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.

The locomotive has had an "internal" steam test which has revealed a small number of snags to be rectified. Afer the formal steam test, witnessed by our insurance company boiler inspector, the locomotive should be ready for service again.

Wednesday 6th November 2019

A cold fine morning but cloud setting in after lunch yesterday at Grosmont. No trains running until the end of the month when Santa specials and The Northern Lights start operating using the J27. The track has been split on Fen Bog for sleeper renewal.

The team today was Bill Dobson, who could only stop for a cup of tea and give us some jobs on the T2 due to other arrangements, Ian Pearson, Steve Hyman, Nigel Hall and myself working on the T2, and Paul Hutchinson, Angie Buxton, Les Harper, Mike Bloomfield and later on Chris Henwood and Richard De Sadeleer working on the K1. The K1 and T2 were shunted onto No 7 Road in Deviation Shed on Tuesday and, yesterday, Lucie and the J27 were shunted into No 8 Road (see photo). As a result, Dame Vera Lynn was moved outside and is now standing immediately by the roller shutter door on No 8 Road.

Three NELPG engines in Deviation Shed on 6 November 2019 - Chris Lawson.

After the usual cuppa, work started with Steve cleaning out the T2's smoke box with Ian assisting, in preparation for removing the main steam pipes. However, they soon realised that the removal of the main steam pipes wasn't as easy as it looked because the spark arrestor was in the way and making any progress very difficult. Nigel brought some heavy duty cardboard from home and stacked it against the sheeting wall on the side of No 6 Road. It is intended to be used for lying on when work is required while in the 4 foot. He also slackened a washout door on the lower right hand side of the T2 to allow the boiler to drain into the pit. As a result the pit pump was on for most of the day. First job for me was to light the stove and then I removed the cosmetic covers from the T2 cylinder covers. That enabled me to access the cylinder nuts and slacken them using a 7/8" socket and a long handled ratchet socket from the K1 toolbox. Although all the cylinder nuts are now loose, we never got round to removing the cylinder covers - a job for next week.

Lunch was had around the stove and a decision was made to remove the spark arrestor from the smoke box. So, after lunch, Ian set about the removal of the spark arrestor with my assistance and we managed to remove some parts of it. Some of the small bolts would not unscrew so Ian cut them of with an angle grinder. Unfortunately, the rest of the studs will have to be drilled out later. There is therefore still quite a bit of work to do to remove the rest of the spark arrestor - another job for next week. The pieces taken off at the moment have been marked up and some photos taken. Steve and Nigel spent all afternoon removing the T2 regulator handle and stuffing box which are now on the bench in the workshop. Mark O' Brien inspected the T2 firebox tube plate and reported all was OK after its steam test last week and use at the weekend after Repton had failed.

In the meantime, on the K1, most of the effort concentrated on getting the boiler ready for Friday's insurance company cold exam. The mud hole door openings and washout plug holes were cleaned, the gauge frames stripped and examined, cleaning the firebox was completed and the tube ends oiled. The safety valves were also stripped and examined, and our own examination of the boiler was carried out including identifying which roof stay nuts are to be replaced ahead of next season's service.

In addition, the steam brake flexible pipe between the engine and tender was removed so that it can be used as a pattern to manufacture some spares. The wear on the cross head top slippers was also checked against the wear on the piston heads.

No work was done on the J27 today but the left hand valve has been taken out for repair by the MPD staff.


Wednesday 30th October 2019

A cold and cloudy with sunny intervals sort of a day at Grosmont yesterday but at least no rain. No Ian Pearson either, who was laid low with a bug (get well soon), but Paul Hutchinson, Angie Buxton, Mike Bloomfield, Bill Dobson (and Zac the dog), Nigel Bill, Steve Hyman and myself did make it. First job was to put the stove on - or at least try to. It would not draw and there was clearly a blockage in the flue. To avoid filling Deviation Shed with smoke and gassing ourselves in the process, the bottom of the flue was dismantled once the fireclay seal had been broken out, and a considerable amount of dirt removed by Steve Hyman and Nigel Bill after rodding the complete flue (see photo). Flushed with this success, tea was brewed and the work for the day assessed.

Deviation Shed stove after cleaning flue with Steve Hyman on 30 October 2019 - Chris Lawson.

The J27 had been moved out of Deviation Shed and was now down at the running shed, where the MPD staff had started the wash out. There was a loose valve head which Bill dealt with, but otherwise there was nothing that could be done.

The T2/Q6 was in steam and was to have a loaded test run up the bank to Goathland to check that the repairs to the leaking tubes were OK following its successful static steam test last week. This took the form of banking the King on the 12.30 Diner from Grosmont, which also had the advantage of providing some steam heating for the passengers on the train. Bill Dobson travelled on the footplate and reports that the T2/Q6 pushed the King most of the way to Goathland. Certainly it made a great sight and sound as it came past Deviation Shed, with its exhaust echoing around the valley as it climbed the bank past Esk Valley cottages. No problems were reported on its return to Grosmont, but a check of the firebox tubes will be made this morning once it has cooled down. Assuming all is well, it will act as spare engine for the rest of the week.

Deviation Shed No 7 Road roller shutter door fire exit. 30 October 2019 - Chris Lawson

Work therefore concentrated on the K1, once some jobs had been completed in Deviation Shed itself. In particular, Nigel Bill put up a fire exit notice on the stanchion next to the fire door in the No 7 Road roller shutter door, and painted a yellow strip on the front of the step to meet health and safety requirements (see photo). We also had a visit from Piglet to discuss the disposition of locomotives, as we need to get all three of ours inside this weekend. No 6 Road is now full with No 29, 80135 and No5; No 7 Road with the pit is needed for the T2/Q6 (north end) and K1 (south end so it can easily be moved to Pickering at the end of the year for onward transport to the Great Central Railway); and the J27 will go on No 8 Road along with Lucie before their move to Pickering for the Santas. That means that Dame Vera Lynn will have to move out temporarily, but there should be space for it to return once the J27, Lucie and the K1 have left.

Lunch was had round the stove, with the warming plate in use for Nigel Bill's pies, and then it was on with the K1 again. On Saturday, Paul, Angie and Les Harper had removed the piston valves immediately after the locomotive came back on shed after the Diner. They came out quite easily, with both being removed in less than two hours. Tuesday saw Les Harper, Mike Bloomfield, Angie and Paul check the cross head, big end and little end clearances, remove both con rods, both cylinder covers and both cross head cotters. They also drained the boiler, removed the top and side mud hole doors and the primary screen. Chris Henwood also called in on his way home from work and die pen tested the little end pins (which were found to be satisfactory).So yesterday the mud hole doors and valve rings were cleaned by Nigel Bill, Steve Hyman, Bill Dobson and myself, while the boiler was washed out by Angie, Mike Bloomfield, and Paul, the latter two getting soaked in the process. The steam heat valve was removed by Paul. He also wanted to split the piston rods from the cross heads, but the splitting gear failed so that remains to be done.

With it being half term this week for another batch of schools, the Railway was quite busy. Trains were well loaded and the locomotives in traffic included Eric Treacy, B1 No 1264, King Edward II, and the T2/Q6. Repton also returned to Grosmont after its travels, on the rear of the Diner from Pickering. We had a steady flow of visitors throughout the day, and, thanks to Steve Hyman's persuasive charms, money was seen going into the donations box.

With the end of the operating season on Sunday, and winter maintenance now started, working parties will return to the Saturday/Wednesday pattern. So the next working party will be on Saturday 2 November, and then on Wednesday 6 November. Paul may well arrange some additional working parties for the K1, but will notify those by separate email.


Wednesday 23rd October 2019

A lovely fine sunny, if cool, day at Grosmont yesterday, with Les Harper, Ian Pearson and myself. A welcome visit from Steve Hyman who is on the road to recovery following his accident on the Wensleydale Railway in August, and Mike Bloomfield joined us in the afternoon. At Deviation Shed, North Eastern Security Services arrived to service our roller shutter doors and repair the lifting mechanism of the No 6 Road door. Their first job was to get a cherrypicker round to the south side of Deviation Shed having arrived on a trailer towed by a short flatbed truck. After unloading near the coal storage area it was driven round to the southern end of Deviation Shed and work on the doors commenced. This included dropping the roller shutter door in its entirety onto the ground from height, which caused a rush to the site to make sure it was not an accident - it was not - and no-one had been injured - they had not! By 16.30 there was still a great deal of work to do, so they will be back today to complete the job.

The K1 was in traffic today leaving Pickering with the 09.25 train to Whitby, but unfortunately it had a broken R/H leading tender spring. The locomotive was changed at Grosmont for D7628 to continue to Whitby. The K1 was brought to the MPD for a spring change which was carried out by shed staff (see photo). Les Harper took the opportunity to make a start on cleaning in preparation for Saturday's NELPG Diner (see photo). While the K1 was having its tender spring changed, Les and Ian noticed that the L/ H piston rod looked quite dry but this could have been the result of a steam leak from the piston packing blowing the oil away. The brass oil box which feeds the piston rod was drained, the pipe run tweaked, and replenished with fresh oil. Oil was then noted dripping onto the piston rod. The K1 then departed Grosmont with the 13.30 train to Pickering. The Railway had hoped to run it again today, but it is now overdue its latest 28 day wash out, and Paul has stopped it to ensure it is available for the NELPG Diner on Saturday, which will be its last turn of the year. Immediately after its return to Grosmont on Saturday, the valves will be removed, as it is easier to do so while they are hot, and full winter maintenance will start on the following Tuesday.

K1 No 62005 - replacing broken tender spring at Grosmont on 23 October 2019 - Chris Lawson

K1 No 62005 being cleaned at Grosmont by Les Harper on 23 October 2019 - Chris Lawson

Lunch was had alfresco in the by now warm sun, on the benches outside Deviation Shed. Afterwards we set about clearing scrap and rubbish from No 8 Road and the back of the building. A heap of scrap has now been collected on the east side of Deviation Shed. A lot of fire bars have been stacked on a pallet which will need sorting. Then we will need to borrow the Railway's flatbed and take everything to the scrap yard at Marske-By-The-Sea. Having cleared the way, Chris Cubitt and Charlie Wood then shunted the J27 into No 8 Road to get it under cover. It still requires a boiler washout which is now due to be done in November, before its duties on the Santas and Northern Lights trains.

Meanwhile, the expanding and beading over of the leaking tubes on the T2/Q6 was completed. The cause is still being investigated by the MPD, but thought to be either being lit up too quickly in the morning, or cooled down too quickly in the evening, ie heat stress. The boiler was partly filled and a warming fire lit late in the afternoon for a steam test today. Subject to that being successful, the brick arch will be rebuilt and a loaded test run carried out before the locomotive is retired for the season, moved into Deviation Shed, and winter maintenance started.

Quite a lot of visitors round today and a number of queries dealt with, but did not spot much money going in the donation box. Locomotives in traffic today were STD 4 No 76079, 9F No 92134 , D7628, K1 No 62005 and

S15 No 825, which in the evening ran to Battersby and regained its mainline certificate, meaning it can now work to Whitby - congratulations to William Parrish, Martin Ashburner and the rest of the S15 team.


Saturday 19th October 2019

Ian reports that he was at Grosmont on a soggy wet yesterday, with Paul Hutchinson, Angie Buxton and Richard De Sadeleer.

Paul and Angie worked mainly on the K1, firstly repairing the smokebox front screen. The steam pipes in the smokebox were sealed with high temperature sealant and, in the cab, the ashpan spray valve handle was painted and the small ejector valve handle bolt refitted after it was found to be missing. Paul skimmed the T2 steam heat valve head on the workshop lathe and passed it on to Ian who ground it in a bit more and then refitted the whole steam heat valve back on the side of the clack box in the T2 cab.

Lunch was had in the comfort of the Support Coach. After lunch, Richard cleared the debris around the pit water pump (thanks Richard, saved me a job on Wednesday and rather you than me!). It made an enormous difference, removing the water rapidly. He then fitted the repainted pole to the bottom of the gate on the north side of No 7 Road to prevent any small child falling into the pit. Ian asked Paul to check his fitting of the steam heat valve, when he noticed that the L/H gauge frame drain valve was turned slightly oblique to stop it blowing by, and remembered it had been booked for repair. Ian then stripped it down, removed the old Klinger packing and the spindle, to find that the spindle had a small defect near the drain hole with a small amount of metal missing. He found some spare drain valves in the storage area above the workshop, about 5 in all. One of these was cleaned up and a new Klinger packing was obtained and the valve and packing fitted.

Although it was raining for most of the day there were quite a few visitors around. Locomotives running yesterday were B1 No 1264, Black Five No 5428 Eric Treacy, and GWR King No 6023 King Edward II, along with diesel 7628.


Wednesday 16th October 2019

A wet miserable morning at Grosmont today but it did get out much brighter later on in the day and was quite warm and sunny. In attendance were Paul Hutchinson, Angie Buxton, Chris Henwood, Ian Pearson and myself, joined by Jon Bradley and Nigel Hall after lunch.

We arrived to learn that the T2 had been failed the previous evening with leaking small tubes in the firebox. After a cup of tea in the Support Coach and a discussion of the extent and possible cause of the problem, Mark O'Brien went in the firebox to do a visual inspection now the locomotive had cooled down, and reported that nearly all the small tubes below the flue tubes were leaking. Further discussion and inspection during the morning did not cast any more light on the possible cause, but by the end of the day, it had been decided to remove the brick arch, expand and then bead over the tubes, steam test, and then rebuild the brick arch. So probably out of action for a week at least. Discussions will doubtless continue with the MPD as to the possible cause, bearing in mind that the T2 tubes had been tight and given no cause for concern all the way through the operating season to date.

In the meantime, Ian and Chris H set about jobs on the T2 with Chris dismantling the regulator, removing the follower and some of the old gland packing, replacing it with new graphite packing and refitting. Ian took off the steam heat valve which was blowing by, and it also had a blowing joint where it fits to the clack box in the cab. This was taken to the workshop, stripped down and cleaned. The seat was recut and ground in and a new joint made, but the head requires skimming which Paul will do on Saturday and then the valve can be refitted. Angie made and fitted a new piece of wood which supports a bracket securing the low level water filler on the left hand side of the K1 tender. Paul attended to the K1 left hand piston packing which had been giving some trouble recently: it was stripped down, cleaned, adjusted and re- fitted. Back at Deviation Shed, I rubbed down and painted the length of pipe which has been made to fit the bottom of the gate at the North end of No 7 Road to stop small children getting under the gate and falling into the big dark pit. This pipe will be refitted on Saturday. I also did the monthly check of the defibrillator.

Lunch was hosted in the Support Coach today - a bit posher than we are used to! After lunch, Angie removed all the ash from the K1 smoke box and barrowed it to the ash tip. I mixed some cement and grouted around the gate post on No 7 Road to tidy up the area. I also made the afternoon tea. Nigel Hall arrived to collect 2 stand lamps to take to Hopetown, and also helped Jon Bradley clean around the stove area ready for our winter warming.

No work was done on the J27 as it is waiting for a washout and is currently parked outside Deviation Shed on No 8 Road. It is unlikely to work again before the end of the operating season, but will then be in use for the Northern Lights train and the Santas between Pickering and Levisham at the end of the year. With the S160 gear being moved from No 6 Road to the back of No 8 Road now that Hartland has been moved into the fitting shop where it was being prepared for repainting (among other tasks), Chris Cubitt was hoping to move No 29 into Deviation Shed on No 6 Road today for temporary storage. It has a broken spring on the rear bogie and, with no spares available, will have to wait for supplies from the spring manufacturer before it can work again. So, regrettably, there can be no prospect of it double heading the diner with the K1 as a mark of respect to the late John Richardson who was one of the original consortium involved in its purchase. However, the roller shutter door would not wind up as the gears seem to have jammed, and will have to be repaired by a specialist contractor in approximately a week's time. That also saved us having to move the velocipede to give the necessary length for No 29 to fit. We also looked at the piles of material stacked up against the outside of the back wall of the building, and identified a number of items that are clearly scrap and need to be removed to avoid possible damage to the building fabric. The pit pump also seems to need attention as it is very slow at removing water. A good clean out is probably required, a job for which I was volunteered next week!

There were a number of visitors around today, in spite of the weather and time of the year. Locomotives in traffic were Black Five No 5428 Eric Treacy (but sounding a bit off beat), S15 No 825, B1 No 1264 and the DMU.

There will be a small working party on Saturday 19 October 2019 with Paul, Angie and possibly Ian - others will be very welcome to join them though. The next regular working party will be on Wednesday 23 October 2019, but it will not be long now before we start on winter maintenance and return to regular Saturday and Wednesday working parties.


Wednesday 9th October 2019

A mild, mainly fine, day yesterday at Grosmont with one heavy shower after lunch and Paul Hutchinson, Angie Buxton and Bill Dobson present.

Ian Pearson and myself joined them just after 11.30.

On the T2, Bill was busy taking the L/H injector steam valve out which was replaced and lapped in by Paul. Angie replaced and lapped in the R/H clack. Bill was cleaning cab fittings, smokebox hinges and door fastening wheel.

I washed up the pots and made tea for lunch which was had in Deviation shed.

After lunch Ian removed the new bottom bar from the pit access gate so that I could hacksaw off the threaded ends, rub it down and give the bar a coat of paint. A second coat will be required next week. The base of the gate post which was moved by Trevor Wilford on a previous week also needs a cement fillet round the base - another job for next week. I also checked that the rear fire door was opening properly. Ian did some oiling up on the T2, removed water contamination from the brass boxes and lit a warming fire in preparation for its possible use today. On the K1, a new L /H expansion bracket cladding sheet was given a second coat of gloss paint and fitted by Paul. The steam supply pipe was lagged by Angie who also put the Radio and TPWS/OTMR batteries on charge.

Securing clips were made, painted and fitted to the through air pipe pressure gauge pipework, speedo flexible conduit, and vacuum chamber pipework by Paul. He also took home the drivers seat bottom cushion for repair which he did last night, and was intending to take it back to Grosmont and refit it today.

The J27 was in the running shed on 28 day wash out and is unlikely to be rostered again before the end of the operating season. However, it is down for the Northern Lights Express and Santas from Pickering to Levisham during December.

In the end, the T2 was not required today as S15 No 825 went to Goathland on a successful test run last night and was rostered for the dining train instead. The B1, 76079 and Eric Treacy provided the steam services yesterday, while No 29 was running up and down the bank with a brake van and weltrol carrying a very large military gun - doubtless practising for the War Weekend activities this coming weekend. The B1 and class 25 ran to Battersby in the evening for driver training and refreshers.


Wednesday 2nd October 2019

I was the Billy no mates today, on a glorious sunny, albeit chilly, day at Grosmont. Bill Dobson joined me after he had had a cup of tea in Armstrong Oilers, and we quickly established that there was no meaningful work we could do. Ian Pearson was driving and gave us a wave as he passed with 76079 on the 10.00 ex Whitby to Pickering.

The J27 was on the wheeldrop having a broken spring replaced (see photo of the damaged spring), following which it was due to go to the running shed for wash out. So unlikely to ba available for traffic for at least a week. The T2 was standing outside the running shed on No 4 Road being cleaned, and is currently the designated spare engine should there be a failure in service. Meanwhile the K1 was standing behind Deviation Shed.

J27 broken spring over Gala weekend at Grosmont on 2 October 2019 - Chris Lawson

Its two replacement springs had now arrived, and were due to be fitted this afternoon once the J27 cleared the wheeldrop. Barney is anxious to use it to replace 76079 which is in need of attention, and is discussing the possibilities with Paul. It is however, definitely booked to take the diner on 26 October.

As a result, I switched on the pump to drain some of the water from the pit, checked the rear fire door was clear to open, did the washing up, filled the water bottles and emptied the overflowing dustbin - all the minor housekeeping jobs. There were a few visitors around and some money went into the donation box. William Parrish did a small job for the S15 No 825 in the workshop before Bill and I then left, had a cup of tea at the Grosmont Station cafe, and returned home at lunchtime.

As well as 76079, Black 5 No 5428 Eric Treacy was in service, along with the DMU. Much quieter than over the Gala weekend, but the trains were still reasonably full.

In spite of the lack of work this week, there will be another working party next week on 9 October 2019.


Wednesday 18th September 2019


K1 62005 passes Deviation Shed with the 1330 ex Grosmont on 18 September 2019 - Ian Pearson

Ian Pearson reports a fine day at Grosmont today with Bill Dobson, and two late arrivals - Jon Bradley and Ian himself.

There is not a lot to report with the T2 on the wheel drops having the L/H driving spring changed. The cause of this breakage is being explored with the NYMR, which apparently occurred on Sunday when it was on the late running 1630 ex Grosmont. The K1 was being prepared for service to replace the B1 which had been stopped due to leaking tubes. The attached photo shows it passing Deviation Shed on the 1330 ex Grosmont, looking magnificent.

Bill was asked to remove the T2 steam brake isolation valve which was seized in the open position. After removal of the spindle part of the valve which has the seat on a thread which is the seized part, it was heated while secured in a vice. However, it would not unscrew so, rather than damage it, Bill decided to fit it back into the valve body on the locomotive. He then sent a message to Nigel Hall to see if there is a spare valve at Darlington. Another job on the T2 was to take off the brass oil cap on the L/H intermediate coupling rod which had been damaged slightly, causing some sharp edges which were filed off and a new cork fitted. This problem seems to have been caused by the broken spring.

The tool box on the back of the J27 tender was removed as it has a broken lid which Jon is going to repair. He also repaired our old wheel barrow.

Lunch was had in Deviation Shed with lots of visitors round. S15 No 825 was in traffic today, along with the K1 and Standard Tank No 80136. As there was no Whitby steam due to the B1 failure and 5428 on washout, the class 25 was working the Grosmont - Whitby section.

The next regular working party will be on Wednesday 25th September, the day before NELPG Day as part of the NYMR Gala, so there should be locomotives to clean at the least. In addition, Paul will be going to Grosmont to do a days work on the K1 on Sunday (22 September): if anyone would like to join him please let him know by e-mail or text.


Wednesday 11th September 2019

Ian reports a mild wet morning yesterday, but getting out fine later on. He was on his own, with not a lot to do as the T2/Q6 was back in traffic after its repairs, and the J27 was still stuck at New Bridge because of the congestion at Grosmont caused by the continuing P/W work on the new point for No 6 Road.

However, Charlie Dore wanted to colour code our lifting equipment. So, after opening up Deviation Shed, he came up with his tin of paint and colour coded all our lifting equipment Green, including the lifting jack and chain block. Colour code for the next 6 months is therefore Green. Ian then went down to the MPD and helped out a little, cleaning two of Repton's valve covers. Repton at the moment is having its valves removed and carbon cleaned from the heads and rings. At the end of the day, the middle valve was still to extract after many hours moving it to a point where it just wouldn’t move any farther forward. Hopefully it will have been removed today!

Other things going on at the MPD was the painting of the 9F No 92134 and tender in black (with the later BR emblem) being done by Heritage Painting. Locomotives working yesterday were B1 No 1264 , Black Five No 5428 Eric Treacy, and T2 No 2238.

Meanwhile, Bill Dobson and Gordon Wells spent the day at the NRM in York looking for safety valve drawings for the T2/Q6 to enable the new castings to be machined, but didn’t have any success. However, further information has come to light which will hopefully lead to finding the required drawings, and I have been charged with trying to track them down over the next week or so. Bill is also anxious to find drawings for the T2 piston, both head and rod. Will keep me out of mischief!


Wednesday 4th September 2019

Wednesday dawned a fine morning at Grosmont but with showers later on. Bill Dobson, Nigel Hall, Ian Pearson were present, and, to their surprise, I joined them later in the morning for the first time since my heart operation. I could only attend because my Wednesday rehabilitation exercise session had been cancelled, but I was told it was great to see me back in action again. Then I went into the workshop and found out why! I had to wash all the dirty pots, refill the water bottles, and then make the tea at lunchtime and afternoon break. So nothing too strenuous, but clearly essential work! I also did the monthly check of the defibrillator which was overdue, and found it to be in order. The stock of J27 springs was also checked - two engine springs and one tender spring are on a pallet in the spring storage area. As I haven't been to Deviation Shed for a few months though, I must put on record my thanks to Bryan Orange and his team for the work they have done over the summer - the lighting levels, particularly in the workshop, are much improved, the fire exits have been brought up to standard, a first aid station been established next to No 7 Road on the outside wall of the workshop, and the place generally tidied up and smartened. Just need to keep the tea point up to scratch now, with the mugs washed up after use and the water bottles kept full!

Meanwhile, down at the MPD on No 4 Road, the workers found the T2 in light steam. The shed staff had worked hard on the engine over the last few days, fitting the right hand piston back into the cylinder with a new ring, also fitting the connecting rod big end bearings and little end to the piston rod and large cotters. Barney gave Bill and Ian a list of other items still to fit to get the engine moveable - piston packings (which at the time were still being machined), cylinder cock valves and linkage, new insulation and cladding all to be fitted, the latter needing a hole to be drilled into the outer edge of the casting and tapping to secure the top end of cladding. Some of the left hand side cladding also needed to be secured. Another item was the mechanical drive shaft to the lubricator. Later on that morning the piston packings were delivered from the machine shop. These took a long time to fit but, with the help of some shed staff, the piston follower was eventually compressed sufficiently to get the nuts started, and then secured with the slide bar lubrication pot attached. The little end oil pot was also fitted. Most of the fitting of the above was done by Bill, Ian and Nigel, with some help from cleaner Nick Proctor  and shed fitter Danny Middleton. Although the engine was in steam, it never moved as work did not finish until  about 5pm, so the move was cancelled. It was in steam again yesterday though, but has not been rostered for today's running - hopefully over the weekend?

Elsewhere on site, the S160 No 2253 was in traffic, clocking up the 500 miles it needs before departing for the Dartmouth Steam Railway, the S15 No 825 was having its spark arrestor fitted and a couple of other minor jobs completed before it returns to operation (it has already successfully done a couple of runs up to Goathland), the 9F was having its brick arch fitted (will it be a runner in time for the Gala?), the B1 was on wash out, No 29 was having its final lining out done by Peter Whitaker, Repton spent most of the day under the coaling plant having been failed with a couple of problems after its early morning run to Whitby and back, and Ian Foot and his team were working on Dame Vera Lynn in Deviation Shed, preparing it for a visit by the boiler inspector due yesterday. The Green Knight is also stripped down in the boiler shop. Most importantly though, Martyn Cannings and the PW team were on site at the south end of Deviation Shed, clearing the ground and starting the work to install the new point to replace the broken one giving access to No 6 Road. They are also intending to replace the broken rail on No 8 Road. The Channel 5 filming team were at work around the site, and Piglet was sorting out the transport arrangements for the visiting locos for the Gala. So a lot of activity throughout the day.


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