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Clan Line Overhaul and Return to Traffic

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by Big Al, Mar 2, 2016.

  1. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    As is typical of the MNLPS, they are quietly going about their business of bringing Clan Line back to the main line in conjunction with LNWR Heritage who have been contracted to do some of the work. The text below was shared with www.ukheritagehub.co.uk as their latest update.
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    I am pleased to report that 2016, so far, as seen some continuing good progress on the boiler and frames of 35028 at LNWR-H. Since our last update, in Issue 61, stay removal is under way and the new boiler plate work has arived. This plate work is to replace the worn section of the lower inner firebox. Following on from the non-destructive testing on the frames during the final months of 2015, cracks were found in Clan Line's frame stretchers. These have now been repaired successfully.

    The left and middle steam chests have been bored in January and because of their new slight increase in diameter new valve heads have been ordered. These valve heads will then have to be machined to the new size of the valve chests. The piston rods have been ground and returned to Crewe for refitting. To match the new size of these rods new packings are being manufactured.

    The bogie and Bissel have had new tyres fitted at South Devon Railway and these are, this week (w/c 15th of Feb) being painted by our volunteers. These are planned to be back at Crewe in late February. We have also received our loco springs back from overhaul and recertification. Our volunteers are repairing the ashpans at Stewarts Lane and the various other components we have refurbished are now in the final stages of painting.

    Whilst the loco is out of traffic the opportunity has been taken to overhaul the MNLPS support coach ‘Mercator.’ The work on Mercator will be undertaken at Eastleigh and to facilitate this, it was towed from Crewe on the 12th of January.

    Another positive note is there are only 15 small tubes left to be sponsored, so thank you to the people who have donated and please check out www.Clan-Line.org.uk for how you can sponsor the remaining for £60 each. You will also find on our website details on fire bars and firebox stay appeals as well as more details on our continuing overhaul.
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    MNLPS members have also been contacted over the (inevitable) shortfall of funds to complete the work due largely to additional jobs that were revealed once the loco was stripped down. And this was on a loco that at the point it was withdrawn from service still looked as though it was ex-works!

    So anyone with spare cash (and the inclination) will, I am sure, be welcome on www.Clan-Line.org.uk if they wish to make a donation. (Go to the 'Fundraising' section.)
     
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  2. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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  3. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    Some recent developments with Clan Line that might interest everyone but also an important piece of news that illustrates how difficult it is to predict precisely when a locomotive will return from a major overhaul.

    The driving wheels are now back at Crewe after attention at the South Devon Railway and that means work can crack on with the mechanical and reassembly side of the overhaul. However, following some detailed de-scaling work an area of corrosion have been identified around the join between the front tube plate and the boiler wall. This is repairable but that is not the style of the MNLPS who have opted for a new tube plate at circa £30k - a non-budgeted additional expense. What this will do is move the anticipated completion date forward into 2017, probably to around March/April time.

    The chairman has told members that this will still mean that Clan Line will feature in the 50th Anniversary celebrations of the End of Southern Steam and discussions are taking place with UKRT to that end. However, as is inevitable, money has become an issue.

    As you may know, the MNLPS receives no external funding or grants and relies on its various benefactors and members. That is quite an 'ask'. With 10,000 registered members on National Preservation you can see how a modest sum from everyone could make quite a difference. But Clan Line is just one of many heritage projects that deserve support and this is not a fund raising message. That said, financial times are difficult at present and this is just an update of where the overhaul is at.

    I don't have any authority to ask anything on behalf of the MNLPS but thought the information should be shared. Have also added below an address for any donations that anyone might wish to make. Please mention Nat Pres if you do.

    The MNLPS Fundraising Officer, Flat 22, Sherborne Court, 66-68 Upperton Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN21 1LU.
     
  4. Johnb

    Johnb Part of the furniture

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    Al, can I just add if you go to the Clan Line website under fundraising you can download a Gift Aid form and as I think everyone knows this enhances the gift by a tax credit. It's also possible to make a direct payment via PayPal
     
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  5. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    The latest magazine update for members on the overhaul at Crewe has gone into detail on the extent to which the replacement of the front tubeplate has pushed the completion date for the locomotive towards the spring of 2017. I had not realised that the fabrication of a smokebox end tubeplate on a MN is a first in preservation. This work is being undertaken by South Devon Railway Engineering and it appears that this is going well. That leaves the unplanned additional cost as a focus for further fundraising and donations continue to be gratefully received.

    Apart from this key work, much else of the locomotive is getting ever closer to assembly, or what needs to be done is on track. Clan Line now sits on her refurbished wheels with new tyres as shown in the photoset below:
    http://www.clan-line.org.uk/news/crewe-overhaul-update-14

    Ever mindful of one of the society's enshrined objectives - i,e, to maintain Clan Line as an operational mainline locomotive - members have recently been informed of an important action that may help to alleviate the ongoing bugbear of the national network, that is gauging. The wheels that now sit underneath Clan Line are slightly smaller than they were previously. Whilst it's only the order of three quarters of an inch, what it is intended is that Clan Line will come out of this overhaul at a height of 13ft 0¼in as distinct from its current registered height of 13ft 1in. MNs are already a fairly gauge friendly class but this really makes sense although whether it results in her being able to fit eastwards under the ever-moving track beneath the A30 Oborne Bridge near Sherborne is another matter!
     
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  6. ragl

    ragl Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the informative update Al. Regarding the front tubeplate, is the one being replaced from the B.R. era?

    Cheers,

    Alan
     
  7. andalfi1

    andalfi1 Active Member

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    Looking at this, it suggests that 1.1/2" has been removed from the tyre diameter, which would reduce loco height by 3/4", or has half that amount been reduced from elsewhere, to give the 3/4" overall reduction ?
     
  8. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    Yes. This is the one she had in BR days. There was an option to repair the plate but as you may know it is not the style of the MNLPS to do that kind of thing as, anyway, the life expectancy of a repair would be less than a new fabrication.
     
  9. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    The height reduction is being achieved by a combination of attention to the drivers themselves and also the new tyres as they are fitted. The MNLPS CME says that Clan Line is gauged currently at 13 ft 1in maximum height. The intention is to end up with her at 13ft 0¼in.

    By way of an aside it's worth noting that MNs when rebuilt were to a height of 12ft 11in (according to British Transport Commission data) so she clearly has grown a bit as she has got older!.
     
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  10. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Resident of Nat Pres

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    Happens to us all!

    Tom
     
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  11. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Resident of Nat Pres

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    Not sure I understand that - I can understand taking down the tyre diameter (though that is quite an expensive option, in the sense you will get fewer miles before the next replacement set is required) but I can't see how you can easily reduce the diameter of the wheel centres, without affecting their structural integrity? Or is it an adjustment to the springing so that the axle boxes sit slightly higher in the horns?

    Tom
     
  12. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    I'm the wrong person to ask on that one. All I can say is that members have been told that through machining of the wheels the intention is to reduce the height of Clan Line a tad. As I interpreted what I read it came over as more than just fiddling with tyre depth but that may be all that is going to happen. Axles and horn guides we're not mentioned.
     
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  13. Johnb

    Johnb Part of the furniture

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    I got my copy of Southern Express this morning and it is clearly stated that they are machining off 5/8" off the tyres which would give the required 1.5 ". One thing I didn't understand was the statement that it was intended to return the loco to its pre works height of 13' 0 1/4" or below. Does this mean it has grown 3/4" over it's 10 year boiler certificate?
     
  14. andalfi1

    andalfi1 Active Member

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    That statement is anything but clear, as stated up thread, the current registered height is 13' 1", to reduce the overall height to 13' 1/4" you have to remove 1.1/2" from the tyre diameter (3/4" per side) to lower the loco by the required 3/4".
     
  15. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    I've been given more information about what the MNLPS is doing with the height of Clan Line and this develops further what members will have read in the house magazine. Thanks to the CME for what follows.

    As rebuilt, Merchant Navy Pacifics measured 12ft 11in to the chimney with the highest point of the locomotive at the cab ventilator and the nut on top of the dome, both at 13ft 1in. (These figures are rounded up values by one sixteenth of an inch from the original drawings). So Clan Line has been running around registered as 13ft 1in for Network Rail (NR) gauging purposes.

    The work to reduce her height has primarily been to machine and profile the drivers but the horns will also be dropped by one eighth of an inch. The intention is that when she is re-registered by NR it will be at a height three quarters of an inch less than previously. (I gather that such small differences are in fact quite significant on the gauging computer).

    I hope that clarifies things. Rest assured you won't notice the difference although hopefully the NR infrastructure will.
     
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  16. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    Very sound logic, wonder if 35018 will be the same?
     
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  17. Steamage

    Steamage Part of the furniture

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    There are various ways you can support Clan Line's overhaul. If you'd like to buy a firebar or firebox stay, or "just" make a donation, then have look at the Fundraising page. If you'd like one of OVP's fine DVDs, try the Store page.

    They've also got copies of my 2-disc production, "Clan Line, 2007-2015", though it's not currently listed on that page. There's a description and a selection of stills from the production on my web-site - see the link in my signature. If you want that on DVD, drop a line to the address on the MNLPS Fundraising page. If you want it on BluRay (1080-line high definition), let me know.
     
  18. martin1656

    martin1656 Part of the furniture

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    Talking of which, won't it be uncanny if both return to the mainline at the same time, Do the test circuits of Crewe and Carnforth overlap? it would be strange if it ends up with both passing each other whilst on test :)
     
  19. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    Has MNLPS said whether it will be arranging with a heritage line for some running in prior to full relaunch?
     
  20. Johnb

    Johnb Part of the furniture

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    Nothing has been said about it yet and I don't think it happened after the last overhaul. It's still been the most reliable main line loco of the lot, as far as I recall its only ever failed in traffic once.
     

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