Wednesday, 31 May 2017

A Quiet Day

Tuesday 30th May

Not a huge amount to report this week. I'm afraid it was back to the cleaning and corrosion protecting  of the point rodding .   Six of use in action. Carl S and Keith L took the first train of the day to Gotherington to clear vegetation from the pathway approach to the station and have a general tidy up.

John P and  Jim P went off to Toddington with some concrete mix on the red  flatbed to plant the 7 and 8 coach stopping markers. They now have smart steel black mounting stakes:

Work then continued with cleaning

And painting:

We are now on the second 5 litre can of Rustoleum and have completed 87 rods. Only another 45 ish to go!  Here's the completed pile so far:


Thursday, 18 May 2017

Putting the Block on

Tuesday 16th May

Four of us off to Broadway today to advance some of the work on the signal box.
As we were departing from Winchcombe we were held up by a departing wagon (presumably for Sharpness)

And last week a tube wagon being winched onto a low loader

The main task today was to mount the Block Shelf in the signal box. The two original brackets were too short and have had extensions welded on - they now needed to be cut to length after trying in position to get a suitable gap between the shelf and the top of the levers. The Transit doubled up as a workshop to do this:

First of all we had to hold the brackets in place and mark the hole positions in the roof beams and drill 2 holes  - a bit of an acrobatic performance because the roof is quite a height


Then to drill the holes in the Block shelf to match the brackets

Have we got the gap right?  Looks OK to me

Leaning- on test discovers that there is a significant lateral movement. A central horizontal bracket needs to be made and will be fitted to prevent this. Also a hollow pillar will be fitted for centre support  - this will double up to conceal the wiring. Otherwise it looks the business.

Meanwhile down in  the Locking Room Malcolm was wrestling with the fitting of the remaining connecting rods for the point operating levers. The ones we had were not the correct length so they have been shortened and re- welded  ( courtesy of out C&W colleagues) . They connect the lever tails to the angle cranks. Further rodding will then reach through the tunnel to trackside. Here's the top  connection

And here's the bottom

Fitting the split pins to retain the pivot pins in the lever tails is a very fiddly job . Malcolm managed it after uttering a few choice words

It was a relief to have a day off from cleaning  the dreaded point rodding today. Four of us have signed up for the grand rail  clipping at Little  Buckland tomorrow.


Monday, 8 May 2017

At Last!

Delighted to be able to say that the Toddington Concetrator is now working fully!

It always did work reliably to the trackside phones but we knew that we had a problem  with low audio level when  a signalman used it to talk from Todd to Winchcombe after much brain searching the problem was down to the design of the new modern transmission bridge. Whilst this coped with calling betwen boxes  the tiny DIL relays did not have enough inductance to  to ensure that the audio went out to line.

The change to  a differently wound relay has done the trick and its now fully working

We will now steadily upgrade the other units that have been installed  and continue with building the final one for Broadway

Mike S

PS We always did have a backup  system via the dial up phones throughout the system

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Same again......

Tuesday 2nd May

Six of us in action again at Winchcombe. A bit more signal preparation work to complete. Since last week the direction indicator signal was extracted from its moorings with the help of the JCB and the Telehandler. (wasn't there to get any pictures of the event). Here it is now lying on its side

The two wooden platforms were looking in need of a bit of preservation, so Jim P set to with a can of creosote. Both platforms have been a favourite stopping off point for the local bird life and were well coated in birdlime - another cleaning job required first

The wooden signal post still needs more fittings positioning. Today's task was to fix the lamp case support bracket. The spectacle plate was mounted first so that the lamp lens could be positioned as closely as possible to the centre of the red spectacle (note that the spectacles are much larger on this signal). Holes then drilled through the post to secure with screwed rodding. John P and Carl S were in charge of this:


We now need to modify a down rod to the correct length to connect the spectacle to the balance weight arm - a cut and weld job to follow.

While we have got the two other signals for Broadway north lying in the yard it was appropriate to make sure that we have finials which fit and  with holes that line up with holes in the post. An  awkward job to do once the posts are in position. These two will need a bit of packing to keep them vertical. Jim P wrestled with this after finishing the creosoting

And of course we all took our turns with the continued cleaning and painting of the point rodding. Now 28 finished and stacked with 2 more almost done. This is going to keep us busy for a few more weeks yet. Well worth the effort though because they will look pretty smart along the edge of Broadway platform for all to see!!