A birthday party surprise!

Unfortunately Tornado was unable to attend her 10th birthday party in Darlington but it looks like Prince of Wales had a surprise waiting for the guests!  Again, many thanks to all those who signed up to The Mikado Club to get No. 2007 on her wheels.

All photos by Mandy Grant.

A ‘tyring’ day!

Excellent progress continues to be made with the process of wheeling and tyring at South Devon Railway (Engineering).  These photos show the steps involved in preparing the wheel centres (now all fitted to their axles) for the tyres to be shrunk on.  Assembling Tornado’s wheels used numerous contractors and multiple road miles so, for the Trust, having a ‘one stop shop’ that could do all the work has saved a lot of haulage and time.  All photos by David Elliott.

Boring a tyre on the vertical borer.

A fully machined tyre ready for fitting.

Machining back faces on the other wheel lathe and boring crank pin holes on the quartering machine.

Profiling a flange on the wheel lathe.

Wheels tyred, crankpins fitted

Work continues at a great pace at South Devon Railway (Engineering).  The tyre fitting is being done using the ex Swindon works tyre heating equipment.  The quartering machine is a special form of horizontal borer which can bore crank pin holes or turn crank pins (if already fitted) from both sides of the wheelset at the same setting; provided the setting is not altered whilst swapping wheelsets, this ensures that the distance between the crank pins and the axle centres and the angle between the crank pins is consistent for all four wheelsets which is vital for smooth running of the finished locomotive.

All photos by Rob le Chevalier

The crank axle in the wheel lathe for turning the back of the rims

Another view of this operation

The leading coupled wheelset in the quartering machine

Tyres fitted to the trailing coupled wheelset

Activity at Darlington

Although the headline-grabbing wheelsets are away at South Devon Railway Engineering, work has continued at a fair pace at Darlington Locomotive Works, including the delivery of the spectacle windows and frames;  the frames have been CNC machined from leaded gunmetal (bronze) castings by Durham Precision Engineering, the glazing retaining strips have been laser profiled from 6mm brass sheet by Holme Dodsworth of Newcastle.  20.5mm thick multiple laminated glazings with an anti-spall coating on the inside have been made to comply with current railway group standards by Romag at Consett.  These components have been sponsored as part of our Dedicated Donation scheme – have you sponsored a component yet?  If not, find out how to do so here.

Meanwhile Ian Matthews has been producing the fiendishly complicated compound curvature for the junction of the firebox cladding and that of the boiler barrel.

All photos by David Elliott

Wheelset and tender progress

Although things may have been quiet at Darlington Locomotive Works recently, plenty of activity has been taking place at our supporting engineering firms and sub-contractors.  Down in the West Country, South Devon Railway Engineering is making good progress assembling the wheelsets – remember, to support the wheeling of Prince of Wales you can join The Mikado Club but hurry, there are only a handful of places left!  You can find full membership and benefit details here.  All photos of wheels by Rob LeChevalier.

Meanwhile at Ian Howitt’s works, dozens of parts have been machined and assembly has started on the tender’s frames.  All photos of tender parts by Ian Howitt.

Tender brake hanger bearings

Tender brake cross-shaft brackets

Tender brake hangers

Tender bufferbeam brackets (gussets)

Tender handbrake shaft bracket

Tender spring box washers

Quick engineering update

The tender alternator pulley being machined at North View – David Elliott

Newly finished equalising levers – David Elliott

Brake pins being machined – David Elliott

Bearings, axles and wheels away

In the last couple of weeks work has concentrated on fitting the bearings to the axles and preparing the axles and wheels for transport to the South Devon Railway for assembly.  The following photos are by Mandy Grant:

On 14th March Allelys collected the driving and pony wheels for delivery to SDR(E) – photos by David Elliott:

Progress on multiple fronts

In the last couple of weeks an awful lot has been going on at Darlington Locomotive Works.  Three coupled axles have arrived and the leading coupled axle set up to press on its bearings.  There has been some more progress on cladding and Daniela Filova has been producing manufacturing drawings on a regular basis.  Orders have been placed for the cylinder cover patterns and castings, tender alternator pulley and roller bearing adjustment rings.  The air pump which arrived in kit form reassembled and sent with its twin plus various ancillaries to Meiningen for overhaul. Ian Howitt collected tender hornblocks and liners and intends machining to start soon and the tender front dragbox is almost complete at North View Engineering Solutions prior to sending to Ian.

Plain driving axles, newly delivered from South Africa – Gemma Braithwaite

One of the axles set up on the bearing press – David Elliott

Jordan Durham from Middlesborough College re-assembles an air pump – David Elliott

Tender castings for Ian Howitt – Bob Hughes