Watercress Line

Wagon Group Report 14th February 2017

Tuesday at Medstead Dave V reports they made good progress on the SW Tar wagon No 95. Despite a damp start they had sun for a change, so were able to get some painting and Vactanning done.
Richard, Rob and John D finished derusting under the tank where the timber bulks fit and applied Vactan to this ... and several other areas that still needed it. Keith, Chris S and Dave continued measuring and deciding what to do with the timber cutting. They have now found out that in addition to the points mentioned last week that the tank has slewed an inch or two diagonally across the wagon... The wood cutting will be done ’true’ with the intention of moving the tank back into correct alignment as they lower it. Well that’s the plan anyway.
Brian removed the security light by the workshop PMV entrance, for some attention as it was not working properly, and then he and Richard sorted sales stock ready for the Pre Spring Gala this coming weekend.
David T continued removing rotten wood from the south side of workshop PMV S 1851, and after lunch he and Dave V went to Alresford and black top coated the DS 1580 crane runner sole bars and country end. The crane and runner were in the cattle dock. This was rather fortuitous for Dave, as he had not read my email directing them to Ropley properly, where we thought it was going to be. Well that’s where Mr Bentley said it would be this week! ... This was a sub contract job from our Alton branch, who had been repainting the runner.
A brief report from Malcolm on BY S 653 this week, as his car did not start and he and Chris did not get to Medstead until lunchtime. However they measured and cut the BY S 653 country end boards and the adjacent non running side panel between the end and doorway. These were readied for priming and undercoating.
A dry, but cold Wednesday at Alton. First job was to set up the lights underneath B 763661 for undercoating the under frames at the London end. Everything was set up, but power at that end of the yard seemed somewhat lacking... Notwithstanding this slight setback Adrian and Roger were given large quantities of carrots to help them see in the dark, and they proceeded to do the undercoating. Next week however with some lights hopefully, we will probably need to do some touching up of areas missed in the gloom.
We removed the sheets from M 460001 and Ray continued with his “Precision” cutting of the end floor timbers, which will enable the new south side plank on order to fit in. Ray happened to mention the lack of the word “Precision” in his carpentry efforts in last week’s report, which I think is a subtle hint about my cutting of some of the flooring! But they fitted fine though...
The cable drums on M 460001 were sanded down, filled, ali wood primed and in some places totally undercoated. John Q and Ray did some more cutting out and interfacing in new bits of timber. Beforehand John’s B and Q had gone down to Alresford to top coat the buffer beam red on the DS 1580 crane runner, in advance of the Gala next weekend.  
The ISO container lining gang of Steve, Mick, Bob and Adam carried on inside the container and the current looking “tudor” style horizontal timber beams and insulation are now progressing further along the inside of the roof. These wil be lined with ply sheeting soon.
John B,  John D, Jose and Chris R were greeted with a cold, snowy scene at Medstead on Saturday.  Unfortunately, due to the weather conditions, they were unable to tackle the priority job of painting the parts of the Tar Wagon tank and frame, to enable the new timber supports to be fitted.
John B and Chris made a start on priming the T&G timbers for BY S 653 inside the BY. Jose elected to paint the Fergie tractor wheel dishes with top coat in the warmth (?) of the workshop PMV, also painting some of the Tar Wagon brake rigging with black gloss.
After Tea, John B and Chris R carried on with painting primer in the BY, and John D and Jose took Terry the Bull (well just the head) to Alresford head shunt to find the cattle wagon in the freight, that had left without him during the week!  After a couple of hiccups they managed to secure Terry in his rightful position looking out of the bars in the wagon. They covered his head in an old shower curtain to keep him dry.
Lunch was late, so in view of the unpleasant weather they decided to call it a day.
Cable drums, bulls head, oil tank, cranes and ISO container ... it’s a life of variety in the Wagon Group!
See you all at our sales stand at Medstead this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Gala.
Chris Le Corney

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