Watercress Line

Wagon Group Report 1st August

They had a good day at Medstead on Tuesday. John D completed undercoating the south side of the workshop PMV, and fitted the bull’s head into the cattle wagon ready for the freight train running days at the weekend.
Keith continued with the end timbers for the SW tar wagon, and Richard continued with the two cast iron signs which fit on the solebars. Chris S sorted out a couple of nuts that still needed tightening, and helped Keith with the timbers. Clive finished the first coat of red topcoat on the north side sole bar and then applied a second coat to the south side. Kevin finished cleaning and greasing the two remaining springs and then greased all the axle box and brake gear nuts, bolts and cotter pins, and touched up several areas with black or silver paint as appropriate.
Ian Johnson continued sorting out BY S 653 fittings. He went home happy as he managed to find a lot of the bits has been looking for. Chris and Malcolm were busy working on the BY, but forgot to report back on their achievements …No doubt we will find out next week!
David E, Keith and Dave V made a trip to Bennetts to look at the SR insulated meat container S 749, (which has a cracked timber corner post) and to decide on how best to fix it.
The forecast for Wednesday at Alton was dire, so we postponed that day, and those who could make Thursday came them …although showers were forecast! Despite a few drops of rain however, it was quite a nice day and better than expected.
Work was concentrated on big crane DS 1580 (well we currently have no other wagons to work on!), derusting, priming and undercoating by myself, Adrian, Paul, Ian, Ray, and John Q. Much progress was made. Had we have known how dry it was going to be we would have done some black top coating, but here’s hoping for next week.
Saturday at Medstead was a good turnout with Dillon, Jim, Johns B and D, Dave R, and later Jamie (who passed his theory test for the motorcycle). John D started off removing the tarpaulin from the Fergie tractor ready for the freight train to do its two return trips that day.
Jim and Dillon carried on with the vac cylinder on box van B 761663. Over the course of the day they fitted the piston rod protective sleeve, the safety vee bracket, changed the 16mm bolts fitted last week for 20mm bolts, turned over the release valve cover to face the correct way and fit the release cord, plus the rubber vac pipe between the cylinder and the train pipe. This van now just needs a vac test before returning to traffic (it passed the test on Monday).
Dave R applied green undercoat on the south side of the workshop PMV, before rain stopped play, then had a tidy up of the excess pots and tubs accumulating on the benches. The two Johns and Jamie tackled the roof hoops removed a couple of weeks ago from the gunpowder wagon, removing all the bolts for future re-use, and wire brushing ready for red oxide.
Jim and Dillon also adjusted the brakes on the low sided wagon M 460001 with the cable drums, as both levers dropped to the bottom. A good productive day despite a certain 9F keep appearing with the freight rake causing everyone to stop play!
Chris Le Corney

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