MAJOR STEP FORWARD FOR NEW 21ST CENTURY STEAM LOCOMOTIVE
Major Motion Components Forged
The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, the registered charity that is building the first new mainline steam locomotive in Britain for 40 years at a cost of over £1.7 million, today announced that the first major motion - the equivalent of a car’s gearbox - components have been forged for its half completed locomotive.
These massive steel forgings include the three connecting rods, which will transfer the power from Tornado’s three cylinders to its six 6ft 8in driving wheels. These forgings were formed from one foot square, cast steel billets weighing a total of 5 tons and were forged into shape using a 1 ton air hammer whilst at between 860 and 1200 °C by John Hesketh & Son at Bury. The forgings are being forwarded in batches to be machined by Ufone Precision Engineers at Rowley Regis to be delivered to the Trust’s Darlington Locomotive Works (DLW) to be fitted to No. 60163 Tornado by July 2000. The total cost of the three sets of motion (including valve gear) will be around £130,000.
Mark Allatt, Marketing Director, commented: “The completion of our first major motion components is a major step forward for the Trust. In addition to keeping steam alive in the 21st Century by building new locomotives, we seek to
apply the best of both modern and traditional engineering methods, processes and technology – seen at its best in Tornado’s motion manufacture.”