03/07/22 – Raising a Flag for the Vans

Welcome to this weeks’ update from the team at Quorn with Matt, Nick, Ross, Jake, Richard and myself all around during the weekend. The first job was admiring our superb new team flag that Matt had sourced.

Saturday, and we can report the completion of two box vans, being B784409 and B777171, receiving final signwriting after bodyside door & panel replacements and repairs.

Progress was also made with the signwriting on B783082, the right hand panel detail and Circuit Symbol yellow circle being applied.

Nick made a start on the next van needing attention, B763305. The bodyside panels were scraped to remove the distressed and loose paint.

The Volvo received some attention, pumping up a tyre that appeared to have deflated due to a sticky valve which was probably disturbed when we checked the tyre pressures last week. Ross also took a look at the hydraulic lift locking pin mechanism which was being temperamental, an actuator split pin had come adrift causing the pin to drop out; replacements fixed the problem.

The Bogie Bolster D B928135 also received our attention this weekend; after purchasing some more Lithium EP3 grease for the axle bearings, the east side axleboxes of the wagon could be dealt with.

In turn I removed the axlebox covers, and as we found on the west side, the insides of the covers had been painted; therefore the covers were thoroughly cleaned and all traces of paint removed before refitting and the pumping in of some new grease. By the end of Saturday the north end bogie was completed.

The group had a new arrival on Saturday, a 3T Brush Electric Pony. This was quickly trialled by hauling the recently refurbished Brutes.

Making the most of Sunday mornings’ sunshine, Nick & Ross progressed with the body side panels of B763305. Applying a coat of 50/50 PVA sealer, then allowing to dry before a coat of white primer.

Matt continued signwriting with the number panel and Circuit Symbol on B783082, this completes another box van.

I carried on with the south end axleboxes of the Bogie Bolster D B928135; Jake had also popped in and lent a hand with a bit of grease pumping. Once the axlebox covers were refitted, a white undercoat was applied.

Whilst the primer was drying on the bodysides of B763305 Nick turned his attention to scraping down the bodyside panels and doors of the next van, B786348, then applying a coat of PVA sealer before the white primer.

With the Bogie Bolster D B928135 nearing completion we decided it was time to do a full vehicle inspection and brake test. The old Vacuum Brake test rig was awoken and coupled to the wagon, then full brake operation and leakage tests were completed. A few items were noted including a missing axle upkeep split pin, a dry coupling, a missing vacuum pipe dummy seal and a small leak from a vacuum branch-pipe, all of which were attended to.

Whilst the coupling was being oiled, Matt applied the No.1 wheel identification arrow.

With the white undercoat drying quickly I was able to apply the yellow gloss to the axleboxes. The final item to be completed next week will be the red bands on the east side axleboxes before the wagon can be signed-off to go back into traffic.

A busy weekend with a number of wagons reaching completion helped boost team spirit and the sense of achievement, so we celebrated by raising 3-flags for the 3 completed box-vans.

Thanks for reading, all the best, Dave.

Author: Dave Bower

Retired Rail Vehicle Testing Engineer and Railway Author

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