the tender for varnishing.
After lunch Ian removed the small cotters so as to remove the piston rod main cotter. Steve and I carried on with our respective jobs. Ian managed to remove both small cotters but only removed the L/H main cotter in spite of a serious attack on the one on the right. The L/H one is now in the workshop with its small cotter attached. Both cylinder cladding sheets are now cleaned and stored in Deviation shed ready for sanding down and painting .
Only one of the sheared bolts has been drilled out. This took all day as they are extremely hard. Nigel completed varnishing the R/H side of the tender. He intends completing the L/H side today (Thursday).
If any one is available on Saturday there's a few jobs to do - the remaining small cladding bolt to drill out of the R/H cylinder casting, pistons to remove (for which the splitter is required from Darlington, if it's there?), the steam brake to remove and examine, clean and paint the wheelsets, and R/H main cotter to remove just for starters. Ian looks forward to seeing you on Saturday. There's plenty of in date milk in the fridge, but the biscuit stocks could do with replenishing.
Elsewhere, the wheel sets were delayed on their return from South Devon because of a problem with the back load from the North back to the South West. That has been resolved though and the wheel sets are now due back at Grosmont late this afternoon. The MPD has been asked to make sure they are sheeted up so that they are dry for cleaning and painting over the next few working parties. This will also enable the MPD to re-start work on the axleboxes, which they estimate will take about one month to complete.
Mark O'Brien was on with tapping the top set of flues yesterday. He has now found that he can deal with the ones that were fouled by the crown stays by tapping from the smokebox end so he can get the job finished without having to take any drastic action with the crown stays. Because of absences today and tomorrow he is not able to do any more this week, but hopes to have the job finished by the end of next week at the latest, so that the final bottle ends can be ordered. A plan for re-ending the bottle ends is also being finalised.