27/08/2018 – It came off in my hands (honest)!

A bumper update from Quorn Wagon &Wagon this week, as we’ve had an impromptu work week. Matt and I took some days off work, and we all made the most of the bank holiday weekend.

Work on the LMS brake van, M730562, has finally been completed and was shunted out to the south end of the van train today (Bank Holiday Monday). On Wednesday Matt finished off the upholstery and a few little jobs inside. As the van was removed from the dock, Jake finished painting the east side underframe and the long running boards.

Now we have finished the LMS Brake, we have started the Southern Brake Van (S56010) with gusto! This is the 3rd concurrent brake van we have done this year, and we now appear to be settling into the swing of things when it comes to brake van sides and their rectification. The Southern brake has not been attended to for at least 10 years, and this has shown in the bodywork. The way the body is fashioned means there are a lot of areas for water to sit and cause rot and decay.

Thursday and Friday were spent stripping the rotten side planks of the brake, cleaning and chipping the steel T-section uprights that connect the floor to the roof and removing the expired upholstery. Once one bit was removed, often a few more bits cames along with it, leading to the phrase in the title! Matt found an original interior wall panel underneath another, where the livery applied was the cream and bauxite we have been using in the BR brake van, and the LMS brake van. Measuring the demarcation line shows it at 3ft 5.5inches, which is only 0.5inches less than what we have been using. Rain (read massive deluge) did also stop play for a while on Friday.

Saturday arrives, and so does our replacement wood! Our timber merchant, Harlow Brothers of Long Whatton, have sorted us out again, and have cut, machined and tanalised the planks needed for this van. Cut to length and rebated into the corner section, they fitted a treat and look great! We were also able to strip some of the body planks from a Southern PMV body being broken up behind the loco shed at Loughborough. These were cut down to replace any boards fitted next to the ducket.

Sunday saw the same action taking place on the dockside, with 6 body planks being replaced there, and some of the interior plywood cut and fitted. Monday saw little jobs being undertaken, including refitting all the veranda door tops, lower floor quadrant cutting and fitting, filling strips manufacture, and a door plank to replicate and fit (I’m proud of that one, but took no pictures during the manufacture!)

I finish with some night time shots of the Yellow Coach and that south yard. Both Matt and I, both living an hour away; both in Lincolnshire, made use of the bunkroom in the Yellow coach and stayed a few days at the railway. it’s not very often you see views like this, and I’m sure some of the passengers on the evening trains were surprised to see the lights still on.

Once we’d finished our daylight work, Matt and I tidied the mess area in the coach and used our limited upholstery skills to manufacture a new seat base for the mess area. One of the cushions was missing when Nick and I first started using the coach as a base for our wagon restoration activities (around 2012). At that time this didn’t matter as there was just Nick, myself and Alex (Nick’s son), and the occasional visitor Now, we find ourselves in need of some extra sitting space for a larger team, and our visitors. We can now seat 18 around the 2 tables!

We are happy with our progress, and are thinking about organizing a proper work week next year!

Thanks for reading!

Author: Ross Loades

Wagon Basher and Systems Engineer in the Rail Industry

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