Graham Clarke writes: This is an update from the Deltic Preservation Society covering the first two weekends of December at our depot at Barrow Hill. The new couplings and buffer beams on 55015 were painted black and red respectively. The engine room floor tread plates from 55019 are being removed, cleaned and painted. Thanks to Alex and Steve. Bob, Martin, Mark, Nigel and Darrell have removed them and cleaned up the oily mess underneath in the engine room. Thanks! Both vacuum exhausters are fitted and bolted down in 55015’s no.1 nose compartment. Thanks to Dave, Beth and Ray for struggling and completing the job.
We are delighted to report that Sheaf Engineering has completed work on the bogies which were purchased in 2013 and have been overhauled for ‘TULYAR’ once the loco has been finished. The picture below, by Mike Hallam-Rudd, shows the bogies at Barrow Hill prior to them being despatched to Nemesis Rail at Burton.
We are pleased to announce that after several successful visits in previous years, 55019 ‘ROYAL HIGHLAND FUSILIER’ will be visiting the Severn Valley Railway again in 2019.
The locomotive will arrive in early May and will stay for a few weeks during which it will work some of our timetabled service trains, appear at the Spring Diesel Festival (May 16-18) and once again be available for the Deltic Driver Experience days. These have proved to be extremely popular in recent years, with the available places being over-subscribed – early booking is therefore essential to guarantee a place! For more information on the Driver Experience, please see HERE.
Graham Clarke writes…
Over the last two weeks there’s been significant progress made through a number of working parties on Saturdays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.
55015 now has both compressors and the two vacuum exhausters installed. A of lot of small parts have been sorted, missing items have been identified and new parts bought.
Inside the engine room has been cleaned and waste wire from rewiring thrown away. The air intake boxes are being prepared for sealing up , new filters and fitting the air ducts that connect to the engines are being fitted. They have had the sealing faces cleaned and new gaskets made.
I’m still struggling with traction motor cables, but I’ll get there.
55019 has had a lot of cleaning done and a starts been made on painting the floor. The loco’s bed plates had become inundated with rain water, causing waste oil to flow out onto the floor. It’s always a problem when the locos are away and it rains a lot. Geoff has also worked his magic on the outside.
A big thanks to the following: Darrell, Bob, Martin(2), Hairy Steve, Steve, Mick(2), Dave (2), Geoff, Mark, Beth, Nigel, Adrian, Stuart and Mike. Apologies to anyone that I have not recalled and listed. It’s always like putting your head in the lion’s mouth making a list of those who help, but it’s most important to say thank you.
I would also like to thank Sheaf Engineering for the sterling work they are doing on our bogies.
The DPS regrets to advise that D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’ will not be available to haul ‘The Waverley Re-Union’ tour from Birmingham to Tweedbank on January 5th 2019. This is a disappointment for all involved, and the first occasion that D9009 has had to be pulled from a charter commitment since its return to the main line in 2012. The loco requires a bogie exchange, which will have to be followed by re-certification, essential for continued main-line running. Unfortunately, the workshop time required to complete the necessary work means we are unable to guarantee the loco’s availability for the tour.
Replacement motive power has been identified, and agreed, with the train’s operator (DB Cargo) and Network Rail, in the form of Class 50s, provided by our friends at the Class Fifty Alliance (CFA).
Pathfinder will be contacting those who have booked on this tour in the next few days. If you are happy with the change of motive power you need do nothing – your Boarding Pass(es) will be sent to you, as usual, during the week before the excursion runs. However, if you would prefer to cancel because of the lack of ‘Deltic’ motive power please contact the Pathfinder Office.
Looking ahead, we are aiming to return D9009 to service in time to work the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust tour on March 3rd 2019, and Pathfinder plans to run another excursion hauled by ‘ALYCIDON’ on May 11th 2019. Full details will be released later in December.
Further to yesterday’s message, 55019 ‘ROYAL HIGHLAND FUSILIER’ is now back at Barrow Hill following its visit to the Spa Valley and Great Central Railways. The picture below, kindly supplied by Steve Rimell, shows the loco at the Abnormal Load Holding Point by Junction 28 on the M1 last night.
Following its successful visit to the Great Central Railway, 55019 ‘ROYAL HIGHLAND FUSILIER’ is due to arrive back at the DPS depot at Barrow Hill tomorrow (November 7th). Its return concludes a highly successful 2018 season, which has seen ’19 visit the Severn Valley, West Somerset, Keighley & Worth Valley, Spa Valley and Great Central Railways. Watch this space for news on 2019 in the coming months.
The latest from Graham Clarke…
Work has continued on 55015 on some days during the last two weeks and on Saturdays at Barrow Hill.
The compressors are now in, piped up and bolted down. A lot of time has been spent working out what parts need obtaining and finding things on the storage racks where items removed and refurbished are stored. Most of the nuts and bolts were bagged and tagged when they were removed. This has helped, but there are still some shortages. There are also a number of air system pipe fittings missing that need identifying and buying.
The main tasks underway at the moment are: completing the fitting of air tanks, finishing fitting out the engine room walls, a general clean up and completion of the electrical rebuild and testing.
A set of brake valves is also being assembled ready to go away to Railway Brake Services for overhaul. The driver’s brake valve are already in stock and ready to fit.
The buffer beams behind the buffers have also been cleaned and painted along with the buffers having the paint removed. They also need the springs changing, but I’m not sure yet how to achieve that. It’s a dangerous job, if you don’t know what you are doing, due to the springs being held under compression. You need to compress the springs in order to remove the backing nut and washer. This then allows the spring to be decompressed in a controlled way. If you don’t do that the internal parts of the buffer will explode in you face when you take the nut off.
As is often the case it is the preparation of jobs that takes the time. Doing them is often the easy bit, if you have everything you need to complete a job.
A big thank you to: Pete, Dave, Martin, Mick P, Mick C, Steve P, Ken, Steve M, Jon, Geoff, Mike and Ray.
Thanks also to the team on 55008’s cab. Nat, Beth, Nigel and James. We are attempting to get the cab inside the depot to allow work to continue over the winter. Hopefully, this maybe possible over the coming weeks, by moving things around.
I’ve been preparing for the difficult job of soldering on the traction motor connections that connect the main electrical supply to 4 of the traction motors in the back of the control cubicles. I was hoping to use crimp terminals, but they won’t fit. With Steve’s help, I removed them ready for soldering instead. Fortunately, I kept the original terminals safe.
Finally, I must also thank John and Harry for their help with finance and vastly improving the appearance of the depot with new safety barriers and signage.
Graham Clarke writes… I was at the GCR on Thursday morning and on Saturday/Sunday. Saturday was Members’ day. It was good to see old friends and one or two new ones too. Sunday was a normal running day with three round trips. It was nice that the GCR could arrange for one of our members to have a cab ride on the first trip. Thanks also to our driver John. 55019 performed well, although there is a small problem with losing auxiliary power at one end of the loco or the other, if both engines are running. I know what’s happening and how to work around it to get everything working. I need to do more tests on various bits of equipment to fully diagnose what needs replacing. I didn’t have the equipment away from Barrow Hill to do that.
The DPS Members Day with 55019 at the Great Central Railway on Saturday was extremely well attended, with many people enjoying trips behind ‘ROYAL HIGHLAND FUSILIER’ which has had a busy 2018 season. It was a particularly notable day for one member, Jonathan Wilcox, who achieved his ambition of travelling 10,000 miles behind 55019 before his 30th birthday (which is in December). Jonathan first rode behind ‘RHF’ at the GCR when he was just four months old on April 30th 1989, and when the loco was based at the Great Central Railway and East Lancaster Railway, missed very few running days (thanks largely due to his father Pete being part of the loco support crew). The pictures below show him with 55019 at the GCR in 1991 and again at the DPS members day last Saturday.