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Quainton News Archive - Quainton News No. 102 - October 2009

Engineering Report Autumn 09 - Adrian Corke - Head of Engineering

The year so far has seen several projects completed or on the verge of completion, as well as the usual maintenance and repairs of the locomotives and rolling stock. There have also been several new members that have joined the ranks of the Engineering Team, and this is always very encouraging.

Metropolitan No. 1

Met 1 made a rare foray out from Quainton earlier in the year and visited the Mid Hants Railway. Unfortunately she suffered from some leaks on the front tube plate. The front tube plate has four tube holes blanked off, which we did not know of until the leaks started. Despite much investigation we cannot discover when this tube plate was fitted and why the extra holes are there. The tube plate has been welded up, and four tubes were replaced around the welded repair. Met passed its steam test by our inspector, and was kept hot for most of week commencing 17th August. She has now re-entered service and everything appears to have settled down nicely. The boiler inspector will inspect the boiler at its next examination in January, as he is concerned that some of the tube ends in the smoke box have now corroded away completely. Met's 10 year inspection is due in January 2011, and a full assessment of what will be required will be carried out during 2010, until then she remains available for service.

Coventry No. 1

Following the boiler and driving axle repairs, which were hindered by some of the worst weather for some years, Coventry has now settled down, however as with all repairs of this nature, it then shows up other areas that will require attention in the future. Unfortunately, the next repairs will involve removing the wheel sets and overhauling the axle boxes and horn guides. I intend to continue to monitor the situation for now.


Following a cry for help from the Lincolnshire Wolds Railway, Millom has been hired out until January 2010. Unfortunately, she ran a hot box at the Lincolnshire Wolds the week after she arrived there, they have accepted that the locomotive had no problems when it was delivered to them, although they cannot find a reason for the bearing to pick up. I visited to show them how to remove the axle box without disturbing too much of the locomotive. The bearing was scraped in and the locomotive is now back in service. Both injectors have been refurbished by South Coast Steam, this was a job that was scheduled for the end of this year, and has been brought forward by necessity.


Suffered with steam brake problems early in the season, a large spring has now been fitted inside the steam cylinder, and this seems to have eased the problems. The brake valve will be overhauled during the winter to see if this will improve matters.

Beattie then failed during preparation on Sunday 16th August with a major leak between the boiler and smoke box tube plate. In consultation with our boiler inspector, the leak has been seal welded, and passed for further use, however there is still a small leak at the end of the weld, we will need to wait and see if this seals itself, or whether we have a larger repair on our hands. Beattie will not be visiting Cornwall this year as Bodmin do not have any plans for her.

No. 66

Has now returned to Quainton, with the major components being in the Down Yard restoration shed, work will not start on 66 until Swanscombe is back in traffic. Work is now in progress on a project plan, with a view to completing the chassis in mid 2010.

A quotation has been requested for the boiler repairs, this will at least give us an idea of how much money will be required to get the engine into traffic by early 2011.


Continues to operate reliably at Spa Valley.


Much effort has been expended on Swanscombe this year, and what started out as an overhaul of the valve gear rapidly escalated to include a re-bore of cylinders along with new pistons, rings and piston rods. All of the valve gear has been pinned and bushed. One unexpected job was the overhaul of the regulator and a new dry steam pipe in the boiler, this took up a lot of time making sure everything was aligned correctly.


Failed late in 2008, and it has been necessary to refurbish the generator and traction motor in situ. I'm not sure if Ray Jackson had the patience of a saint or merely that he was determined that it would not beat him! The locomotive will now receive a full service and inspection ready for the winter.

Mk1 SK

This vehicle has had a complete repaint, as it was looking very faded. The Waddesdon side will have received another coat of paint by the time you read this.

Shark Van

This vehicle should be out shopped by the time you read this.

Stove R

This vehicle was removed from the museum in preparation for its restoration. Once complete the vehicle will become part of the up yard passenger train, the intention is that our disabled guests will be able to travel in comfort with their families, something they cannot do at present.

Hibberd Diesel Tarmac

Work has been progressing slowly under the guidance of Bix Curtis, and it has now taken its place as the works shunted in the down yard.

New Engineering Facility

Your Executive committee approved the conversion of the now vacated Ivatt Shed to a new engineering facility as funds permit. The inner building has now been demolished and the overgrown trees have been cut down ready for the roots to be removed once the season finishes. Much time is currently wasted travelling between the two yards, and this will allow us to take on more of our own work in the coming years. The plans are for a two track shed, with a machine shop and offices and mess room above at one end. Both tracks will be concreted in to allow the jacking of locomotives and coaches. An area for servicing of items of plant and other equipment is also included.

The text in this Quainton Railway Society publication was written in 2009 and so does not reflect events in the 5+ years since publication. The text and photographs are repeated verbatim from the original publication, with only a few minor grammar changes but some clarifying notes are added if deemed necessary. The photos from the original publication are provided as scans in this internet version of this long out of print publication.

Engineering Report Autumn 09 - Adrian Corke - Head of Engineering - Quainton News No. 102 - October 2009

Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
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Page Updated: 02 December 2017