It was a busy week down at the depot at Pentrefelin this weekend as preparations ramp up towards our annual gala, which this year takes place on June 3 and 4.
Once again there was a big shunt round, this time to get the Wickham back out of the workshop and to the fuel point where it could be refuelled for the first time in almost 12 months.
The first job of the day was to replace the exhaust stacks on the rear of the Wickham Power Car which had been removed to enable the painting to be to the best standard possible.
One of 50416's throttle motors was noted as having been sticking and so the throttle motor was stripped down and found to be full of water and rust. The air system non-return valves were down for stripping and checking but as usual proved to be most resistant to removal. One was so bad that it refused to be removed and has had to be left for another day.
Some work has been done to finish some part-completed stepboards that were supplied and which will eventually be fitted to Class 108 56223.
And finally a rather different but new Daisy face has arrived for use at future events from the official suppliers. Daisy now rather proudly wears her buffers right up on her cheeks and is fitted with equipment which enables her to be mounted properly while at the same time showing the required red lights. Must say she looks somewhat shocked..........................
Over the weekend we had one of our units rostered for Llangollen's Victorian event. Consequently we turned out a very early prototype Class 127 and we were honoured that her Majesty was able to pay us a visit and to see what the future of rail travel was all about.
After not being seen outside for a number of months there was a chance to see the new paint job on the Wickham unit as it was removed from the shed for the parts of the M-Exam that require the engines to be running to be carried out.
One problem that was discovered was a substantial air leak on one of the pipeline air filters which had to be repaired. The fuel gauges, which have always given an incorrect reading, were adjusted while the handrails were individually rubbed down and repainted as a bench job.
Other jobs completed were the repair of the sink tap in Class 108 56223, the PA system in Class 108 51907, the removal for repair of the hot water tank in Class 108 54490, the washing of the Class 104 and the refuelling of the Class 104 and 127 units. Some wood has been cut to make new steps up into our units to replace some which are damaged.
Finally our sales team were at the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway's Multiple Memories Gala raising funds for our ongoing projects. While at the event there was a most unusual visitor for the stand staff, a Class 153 unit that had just been named as part of the event.
At Llangollen the repainting of the Wickham set is reaching completion with the application of lining and lettering. This is the first time this set has been repainted since it was restored 11 years ago and the work is being done to a very high standard.
The windows of two of the sets that were out at the recent Thomas event were tackled over the weekend. It is amazing how much mess passengers can leave behind them and sometimes it is hard to see through the windows after one of these events. Another job tackled was the movement of stock from stores for onwards transport to the Ecclesbourne DMU Gala at the weekend where our sales stall will be in evidence once again.
At Butterley the remaining sliding lights were fitted into Gloucester Power Car 51118 and the unit is now fully watertight. A few more securing screws will complete this job after which the corridor connection needs refitting before the power car is swapped with its trailer so that interior work can recommence on that.
As part of a homework project one of our members is refurbishing the light clusters for the Gloucester. After all these years the wiring in one was found still to work!
At Llangollen over the weekend there was progress on some maintenance issues. An oil leak on one of the torque convertors on Class 127 power car 51618 was traced to a poorly-fitting filter, something that was arising from the recent exam that the unit went through. Class 108 trailer car 54490 had come in with a droplight in the cab that had become detached from its spring and so the door was stripped down and the problem found to be a broken rivet in the 'lazy tongs' . This was duly fixed and the door put back together. A start was made on the repairs to a defective tap on Class 108 trailer 56223 but this was defeated by a lack of suitable materials in the stores. Wickham Driving Trailer 56171 received a second coat of gloss paint over the weekend.
At Butterley Gloucester Power car 51118 was moved outside and work continues to fit the rest of the sliding lights. Electrical work also continues on Trailer 56097 with wiring taking place under the control desk.