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Repair of Birch Grove's Westinghouse pump


[View of air pump installed on engine Fred Bailey eyeing up the newly-repaired pump in position on the cabside. The old black paint tells that this is the pump which served on Fenchurch prior to its repair. The swap was caused by a change in the priority of the repair jobs, with Birch Grove taking precedence over Fenchurch when repair of its pump was already well under way.

The repair work included making a new steam cylinder piston head, new rings on both main pistons and one side of the shuttle valve, and a new piston rod. It has been tested by feeding compressed air into the steam cylinder, but the rest of the brake system is not yet sufficiently advanced to charge the engine's main air reservoir.

The piston rod has been replaced with a new one of stainless steel - a constant problem in the past has been corrosion of the rod whilst the engine is not in use, resulting in the gland packing failing to seal properly. Note the square-headed bolts holding the cylinder covers - newly made to the manufacturer's original specification. The small cup on the right with the shut-off cock is for oiling the air cylinder. [View of piston rod and gland nuts
[View of pump maker's plate The maker's plate on the pump. Years of polishing have worn away the serial number. A lucky consequence of the pump swap is that Birch Grove now has a pump with a maker's plate, and Fenchurch will have one without, both of which are correct for the engines.
The pump with all its pipework installed. (The small-diameter pipe coming down along the tank edge is the drain for the hydrostatic lubricator delivery pipe.) [View of pump with pipework

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