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Bluebell Railway Atlantic Group
2006 progress

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February 2006

Roof girders up on Atlantic Shed - David Chappell The roof girders went up on the atlantic shed in late January (photo from David Chappell), and the remaining components for the shed have now been delivered. It is on course for completion within the £60,000 budgeted, and will, in addition to being essential for the furtherance of this project, be a great investment for the future.

The castings of the final pair of driving wheels have been delivered. This means that we now have all the wheels, although putting them onto axles and fitting tyres and crank pins will be an expensive business.

Progress on Atlantic Shed 1st April - Fred Bailey

April 2006

These three photos from Fred Bailey show the progress in the construction of the shed. To the right, on Saturday 1st April, much of the cladding has gone up, with just the capping and edgeing pieces to be done.

Below, by Sunday 9th April, the scafolding was down and the exterior was almost finished, although there is one more roller shutter door to fit. The loco components are at least now protected from the elements, although it still has to be lined with insulation and plywood to make it less susceptible to condensation, so that machined components can be stored in it with less risk of corrosion.

Progress on Atlantic Shed 9th April - Fred Bailey Interior of Atlantic Shed 9th April - Fred Bailey

TW apprentices work on the tender underframe - Fred Bailey

August 2006

The official opening of the shed has been the main event so far this year, and at it the project was given two items for the locomotive - its original regulator handle, and a plate for the interior of the cab indicating "Class H2".

Since the opening of the building, things have been moving forward. As is already known, Keith Sturt is employed by the group on a two day a week basis. As from June, Fred Bailey has joined him on a similar arrangement. Even so the task is quite daunting, but with two of us now concentrating our efforts progress will improve.

An important new addition to the project are apprentices from Thames Water. We will be using them for a range of jobs in the near future. It is part of the project brief to encourage the aquisition of skills by apprentices. The photo right shows them opening up holes for the new horn cheeks on the tender chassis.

Drilling the reinforcing plates - Fred Bailey General view down the shop - Fred Bailey

Above: Drilling the reinforcing plates that are rivetted to the mainframes behind the rear driving wheels.
     General view down the shop.

Rear outer mainframes drilled - Fred Bailey Rear outer mainframes drilled - Fred Bailey

Above: Rear outer mainframes drilled ready to go into the main workshops for the milling of the sides of the horn openings.
     One driving hornstay (solid) and one leading coupled hornstay (with hole). These are steel castings; we have 2 of each!

New bogie centre casting - Fred Bailey New bogie centre casting - Fred Bailey

Two views of the new steel bogie centre casting.

The first hole going through the mainframes - Fred Bailey


Left: The first hole going through the mainframes! The first of a great many.

In addition to the above, the tender horns are rivetted and the tender steps are nearing completion. There is a new stretcher in the tender that supports the air brake cylinder. The patterns for the cylinders have just gone to the foundry - 3 off are required - 1 for the tender and 2 for the locomotive. Steel is being cut in preparation for the fabricating of the many frame stretchers.

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More recent news updates

  • 2007 - Main locomotive frames erected.
  • 2008 - Components for the cylinders and valve chest delivered - frames riveted - forged billets for connecting and coupling rods delivered.
  • 2009 - First motion parts water-jet cut from forged blanks - bogie frames assembled.
  • 2010 - Cylinders and valve chests fabricated, air brake cylinders completed, bogie and trailing wheelsets completed.
  • 2011 - Coupling rods and axleboxes delivered, reverser mechanism completed, crossheads cast.
  • 2012 - Valve and cylinder liners fitted - lifting and reversing arms and axlebox crowns delivered - castings for mudhole doors, regulator and whistle valves, reversing shaft clutch, blast-pipe cap, crosshead slippers, 'J' pipe and eight eccentric halves received - Bogie and trailing axle now support the frames - Valve chest and cylinders fitted to frames, covers fitted, and pressure tested.
  • 2013 - Cylinders, valves, slidebars and crossheads completed - driving wheels completed - valve gear components delivered - lifting frames constructed.
  • 2014 - Weigh (reversing) shaft and air-clutch fitted, axleboxes metalled, machined and fitted, wheel rotators constructed, eccentric rods, valve and reversing gear, pipework for brakes and steam heat completed, locomotive wheeled, cylinders clad and crossheads fitted.
  • 2015 - Rolling Chassis completed with all motion erected. Running plates and splashers completed, along with cab sides and front.
  • 2016 - Connecting and coupling rods fitted, valves set. Superheater header delivered. Revision of boiler internal pipework completed. Cab roof riveted together and fitted. Mud-hole patches welded into boiler. Flue tubes (with screw ends welded on) delivered.
  • 2017 - Major progress on the boiler overhaul, and with the safety valves.
  • 2018 - Boiler tubes fitted, tender made mobile, complex parts of the boiler cladding made.
  • Most recent news.

Older news updates

Project Funding

A fund raising appeal for the cash required to complete the project was launched in 2000, and a combination of gifts made via the Bluebell Railway Trust, and standing orders set up to provide a steady income to the project have now made over a third of the total available. Whilst this has provided funding for the present work, more is going to be needed to complete the project, and the best way in which you can help is by setting up a small, regular, standing order to the Bluebell Railway Trust under Gift Aid, since this enables the Trust to reclaim the basic rate tax you have paid, and (if you are a higher rate tax-payer) enables you to reclaim some tax as well.

A combined Donation, GiftAid and Standing Order form is available as a pdf document.

For further details contact David Jones.

A donation is made to this project when you buy Historical Transport Film videos from Beulah.

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