FR Number 20 is once again Britain's oldest working standard gauge steam locomotive - after its first heavy general overhaul in preservation!
|Inside Haverthwaite shed, the first step is to remove the pipework and boiler cladding. This is not a five minute job!|
|Outside in the open air, FR Number 20, minus tender, is positioned in the yard for the boiler and smokebox assembly to be lifted from the frames.|
|The lift in progress, using the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway Company's newly purchased road crane. These operations are always carried out with the car park closed to visitors.|
|Now facing the opposite direction, and positioned outside the main shed at Haverthwaite.|
The old tubes were air-blasted to clean them before removal. 10 years of accumulated soot and grime make this an unpleasant task! FRT Volunteer Paul Timewell does the honours.
|The firebox tubeplate, photographed with a number of the tubes already removed. The tubes are taken out to allow the inside of the boiler to be visually inspected by the insurance company's boiler inspector, and also to ensure that the locomotive starts its new 10 year "boiler ticket" with a new set of tubes without any wastage of the metal. Because FR Number 20 is only used on special occasions, the old tubes were still in very good condition, but nonetheless needed to be scrapped and replaced with new.|
With all the tubes removed, the boiler barrel was descaled, and some welding repairs carried out to the foundation ring (the metal that joins the bases of the inner and outer fireboxes).
After the boiler inspector gave his blessing to the works that have been carried out, the new tubes were installed, and then expanded to produce a steam-tight fit. After a hydraulic test of the retubed boiler was passed successfully, the boiler was returned to the frames, the pipework reconnected, a steam test carried out for the boiler inspector, and the locomotive returned to service in July 2008, all in time for its final stint hauling the Victorian Evenings.
İFurness Railway Trust