29 & 30 March 2008

Saturday 29th March : Today 5 working members attended the ELR to progress work on D8233.

First a warm and very welcome to two new volunteers, Graham Mortimer and David Bellamy. Our aims this weekend were to complete the water system and fill with coolant, complete the oil system, and try and turn the engine over with the air starters.

We set about the day by getting an air supply from the Loco Works system to D8233. With a few hoses and fittings, D8233's air starter system had a 110psi supply. We tried the air starter trigger, and both starters just exhausted the air. Upon further investigation it was discovered both air starters were seized. One was easily freed off, the other was very reluctant. It was decided to remove the motor for a bench strip down. Upon stripping down it was found to be very rusty and bitty inside and a few of the vanes were stuck. After a good clean up it was rebuilt, in the meantime the opportunity was taken to try and turn the engine round with one motor, and with some success the power unit was turned over a few times, but it was clear more pressure was need to get it going fast enough to fire, also there seemed to be a dead spot on the motor, a sticking vane.

Once the rebuilt starter had been refitted, we tried again, but only one motor (the un-rebuiltone) would engage the pinion, the rebuilt one just span round, the part of the motor we didn't touch was also in need of attention! It was also decided to give the other motor an in situ clean out, the end cover was removed the vanes removed and cleaned and sure enough one was found to be stuck. After a clean out and rebuild, it was tried again on the one motor and it seemed a lot better.

Meanwhile, other progress on the loco included the fitting of all 22 radiator elements, six of which were the thin type, these will be replaced with the thicker type once procured, but for the purpose of starting the power unit up they will suffice for now.

Some of the oil system pipework from the sump to the oil priming pump and drain T piece was fitted. Welcome to the world of Ermeto couplings Jason! Its an evil one! Dave Mylett, fitted the rest of the fuel pumps, but came across problems refitting the fuel Rail. Early evening energy and patience was running low, and we called it a day.

Saturday 30th March : 7 Working members present today.

The day started by pulling the tarpaulin back as the sun was shining and conditions were a lot better than the previous days. We started the day, with the aim to get the water pipes on and the system filled.

First job was to cut to lengths of silicon hose for the top pipes between cooler group and thermostat, with the aid of fairy liquid these were then slid over the pipe. The thermostat was then lifted into position and bolted up. The hoses were then slid back over the thermostat pipes and the clips fitted and tightened up. The next pipes fitted were the ones from the power unit top rails to the thermostat, however two extension pipes needed removing before these could be put on. They were a bit stubborn to remove, but brute force won the day. Two more silicon hoses were cut too length and the pipe fitted, however, the clips were proving to be more difficult to fit and it was clear bigger ones were needed. Jim was then utilised to modify clips as we needed by cutting and welding them to suit.

With the top rail fitted, attention turned to the bottom water pipes from cooler group to the water pump, these were bolted into position, and hoses cut for the water pump connections and fitted. The bypass pipes were next to be fitted, these run from the back of the thermostat down to the bottom pipes that run from cooler group to water pumps. fitting to the thermostat proved very testing as we couldn't find a spanner/socket or ring key that would fit on the nuts or bolts and then you could actually turn to tighten them up! Jim came to the rescue by welding on smaller nuts so we could get a small socket on to tighten up. The second by pass pipe was in one piece, the first in two halves, we decided to modify the one piece one to the same as the other, mainly to so it would be easier to fit and remove. Two more hoses were cut and then fitted, and the pipes bolted to the bottom ones. This left the header tank to water pump pipes for the system to be complete. Again these are in two halves so more hoses were cut and the pipes fitted. Jim then finished modifying all the clips and these were fitted to the relevant pipes.

Meanwhile while all this was going on the two new members had removed the problem starter motor and stripped it back down and discovered the pinion had a tight spot on the bendix. It was cleaned up so the pinion moved back and too freely. The motor was then rebuilt, but without the proper equipment to fit bearings etc, it was proving difficult. Eventually they won and the motor was back together and is now ready for testing off the engine with air.

Back on the coolant side of things, the hose was inserted into the header tank and the tap turned on, while we had refreshments the system filled. One leak emerged from the water pump to bottom pipe hose and was duly nipped up, however was still slightly weeping, so jubilee clips may be employed on this. Another leak then emerged from what we thought was the top hose from thermostat to top water pipe of the cooler group. We tried nipping it up but it made no difference. Upon further investigation we think the top cover on the thermostat housing might have a problem with its gasket, either its torn or squeezed out. It was devastating to watch, but as it was already early evening, it was a signal to give up. However the plan for the next working weekend is to undo all the hoses that lead to the thermostat undo the mounting bracket and drop the thermostat with pipe work attached down so the top cover can be accessed to remove and investigate why it isn't water tight.

Around 6pm it was the end of a very hard but semi successful weekend. Everyone involved these past two days has toiled and sweated to achieve what we have. Yes we have had set backs, but overall its positive progress. The water system is complete, and we now have idea of our air requirements to start the power unit. Many thanks to all those involved.

The next working weekend is 12th & 13th of April - if you wish to lend a hand please contact Chris Tatton

Above : The oil priming pump is now connected up in with new flexible hoses and fittings. © C15PS
Above : The weather was good on the sunday so the tarp was pulled right back.© C15PS
Above : New volunteers Dave & Graham work on overhauling the L/H air starter motor. © C15PS
Above : The main coolant pipes are all now refitted in front of the engine.© C15PS
Above : The thermostat has no less than 6 large coolant pipes attached to it. © C15PS
Above : Everyone had gathered round to see where the water was leaking from. © C15PS


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