Autumn 2022 Update

In the last issue it was reported that some of the rivets had been delivered with the intention of fitting some of these once the relevant holes had been reamed. To start the process the frames first had to be levelled and the diagonals checked for accuracy, this being achieved to within 30 thousandths of an inch, which is more than adequate for a structure which does not have any moving parts. Due to the extremely hot weather during July and the early part of August, conditions were totally unsuitable for carrying out any work with metal that needed to be red hot. In view of this, riveting did not commence until mid August. We are still awaiting delivery of the outstanding rivets, which has further delayed the expected completion of the assembly of the carrier frames. It is now hoped that these will be ready to be returned to us by the end of September after being shot blasted and primed. The order for supplying the platework for the cab, tanks and bunker was placed with CTL Seal early in July. All the plates have now been cut to size. Some of the plates i.e. side tank components and the rear of the bunker needed bending to their respective required shapes. This has also been carried out as part of this same order. During a recent visit to CTL Seal we were shown the platework for the above items which are ready for delivery to us when required. The reason for the visit was to discuss the method of construction for the two components of the power bogie pivot assembly. The consensus is that the preferred method will be a steel fabrication, machined where necessary. A price for this work will be forthcoming once the weight of the components has been worked out.

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Platework at CTL Seal. Left hand sidetank outer with both tank floors on top

Once the carrier frames have been returned to us closely followed by the delivery of the platework from CTL Seal, work will commence on the erection of the bunker on the carrier frames. It will also be possible to carry out the necessary drilling and tapping of the holes required to fasten the bottom plates of the side tanks onto their relevant supports. At this stage it will be possible to tack weld the sides into position prior to sending away for welding if this is required.

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Various items of platework including three tank sides, one bunker side and one cab side
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Front coupler lower pivot plate and boss prepared for welding

Work on the preparation of the front buffer beam ready for bolting to the power bogie frames is now complete with the exception of the holes necessary for the air brake pipe work, these being of a size which can easily be drilled at a later stage.

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Front bufferbeam and coupler plate assembly ready to be fixed to front of power bogie frames

After our return from the Bala Lake Railway, a day at the workshop was arranged to allow an overseas friend and Friend of GOWRIE to visit us on one of the few available days when both our diaries allowed. This was also to be a very important day for the project as this was the day when the various parts of the power bogie were to have their initial assembly. The operation started by clearing everything from the top of the frame plates. The position of the motion brackets both on the inside and outside of the frames was marked prior to the left frame being moved out of the way to allow the assembly to commence. The right hand frame was placed on the supports with the inner face uppermost after which the rear frame stretcher and previously assembled front buffer beam and coupler plates were positioned and bolted. The left hand frame was then lowered into position and several bolts inserted to hold the structure in position ready for the remaining holes to be drilled in the angles on our next visit.

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Front buffer beam assembly placed on right hand power bogie frame ready for fixing
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Our partly obscured friend from Australia, Steve Gordon, assisting equally obscured Marion in bolting the front buffer beam to the right hand frame
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Both frames in position looking forward
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The frame bolting team including our overseas player

After the initial assembly of the power bogie frames there is still more work needed before they are ready to be sent away to be riveted. There are a considerable number of holes still to be drilled, mainly in the angles which fit the various parts together. This is also necessary in order to ensure that the structure is more stable when it is moved around. An important item that has now been fitted is the stretcher which forms part of the motion brackets. These parts are critical as their accurate positioning is necessary to ensure correct alignment when the cylinders and slidebars are eventually fitted. Although the motion brackets and associated stretcher are not riveted to the frames (they are fixed with fitted bolts), these items are riveted to the angles which are then bolted to the frames.

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MATCH FUNDING UPDATE

We would like to thank all of you who have generously contributed to match fund appeals. We are pleased to report that we have now received sufficient donations to be able to close the appeal for the plateworks for the tanks, cab and bunker, however, there is still a big shortfall in the request with regard to the machining of the wheelsets. This currently stands at £1,500 and the amount we are asking for £7,500, so as you will see we are still looking to raise another £6,000!