News and Updates

14/08/22 – Classic & Vintage Vehicles

Welcome to this week’s super-hot update from Quorn, with Nick, Matt, Ross and myself on-site.

Ross changed Hectors inverter, which after a little hesitance brought the 12v side alive. Although faults remain with the rear lights and indicators it does mean the main isolator now operates properly and he can see in the dark; the remaining faults are likely to be wiring as a fault is apparent.

New battery leads were also fitted to the jury rigged battery system and the image below serves as an example of up-to date electronic miniaturisation.

Matt woke Madge up giving her a wash before Ross and Matt loaded her with our bulk load for display.

I used Test Car 2’s compressor to pump up Madge’s tyres; I then joined Matt in the ‘office’ to prepare the signwriting templates for our Most Important Van.

Madge was joined in the yard by Jerry, my Stag, Nicks Morris Minor, Danny, Hector and our Tug, making quite a colourful line-up from our group to support the GCR’s Summer Classic and Vintage Vehicle Festival.

Matt and I continued with the work on the van, yellow and black panels being applied.

Ross and Nick attended to the sleeper crossing that was very much in need of attention.

I made a start with some signwriting on the van, applying the ZQO TOPS code to the chalkboards.

Test Car 2’s compressor was called upon again to assist with air for the tyres of a 125cc BSA Bantam from the TPO Museum in the LNER Postal set.

Ross then assisted getting it going, providing a customary ride-test.

Some late evening floodlit striping was carried out by Matt on the west side van doors, the livery really beginning to take shape.

The focus for Sunday was again on the van, Matt working at the south end marking out and applying the wasp stripes.

I got the signwriting brushes out and made a start on the west side number panel using the templates we had prepared on Saturday. First chalking up, then working bottom-up with the white paint.

Madge was joined again in the yard by Nick’s Morris Minor and my Stag. In order to prepare for the unloading of Madge’s trailer later in the day, Ross and Matt took the pick-up to unload a few parcels from one of the vans to make space for the bulk load. The pick-up was however out of gauge to pass under the gazebo, so rather than take it down the two-stage lift and drive-through method was used.

As the sun came round the west side of the van in the afternoon we had to put up some shade to allow us to work safely in the heat. An old gazebo cover was spread over the end of the van and the tank wagon which was coupled to it providing a good amount of shade for Matt.

I used our new gazebo positioned to give me some shade to continue with the signwriting.

By the end of the day we had completed the west side & south end wasp stripes, and the west side number panel.

As Matt said last week, we intended to reveal the final livery for our Most Important Van this week; unfortunately due to late delivery of the paint we have not been able to reveal the actual body colour, so here it is on the diagram; BR Engineers Olive BS381C 220, commonly known as Olive Green which was introduced by BR in 1967.

Hopefully the Olive Green paint will be here before next weekend so we can reveal the colour actually on the van; tune in to see how we get on.

All the best, Dave

07/08/22 – Green?

We start with final touches being applied to 765272, South swan neck, lamp irons and a second coat of bauxite for the southern vent.

As well as the completion of the east side data panel.

This completes this vehicles repaint, with some roof repairs remaining to carry out. Just a pair of closing images of the vehicle as was and as is now.

Steve and I took a quick visit to Rothley to remove and repaint the sign on the former sheet store/goods shed. This returned to Quorn and was painted black, sign written and the frame glossed white.

Back at Quorn, and attention turning to arguably the most important van in the fleet, well to us anyhow.

Same as always, Scrape, with a little more than usual being removed.



Although with the additional step of fill, sand and fill. As a static van this will add a little more life to the ply which would vibrate out of an inservice vehicle.

Then the start of the undercoating, any guesses about livery?

The chalkboards were also removed, Scraped, PVA’d and primed.

Between waiting for items to dry we also applied a smart coat of black to the garage.

Followed by a trip back to Rothley to refit the now completed sign.

With Nick back from Scout camp, we trial fit two BRUTEs in his van. This is in preparation for a future road trip.

A touch of sealer was then applied to 854097.

Then once that had cured more paint, not only green but a touch of yellow too.

I’ll leave you a week to figure it out, see if you guess correctly next week.

31/07/22 – 100

We start this update with the announcement that we have reached 100 rail vehicles. Number 100 has been on the railway for a number of years and was transferred to us earlier this year. Currently carrying the number 771908 the vehicle is in fact 781908, a 1960 Wolverton build diagram 1/211 Palvan from lot 3310.

On to the update, it has been another busy one for us, with Dave carrying out some midweek work, applying primer and undercoat to B765272’s east side. Followed by a touch of gloss the day after.

Dave and I popped to Rothley to complete the east side of our little Mineral Project. Our thanks not only to C&W for asking us to do something unusual but to the Windcutter Group for giving permission to do that unusual thing to one of their vehicles.

Not content with signwriting one vehicle we headed to Quorn and the west side of 765272. Dave applying the left hand details whilst I applied the right and XP square.

So why this hybrid scheme I hear you say. Well quite simply thats what was applied to the vehicle. Looking through Paul Bartlett’s excellent site we come across the following image of the vehicle in 1979, removing the metric and condemned markings results in the steam era appropriate scheme above.

Next task on the list, application of underframe black, yes you guessed it, to the underframe. Jake and Dave doing the honours, between spots of rain.

I also applied matt black to the west side data panel in preparation for dates to be applied.

I then completed Dannys repaint. Rear axle, steering arms, inner chassis and some detailing, including the inside of the front wheels.

That was until the curse of the Green paint came back to haunt us. After completion of work mentioned below the new replacement tin, for the one that got thrown over me a few weeks ago, was squashed into the ground. We shall no longer be attempting to paint anything in that shade of green again.

So what squashed the paint?
I am pleased to say Hector did.

Ross spending the day looking at the original batteries, this confirms 3 dead cells as advised by the previous owner. Whilst we look at replacements for these, Ross jury rigged a temporary solution to begin bringing Hector to life.

With 51 volts available nothing seemed to be working until the key is physically held in the on position. This allows you to motor the vehicle.

What is missing however is the 12v supplies and the ability for the key to latch. This has been found to be a faulty inverter, which takes the incoming supply and drops it to 12v, a new and a spare have been ordered.

But that did not stop us having a little bit of fun.

We took Hector to the station after getting the handbrake to work on the left hand wheel, this is temporary until we look into the Hydraulic brakes in more depth.

Next task was to sand down the ends of 765272, New volunteer Steve having the honours with air supplied from the test car.

I applied the details to the data panel and painted the brake cylinder.

Whilst Dave started the sole bar signwriting.

After Steve had worked his magic, I followed up with primer on the bare areas. This included etch primer for the south end vent, which we took back to bare metal due to the paint condition.

It was then on to glossing the ends. the majority of the gloss and undercoat was intact and with the surfaced keyed Steve went for it.

Dave and I began the east side signwriting. Same order as the west side.

This was followed up by a re-coat of the head stocks. Painting the north swan neck and refitting the Instanter couplings.

There was also time to fit a notice to the other tug, this is a replica of those applied to BR platform tugs and was kindly sent to us. Thank you Andy.

Only a few finishing touches to apply next week. We will let you know if we are able to manage them.

24/07/22 – Meet Hector !

Welcome to this week’s update from Quorn; and welcome to Steve who joined Nick, Ross, Matt, Richard and myself over the weekend.

We start by reporting some progress along with the Carriage & Wagon team at Rothley during the week, with a new livery and identity being given to a Mineral wagon which is currently out of use due to structural issues. It is being cosmetically restored to compliment the Class 10’s new livery which will be revealed by GCR (C&W Rothley) in due course.

B765272 which had been progressed last weekend, received undercoat and Gloss from the wagon fairies to its west side during the week.

On Saturday Nick and Steve made a start on the east side of the van, erecting the scaffolding then re-bolting the north end panels.

Next the replacement doors were finished off and fitted to the east side. These had been started by the previous owner and came with the van when it was transferred to us last year.

Matt and Dave got their signwriting brushes out to put the finishing touches to the corporate branding and identity onto Danny. Matt did the number plate.

Whilst Dave applied the ‘British Rail’ legend and Danny’s name.

After last week’s clutch failure on Danny, Ross made a start removing the stubborn flexible drive coupling so that the gearbox could be taken out to get to the clutch.

With the gearbox out it became very clear what the problem was, the clutch release bearing and operating fork had disintegrated into many pieces. New parts will have to be ordered including a new clutch assembly. Dave then took the opportunity to clean up the gearbox whilst it was out ready for a lick of paint.

Matt and Dave took a trip to Rothley in Jerry to apply a couple more items of signwriting to the Mineral Wagon. Matt painted the STOVE lettering whilst Dave attended to the north end NCB legend.

Matt also found time in between other jobs to apply a grey panel to Nicks’ box storage trailer, followed by marking out ready for the next stage; all will be revealed next week!

Sunday saw further progress with the east side doors on van B765272, the door locking bar & respective P-brackets were fitted, and the doors adjusted slightly to close neatly. Any bare wood was then treated.

Underframe and headstock scraping was also progressed in readiness for painting.

The protection plates were then fitted to the lower corners of the doors and undercoated. This side of the van is now ready for a repaint at some point.

Whilst Dave, Ross, Steve and Richard progressed the van, Nick and Matt made a trip up the motorway to a farm in Tupton near Chesterfield to collect our new acquisition, Hector; with thanks once again to Kenway Construction for the loan of the truck.

So lets meet Hector, he’s a 1988 built Lansing battery powered 3-wheel tug, F729CUA.

He was unloaded along with battery pack & charger with the help of the Volvo and our Brush Tractor and trailer.

We didn’t waste much time in getting to know Hector, firstly putting some air in the tyres, the tipping him up to remove the quantities of farm related muck and foliage that he’d acquired in his time at the farm.

We then tried giving him a tug with the Brush Tractor to try and free off the seized brakes.

Unfortunately this didn’t work so Hector was tipped up again to remove the wheels so the drums could be attended to.

With Hector back on his wheels and movable it was time for his first spin around the yard, although he needed a little help from our Brush tractor because his power equipment and batteries need some attention.

Thanks for reading, join us next week to see what we have in store next for Hector.

17/07/22 – Feeling hot, hot hot

Hi all, and welcome to another update from a rather crispy Quorn Wagon and Wagon. This week we’ve progressed the van train and yet another support vehicle. First though, the Bogie Bolster is finished! Matt had finished the red stripe on the bearing end caps last weekend, which was the last thing to do before the wagon is released to traffic. It’ll be good to see this in the next mixed freight!

Okay, and now onto Saturdays work, with Nick, Matt and I on site. Nick concentrated on scraping and then applying a coat of PVA to the next van in the rake, B765272.

Matt finished the signwriting on B777728, which completed the repaint of that van. Another few vans had their signwriting attended to as well.

Matt then went on to finish off a small pet project, a new sign for our gate.

I finished off re-assembling Danny, by putting more bolts in the panels that were re-fitted last week. I then adjusted his brakes and the brakes on the Tug. Sadly, no pictures of this!

On to Sunday, with Dave rejoining us after his holiday. Nick and Dave both started by applying primer to the panels that had been PVA’d yesterday.

Matt and I got stuck into finishing the repaint of Danny. Matt started by applying the BR Double Arrow to Danny’s skip.

I started de-greasing the engine, ready for it to be painted. This was done by Dave and myself.

Unfortunately, I also managed to apply most of the tin to Matt, his trousers and the floor. That stopped any ideas of a second coat on the engine and diff! Sorry Matt!

Once the east side of the vans was in shade, Nick and Dave took out the southmost panel on the east side. This was only held in with 5 bolts and hadn’t been sealed to the van. This has now been fully bolted and sealed.

We finished the day with the obligatory big tidy up and a small photoshoot for the 3 BR vehicles. There is still a little bit more to do on Danny, including a very new requirement to replace the clutch!

Thanks for reading and catch us next week to see what we get up to, fingers crossed it will be a bit cooler!

10/07/22 – Another 2 with a 3rd progressed.

With 763305 and 786348 prepared and undercoated last week, a visit from the wagon fairies sees them undercoated on Tuesday and glossed on Thursday.

This brings us ahead for the weekend, with Nick, Dave, Jake and I on site.

Form me and Dave it was out with the mahl sticks and brushes. 763305 for me and 786348 for Dave.

Slightly modified branding for 348 in memory of Nick’s father.

777728 is the next van in the train and the usual activity.




Once I had completed my signwriting I moved on to the recent arrival,




Top coat.

We were also blessed with a visit from Jamie, who assisted Nick with his new purchase.

As well as our own mini classic car meet.

I continued in to the evening applying 3 coats of yellow to the tug which I reassembled Sunday.

Nick joining me early also to apply undercoat to 777728 before the heat set in.

For me detailing the tug. Wasp stripes and double arrows.

Ross turned his attention to Danny.


Then top coat.

A few more coats, then I wonder what details we shall be applying? As the afternoon came to a close we took the tug for a visit to the station, with a few ideas for Railways at Work 2023 beginning to circulate.

With 2 completed vans and a tug for this week, Join us next weekend to find out what we were able to achieved.

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.