Weekend Rails

what we do for our kids

Tales of the Andrew Briddon Loco collection

Elsewhere - www.andrewbriddonlocos.co.uk - you can see the "official" face of the locomotive collection my son has built up. Here on "Weekend Rails" you can read a blow-by-blow account of our work in restoring and improving them.

Of a day early

28th January 2012

Work – that is to say the kind from which we are supposed to earn our livings – gets in the way this weekend. I have to be on site Sunday and Andrew must travel Sunday to be on (another) site at 09.00 Monday morning, and as he was attending a party Saturday night, we agreed that it would be just the one day this weekend, and back on Beverley. But of course you are all waiting avidly to hear what arrived from Mr Makita, aren’t you? Well, as I had to be at a meeting Monday, Steph stayed in all day waiting for Parcelforce, who in the end arrived at about 4.30, after I had got back home.

Of casing tops and cast-iron pots

5th February 2012

Some of you may think they smell a rat when, a week after having had a day away from the collection (for new readers, see here) I am back reporting on three days in succession. Is Andrew demanding recompense? Actually, it was already planned this way, but it nearly didn’t happen. My friendly fabricators had promised to get the casing parts for the 03 finished by the end of January, and as Andrew has a busy work programme ahead of him, he could see his way clear to taking Friday off (after a week involving visits to Norwich, Southampton and Selhurst, and explains why I must disappoint those expecting the link to “Beverley” in operation – he simply hasn’t had time to do it) but not much else.

Of days when nothing goes right

15th January 2012

According to the histories, Swindon added a massively heavy cast chimney to the front of their build 03s in order to achieve balance since the locos were front end light. This has never altogether rung true with me – for one thing putting a ballast weight on top of the casings requires a very substantial casing frame and anyway, who would to put it up that high? There again, there is an answer to that, and that is “Autoloc”.

Of Golf and Gas

11th March 2012

The magazines are now beginning to report the plans for the AFRPS gala, now but 2 months off. Some are confidently saying that haulage will include a certain 03, others adding the “subject to availability” caveat, and one contributor muttering that “getting a move on” will be vital if D2128 is to turn a wheel (but what does he know?). Provided there are no major hitches, things are progressing nicely, and Andrew’s biggest concern is cash flow to buy the remaining big lumps. The control panel still monopolises the front room table at Briddon Towers.

Of ponds and profiles

19th February 2012

Back to normal, well for one week only. I had earmarked Friday for a run up to the profilers for a bumper collection, taking a small copy of my CAD drawing so as to spot, and tick off, each of the various shapes as we found them. Mostly they were bits for D2128, but there were also parts for the Drewry and a job of mine for a loco down south, but anyway.

Of progress and pressure

12th February 2012

Not quite sure why I’m bothering with a posting this week. With Andrew away at his girl friend’s on Saturday, and me having to investigate a non-starting Dorman 8JT today, it has been another weekend when nothing has been done on the locos.

But there again, that is not entirely true. The long list of  “things that simply must happen” to D2128 we compiled last weekend galvanised me into spending some more time on CAD and finalising a few things.

Of specs and drills for free

22nd January 2012

I have spent that last few weeks struggling with close-up work because having lost of pair of glasses, the replacement pair I got from the opticians seemed to be “long range” rather than “close range” and I insist that this has been my problem in reading measurements when marking out tank tops. I went back to the opticians on Monday and after checking their records they admitted that I was indeed correct and the wrong spec had been ordered.

Of stopping and starting

4th March 2012

Even as I was packing to go away for the (previous) weekend, I got a phone call from Peak Rail reporting that Charlie’s stop solenoid had given up the ghost. Let me explain. Left to its own devices, most engine fuel pumps head to the “run” position, it is what they are made to do. Therefore you need a device to pull the lever on the pump to a position where there is insufficient fuel delivered and the engine stops.

Of tanks and oils

8th January 2012

The Briddon clan saw in the New Year at my daughter’s in Darlington, and had a relaxing New Years Day, but by Monday Andrew was itching to get back to activity and we headed over to Scunthorpe. Object of the day primarily was “Beverley”, but while Andrew spent time on minor amendments to the supercharger/dynamo drive we reinstated the previous week I did some dimension checks on the 03 before joining him in the warm of the shed.

Of taps and vanes

25th March 2012

During the week, a jiffy bag arrived for Andrew containing a new set of vanes for the dmu exhauster on “Pluto” and in consequence he decided that it was time we showed our faces there. So on a misty Saturday morning, we headed north to York and the DVLR.

Of things starting to come together

18th March 2012

Only one day on the collection as Andrew was at his girl friend’s and I was having a frustrating time on that Dorman 8JT I mentioned before, but I won’t go in to that save to say that I had done the work according to the Dorman manual, and only wish that someone had explained that to the engine. Anyway, amongst the miscellaneous little jobs during the week I spent a bit of time finalising the gearchange unit.


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