18/02/18 Brakes, Brake Vans and Broken Floors

Quorn Wagon and Wagon have had a busy weekend, we have worked on B850498, B954268 and prep work has been started for B762855. The van train has also been de-branded following the 2 recent photo charters and the Winter Gala.

Matt in the distance removing branding posters from the van train.


As mentioned here previously, the donor chassis is that of a tank wagon. We know this was a saddle mounted tank wagon, built in 1942 for the Air Ministry. These had non-coacting push brakes. this means both sides can be applied independently of each other. Originally the push brake rods had wooden spacers, these were found to be rotten and could rotate and fall onto the railhead.

Push brake rods, modified to the BR style spacers.

The wood was removed and replaced with galvanised steel pipe, as was used by BR to repair these items.

It was decided to replace a single floorboard in the south end of this van. The old plank was removed and a suitable replacement found and cut to fit in the hole. The new plank was then dropped back into the hole, and the hole drilled for the bolt. Job done, you would think. Unfortunately, as with many jobs in preservation the 5-minute jobs often take much longer as was the case here. In the end, 5-floor planks were replaced in this van. Under some of the boards was found some pea gravel, evidently from its time as a grounded body at Swithland Sand and Gravel.

The imitation shock-gear the Matt has conjured up has now also been removed in anticipation of the vehicle moving to the loco shed at Loughborough for the completion of the body to chassis welding.

After the photo charter on 12th Feb, the van train was deposited back to us with B954268 as the brake van for the set. It was looking a bit worse for wear, with some planks under the East side ducket having rotted through, and a layer of green slime covering the north end of the vehicle. Whilst cleaning a step board was found to be rotten, and this was replaced too.

Matt has also spent some time tidying up the letters on the side of this van, which are currently stickers. If the resources can be found, it is hoped this van could be repainted this year, once B850498 and B854782 are completed.
In other news

Whilst having a hunt for props to fill the theatrical van, it was found the B762855 has a few holes in the roof. This occurs when the roofing felt has cracked, due temperature cycling hot and cold, and the flex that the vehicle is put under when running in the train. We have obtained another lorry sheet on site and spent this evening cleaning this down over the turntable pit, ready for next weekend, where it is intended for the roof covering to be replaced. Watch this space!

Thanks for reading!

Author: Ross Loades

Wagon Basher and Systems Engineer in the Rail Industry

%d bloggers like this: