Thursday, 27 October 2011

Waiting for the wheel to turn

Turning an axle on the lathe
With George Sholto now in service and the season drawing to a close, the workshop can concentrate on getting the new 2-foot carriages built and general maintenance. Last time I saw Phil he was fixing the framework to the floor — today he's machining wheels for 2-foot bogies.

The plan is to have a couple of spare bogies so that when the wheels get worn down it is possible to quickly swap them over, and then refurbish the worn set ready for the next time. This should help to keep the Nursery Line running and minimise downtime. Phil assures me they can swap a 2-foot bogie out in around twenty minutes!

2-foot bogie being refurbished

Braking mechanism

This one's nearly ready

No. 994 George Sholto steams into service

Tom gives George Sholto the thumbs up
After the new boiler's arrival last year, and with much work this year, George Sholto passed its boiler inspection a couple of days ago and entered passenger service yesterday. In a stroke of luck, I happened to be around for its second day of service and managed to get some photographs whilst it's still gleaming.

It's really great to finally see it out and about after following its progress through the workshops over the last ten or so months. The other great thing is that it can pull more carriages than Bevan, so it will be really useful for Hallowe'en evening and the Christmas specials when it can get rather busy.

Passing the workshops

Steaming in Peat Field 1

One point of discussion that I'm sure will arise is why the name was changed from Bill Harvey back to George Sholto — I think the reasoning behind it is that now it's been restored to its former glory, it makes sense to use the original name.

Well done to Phil, Tony, John and Brian in the workshops — it looks fantastic.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

George Sholto and a horse named Jack

No. 994 George Sholto
Much progress has been made on George Sholto in the couple of months since my last update. The cab has been painted and refitted. The saddle tank has been painted and fitted with the nameplates. Other brasswork has been refitted, and generally it's looking like a very nearly finished locomotive.