Most of our volunteer's efforts at this time of the year must  necessarily be devoted to the winter maintenance tasks on working locomotives so there is a limit to what we are able to do.  However, our contractors at Roach Engineering are progressing our new drag box.  The photo shows it part machined - we expect it to be finished before the end of the month.  As you can see, its a big chunk of metal!  It will be really good to get this in place on the loco.


We have also made some more progress with the "rivetting" project - the new footplating we have made needs lots of holes drilled to match the existing fixing points.  We have acquired a set of heavy duty, centre point  punches - we chose the right size for the existing holes in the framework (and they are far from all the same size!), quick tap on the punch through the existing hole and mark the new platework then get to work with the mag drill.  Sorry there are no photos of this work in progress as I was too busy with the drill to take any - will do better next time.

Now we have the funds (thanks to you, our supporters) for the new smoke box, we are getting quotes for the next stage - this will be the purchase of the door ring and the door itself.  We are investigating the relative costs of having the part machined from solid compared to having a pressing made.

In the machine shop at Toddington, our eccentric straps have been completed - a next stage is to have the eccentrics themselves machined. To progress this we have acquired a "dummy axle" that will be used to mount the eccentrics in the machine shop and get them true.  Then will come the application of the bearing surface of white metal - to get ready for this stage we have sourced 50kg of (very expensive) ingots of the metal.  Fortunately, the material machined off can be recycled.

The new rear eccentric straps matched with the existing parts - all the bolts that hold them together had to be made to match.


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