Watercress Line


Dave V reports from what turned into a very hot Tuesday at Medstead. With reduced numbers that day, they didn’t manage to get as far as previous weeks on the coach roof of S 4977.
This coach was the worst one they had seen so far, and continues the trend of having a hole in exactly the same spot, which Pete Cutler did a good job of filling. John D, Hamish, Pete and Dave V managed to complete paint deflaking, sanding, dusting and washing down half of the roof. The roof itself was too hot to touch from around midday and the water was turning to steam when they washed it!
Late morning they had a surprise visit from David Taylor who had dropped in following his annual return to the area for a car service. He moved to Bristol some 18 months ago... Not one to miss an opportunity Dave gave him a scraper, and David spent a while helping out on the coach roof, before joining them for lunch.  
Elsewhere Richard was tasked with lining the new woodwork van steps with non-slip covering and has produced a plan to maximise use of the roll that has been donated by the Building Group.   

Keith, with some assistance from Malcolm and Chris P, produced patterns for the wooden ‘hoops’ at the country end of the BY roof. They are made in five sections and sit on the curved angle iron roof supports to provide a fixing point for the roof boards. They then went on to fit the two outer pieces produced from Keith’s pattern. They have almost completed fitting them and plan to move on to installing the remaining pieces next week.
A good turnout on Wednesday of 10 at Medstead. There was a slight damp in the air to start with, so we had to wipe down the carriage roof first. It was cloudy most of the day, but it warmed up later on.
We carried on cleaning off the roof from the Tuesday gang sterling efforts, and before lunch we were able to get the first coat of paint on, and this was followed subsequently by the second coat. A brush down of the scaffold platform and a tidy up, and that concluded coach roof No 3.
After the coach roof preparation, the painting is actually quite quick so Mick and Bob being "spare" removed the securings from one of the "Pirelli" cable drums in Bennetts, which is keeling over slightly. We want to remove this from the wagon (for repair or scrapping), rather than risk it falling off.
Final action of this week was left to Dave Ryding with a pleasant Saturday afternoon on the gunpowder van, and getting to get a large chunk of the country end underframe glossed off, as well as the wheel spokes and axles.  

Chris Le Corney

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