Watercress Line

Wagon Group Report 17th July

Dave V reports from Medstead last Tuesday that they had a slightly non productive day, with drizzling rain. Dave and Kevin took the opportunity to take the train to Alton to deliver a work bench, bench grinder and step-up ladder.


On the SW Tar wagon No 95 however they managed to do some derusting on the country end buffer beam and apply some Vactan, and to make a start on cleaning and greasing the springs. Keith continued with securing and waterproofing the country end of the woodworking CCT. It's now looking very good.


Meantime Chris and Malcolm felt like a change and decided to make templates for the timbers which the roof boards screw/nail into on BY S 653. They found this was a lot more of a fiddle than expected, and they made a lot of progress but didn't quite finish the job. The idea is to retain a set of patterns, labelled up, for future jobs on a similar vehicle; so, hopefully, it will be time well spent in the end.


After overnight rain it was a bit damp at Alton on Wednesday to start with, but it soon dried up.


Following the Gala we had a lack of wagons and cranes and the sidings looked rather empty, for a change. Still though big crane DS 1580 was there, and myself, Ray, and Roger set about derusting various areas on the runner wagon, and John Q did some spot priming  after us. This was subsequently followed by undercoating ...............


Meantime Mick and Steve, helped by Adam were busy planning and making preparations for the covered roof to go in between the grounded van body and the ISO container.

Jose, Jim and John D were at Medstead on Saturday.  Light drizzle hampered their painting early on.  They covered the Fergie tractor on the freight train in Bennetts siding, pending the next running of the freight train over the weekend of 29th/30th July.  

After a cup of tea it was dry enough to start painting the south side of the workshop PMV with undercoat.

Jose found the wind favourable for his customary bonfire, which had become much in need of burning! More painting after lunch, covering a substantial part of the PMV side. 

Jose was very keen to make some progress on the Gunpowder wagon W 105691, and they removed  three of the wooden roof beams. They set about chopping away the rotten wood and removed the three steel beams laying them on the floor of the wagon . They left four beams, as they are making a timber frame to temporarily support the heavy steel roof.  The gunpowder van was also a great spot to watch the two magnificent locos rostered working on Saturday …….  80078 and 92212.

Dillon meantime has been busy overhauling the vac cylinder from vanfit B 763661 at home, and reports ………The outer cylinder is complete up to first gloss with new stainless steel studs and nuts, with copious amounts of thread sealant. The piston rod has been cleaned up and painted. The piston has been cleaned up and non working surfaces sanded and red oxided. The main inner cylinder has been cleaned up, red oxided, and outer surfaces up to first undercoat, and all the old studs removed. The new 3/8 studs and nuts were manufactured a few weeks ago. The gland seal housing and release valve have been cleaned up and taken up to first gloss.


A Mad Hants photo charter ran on Monday 3rd July with 34081 and the freight, and the cover photo shows this to good effect.


Chris Le Corney

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