Media contact
All media enquiries should be made to Mark Allatt at mark.allatt@p2steam.com or on 07710 878979.
Please note that this is not a general enquiries number and is for press use only. The general enquiries number is 01325 460163.

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.

Boiler tender issued

MANUFACTURERS INVITED TO TENDER FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE BOILER.

The Trust is seeking expressions of interest in the manufacture of No. 2007’s boiler. The boiler for Prince of Wales will be similar to that which was built by DB Dampflokwerk Meiningen, Germany for new Peppercorn A1 class No. 60163 Tornado in 2006/7, being a fully welded design with a steel firebox. The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust owns the design rights to the boiler and it is intended that a number of minor modifications that have been applied to Tornado’s boiler since it was originally built will be incorporated into this design. The Trust has already sent the arrangement drawing to ten potential manufacturers in the UK and overseas but is still open to approaches by other interested parties.

The boiler for the new class P2 locomotive is intended to be directly interchangeable with the diagram 118A boiler fitted to Tornado and the constructor of the new boiler should be able to demonstrate fulfilment of the following requirements:

  1. To have a track record in construction of new boilers and/or major repairs to existing boilers of a similar size as the boiler of the new Gresley class P2.
  2. To have facilities and equipment large enough to adequately handle a boiler of this size.
  3. To operate a quality management system (QMS), which shall as a minimum include ISO 9000 and which clearly demonstrates adequate control of critical processes including material specification and traceability, weld procedures and welder qualifications.
  4. Have a clear relationship with a mutually agreed notified body to facilitate certification of the boiler to the appropriate National and European Standards.
  5. Ability to deliver on time to an agreed schedule.

The Trust has requested that potential suppliers provide an indicative price for a boiler to the standard defined in the drawings supplied. The anticipated schedule is:

  • Selection of supplier end 2018
  • Negotiations and finalisation of technical specification quarters one and two 2019
  • Firm order placed June 2019
  • Delivery required January 2021

No. 2007’s boiler in detail:

  • Use of diagram 118A Tornado boiler with detailed modifications to improve overhaul life
  • Interchangeable with Tornado boiler
  • Tornado boiler is 17in shorter than P2 boiler – No. 2007’s smoke box has been extended within the cladding
  • 250psi of No. 60163’s boiler will be retained to improve economy and increase maximum power

Tornado’s boiler is lifted into her frames in 2007 – David Elliott

Following the success of The Founders Club, which was designed to get to the P2 Project to the point of cutting No. 2007’s frames, the Trust decided to establish The Boiler Club to fund the construction of Prince of Wales’s boiler. The Trust set an initial target for The Founders Club of at least £100,000 from 100 ‘Founders’ but due to the overwhelming generosity of its supporters actually raised £450,000 (including gift aid) from over 360 donors. It is the Trust’s desire to leave No. 2007 Prince of Wales debt free upon completion and therefore its aim is to raise at least £600,000 for The Boiler Club from 300 supporters each donating £2,000 to the project (in up to 40 payments of £50 by standing order). In return for this commitment, members of The Boiler Club receive these special benefits:

  • Opportunity to buy ticket (seat already reserved) on No. 2007’s first main line train
  • Reasonable access to No. 2007 at all times
  • Opportunity to buy exclusive Boiler Club badge
  • Opportunity to join one of the teams building No. 2007
  • First choice of other components to sponsor
  • Special limited edition version (signed/numbered) of the first official painting of No. 2007 Prince of Wales with No. 60163 Tornado –‘Dream Team’ by renowned railway artist Chris Ludlow
  • Special Boiler Club day with Tornado.

 The Trust is delighted that over half of the required 300 members have joined The Boiler Club fundraising campaign. Launched in October 2014 to raise the £600,000 needed pay for the manufacture of the boiler, The Boiler Club now has almost 160 members who have each donated or pledged £2,000 (plus Gift Aid) meaning almost £400,000 (including Gift Aid) has been pledged so far for the boiler.  You can join The Boiler Club here.

Mark Allatt, Trustee and P2 Project Director, The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, commented, “The boiler is the beating heart of a steam locomotive and to keep the construction of No. 2007 Prince of Wales on schedule for completion in 2021 we need to place the order for the boiler in 2019 for delivery in 2021.

“Passing the half-way point in the membership of The Boiler Club marks a significant milestone in the project to build Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive. It is our desire if possible to complete No. 2007 debt-free and so we launched The Boiler Club in October 2014 to raise £600,000 to fund Prince of Wales’s boiler.

“With this latest announcement, no-one can now doubt that we really mean business. The next few months will see further major announcements as the construction of the locomotive gathers pace. We are now appealing to those who want to be a part of this exciting project to become Covenantors, sponsors and volunteers to help us maintain this momentum.”

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

Motion components – orders placed!

COME ON, COME ON, DO THE LOCO-MOTION WITH ME – ALL HEAVY MOTION FORGINGS ORDERED

£210,000 appeal to manufacture the motion passes 25% in under two months

We have now placed a £220,000 order with Stephenson Engineering Ltd of Atherton, Manchester for the heavy motion for Prince of Wales. The order includes the forging, machining and heat treatment of the nine heavy motion rods – intermediate coupling rod LH/RH, trailing coupling rod LH/RH, leading couple rod LH/RH, outside connecting rod LH/RH and the inside connecting rod assembly (including strap, gluts and strap nuts and washers) – and the combined piston and rod. The motion is expected to be delivered in batches between December 2018 and December 2019.

In April 2018, The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust launched a new appeal to raise the funds to manufacture the motion for new Gresley class P2 No. 2007 Prince of Wales. The Motion Club was established with the aim of raising £210,000 from 175 supporters each donating £1,000 (plus Gift Aid) to the project in up to eight payments of £125 by standing order. In just seven weeks the appeal had already reached over a quarter of its £210,000 target.

If the project is to remain on schedule to complete No. 2007 by 2021, the Trust needed to order the motion in 2018. Following the success of The Founders Club (to get the project to the point of cutting the frames), The Boiler Club (to fund the construction of the boiler) and The Mikado Club (to wheel the locomotive), The Cylinder Club (to make the cylinder block), the Trust decided to establish The Motion Club to raise an estimated £210,000 required to manufacture No. 2007’s motion.

In return for supporting this appeal, special benefits for members of The Motion Club include:

  • Opportunity to buy ticket (seat already reserved) on one of the first trains hauled by No. 2007 Prince of Wales
  • Reasonable access to No. 2007 at all times
  • Opportunity to buy exclusive Motion Club badge
  • Opportunity to join one of the teams building No. 2007
  • First choice of other components to sponsor
  • Special Motion Club day with Tornado
  • Special limited-edition version (signed/numbered) of Stuart Black’s drawing of No. 2007 Prince of Wales

The work involved in designing and manufacturing the motion includes:

  • Redesign of coupling and connecting rods to use modern material (pre-war nickel chrome steel alloy proved prone to fracture
  • Incorporation of late-pattern BR-type continuous white metal lined crank pin bearing bushes
  • Use of the late-A1 design of inside connecting rod which overcame the tendency for the original design of inside connecting rods on LNER ‘Pacifics’ to big-end failure
  • Open die forging of six coupling rods, two outside connecting rods and the inside connecting rod and strap
  • CNC machining of all rods
  • Manufacture of oil box lids, coupling rod knuckle pins, nuts and washers and bearing bush keys
  • Casting of leaded gunmetal and phosphor bronze castings of crank pin bearing bushes
  • Machining and white metalling of bearing bushes
  • Fitting oil box tops
  • Assembly of bearing bushes to rods
  • Polishing rods

Mark Allatt, P2 Project Director and Trustee, The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, commented, “We are delighted with the level of support that the project to build Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive has received since its launch. Thanks to our supporters’ continued generosity, over £3m has now been donated or pledged. Recently we have been focused on preparing to wheel No. 2007.

“We now want to turn our attention to the motion which is our next major design and manufacturing challenge. Raising 27% of our £210,000 target for The Motion Club in just seven weeks has given us the confidence to place the order for the nine heavy motion components whilst we work hard to raise the remaining £150,000. This means that we remain on-track for completion of the new locomotive in 2021.

“I would encourage all steam enthusiasts who haven’t yet contributed to this exciting project to help us to meet these deadlines by becoming a member of The Motion Club or a monthly ‘P2 for the price of a pint of beer a week’ covenantor. It’s time to get on board! This year will see further major announcements as the construction of new Gresley class P2 No. 2007 Prince of Wales gathers pace.”

To become a member of The Motion Club, email , call 01325 460163 or visit www.p2steam.com for more information.

Pledges pass £3m, Mikado Club now complete!

The Mikado Club to fund the wheeling reaches 200 members target

We are thrilled to announce that pledges to the project have now passed £3m – over 60% of the £5m needed to complete the locomotiveThis coincides with the 200th member signing up for The Mikado Club which was launched in March 2016 to raise £200,000 from 160 members to wheel the engine and was extended in May 2017 to 200 members and £250,000 to also wheel the tender.

Last month the Trust launched The Motion Club, established to fund the manufacture of the heavy motion for No. 2007, setting the challenge of raising £210,000 from 175 supporters each donating £1,000 plus Gift Aid. In just three weeks the Trust had already signed up 36 members of The Motion Club, potentially worth £45,000 including Gift Aid – a remarkable achievement thanks to the generosity of our supporters.

Driving wheelsets in the process of assembly at SDR(E) – David Elliott

Completed wheelsets at Buckfastleigh – David Elliott

The work involved wheeling the engine to create the first British standard gauge ‘Mikado’ since 1945 includes:

•      Machining axle and cannon box castings, manufacturing roller bearing details

•      Boring eight coupled wheel bosses to finished size

•      Assembling bearings and cannon box onto pony truck axle

•      Assembling bearings, cannon and axle boxes onto plain coupled axles

•      Trial fitting coupled axles to frame

•      Pressing Cartazzi wheels onto axle, fitting & machining tyres and fitting bearings & axleboxes

•      Pressing plain coupled wheels onto axles, fitting and machining tyres

•      Assembling crank axle, fitting bearings & axleboxes, pressing wheels onto crank axle, fitting and machining tyres

•      Finish machining crank bosses & boring crank pin holes and machining & fitting all crank pins

•      Trial fitting wheelsets to frames at DLW.

We are confident that we will have completed the rolling chassis for No. 2007 Prince of Wales in summer 2018 and have recently ordered all the coupling and connect rods.  Thus far over £1.7m (over 34% of the total required) has been converted into metal, more than £2.1m (over 42%) has already been donated and over £3m (60%) has been pledged.

Mark Allatt, P2 Project Director and Trustee, The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, commented, “We are delighted with the level of support that the project to build Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive has received since its launch with over £1.7m spent so far on construction and over £2.1m donated and more than £3m by our supporters.

“We are now confident that we will have completed the rolling chassis for No. 2007 Prince of Wales in summer 2018 and we remain on-track for completion of the new locomotive in 2021. However, to maintain this rate of progress we need to raise more than £700,000 per year, which given the nature of the regular donation scheme becomes more challenging as each year passes. Last financial year we more than achieved our budget of £500,000 and this new financial year we have set a fundraising budget of £700,000.

“We would encourage all our supporters who haven’t yet contributed to this exciting project to help us to meet these deadlines by becoming a monthly ‘P2 for the price of a pint of beer a week’ covenantor, joining The Boiler Club, becoming a member of The Motion Club or taking out a Dedicated Donation. It’s time to get on-board!”

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

Prince of Wales 40% funded after just four years!

DONATIONS TOWARD BUILDING BRITAIN’S MOST POWERFUL STEAM LOCOMOTIVE PASS £2M

We are thrilled to announced that donations to the project have now passed £2m – over 40% of the £5m needed to complete the locomotive in 2021 – with pledges towards building the locomotive also rapidly approaching £3m.The frames for Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive were rolled at British Steel’s Scunthorpe works exactly four years ago on St George’s Day 2014 in the presence of designer Sir Nigel Gresley’s two grandsons Ben and (the late) Tim Godfrey.

05211402ScunthorpeAH

Ben and Tim Godfrey start the machine cutting No. 2007’s frames – Andrew Hardy

Public interest in seeing a new Gresley class P2 become a reality sooner rather than later remains high and 860 people have already signed up to the ‘P2 for the price of a pint of beer per week’ (£10 per month or more) covenant scheme since its launch in March 2014. In addition to this core scheme, funds have been raised through The Founders Club (over 360 members donated £1,000 each plus Gift Aid – target 100 people), now closed and raised over £450,000; The Mikado Club (launched in March 2016 with an initial target of 160 members to wheel the engine and extended in May 2017 to 200 members to also wheel the tender) now just requires six members to be fully subscribed with 200 supporters pledging £1,000 each plus Gift Aid and therefore potentially raising £250,000; The Cylinder Club (only launched at our last Convention in October 2017) is now fully subscribed with 100 people having already pledged £1,000 each plus Gift Aid and therefore potentially raising £125,000; The Boiler Club (154 people have pledged £2,000 each to fund the boiler – target of 300 people – meaning well over half of the £600,000 target now pledged); and Dedicated Donations (over £225,000 from existing supporters sponsoring a variety of components). The Gresley Society Trust has also sponsored the locomotive’s distinctive front-end for which we are most grateful.

Earlier this month the Trust launched The Motion Club, established to fund the manufacture of the heavy motion for No. 2007, setting the challenge of raising £210,000 from 175 supporters each donating £1,000 plus Gift Aid. In just ten days the Trust had already signed up 24 members of The Motion Club, potentially worth £30,000 including Gift Aid – a remarkable achievement thanks to the generosity of our supporters.

Progress building Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive continues at Darlington Locomotive Works and includes:

•                  Frame plates for engine and tender rolled and profiled; engine’s frames erected at Darlington Locomotive Works; all major engine frame stays, brackets, horn blocks, axle boxes and buffers cast (44 in total); over 1,000 fitted and driven bolts ordered and delivered, approximately 800 now fitted to the frames

•                  All 20 wheels for engine and tender cast and proof machined; roller bearings for all engine and tender wheelsets and engine axles (including crank axle), tyres and crank pins delivered, tender axles order, tyres delivered and first wheelset complete. All components for assembling engine wheelsets now at South Devon Railway Engineering

•                  Preliminary discussions held with boiler manufacturers and forged foundation ring corners manufactured and machined; start made on boiler fittings with castings for combined injector steam and delivery valves

•                  Study into ride and suspension completed using rail industry standard Vampire® software; finite Element Analysis completed on re-designed crank axle to ensure locomotive complies with modern standards; assessment and notified body appointed to oversee certification – first site visit made

•                  Cab erected and cab side window frames fitted; engine footplating and splasher kits delivered and permanently fitted to frames

•                  Smokebox door pressed details made and door completed, door frame manufactured, smokebox delivered and erected; chimney cast and fitted

•                  Crosshead castings received

•                  Boiler cladding assembly jig built, cladding crinolines and hoops rolled and fitted to jig, cladding sheets procured, rolled and being fitting to the jig

•                  Tender frame construction under way, axlebox and other tender castings ordered from William Cook Cast Products

•                  Nameplates and chime whistle delivered

This means over £1.6m (over 32% of the total required) converted into metal, more than £2.1m (over 42%) already donated and almost £3m (60%) pledged.

Mark Allatt, P2 Project Director and Trustee, The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, commented, “We are delighted with the level of support that the project to build Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive has received since its launch with over £1.6m spent so far on construction and over £2m donated by our supporters.

“We are now that we will have completed the rolling chassis for No. 2007 Prince of Wales in summer 2018 and we remain on-track for completion of the new locomotive in 2021. However, to maintain this rate of progress we need to raise more than £700,000 per year, which given the nature of the regular donation scheme becomes more challenging as each year passes. Last financial year we more than achieved our budget of £500,000 and this new financial year we have set a fundraising budget of £700,000.

“We would encourage all our supporters who haven’t yet contributed to this exciting project to help us to meet these deadlines by becoming a monthly ‘P2 for the price of a pint of beer a week’ covenantor, joining The Boiler Club, becoming a member of The Motion Club or taking out a Dedicated Donation. It’s time to get on-board!”

No. 2007 dominates Darlington Locomotive Works – Mandy Grant