Since the last post in September the new steel panelling for the sides and roof at the south end has been completed. This includes the fixing of the panels to the wooden framework using stainless steel screws sealed in with an adhesive The whole of the west side has been painted with primer and a first undercoat.
Internally the steel panelling has also been finished in primer and new wooden partition frames have been manufactured and installed.
Two external doors have been replaced having been refurbished and most of the sliding windows are now installed.
Much time and effort has been spent on refitting the guttering in order to be perfectly certain they do not leak and that there is no gap between the gutter and the body. This was a problem following the first restoration.
The carriage will remain in the shed until the gangway is fitted, the roof vents fitted and the outside is completely painted.
It has not been possible to obtain a full side view recently due to another vehicle alongside 27162.
Work continues on 7828. Despite the carriage shed becoming a sauna, the beading junctions have been fitted, sealed down, pins punched, filled and sanded. Half of the roof guttering has now been fitted, and the recently fitted roof ventilators have been glossed, along with the centre portion of the roof. Completion of the gutter allows final sealing and painting of the roof to take place, so the second half is a priority.
The strips of beading to connect the junctions are next on the machining list.
7828 was never modified to allow it’s gangways to be connected to a BR Mk.1/Pullman/LNER gangway. This is fine if we want to run it with just LMS/GWR carriages, but as at least initially 7828 must be compatible with Peak Rail’s Mk.1 stock, a gangway must have additional clamps and platework added. Rather than cut and weld the original part, the south end gangway has been selected to be fitted with a replacement gangway end portal. The donor gangway was sourced from LMS TO No.8422, the carriage which was a WWII ambulance, repatriated from Germany after the war, and one time resident at the Longmoor Military Railway. It has lost it’s original gangways, gaining some off something else instead. When it is restored at Rowsley, they will need to be dismantled and rebuilt anyway, so for the time being it has been possible for 7828 to ‘borrow’ a gangway portal – which happens to have full adaptor gear. This has been removed from 8422, stripped back of all fittings, cleaned down and painted. Some surplus outrigger brackets have been removed, and the portal is now ready to have swivels reattached, prior to fitting to 7828 with new bellows.
Work continues apace on the patterns for the light fittings, and the first step in the production of the replacement interior passenger communication cord fittings has been undertaken, with an order for the 3 patterns placed.
Samples of moquette have been received, and discussions continue on the production of the replica ‘fawn rep’ which the carriage will be trimmed with when completed.
Every time we fit something back on LMS Third Open 7828 at Rowsley she looks better, she gets a bit heavier, and there is less ‘stuff’ to trip over. The roof ‘furniture’ is a case in point with the torpedo ventilators being very heavy, and they have now been joined by the tank vents (an inverted ‘J’) and the tank fillers, which means final painting of the roof isn’t far off. A bit lower down the Stone’s ventilators have been fitted, you can see how they work in the photograph – passengers can vary the angle of the ‘vanes’ to extract air or blast it in depending on how they feel. You can also see another important process beginning, the beading. This has a real purpose in covering up the joins between the various panels on the bodyside, but is also a very attractive visual aspect of older coaches. The beading is painted up to undercoat on the back, pre-drilled for the many panel pins needed to attach it, and finally mastic sealant is applied to ensure it is weatherproof.
You might just spot the clock showing 11.15 in the background – it always shows this time and will do until we get up there and change the battery – at least it’s right twice a day…
It has been a long job, but the entire ceiling has been painted in brush filler, laboriously rubbed down (thanks for your help Dave), and then the lighting patresses and beading fitted. As I write this, there are 6 pieces of beading left to screw in, the other 43 having been (in some cases quite literally) bent into shape and secured in place.
The vestibules and toilets were particularly tricky, as the angle of the partitions and curve of the roof required 3 different flavours of curved hockey sticks.
As we’re almost there with the beading, Dave and Bob have started throwing more filler about. Once that’s done (I haven’t tried to count all the holes, I thought it would be depressing), we can start to think about showing it a paint brush.
Trevor continues to apply further layers of undercoat to his gangway end door, and James has cleaned up the last roof vent and carefully wire brushed and sprayed the first components of the passenger communication gear.
Mike’s heater installation continues with the preparation of some 40′ of timber moulding to which the heater brackets are secured along the length of the saloons. This has been cut to length, drilled and primed.
The epic tasks of beading the side, and applying the roof vents are almost upon us, help always welcome.