21 April 2017

Two steps forward (2017 remix)

April has been a chilly month, more so than the months in which Winter is supposed to fall. With chilly nights and winds from the North and North West, it has taken until lunchtime for the temperature to pick up enough at the bus to be able to get work done. Starting at that time is not ideal for me as there is the school run to do in the middle of the afternoon. Starting later, the temperature begins to drop off during the evening and prematurely end my work, as I most definitely do not want to get ill from trying to force things.

I've had some parts made - samples which needed some adjustments in the final versions - I am still waiting for those and then there is more work by Ken (volunteer) to finish them off before they can be used. In the meantime, I continue on tasks on the bus..

I had observed that the waist rail brackets were sitting a little proud and couldn't work out why and then I had an epiphany and worked out what the issue was. It was an engineering oversight. The new brackets differ from the originals, whereas LT ones were an intricate shape with what resemble arrowheads at the ends, the new ones were cut straight, forming a cross. The problem with the ends of the arms of the cross not pulling inwards is because there is nothing pulling them in. To make things worse, when the centre bolt at the outermost part of the bracket is tightened, those edges are naturally bending outwards. I realised that the design of the bracket by London Transport was very deliberate, possibly by knowledge gained by aircraft design and manufacture during World War II. The solution is for me to modify the brackets to more closely resemble the originals, marking them up and using a cutting disc with a grinder. The rectification of the proud edges of the waist rail brackets produced immediate favourable results.

It does mean that I am in a phase of 'two steps forward, one step back' - but it's not the first time; it is more important to get this right though, even if it is yet another setback and repetition of work. You can see a bracket marked up for trimming down as well as completed trimming.

Friday failed to struggle up to the forecast temperature with thick cloud covering lingering all day. Having anticipated this, I opted to do some work from home instead. I trimmed two waist rail brackets, etch primed them to prevent flash rust and trimmed a couple of repair plates.

The remaining photo shows a repair carried out this week adding a new piece of angle iron where the original had flaked away as rust dust. It is blue white in colour as it has received rust treatment after being welded on. It is as solid as a rock and the treatment will have turned black already. The wheel hoop cannot be added until the bracket at the front of it is ready.

Next on the agenda is to trim the offside waist rail brackets and finish them all off. There's always a list of things to move on to, but I try to avoid the temptation to have too many streams of work on the go at any one time. I've prepared some fresh music as the old batch was getting a bit boring; indexing the drawings from the London Transport Museum is going extremely slowly as it is boring and makes me doze off in front of the computer; when I need to find a drawing, I whizz through the thumbnails until I find what I need - I will get them indexed eventually.

Roll on some warmer weather.

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