162 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces
As you will read elsewhere in this magazine, we are now running trains to the top of the causeway bank. Next year the run will be even longer, into the new station. This is a great achievement, but we should not forget that the more track we have, the more it will require in money and manpower to maintain it. As we still seem to be struggling a bit in both these respects, let us hope that our latest extension will at last encourage more members to come and help with the work, and a lot more passengers to buy tickets to pay for it!
No.4 Asbestos – This loco has continued to run our passenger services single-handed and has held up very well despite the hectic summer steaming schedule. A backlog of repairs is now building up which will have to be dealt with over the winter. The motion is knocking very badly and if sufficient funds are available it is intended to cast new bearing brasses. Other faults include the injector water valves leaking badly, which will have to be re-machined, and a number of warped firebars which will have to be renewed.Asbestos & L & Y No.1
No.5 Sentinel – Little progress has been made on this loco over the summer due to the need to keep the trains running and Asbestos operational. All of the old studs have, however, been removed, and the boiler water spaces shot-blasted and painted ready for re-assembly. The latest target for completion of the work is Easter next year.
No.2 Lion – The sad news about this loco is that its owner has decided to take it to Foxfield, and its transport has been arranged for Saturday October 9th. Other than that, progress has continued with the completion of the vacuum, brake system, a re-paint and the fitting of a turbo generator for cab lighting. We wish the loco well at its new home, and will no doubt keep in touch with it.
S100 – The re-machined hornguides of the centre driving axle have now been fitted, and the work is now being repeated for the rear axle.
Fowler Diesel – Following the fitting of a replacement set of batteries, the loco is back to normal, starting almost instantaneously. It has again done the majority of the shunting and works train jobs.
No.21 Diesel – This loco still awaits its long lost engine, whilst work has been carried out on sanding and painting the body.
L&Y No.1 – A surprise move this summer has been the commencement of restoration on this very rare ‘petrol pudding’. In the space of only a few hectic weekends the vehicle has been stripped of upper bodywork, engine, gearbox and axle boxes. The engine itself has been un-seized, stripped and cleaned, and Dorman Engines contacted to help with replacements for the badly worn camshaft drive gears. If the re-assembly of the loco proceeds at the same pace as the dismantling it should be runnable next year.
Smith Rodley Crane – This vehicle has again remained out of use.
Carriage & Wagon News
Great Eastern six-wheel passenger brake No.44 – Work has continued on the restoration of this vehicle with the chipping, priming and painting of the solebars and running gear. Even the wheels now have white-wall tyres! The bodywork is also improving with a coat of Great Eastern blue gloss.
CRC 4-plank wagon – This wagon now has one side and both ends rebuilt and awaits a shunt round the yard so that access can be gained to the other side.
20 ton Great Western Toad No.35251 – The bodywork of this vehicle has been undercoated and is awaiting a top coat.
Great Western Fruit ‘D’ No.2336 – Work has started on stripping paint and undercoating one side, but due to its being kept in the loco shed compound of late where no mains power is available, work on this van has been suspended.
21 ton mineral wagon No.B316711 – This wagon has now had its load of scrap metal removed but still needs the remaining coal dust and slack cleaning out before any restoration can begin.
Covered Carriage Truck S770 – This is a new arrival at Chasewater and belongs to one of our members. It appears to be in excellent condition, requiring only a repaint to cover up the ‘condemned’ symbols painted on the sides by BR. Even the vacuum brake worked first time as proved during a shunting session coupled to Asbestos.
LNWR West Coast Joint Stock 50’ Brake No.20 – The first section of this vehicle to be renovated internally has remained in use as our museum throughout the year. Following this success, work has started on clearing and renovating the other end to initially become Santa’s Grotto at Christmas and then the second half of the museum for next year.
Little or no work has been carried out on the other items of vintage rolling stock, mainly due to the lack of manpower. This is a great shame as there are now a number of half-stripped vehicles stood around under tarpaulins, and winter is approaching.
Wickham DMU E56171 & E50416 – Again, the trailer car ‘Wickham Bar’ has been used as part of our steam hauled passenger train, and in view of its impending departure from Chasewater, little or no work has been carried out on it. The power car has remained out of use for the same reason, with the engines run up occasionally. No date has yet been fixed for the departure of these two vehicles to Llangollen.
Derby Centre Car W59444 – This coach has run all this year coupled to the Wickham trailer to form our passenger train. During the summer the repaint has been completed and it now looks superb in its early BR carmine and cream livery. As a result of this it is rumoured that our Wickham and Gloucester replacements, whatever they may prove to be, will be painted in the same livery, and hopefully to the same excellent standard.
Gloucester trailer E56301 – Having remained at Chasewater throughout the summer, this vehicle finally left for Preston on Monday 4th October. It was tidied up at short notice recently so that it could be used for a special train in August for a visit to Chasewater by the Forestry Commission and local Councillors in connection with the work being carried out to restore the causeway.
Replacement Coaching Stock – The search for replacements for the Gloucester and Wickhams is still on, but as yet nothing suitable has been found at the right price. On one occasion, vehicles from BR which had appeared ideal were found at the last minute to have doubtful ‘asbestos free’ certification and so were not pursued further. Confidence is, however, high that replacements will be found.