June 2022 Update

Both locos are back in steam this coming weekend, and last Saturday/Sunday saw the steam crane in operation for the first time this year.

Chris and Mike coaling up the steam crane (Bill Drewett)

On the 3rd train on Saturday of Platinum Jubilee weekend, ‘Henbury’ blew out a gasket on the main steam pipe to the right hand cylinder. It was taken off the passenger train and sent up the branch to diagnose the issue before heading back to the shed.

‘Portbury’ worked push-pull services for the rest of the day as we waited for the Peckett to cool down enough to work on.
This involved clearing out all the ash from the smokebox, then chiselling out the cement from the smokebox floor (which is used to vacuum-seal it and prevent it drawing air through the front end).
The pipe was removed and the broken seal extracted so it could be used as a template to make a fresh one.
Once this was done, the whole lot was bolted back together and left to seal overnight.
Sunday morning a fire was lit and the loco brought back up to 50psi to test for any leaks, this having been satisfactory Chris was able to re-seal the smokebox with quick-drying cement.
Henbury rejoined the passenger train that morning which was a very satisfying result for the team.
It was my first real experience of locomotive repair and what happens when things go awry, so for me it was an education!

At the same time, the opportunity was taken to take the rear drawhook off and send it to the workshop to have the screw thread mended. The thread had been worn flat on top, preventing the nut from being tightened as much as we wanted it to be. Now it is tight against the bufferbeam.

Bob Edwardes took these pics over the weekend featuring the custom headboards he made for the locos.

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