Spa Valley driver experience – sold out

Please note that all five Deltic Driver Experience dates (August 11th/12th/13th and September 2nd/3rd) on the Spa Valley Railway are now sold out. If you’ve missed out, then you can still see the loco in action on the line on the following dates:

Thursday August 3rd-Sunday August 6th (Diesel Gala) ; Saturday August 19th-Sunday August 20th (Deltic running day) ; Saturday August 26th-Monday August 28th (Spa Valley 20th Anniversary).

 

Volunteer’s View – June 17th 2017

This week, Graham Clarke’s report comes from the main line, where he was one of the support crew on board D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’. A gallery will appear shortly.

Fantastic day out yesterday with D9009 on the Welsh Central Liner Rail Tour run by Pathfinder Tours. I was on the late turn with Alex Williams. It was a great shift with the loco performing well, despite the heat and a run at the Lickey Incline (1/38) from a stop at Bromsgrove right at the bottom of the Bank, without a run at it. The engine temperatures did rise a bit, but not beyond the limits. We really got going once the locomotives took a field divert and I’m informed we passed the top at 51 mph with 10 coaches in tow. Not bad for nearly 56 year old! I was in the engine room taking measurements and that was quite an experience too.

I especially enjoyed the opportunity to ride up front on the run down to Gloucester in the evening sun, barrelling along at about 90mph with the Napier Symphony as an accompaniment. Thanks to our Drivers Greg and Nigel from DBS, Alex, all the other onboard team, DPS riding fitters, water tanker, fuel tanker, everyone who paid to come along and the masses who turned out to enjoy the spectacle. There were a lot of people on nearly every vantage point there was to be had.

D9009 on Central Wales line

A good run has been had with D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’ over the Central Wales line in glorious weather. The picture shows the tour during a short stop at Llandeilo.

The loco is due to return from Burton to York tomorrow, departing around 13.00.

‘The Welsh Central Liner’ – Saturday June 17th

Confirmed timings for Saturday’s railtour from Burton to the Central Wales line and Shrewsbury have now been released by Pathfinder Tours. Please visit their website by CLICKING HERE for pick up/set down times  - note there have been some changes, the train is no longer able to pick up at Coleshill Parkway or Birmingham New Street, but an additional pick-up at Northfield has been added.

Full timings for the train can be found HERE (outward) and HERE (return).

The DPS will be holding an on-board raffle during the day, we look forward to seeing many of you on board the train.

Volunteer’s View – June 10th 2017

Graham Clarke’s report from last weekend….

At Barrow Hill on Saturday it was power units for Steve, Pete, Tom and Beth.  I helped remove the main generator later on.  It’s now separated by about 1/4″.  It will get moved out of the way on another day to make room for removing the phasing gearbox.  Nat was generally helping out, doing bits towards 8′s cab and talking to me a bit about engineering careers.

Geoff was busy painting nose top doors and other bits and bobs around 19.

Adrian and Stuart were working away gettin…g 19 ready to take the refurbished nose grills and doing other bits of bodywork around the cabs.

The load regulator performs a similar function to the gears in a car, but it’s electrical as is the loco’s transmission of power from the engines to the wheels.  Steve N and I spent a very interesting couple of hours with his micro ohm meter checking 15′s load regulator resistance values against the specified values in the Workshop Overhaul  & Service Schedule (WOSS).  It was really interesting to see values coming out within the specified limits.  15 worked ok before it was stopped, so this gives some confidence.  A formal recorded test will take place in a few weeks.  This will help with D9002, which does not apply power in quite the way it should.

Beth and Nat have also posted more details about the weekends work on the power units.

19′s silencers have also been modified the same as D9009 by adding a sealing flange below the roofline to stop oil and fumes entering the engine room.  Once it’s all drilled, sealed and bolted up It works a treat.  The original design should never have left the drawing board.  Thanks to Sheaf Engineering.

Ray and Mike also called in during the day.

Thank you everyone for another very productive weekend.

Volunteer’s View – June 3rd 2017

Another report from Graham Clarke:

Last weekend at Barrow Hill work carried on and it was another productive day.

Beth, Nigel, Ellouise and Tom worked on PU430. It’s coming on steadily and the main generator should be removed by the end of June. The phasing gearbox will then need to come off to get to the main output shaft oil seal. This is being done, because a 30 plus year old oil seal and a spanking and very expensive overhauled main generator are a really bad idea. Oil wrecks the insulation of the main generator pretty quickly.

Neal, Nat and Ellouise did more work on the cosmetic restoration of D9008′s cab. Thanks to you all.

Stuart and Bob carried on with work on 55019. Most of the body filling around the cab and nose is now done and primed. Bob cleaned and refitted the engine a ir filters and 1 set of generator air filters. They others will get done in a couple of weeks. Geoff applied further top coats of paint to the nose doors and the underside of the boiler compartment roof. Thanks Bob and Stuart.

On 15, Pete more or less completed the rewiring of the no.1 cab lighting wiring and made a start at the other end. Mike mostly completed fitting pipe work to the engine room walls. Steve our contract fabricator made further progress fitting inner jacking pocket doors. They are going to look great when they are properly fitted. Thanks.

I spent the day trying to find a lost propane torch and didn’t, much to my annoyance. I did sort out a fix for 2 fuel connections that are broken and some damaged roof drain adaptors that have fallen apart and are stopping the drains being piped up. At the end of the day I successfully soldered on some traction motor cable ends as a trial on some off cut 185mm squared cable. It’s taken me a long time to get hold of the right type of flux cored solder. Plumbers’ solder melts at too high a temperature and so does the modern lead free. I just don’t want to go lead free, because it’s too much of an unknown. It’s not even that green, because of the metals like silver that are damaging to marine life. I’ll stick with old technology that works and has for well over a century.

Thanks again to all our brilliant volunteers!

Welsh Central Liner – Seating Availability

The DPS has been advised that there are just around 50 seats remaining in Standard Class on this tour with D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’, which runs on Saturday June 17th. First Class, First Class Plus and Premier Dining are all now fully booked. Formed of Mk.1 coaches, the tour runs from Burton, the midlands and Severnside to South Wales and the Central Wales line, taking ‘Number 9′ on routes it has not previously covered. There will be a late afternoon break in Shrewsbury. For more details, and to book, please visit Pathfinder Tours’ website by CLICKING HERE.

Volunteer’s View – May 27th 2017

Graham Clarke was at Barrow Hill again last weekend….

Saturday at Barrow Hill it was a bit of a consolidation day.

Tom and Beth were working on PU430.  Thank you both.

Adrian and Stuart were busily working away at body filling around the nose grills and exhauster door, changing fuel filters and fitting the lifting eyes to the repaired boiler roof section.  Thanks to both of you.

Thanks to Geoff who was second coating 19′s nose top doors, various power unit bits and degreasing the outside of the filthy boiler compartment roof.

Ray fitted crash guards to the storage racking (thanks).

Steve and I had a mega tidy up and sweep up around the depot, because it was overdue for one and we have important visitors this week.  Thanks Steve.

And finally, Natalie was busy working on D9008′s cab.

Volunteer’s View – May 20th 2017

Another report courtesy of Graham Clarke….

At Barrow Hill 55015 took a major step forward. The remaining 6 traction motor cables were pulled into the conduits under the no.1 end of the loco and routed to the right locations in the control cubicle. This took a major team effort and could have been much more difficult than it turned out to be. Good preparation, cleanliness and purpose made lubricant made a difference. It was very gratifying to photograph everyone in front of the loco, lights on and job done. A huge thank you to Bradley, Pete, Bob, Tom and Mike.

Elsewhere, Geoff was painting nose top doors and fitting them with new seals. Thanks Geoff.

Nat and Neil were beavering away refurbishing no.8′s cab. Thanks Nat and Neil.

The photo shows the team who helped pull in the cables. In the middle are one of our longest serving volunteers and our newest; Mike and his grandson Bradley. Truly amazing and hard to fathom how fast time passes.

I’m going to now refit the motor terminal boxes, terminate the cables and connect it all up. Once the draw gear is stripped and checked and the bearer pads are changed. The loco will then be ready to take its refurbished bogies when they are finished.

15TMC

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