North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group

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Q6 Blog

A record of events, activities and our work with the Q6.

As the Covid-19 pandemic had reduced the requirement for locomotives on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, in June 2020 a small group of volunteers, working within the Covid-19 protocol, made an early start on the plan to lift the boiler out of the frames. This was to allow an external examination of the boiler by the insurance company, and to allow the boiler ticket to be extended to 2028 - 10 years from the date of the internal examination. The opportunity was taken at this time to service the axle boxes, horns and related "bottom end" components.

On 27th October 2021 the Q6 made 2 light engine test runs to Goathland wth no problems. On Thursday 28th it made another light engine trip to Goathland and then took the 14.30 train to Pickering and return with no problems. Many thanks to all those, both NELPG and NYMR, who have worked so hard over the last two years.

Over the winter we have fitted atomisers to assist with cylinder lubrication, though these have become the 2022 Q6 saga.

22nd, 23rd and 24th September 2020

On the last day of Summer, it was a lovely fine warm day at Grosmont on Tuesday with Nigel Bill, Richard De Sadeleer, Trevor Wilford and Ian Pearson.

Trevor welded the front damper linkage together that was broken during the boiler lift a couple of weeks ago. Richard did some lathe work, machining 6 rivets to size for the backplate that Trevor has been fabricating. Nigel and Ian started work preparing the left and right bottom eccentric rods for removal. First though, Ian had to get the Class 11 shunter started and move the Q6 frames in position on the wheel drop and also get assistance from Sean Bowler in operating the wheel drops. After removal of cotter and taper pins and nuts it was lunch time, which was had in Deviation shed. During the morning, representatives of the A1 Trust came to Deviation Shed and collected the generator belonging to Kevin Gould and which had been stored in Deviation Shed for many years. Kevin has donated it for use on the new P2 locomotive.

After lunch, Nigel Bill ,Richard De Sadeleer, and Ian Pearson continued with the removal of the both bottom eccentric rods which were cleaned and stored in the wheel drop shed. More cleaning of frames continued while Richard drilled out the two sheared bolts from the rear oil box pipe bracket that Steve Hyman started last week. Paul Jameson and his wife and dog called in during the afternoon and gave us a brand new set of drill bits, for which many thanks to Paul.

In complete contrast, as Autumn formally started, Wednesday was grey, cool and very wet, but Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam and Ian Pearson were present. Also helping out were Sean Bowler from the MPD and Dave Brown from No 5 loco volunteers. Sean offered to help remove the intermediate wheel set as he is passed out on operating the wheel drop. Ian got the shunter started and moved the Q6 frames back over the wheel drop. A start was then made on removing split pins from the spring hangers and horn stay bolts, but they took a long time to remove - there are lots of obstacles in the way of trying to get this wheel set out. By the end of the day, Sean and Dave managed to remove the righthand horn stay but the left one was still to remove. With everyone involved, the four spring hangers were also removed, but, unfortunately, the wheels were still in place. Sean and Dave said they would carry on on Thursday (today).

[Some details of the spring hanger bolt threads before the nuts were slackened on the intermediate wheel set: 3 threads left front; 4 threads left rear; 4 threads right front; 4+ threads right rear.]

So today, the left hand intermediate axle box horn stay was tackled. The left hand trailing bolt was very loose into the frame and horn stay but the nut was absolutely tight on the bolt and took several hours to remove. The intermediate wheel set was then finally removed (see photos) by Sean Bowler, Dave Brown and new NELPG member, Robson Hewitson.Our thanks to them for their efforts.

63395 intermediate wheel set finally removed on 24 September 2020 -Ian Pearson

Success! 63395 intermediate wheel set finally removed - Ian Pearson

Up to the time of writng, the J27 has continued to work the Rail Trail service this week, two trains per day between Grosmont and Goathland.


10th to 16th September 2020

A very busy time down at Grosmont since the last report with an intense period of work on the Q6 boiler to get it ready for the NDT test yesterday.

It started with a visit to Deviation Shed by Bryan Orange and Luke Perry on Thursday (10 September) to finish converting the fluorescent lighting in the workshop to LED baton fitting. It got off to a bad start though as as the milk had seemingly gone off, so no traditional starting cup of tea. A fter stumbling with an electrical wiring issue, the final 2 workshop fluorescent fittings were eventually replaced with LED baton fittings. All of the old fittings were placed in the rubbish skip. The LED lights provide significantly more lumens (lighting level) and reduce our current consumption. An additional LED fitting was installed above the new sink to light up the area.

Numerous members of the public visited Deviation Shed during the day and the collection box was busy. That prompted Luke to remove the paper money and £1 and 50 pence coins to the tune of £113, which will be transferred to the Treasuruer in due course. Not a bad total bearing in mind the Shed has been closed due to lockdown for all of the main summer season.

Bill Dobson and Ian Pearson popped in late morning. Ian was driving. Bill has asked for a Swarfega wall fixed dispenser and a paper towel wall fitted device to be provided by the sink, and these are now being obtained.

Bill Dobson in sand blasting PPE on 13 September 2020 - Ian Pearson

Then on Sunday, Bill and Ian spent the day trying to get on top of the sand blasting process even though the nozzle had broken the previous week and a replacement nozzle promised for last Friday had not turned up. The nozzle was then promised for Monday. As Bill had had the protective suit disinfected so he could do the sand blasting (see photo), attempts were therefore made to do a repair on the nozzle with duct tape. However, this only worked to a certain extent, and for a few minutes only. After about four attempts, renewing the tape each time, it was given up as a bad job.

Only a small area of the firebox had been cleaned, and the sand blasting and boiler washout needed to be completed in time for the NDT inspection on the Tuesday. As a result, Ian Pearson contacted Nigel Bill and Richard De Sadeleer on the Sunbday evening to see if they were free and able to help out on Monday. Both were, so on a very hot Monday, with Bill and Ian, work continued. As the new nozzle for the sand blaster still had not arrived, efforts concentrated on washing out the boiler. After setting up the hoses, and with Nigel Bill doing the washing out, this was completed by mid afternoon. Then we acquired a couple of needle guns were acquired to remove some of the rust, and Nigel stayed until 5pm (see photo) and Richard until 7pm to try and make progress. The new sand blasting nozzle arrived just after 4pm, but by then the compressor wasn’t available - grrr......

63395 firebox being needlebunned by Nigel Bill on 14 September 2020 - Ian Pearson

Tuesday was even hotter for the regular working party, with Bill Dobson, Nigel Bill, Richard De Sadeleer, Jon Bradley and Ian Pearson. After lunch, Trevor Wilford joined the team.

Bill introduced everyone to the NDT inspector at 9 am on site at the MPD and showed him around the boiler. The inspection took about 2 hours and was satisfactory in all respects. A major step forward, and the boiler is now ready for the cold exam by the boiler inspector. Thanks are due to all concerned for their efforts in ensuring that the NDT exam could go ahead as planned. While the exam was under way, Nigel Bill and Bill Dobson set up the compressor and sand blasting equipment to complete the area that never got done the previous day.

In the meantime, Ian and Richard De Sadeleer spent most of the morning shunting with the class 11 shunter, to get the STD tank 80136 from the wheel drops and exchange it with the Q6 frames. This was achieved with help from Chris Cubitt driving the 04 shunter. The Q6 frames ended up on the wheel drops, and the STD tank is in Deviation Shed on No 7 Road. Gordon Wells also called in to repair the welder which failed last week. He found a fault with the fuse holder. This was repaired and the welder is now fully operational again. That was fortunate, as Trevor came in during the afternoon and completed the repair of the backplate. Bill and Jon Bradley completed the sand blasting. Ian, Bill , Nigel and Richard removed the left hand side rods as part of the leading and intermediate wheel removal which will be done shortly.

Wednesday, in contrast, was grey and much cooler for Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam and Ian Pearson. The plan for the day was to sheet over the shot blasted fire box area of the Q6, then take off the right hand side rods and front section of the brake rodding before starting on the removal of both back gear eccentric rods. But as Repton had a broken spring the wheel drops would be needed later on Wednesday evening to change the spring. So Ed and Steve sheeted the sand blasted area (see photo) while Ian went to get Jamie Lazenby the shunter, and the shunter started, so the Q6 frames could be moved back a short way to get the rods on bottom quarter making it easier to remove them. All three then got stuck in and got the rods removed along with the front section of the brake rodding.

63395 firebox sheeted over on 16 September 2020 - Ian Pearson

After lunch, Barney helped with the shunting. The frames were moved onto No 8 Road outside Deviation Shed temporarily until they can be put back on the wheel drops. While on No 8 Road, Ed and Ian started cleaning the frames - there’s a lot of dirt to to remove. Steve concentrated on drilling out two sheared bolts which hold the left hand trailing oil pot pipe bracket which feeds the journal. The bracket was removed, cleaned and stored in the workshop upstairs.

No 5 on 16 September 2020 ready for its boiler lift - Ian Pearson

The next working parties will be on Tuesday 22 September with Ian Pearson, Richard De Sadeleer, Nigel Bill and Trevor Wilford rostered, and on Wednesday 23rd for Ian Pearson, Steve Hyman and Ed Bolam.

On the Railway, the Optimist service continues to to run with two return trips each day from Pickering to Whitby, and the Rail Trail service has started with No 29 operating two return trips between Grosmont and Goathland so far this week. No 5 is now ready for its boiler lift (see photo).


Tuesday and Wednesday 8th and 9th September 2020

Tuesday dawned bright and sunny at Grosmont with Bill Dobson, Richard De Sadeleer, Nigel Bill, Chris Wakefield, Trevor Wilford and Ian Pearson, ready to start on the sand blasting following the previous day's successful boiler lift (see photo).

63395 after the boiler lift on 7 September 2020 at Grosmont MPD - Richard De Sadeleer.

Sean Bowler was working at the shed and offered to set up the sand blasting equipment and do all the sand blasting required, which was a great help as there is only one special suit and there was a need to avoid sharing it with others. The sand blasting went fine for a while until the compressor failed. Sean did manage to get it going after some considerable time, but it failed again so little progress was made.

After several attempts with the compressor and the sand blast container and cleaning its workings, it still wouldn’t work, so it was abandoned until Wednesday. However, Nigel and Bill managed to clean a lot of heavy rust from around the outside of the boiler in the firebox area. Ian and Richard spent all morning shunting the Q6 frames from No 2 Road to the pit to get the cab put back on, and then back into Deviation Shed, while Trevor Wilford continued with fabricating the back plate.

After lunch Richard started to remove concrete from the smokebox saddle.

While looking round the frames it was noticed that the vacuum and steam heat pipes had got bent during the boiler lift. These were noted for straightening or replacement on Wednesday. Bill acquired some replacement bolts for the ash pan/diaphragm plate which had been burnt off before the boiler lift.

63395 bent steam and vacuum pipes post boiler lift on 7 Septemeber 2020 - Ian Pearson.

Ian and Nigel brought 4 cladding sheets up from the MPD which had been trapped under the cab prior to its removal. These are now stacked with the others on No 6 Road and are clearly marked up.

Wednesday was another fine sunny day with Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam, Trevor Wilford, and Ian Pearson, with Bill Dobson calling in at lunchtime. Sean Bowler was still trying to get the sand blasting equipment working, but with no progress until the afternoon when a compressor was borrowed from contractors working on the recent rock fall into the River Esk just east of the walk way bridge to the MPD. This is being shored up and netted.

Eventually Sean got some sand blasting done but then the blast gun nozzle broke into pieces and, not surprisingly, this stopped the sand blasting.

Elsewhere, Ian cleared all the ash that was left in the ash pan, while Ed cleared the rest of the concrete and sand from the smokebox saddle.

63395 drag box post boiler lift on 7 September 2020 - Ian Pearson.

Steve cleaned out all the rubbish and coal from the drag box area and it was noted that the drag box has a lot of heavy rust building up (see photo). During the rest of the day, Steve, Ed and Ian cleaned the frames and removed the vacuum and steam heat pipes which were bent during the boiler lift (see photo). Trevor continued with the fabrication of the backplate cladding and was hoping to complete the job by the end of the day, but, unfortunately, the mig welder failed. It may need replacing - not a good couple of days with the equipment.

The NDT test is booked for next Tuesday, before which the sand blasting has to be completed and the boiler also washed out. Bill plans to work on these over the next couple of days.

Lucie was in steam during the day and was taken out for a trip up the line with Chris Cubitt driving and Richard De Sadeleer firing with Piglet on the footplate.


Monday 7th September 2020

Just had a report from Ian Pearson about the successful Q6 boiler lift at Grosmont on a damp and grey Monday, with Bill Dobson, Richard De Sadeleer, Chris Wakefield, Nigel Bill and Ian himself. Assistance was also received from MPD staff Paul Whickham, Chris Kelley and Shaun Bowler for which many thanks.

63395 ready for successful boiler lift at Grosmont on 7 September - Ian pearson.

The road crane arrived at 0830 but had to wait until 1030 for the morning train from Pickering to pass, after which a protection was put on the line and lifting could start. This gave Ian and Richard De Sadeleer time to prep the 08 shunter and move the 2 DMU power cars and 1 trailer car from No 7 Road onto No 9 Road. They had to be moved individually as there is a gearbox drive shaft fault on one of the power cars. Once these were removed from No 7 Road, Deviation Shed could be accessed, and the Q6 moved down to the MPD exit road. By this time the road crane was set up and in position on No 2 Road.

First lift was removing the cab, but, unfortunately, there were 3 bolts still securing it. These were soon cut off with an angle grinder however, and the cab removed. Then the strops were put around the boiler and various adjustments made to get the lift fairly straight (see photo). But the boiler would not move at the cab end, and when the cab was checked underneath, it was found that the diaphragm/expansion plate was still bolted through the ash pan and into the frames with 8 rusted in bolts. After several unsuccessful attempts to remove the bolts with a pneumatic wrench, it was abandoned and the burning gear was brought into action. With Richard De Sadeleer in the firebox, he burnt off all the heads of the bolts and then tried to knock out the remains of the bolt - but only managed one. Paul Wickham then went in with a pneumatic hammer and knocked out the rest of the bolts. By this time though, the possession had been lost and trains were passing. So from about 1245 until 1435 no lifting could take place.

Eventually, the boiler was successfully lifted out of the frames, and with Nigel Bill and Chris Wakefield guiding it with ropes, it was placed on packing set up by the MPD staff. With the the boiler on the packing but secured with the strops, the ash pan had to be removed. This turned into another long job, as the securing cotters had to be hammered out so far, then cut with an angle grinder, and some remaining pieces needing to be chiseled out. Eventually it dropped off and was dragged from underneath the boiler to the side using the JCB front loader. By 1715, clearing up was under way, the loco frames were shunted off, the crane crew got their vehicle ready for moving off site, and all the tools were returned to our workshop. By 1800 everyone left for home, after a very long, but eventually successful, day.

Next comes the sand blasting of the boiler, NDT testing and then the external exam by the boiler inspector.

On the Railway, the NYMR has now announced that, in addition to the two daily Pickering - Whitby trains, a steam hauled Rail Trail shuttle service will run between Grosmont and Goathland from next Monday, 14 September, until 1 November. It will leave Grosmont at 1100 and 1330, returning at 1215 and 1455 respectively. It will give some time to explore Goathland village, or walk the Rail Trail. Although subject to confirmation and availability, the main motive power is expected to be the J27 and No 29.


Tuesday and Wednesday 1st and 2nd September 2020

Ian reports a lovely fine sunny day at Grosmont on Tuesday, with Richard De Sadeleer, Chris Wakefield, Trevor Wilford and Ian himself.

At the moment it is a struggle to find jobs as the boiler lift is awaited, so Chris set about cleaning in the cab where lots of grease and dirt has accumulated: paraffin scrapers and brushes were the order of the day. Richard was given a couple of small jobs, altering the blank fitted last week to the safety valve boss by chamfering the corners which was touching the remaining cladding. He also removed some partly drilled out studs from a section of spark arrestor framework. Ian spent some time marking and labelling all the steel fittings of the spark arrestor frame. These are now stored in a green plastic box behind the bench in front of the picture display. Trevor continued to fabricate the back plate cladding. New metal has been cut and made ready for welding next week (see photo). Later on during the morning, Ian was asked to conduct Piglet while he drove his engine, Lucie, for the boiler inspector. The little locomotive passed with flying colours (see photo). Lunch was had alfresco on the picnic tables. After lunch, Ian was required to conduct Piglet again, as he gave Lucie a run up and down the shed siding a few times while Richard De Sadeleer took a video of the event.

63395 backplate with replacement steel on 1 September 2020 ready for welding - Ian Pearson.

It was another fine day at Grosmont on Wednesday with Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam and Ian. Some staging was brought up from the MPD and set up in front of the tender due to the tender being several yards away from the locomotive. This was so Steve could reach safely to connect a chain to the inside of the righthand tender locker door. A hole had to be drilled into the door and the side of the locker and then the chain attached. Ian did some checks in the smokebox on the blast pipe spark arrestor studs. The front stud shows a lot of wasting around the threads and may need replacing. Ed set to cleaning out the pit, and removed lots of slurry and ash. Lunch was again held alfresco on the picnic tables.

Lucie under the Grosmont coaling plant on 1 September after its successful steam test with Piglet, his brother, Ian Pearson and the boiler inspector.

After lunch, when Steve had finished fitting the chain to the locker door, all the staging was removed and returned to the MPD. Bill came in and introduced everyone to Mike Walsh from M & W crane hire who are going to lift the boiler next Monday, 7 September. Finally, some tidying up was done in the workshop, mainly underneath the bench at the south end.

65894 being wax polished at Grosmont MPD on 28 August 2020 - Terry Newman.

For next week, there will be an extra working party on Monday for the boiler lift, for which Ian Pearson, Bill Dobson, Richard De Sadeleer and Chris Wakefield have been rostered. Tuesday's regular working party will involve Ian, Bill Dobson, Richard De Sadeleer and Trevor Wilford, while Wednesday has Ian, Bill Dobson, Steve Hyman and Ed Bolam rostered.


Tuesday and Wednesday 25th 26th August 2020

Ian reports heavy rain storms most of the day at Grosmont on Tuesday, but Richard De Sadeleer, Trevor Wilford, Nigel Hall and Ian himself were in attendance. The planned Q6 boiler lift did not take place in the end. Apart from the weather, there was a problem with the crane hire company. Bill is going to contact another crane hire company, as everything is now ready for the lift, in the hope it can be done next week.

63395 grit blasting sand at Deviation Shed on 25 August 2020 - Ian Pearson

A ton of shot blast material was delivered on Monday and was brought up into Deviation Shed on two pallets with the JCB front loader. Space had to be made at the entrance to the Shed to accommodate the pallets (see photo), by removing various items which are now stored at the side of No 6 Road. All the boiler plugs fitted last week were changed for old ones by Richard, so the originals do not get damaged when the boiler is shot blasted. Trevor annealed the smokebox blower pipe and then continued with the damaged lower back head sheet. The damaged section was cut out (see photo), and will be replaced with new material next week. Nigel fitted a BR transfer onto the left hand side of the tender, so it is now a Q6 rather than a T2 (sorry Chris). Only one transfer was in the packet however, so Nigel is ordering another for the right hand side. Some tidying up was done in the workshop. Gordon Wells came in later in the morning and completed fitting a couple of electrical sockets in the washing area.

63395 damaged section cut out of lower back head sheet on 25 August 2020 -Ian Pearson

Wednesday was a better day weather wise, with brighter spells later in the morning and no rain. Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam, Bill Dobson and Ian were present.

A blank was brought from Hopetown and fitted by Steve to the back safety valve boss. A concentrated effort moved quite a few heavy items from around the buffer stops on No 8 Road to the side of No 6 Road. Ed gave the rocking grate mechanism a coat of red oxide, and also cleaned some nuts and bolts from the injector pipework. Steve and Ian took all the blast pipe spark arrester steel fittings down to the shot blaster at the MPD and cleaned the rust off them all. There are some odd pieces of bolts still to drill out and this will be done next week. Bill has been busy investigating the fitting of atomisers on the Q6 and these will be ordered shortly.

Meanwhile, the J27 has had a water change and is now available for traffic as spare engine. Repton, the 9F and the Class 25 are working the twice daily Pickering - Whitby trains, with the 9F double heading with Repton on the evening return to Pickering to avoid slippage and delays because of the heavy trains and wet and greasy rails on the 1 in 49. As a result, Grosmont to Goathland is being done very promptly! This service runs until 27 September. Whether any operating changes will be made to include services to intermediate stations remains to be seen, but when the J27 does return to service, it has 7 days operation before needing to be stopped for a 28 day washout and steam test. Although officially a job for the NYMR MPD, given their reduced staffing, Chris Henwood is hoping to get an NELPG team together to do the work, assisting a foreman or boilersmith. So if you want to be involved, look out for emails inviting volunteers once the timing is clearer.

Lucy has also been observed in steam outside No 5 Road with Piglet in charge.


Tuesday and Wednesday 11th and 12th August 2020

A misty muggy morning but getting very hot and humid later at Grosmont on Tuesday, with Bill Dobson, Richard De Sadeleer, Trevor Wilford, Nigel Hall and Ian Pearson in attendance

To start with, Ian set up the air line from our compressor, Bill borrowed a grinding tool from the MPD and ground small amount out of the newly machined little end bush to make it a better fit, while Richard set about cleaning more copper pipes and Trevor completed annealing the rest of the pipe work. Nigel Hall completed rubbing down the tender and has primed the tender handrails .

It was so hot at lunchtime only Richard and Ian braved lunch outside, the others lunched in Deviation shed. Gordon Wells came and connected a new switch for the water heater.

After lunch, Bill and Ian investigated drilling and tapping the sheared off studs which hold the right hand side of the tea tray. The smaller mag drill was borrowed from the MPD but it was then realised that the mag drill would not sit square on the backplate. To do this, a piece of steel plate would have to be tacked onto the backplate and, as no-one had any experience of doing this, Bill decided to contract the job out to the MPD staff. Trevor made a start on rectifying a section of backplate which fits around the centre lower area and round the fire hole door (see photo). Later, Bill repacked the steam brake valve and refitted it, before removing the steam valve from the manifold to the ejector, repacking it and then refitting that. Separately, Ian removed the steam supply valve from the manifold to the pressure gauge, repacked it and refitted that as well.

63395 backplate being rectified by Trevor Wilford on 11 August 2020 - Ian Pearson

On Tuesday, the J27 was topping and tailing with the 9F between Grosmont and MP18 (see photo), while No 5 was finally shunted outside of Deviation Shed by Chris Cubitt and Charlie Wood with help from Richard (see photo). Subsequent shunting saw the Standard Tank 80135 put back at the rear of Deviation Shed with the B1 tender on top.

65894 passes Deviation Shed with the 1530 ex Grosmont shuttle to MP18 on 11 August 2020 - Richard De Sadeleer

No 5's water feed pipe being removed by Chris Cubitt and Sean Bowler after it had been moved out of Deviation Shed on 11 August 2020 - Nigel Hall

Wednesday was another warm muggy day with some mist at times. Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam and Ian Pearson made it but no Nigel Bill as he was incapacitated. Now that No 5 has been shunted outside, the three musketeers moved all the cladding sheets back onto the spare space on No 6 Road, leaving No 7 Road clear for moving the Q6 out for its boiler lift. Steve worked in the cab most of the day repacking the steam heat valve, top manifold valve to blower, and the blower valve itself. Steve had also done quite a bit of work at home, updating the inventory system of parts taken off the locomotive. Ed spent all day cleaning copper pipe work, with some help from Ian. Ian though spent a lot of time upstairs in the workshop, making more space on the shelves in No 8 Bay, re-organising removed items onto the middle shelf, and stacking cleaned copper pipework onto the top shelf.

Lunch was had alfresco on the bench outside Deviation Shed, watching No 5 having its sand boxes and side tanks removed. The J27 was topping and tailing with the 9F once more.

Next week’s working parties will be on Tuesday 18 August with Bill Dobson, Trevor Wilford and Nigel Hall (Ian will not be available as he will driving that day), and on Wednesday 19 August with Ian Pearson, Steve Hyman and Ed Bolam.

The NYMR timetable changes next week. Tomorrow sees the last of the two shuttle services, with no services on Saturday or Sunday to give time to prepare for a daily, two train, through service from Pickering to Whitby, starting on Monday until 13 September. The services will leave Pickering at 0920 (and leaving Whitby at 1400), and 1200 (leaving Whitby at 1630). They will not stop at any intermediate stations. Subject to availability they will be steam hauled throughout.


Tuesday and Wednesday 4th and 5th August 2020

Another busy week at Grosmont.

On Monday, Bryan Orange and Luke Perry tiled the splashback for the new sink unit in Deviation Shed (see photo). That took most of the day to complete as the mirror had to be moved up about 3 inches higher so that the tiles didn't have to be nibbled round to make them fit. The final job was to connect the already provided cable to a power supply so that the upstairs emergency escape light fitting worked. That job was done and there is now full compliance with escape fittings in Deviation Shed.

Deviation Shed new washing facilities after tiling on 3 August 2020 - Luke Perry.

A windy, rainy Tuesday saw Trevor Wilford, Nigel Bill, Bill Dobson and Richard De Sadeleer joined by Ian Pearson just in time for lunch after having a medical with Dr Dallara at Loftus. Bill spent most of the day making valve joints for safety valves, whistle valve and reversing valve, while Trevor concentrated on annealing copper pipe work. Some defects were found on some of the pipes, mainly cracks in the copper, and these may need replacing. Nigel and Richard, after assisting Trevor setting up the copper pipes for annealing, drilled out the two broken studs on the back plate which hold the right hand side of the tea tray to the back plate. This was the job that Paul Jameson started last week and took all day to finish. Ian removed the annealed copper pipe back upstairs in the workshop for storage, with some relabelling where necessary and marking up some items for rectification.

The J27 was also on shed that day, having been taken out of traffic, reportedly with leaking valve covers, although I also heard that there was an issue with the lubricator mechanism. Either way, the problems were regarded as minor, quickly rectified, and it apparently returned to duty on the Grosmont/MP18 shuttles that day and Wednesday. Today it was back at Pickering, although it is being stabled at Grosmont overnight, running down to Pickering in the morning, working the shuttles during the day and then being dropped off the last one at Levisham and running back to Grosmont. The train is then taken back to Pickering with the 08 diesel shunter which is topping and tailing.

In contrast, Wednesday was a warm cloudy day with Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam, Trevor Wilford, Nigel Hall, and Ian Pearson, with Jon Bradley present until lunchtime, sealing round the new worktop. On the Q6, Steve chipped out the filler where the top end of the cab meets the bottom end and it is now ready for removal. Trevor continued annealing the copper pipes (there are now only a few left to do), while Ed and Ian spent most of the day cleaning the annealed pipes. These are about 50% done. Ian, Steve and Ed then removed all the cladding which was stored on No 6 Road onto No 7 Road on timber supports, to allow access for the removal of Lambton Tank No 5 next week.

Meanwhile, Nigel Hall concentrated on sanding down all the right hand side of the tender and most of the left side, in preparation for the return of the Q6 to BR livery. He plans to complete it next week, much to the irritation of that true NER officianado, Chris Cubitt, who on seeing the North Eastern livery disappearing from the tender, castigated the operation and person responsible and apparently had the following exchange with Barney :-

Chris Cubitt to Barney: “He’s not following the MPD method statement for the painting of BR liveries.”
Barney: “Why, what’s it say?”
Chris Cubitt: “Don’t!”

Can't really follow that, other than to say that next week's working parties will be on Tuesday 11 August with Bill Dobson, Ian Pearson, Trevor Wilford, Richard de Sadeleer and Nigel Hall, and on Wednesday 12 August with Ian Pearson, Steve Hyman, Nigel Bill and Ed Bolam.

Remember, the virus is still around, so take care and keep safe.


Wednesday 29th July 2020

Ian Pearson reports two fine days at Grosmont on Tuesday and Wednesday, although Tuesday was a bit windy. Bill Dobson, Richard de Sadeleer and Paul Jameson joined Ian on Tuesday, with Steve Hyman and Ed Bolam attending on Wednesday with Ian and Paul Hutchinson.

Between them all, quite a lot of items were removed on Tuesday - steam brake, cylinder cock rod, reversing indicator rod, steam reverser direction rod, steam pipe from manifold to ejector, and cab manifold cover. Paul Jameson spent all day drilling out a sheared cab cladding bolt and re tapped it. Then two studs on the right hand side tea tray which sheared while dismantling the cab cladding last week were drilled out. The top one has been tapped. Richard de Sadeleer drilled out lots of sheared small bolts from a long section of crinoline that was removed from the boiler top. Bill Dobson measured up the cylinder covers and is ordering new copper rings.

Jon Bradley also came in and worked in the new washing area, fitting a cupboard and mirror and cupboard doors (see photo). All that remains now is tiling of the splash back, which Bryan Orange has said he will do, and the job will be complete. A big improvement to the faciliities in Deviation Shed, so many thanks to everyone involved in getting the job done. Come October of course, we will need to remember to fit an additional water valve in the manhole outside the cleaners store to ensure we don't have the water supply cut off when the NYMR isolate the coaling plant water supply over winter to stop its water pipes from freezing up!

New washing facilities on 28 July 2020. - Ian pearson

On Wednesday, Ian Pearson and Paul Jameson removed the rear section of the fire grate, and then the vacuum train pipe section from the cab to allow access to another sheared cladding bolt which Paul Jameson drilled out and re tapped. Steve Hyman continued where Richard de Sadeleer left off on Tuesday, redrilling and tapping with a 5/16 Whitworth tap on the section of crinoline, with still quite a few holes left to deal with. Ed spent all day cleaning, rubbing down, and painting with red oxide, the vacuum pipe that had been removed earlier and the back plate tea tray. Most items removed over the last two days have been logged and labelled and put into store. Lunch was had alfresco on the picnic table overlooking the shed with No29 on steam test.

All the fire extinguishers have been checked and examined. Both Propane and Oxygen bottles have been changed from BOC to NeeGas. All departments on the Railway are now using NeeGas.

The next Q6 working party will be on Tuesday 4 August with Trevor Wilford, Bill Dobson, and Richard de Sadeleer, with possibly Nigel Bill and Ian Pearson joining after lunch following their medical at Loftus. On Wednesday 5 August, the working party will be Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam and Ian Pearson.

There were quite a few visitors around this Wednesday. Services are due to restart on Saturday (Yorkshire Day), with shuttles running from Pickering/Levisham and Grosmont/MP18, but remember, trains will not be stopping at intermediate stations and there will be no access to platforms at any stations other than for booked passengers and rostered staff/volunteers.


Q6 - 22/23 June 2021

While I was struggling over the South Devon banks in the heat this week, Ian reports that Tuesday was also a fine sunny day at Grosmont with two teams at work. Firstly, Chris Henwood, Paul Hutchinson, Angie Buxton, Colin Smith, Richard Worrall and Finn Allen working on the J27's internal steam test, while Bill Dobson, Nigel Bill, Ian McCall, Nigel Hall, Gordon Wells, Trevor Wilford and Ian were working on the Q6. Colin Foxton called in during the afternoon for cuppa and a chat to see how thing were progressing.

In Deviation Shed the protective dust sheets were removed from the Q6 boiler to allow tidying up of the underside of the boiler cladding. More black gloss paint was then applied by Nigel Hall.

The front of the cylinder casting and cover were cleaned in readiness for fitting the new copper gaskets which arrived on Monday. These were annealed, then fitted, with the covers following using the hydraulic lifting table. Ian Selkirk and his assistant from Hogg Engineering came down and inspected the main steam pipe flanges which need machining so the Lenz rings will fit correctly. Having checked the position, and after discussion with Bill, the steam pipes were loaded up on to their truck and taken back to their works for machining.

Some welding jobs were also done. The back damper damaged bracket was removed and two lugs were welded on ready for drilling to allow the damper handle to be re-connected. A drive arm for the mechanical drive also had an extension welded on. Two copper gaskets for the J27 were annealed, ready to be fitted after the steam tests - these are now in store upstairs in Deviation workshop. Work carried on with the Q6 lubricator which was disconnected to allow oil to be pumped through the new pipe work to the new oil feed boxes on the rear axle boxes using the hurdy gurdy pump. The vacuum exhaust pipe and various operating rods were given a coat of black gloss paint.

Wednesday was another warm day with Bill Dobson, Nigel Bill, Steve Hyman, Ed Bolam, Nigel Hall and Ian Pearson present.

The rather heavy Q6 ejector exhaust pipe was fitted back onto the boiler and secured, with all hands assisting. In the smokebox, the four bolt holes in each steam pipe from the cylinder block were reamed out, making the new bolts a better fit. They had accumulated rust over time. In the cab, the ejector brake valve drain pipe was fitted, along with the wooden seating, although some securing bolts have to be fitted to complete this job. The rear damper bracket that was repaired on Tuesday was drilled and fitted to the damper door and then the operating handle from the cab fitted. The big end bearings were dismantled to allow a bump test. The test was successfully completed on the lefthand side: righthand to do next week. Filling and rubbing down of the outside of the cab was started.

The white board that was situated above the lathe has been moved and fitted to the outside wall at the south end of the workshop. Nigel Bill is going to acquire some marker pens .


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