North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
J72 Blog

A blog of activities relating to the J72 69023 'Joem'.

Thursday 19th September 2019


Another week at Hopetown. Arthur, John and Nigel had been there on Monday evening to progress machining and a few other small jobs. Today started with the hunt for a substitute for theT2 steam brake isolation valve – see yesterday’s T2 report. Unlike all of our other locomotives, the cab steam services for the J72 are not fed from a backhead manifold. Nothing in the brass store seemed remotely like the size of valve required. I phoned Bill at about 10:00 to break the bad news.

Colin Smith, in dust mask and face shield, dressed the chips in the paintwork of the inner frames. More correctly he dressed the rust beneath where the paint had been chipped. Allan Wilson, after making morning tea for us all, cleaned the dust Colin had created from the surfaces and later I dabbed a bit of anticorrosive primer onto these spots.

Harry Sams has finished making a wooden template for the spark arrestor. If this design is approved then we can commission the construction of the real thing.

Maurice Bell, John, Jones and Arthur Jenkins continued machining the loco springs and spring hangers.

Derek Shorton has returned from his trip to Wilderswil and the lines to Schynige Platte and Grindelwald. He’d been over the line to Kleine Scheidegg and Wengen, and had caught the connection to Jungfraujoch. Back at Hopetown we had remembered his old trade and found him a float for screeding some bad parts of the walkways. We’ve obtained some epoxy sealant and some epoxy self-levelling screed to repair the worst bits before painting. Derek suggested that we needed to (wire) brush out some of the oil covered surface cement, and set about this with a cup brush. He later found a needle gun was quicker. In the afternoon Hugh Pannel arrived and brought in the needle artillery. There was a lot of shouting about dust and noise. I just hope that we haven’t removed too much of the surface.

Just before lunch, Roy Marshall and Norman Crockit arrived. Roy took the open day cupboard key which Norman had brought in to the locksmith for duplication. Unfortunately no blanks, so Roy came back with a new lock and keys which he distributed appropriately. Roy and Norman both left not long after lunch time.



J72, Thursday 4th October


We had a major step forward on Thursday when Andrew Goodman and RSS lifted the locomotive chassis and the wheels were rolled out. See pictures by Peter Giroux – there’s 58 good photos in the collection.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2018 22:38

Thursday 6th September 2018


A working party of 12 today, including the first session for a long time by Trevor Wilford. Neal Woods visited to advise on a few matters during the day, and Les Harper visited late in the afternoon.

The chassis ready for lifting to remove the wheels - Nigel Hall

The boiler, partially cleaned and without the stubbon crinoline bars, awaits removal of the longitudanal stays - Nigel Hall

The collection of components awaiting servicing - Nigel Hall

Arthur Jenkins ad John Jones turned a scrap washout plug into a gauge glass retention bolt to replace the one found to be missing from the Q6 gauge glass protector yesterday. Dave Wright and Derek Shorton continued wire brushing the boiler whilst at the opposite side Steve Gibson and Harry Sams removed the stubbon bolts holding the firebox crinoline bars. James Piercy and Allan Wilson disconnected the springs from the axle boxes.  Trevor Wilford welded a piece onto the broken ash pan bracket. Colin bowman replaced the non-functioning light above the woodworker's corner. I managed to get another coat of paint onto the back of the cab and the coal rails.

A good day's work - thanks everybody.

James announced that the loco was now fit for lifting from its wheels.

Last Updated on Thursday, 06 September 2018 17:16

Thursday 9th August 2018


I arrived just before 10:00 to find Steve Gibson and Peter Shields camped on the doorstep raring to go.

So, before Allan Wilson could make our first pot of tea, the caps were off, clearances measured with feeler gauges, and rods off. Les Harper greased all the crank pins but these really ought to be protected on further on Monday. Then, whilst just finishing tea the phone rang. Fred required fitters at Leeming Bar to change the loco spring. Steve and Peter left for a day under the J27.

Peter Geroux and Derek Shorton removed the cladding from the firebox crown, bagged the lagging and made a start removing the loose scale from the outside of the boiler. We are still some way from the stage where needle guns are required.

Les Harper did a fair bit of cleaning between frames. He was suspicious that at least one weigh shaft lubricators was blocked and that there was a lot of debris around the reverser handle pivot. He cleaned out the pivot – the handle now moves freely again.

I visited M Machine and took the blast pipe and spark arrestor there to enable Tom to understand what he is making. He seemed happy, and was expecting a visit from Andy Lowes in the afternoon.

Another call from Fred after lunch. Colin Bowman took some burs, stones, drills and reamers down to Leeming Bar in order to enlarge a hole in the new spring. He returned the tool kit a couple of hours later to report that the crew had managed to enlarge the hole before he arrived.

The bunker is now rubbed down and cleaned ready for the second coat of black primer.

We looked at the balance pipe and decided to leave it in place. It does not obstruct access to the wheels and motion and, unless it needs servicing, might be better left in place.

Last Updated on Saturday, 11 August 2018 07:34

Monday 6th August 2018 - J72 Boiler Lift


Yet another warm day at Hopetown for the boiler lift.

Last Updated on Thursday, 06 September 2018 16:39

J72, Thursday 2nd August 2018


Another good week at Hopetown with the J72.

On Monday Arthur Jenkins and John Jones continued servicing the steam brake cylinder, Steve Hyman tidied up components for painting whilst Nigel rubbed down the first primer coat in the bunker.

We have spent most of Thursday working through the list of jobs to prepare for the boiler lift on Monday 6th. Points oiled, packing on the weltrol, neighbours notified etc, etc. We are all ready to go. Allan Wilson and Derek Shorton oiled up the J72. Tim Williamson, Arthur and John had a good look at the ash pan attachments, and with a burning torch, hammer, punch and much effort managed to extract all of the wedges and lower the ash pan into the 4 foot using a jack. This greatly simplifies the boiler lift as there will be no need to struggle to remove the ash pan whilst the boiler is suspended from the crane; it shouldn’t even be necessary to take the gas bottles down to the lift site.

Thank you to all who have helped and to those of you who have volunteered their time on Monday.

And finally, Colin Bowman and Les Harper managed to dismantle the dripping tap in the mess room to discover that there was no washer. Les managed to obtain a bag of washers from the plumbers merchants; the tap no longer drips.

Last Updated on Friday, 03 August 2018 21:51

Thursday 27th July 2018


Another week’s progress with the on both Monday and Thursday.

On the technical side, Andy Lowes, James Swainston and Arthur Jenkins dismantled the steam brake on Monday evening. Arthur and Les Harper continued to clean and make measurements on Thursday. The vegetation outside is sufficiently clear for a shunt, so there was no need for anybody to toil in the heat of the day with the loppers this week. A few remarked that the blackberry’s could do with picking. Derek Shorton and Dave Wright managed to clean up the cab. We can now see what needs doing to prepare for painting. Allan Wilson managed to sweep and vacuum up the dust from the floor of the bunker following the needle gunning of previous weeks, and later Colin Smith managed to give the bunker a coat of primer.

So, progress being made.

Last Updated on Friday, 03 August 2018 20:40

Thursday 29th March 2018



Arthur  Jenkins breaking concrete within the smokebox. The front sandboxes and most of the cladding have been removed - Nigel Hall


Some of the components removed from the locomotive - Nigel Hall


Work begins on general overhaul of J72


On Thursday 15th March, work to dismantle the J72commenced.

Last Updated on Saturday, 07 April 2018 10:14

The boiler inspector visits Hopetown


On Monday 19th February our boiler inspector visited Hopetown to examine the J72 with John Graham, our CME, and Fred Ramshaw, the J72 locomotive engineering manager.

The wear of the firebox tube plate was a concern to him. Though he is prepared to sanction a retube and use up until the 25th August, (the locomotive's withdrawal date), he considers that course of action a possible expensive risk with no guarantee of success. His advice was to withdraw the locomotive now and begin the ten yearly overhaul, finances etc. permitting.

The committee will discuss this matter at its meeting on 12th March.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 27 February 2018 00:13

Page 7 of 9

AIA Logo

The overhaul of J72 No 69023 Joem is being supported by a restoration grant from the Association of Industrial Archaeology.