23-24 July 2011

Attendance 1:

There were five people in total on Saturday, three would spend the day working on D9531 and one – Jason -  would spend the day paint the engine block on the class 15 as the exhaust on one side is due to be refitted imminently. So this left Adam to work on the ‘Object’ for the day.

There has been one job that has been waiting to be completed for a while and so Adam decided that this was the day to complete it. There is a thin channel that runs down between the back of the main electrical conduit and the wall in the boiler end. Over the years probably from construction days this channel has filled up with oil, muck and rust. And as Adam found out there was over an inch of oily muck in places. First part of the job for Adam was to scrape as much of the muck to loosen it at the generator end of the boiler room (the channel is split into two by the water filler) and then using a Hoover remove the muck from the channel. This was very awkward in places as there are pipes running down this channel. After a good hour or so the worst of it was removed and at this stage Adam applied a lot of engine degreaser into the channel and onto the pipes that run through the channel.

To allow the engine degreaser to soak in Adam moved onto the cab end of the channel. The same principle was applied by using a screw driver to loosen the muck and then using a Hoover remove it from the channel. This was very awkward again but this was because of a cooker situated on the wall which Adam removed to stop him banging his head as often. Next to the external cab door this proved very challenging as the oily muck had seemed to ‘set’. A lot of banging and chipping took place and then suddenly the lump started to budge and once a screw driver was placed into the lump it came out in one piece! With that final piece removed engine degreaser was poured into the channel and spread over everything and left to soak. Adam took this opportunity to have some lunch……

So returning after lunch Adam had brought with him a conduit pipe that he had removed a few months previous that had been drelled and painted into orange. Adam refitted this, it only taking a couple of minutes to complete. Then it was back to the channels. Next up Adam armed himself with a wire brush and gave both channels a brushing to disturb and remove the last of the muck. This was quite time consuming due to the narrowness of the caps. To help with this Adam used a garden cane taped to the handle of the wire brush so that he could get the brush into the narrowest areas. After a wipe out with some clothes Adam pour more Engine Degreaser into the channels and left it to soak for a short while longer. After a final wipe down it was ready for a few coats of paint. Unfortunately Adam didn’t have time to complete the painting so this will have to wait to next time. And that brought Saturday’s proceedings to an end………Working Members 2:

After the initially cuppa it was time to make a start. First job for Adam and Jason was to remove the tarpaulin from above the cooler group so that the grills could be re-fitted as there is an upcoming Thomas the tank engine event and also a photo shoot utilising the CoBo. Also to be refitted was the recently overhauled Fuel Transfer Pump. So armed with the required tools, a ladder and the Pump Adam and Jason made a start. Jason climbed onto the top of the CoBo and with the aid of some rope pulled up the end of the tarpaulin. With the tarp pulled back far enough so that the gaps where the grills fit was exposed Jason climbed down off the roof

Next job was to lift the Fuel Transfer Pump into the loco. It was fairly heavy and quite awkward but with two sets of hands it was soon placed through the cab door. Then with Adam and Jason inside the loco the pump was moved close to its final resting point. They would come back to that later.

The main job now was to get the grills from inside the tent with the view of re-hanging them. Adam and Jason retrieved them and placed one either side of the CoBo. Once complete it was decided to run a die through the holes that the bolts fit so Adam went back to the workshop to retrieve the correct die. In the meantime Jason found that some of the hinges were tight so he worked through them loosening them off with some WD40. A couple of them proved to be extra stubborn and so Jason applied heat to these ones and that seemed to do the trick. Adam returned and ran the die through all of the captive nuts. With Jason nearing completion of loosening off the hinges it was suddenly thought that we didn’t know where the bolts were! A search was started and after a considerable amount of time they were found and with a quick clean-up of the threads a start was made to rehanging the grills. The basic rehanging process consisted of Adam lifting the grill and Jason then locating a hinge in place and screwing in a bolt. With one bolt in then other bolts were fitted and within a very short space of time the first grill was refitted. The other grill required a shunt to be carried out as there wasn’t enough room between the CoBo and a class 47 so while waiting for Alan Lee to move the 47 Adam and Jason stopped for lunch.

After lunch Alan had very kindly moved the 47 and the same process was carried out for the second grill, Adam lifted the grill and Jason fed in the bolts and the tightened them up. Job done and the 47 was moved back into position.

Next job was the bolting down of the Fuel Transfer Pump. This didn’t take too as it is held down with four sets of nuts and bolts. It was simply a case of a spanner on the nut and the socket on the bolt and they were all soon tightened up. With the pump bolted down it was covered by a cloth to stop muck and moister getting into it. And that completed that job.

One final job Adam wanted to get completed before he had to disappear was to take a look under the CoBo as we are planning on lifting it from its bogies in the near future. Since it appeared at the Crewe Works open day when it was displayed on the traverser Adam needed to ascertain what had been connected back up as these will need to be disconnected again ready for the lift. So crawling under the bogies to carry out the inspection Adam discovered that only the handbrake linkages and the bogie pivot nuts at each end need to be disconnected, everything else is still undone. This is good news and shouldn’t take too long to disconnect everything but that is a job for the future. At this time Adam went to clean and left for the day leaving Jason to complete a couple of jobs on the Class 14.


Sunday 24th July

Working Members 2:

Sunday started slowly at first, with Rob joining Jason on site at 10 am and after the obligatory caffeine infused cup of brown tea tasting liquid we both set to on our own projects. Jason toddled off to finish work on D8233’s engine, primarily the re-fitting of the rocker covers (gleaming after a repaint) and waterproofing various pieces of equipment on board due to the leaky roof in the Works. Rob on the other hand loaded his van up with everything he would need to refit one side of the cooler group bellows.

These bellows were in a poor state when we liberated them from their mountings back in 2008/9 (see here: http://www.d8233.org.uk/cobo_090214.htm ) and as you can see the bellow material was non-existent! With the completion of the cooler group firmly in sight one of the outstanding jobs was these forlorn looking frames and with other bellows needed on the other loco’s (14 & 15) we put in a job lot. Now with the bellows were on site we set to restoring the frames and after a touch of modification we now have the first frame & bellow completed.

The fitting of this frame was going to prove a challenge and that’s exactly what faced Rob when he went in to the CoBo. The summer sun beating down on the loco’s tarpaulin and no prospect of ventilation he set to manoeuvring the frames into position. Rob had made the job easier by squishing the frames together using some zip-ties and once in place, cut each one and the frames filled out the gap. Then came the laborious task of fitting the bolts. This job took ages because the holes didn’t line up properly but perseverance pays off. Rob also had to utilise the inspection hatch which is located above the cooler group to get to 12 more bolt holes unreachable from the inside of the loco.

Jason had finished work on the 15 mid-afternoon and assisted Rob with the task of tightening these nuts and bolts. Upon completion it was time to pack up and call it a day.

The next working weekend is October 15/16. If you wish to lend a hand please contact Chris Tatton

Above : One of the grills having the bolts tightened up. © C15PS
Above : The fuel transfer pump in position. © C15PS
Above : Jason screwing closed the grill. © C15PS
Above : One of the nuts for the bogie pivot underneath the CoBo that will be removed ready for lifting in the near future. © C15PS
Above : The handbrake linkage (In the centre of the picture) at one end of the CoBo that will be need to be undone. © C15PS
Above : The bellow in the process of being fitted. © C15PS
Above : Rob M in the process of tightening up the nuts and bolts. © C15PS


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