Winter maintenance – a further update

At the end of November we prepared for the visit of Andy Wright, the British Engineering Services boiler inspector.  Andy was to carry out the annual insurance company cold inspection on the boiler and also to conduct the six yearly internal examination on all 14 air receivers. After locating the air receivers, we then set about disconnecting the pipework which would allow Andy to look inside the receivers.  We also did a final clean out of the firebox and smokebox, and all the washout doors and plugs received a final clean and were laid out ready for inspection.  All photos by Richard Pearson.

A clean firebox.

Washout doors and plugs ready for inspection.

Andy was very happy with the condition of the air receivers and he has also passed the boiler fit for another year making a recommendation to programme in a couple of repairs on the water side of the LH and RH back corners of the inner firebox. This work is routine and will now be done in January and can be conducted without dismantling the engine.

The cab floor lifted to reveal the air receivers.

Andy Wright conducts the examination of the receivers.

Andy was booked to return on Thursday 4th December to carry out the hot examination. With this is successfully passed, the boiler will have a ticket to 3rd February 2022.  We then set about refitting the pipework to the air receivers and refitting the cab floor and floor plates (four are under the floor). The boiler also had all of its doors and plugs refitted along with a new set of gauge glasses. We then added water treatment and filled the boiler, and once full, we lit the fire.  Steam was slowly raised overnight and the following day we successfully completed the full A exam steam test.

A fire in Tornado’s belly once more!

In steam and ready for the A exam.

As well as the boiler inspection and the A Exam steam test, we also completed several other smaller tasks.  The fittings on the air brake pressure test points had become seized so they have been replaced with new.

At the start of the maintenance period we removed the whistle to have the valve and the linkage modified, the whistle has now been refitted and works much better. The photo shows the whistle as it is now with a modified valve, a straight operating arm and with a much straighter linkage.

The bright metal work has also been cleaned and a fresh thin coat of protective grease applied by members of the famous York based ‘Dave team’.  The rest of the engine was also cleaned and the new green paintwork received a coat of protective polish to see it through the winter, as the locomotive will be outside in the elements for the next couple of months since the covered accommodation that we used previously in the prep bay is no longer available because the NRM have one of their own machines in there.