Workshop update June / July 2022

August 23, 2022

The GWSR steam gala gave us the opportunity to show off progress on our Locomotive’s restoration. As costs prevented us transporting the loco to Toddington, we displayed a number of significant completed parts, together with a video slideshow of the locomotive being reassembled at LMS in Loughborough. It was great to meet up with some of you after a significant time and to see the railway buzzing with activity as it were pre-pandemic. We have increased our range of TSLL merchandise with Pens, Key rings, Dapol OO gauge model loco kits, and shopping bags which helped boost our sales income over the weekend. Sweatshirt sales were particularly buoyant given the unseasonal chill in the air!

We are in the process of updating our merchandise range on the website store, so please come and have a look. We are hoping to add some more seasonal items as Christmas looms ever closer. 

Steam Gala Stand at Toddington (L-R Andy Meridith, Rob Merrick, Steve Everett)

Shown below are the refurbished pressure gauges and backing boards ready, part of the components on display at the gala. Many of these parts have been sponsored by you our keen supporters so if it’s you then thank you very much.

 Drivers side gauges and backing board

Fireman’s side gauges and backing board

We have managed a few successful work days at Toddington and having completed the cleaning up of the coupling rods. Our attention has now turned to working on the the valve gear. One of the radius rods is nearing completion and the other is not far behind. New working member Christine Murray has been painting the refurbished tender buffers so we can put them into store until we start construction of our own tender.

Radius rod cleaned up ready for refitting

Progress on the cab has been hampered with supply of materials, as mentioned in my last report…but then things got worse! Due to staff shortages, Unity Engineering were suddenly put in a situation where they couldn’t work on the cab. I discussed this with my fellow TSLL directors and also LMS boss David Wright. Whilst not without significant works at LMS, a small window of opportunity has enabled the cab to be returned to Loughborough to be worked upon. Whist it will not be as complete as we had originally planned, this should mean that the cab will be fitted to the frames in time for our open day on 3rd September.

Cab being delivered to LMS workshops

A new Right hand trailing crank pin nut has been manufactured and fitted ready for the coupling rod bearings to be machined to size. Works are about to start on re- white metaling the coupling rod bushes and machining the new gradient pins and nuts ready to refit the rods to the loco.

New RT crankpin nut fitted

To enable the centre front footplate section to be finally secured in position, new copper pipe work has been installed that lubricates the pony truck centre pin and slides from the oil boxes attached forward of the cylinders on either side of the frames.

RHS Pony truck oil pot and copper pipe work.

After quite a search we have finally managed to find a Sheet metalworker who is willing to take on the manufacture of the replacement boiler cladding. Much of this cladding involves complicated shapes and bending and forming of thin steel plate work. Nick Johnson who trades under the name as “The Norfolk Tin Man” has agreed to form all the awkward shapes leaving us the simpler flat and rolled steel work to complete that part of the restoration. He has already done the same for BR standard 78018, and that looks a nice job so we look forward to receiving the first of the parts later this year. He has also agreed to form us a new steel dome casing, as drawings don’t exist for this, he plans to copy the one on 76084 at the NNR.

New front Firebox cladding sheets being fabricated

At LMS the pressure is on as we are now working hard to complete as much works as possible before the open day on 3rd September 2022. If you are thinking of becoming a shareholder and want to come and see the level of work being done, why not drop us an email and we will happily send you an invite.

Words and Pictures: Andy Meridith – Technical Director