|The failed gasket|
|Mike (l) & Steve, annealing the delivery pipe|
|Mating faces lapped in|
An item noted on the same day that had eluded me hitherto, is that at the back of the shed, there is a nice shiny new backhead for a Swindon number 1 boiler. There are a lot of candidate locos on our line that it could be for (7903, 3850 or 2874 for instance), but in fact it is for 2807 in anticipation of her heavy general overhaul to come at the end of 2019.
|2807's new backhead.|
As mentioned in the last blog post, the DMU has been withdrawn from traffic for a while, to permit the change of a roller bearing that is giving up the ghost. That left a hole in the timetable on several days between Christmas & New Year. On the 27th, one of the diesels hauled a rake of coaches on the DMU's path. For the 28th & 31st however, the timetable was changed from a blue (1 x steam & 1 x DMU) to a purple (2 x steam). This of course meant that extra crews needed to be allocated in a hurry. I ended up firing Foremarke Hall on the 28th at rather short notice. This was one of those wheels of Karma things, as I had helped John clear the ash pan the day before, which made my life considerably easier when it came to prepping the loco in the morning.
|Having some water space to play with would have been nice though.|
|It amused me anyway.|
|Waiting for 35006 to head off to CRC, before we could aim for Broadway...|
|...note the nice new aqueduct...|
|...and this is one of a number of new signal posts|
|We'll still be running round the hard way for a while longer.|
|The cleaner, Matthew getting in some shovelling practice|
|Steam where steam should not be|
|The white scar on the pipe tells its own tale|
|Steve polishes off the last of his Yule log|
|Late sun at Gotherington|
|Crossing 35006 at Winchcombe|
|The cupboard was bare|
|Steve launching one of the last few bits of lighting up wood onto the fire|
|He seems to have found a bit of the old Scottish coal in there|
|Meanwhile, back on Foremarke Hall, the replacement steam heat pipe was looking good|
|John was the prep driver, seen here oiling up 35006|
The previous day's crew hadn't left us much by way of coal... and I knew that under that thin veneer of lumps, was a mountain of dust.
|Not much to go on.|
Heading off into the shed to collect the lamps, I was a little surprised to find that one of 35006's lamps was still lit. They are capable of spontaneously reigniting shortly after being blown out it seems. This also explains why we no longer keep the lamps in the oil store.
|The Olympic flame?|
|Steve drops off the token.|
|Crossing the class 37 at Winchcombe|
|Steve has a go at firing|
|We too had a bucket full of Scottish coal, the smoke is the give away|
|They must have been burning Welsh coal in this hut at Gotherington|
|Foremarke Hall sets off into the New Year|
Happy New Year!