Aware that much development has been going on in the background, but little has been seen in public, and also that the pace of development is gradually increasing, the 762 Club has introduced this on-line update feature. This page, to be updated at the beginning of each month, will provide brief news snippets and images and general "Lynformation" on our progress. Please come back regularly for the latest update.
(just hover your mouse over the images to see captions, click to see a larger version where available):
See the current and archived versions of LYNformation here:
Really FANTASTIC news. The boiler has successfully passed its hydraulic inspection with flying colours. The final preparation came in a hurry in the first week of June, and our Boiler maker, Andy Bennett filled the boiler for the first time on 4th June. After just one or two weeps, he applied pressure and built up the values gradually until he reached 500 psi ( twice the working pressure) and apart from a couple of flue tubes that needed tweaking up, the boiler was perfect first time. A truly brilliant result for the 762 Club and a really BIG milestone for all of us to achieve. Fortunately, the Royal Sun Alliance Boiler inspector was available to come at short notice as he was already in the area on 6th June, so it has already passed the first and second stages of the boiler inspection test procedures in that the cold inspection and hydraulic tests have been completed. I hope that the photographs show the pressure gauge reading 500 psi clearly enough because you won’t see that again for at least another ten years!
Andy Bennett has also now completed all of the internal supports for the brick arch and fitted the pads for the ash pan. He will now start on the superheater header ( see below) and only has the smokebox, the superheater elements and fitting of the regulator to completed.
Also, great news from Trefoil Foundry. Our principal contractor, Alan Keef and Sons visited Trefoil on 5th June and prepared for the casting of the balance of the wheels. As readers will know, the patterns were made in 2009 and one of the driver wheels and one of the pony wheels were cast several years ago. Now that the build process is accelerating, your Board took the decision to cast the rest of the wheels. As a result, we have gone back to our original patterns, tidied them up, checked the original dimensions and confirmed that all is well. We wanted especially to examine the radius of the wheels and the spokes to make sure that they are in accordance with our designers drawings and we are pleased to say that they are, if actually a little more gentle. The original radius as drawn is 10mm and in fact they are between 10.5 and 11 mm.
Two driving wheels will be cast week beginning 10th June, with all of the order being completed by the end of June. Then the wheels will be rough machined in Sheffield before being transported to Alan Keef’s works in Ross-on-Wye. We will soon have 8 weeks (and a big bill!)
Work on the cow catcher is progressing well and as you will see from the photographs, they are looking very much like cowcatchers now. They will be ready by the end of June and put into store till they are needed or displayed at a future Gala for members to see the quality of the work.
4. Superheater Header
This is a very important and big lump of metal that takes saturated steam and diverts the this steam into the individual superheater elements for a second pass through the boiler. This not only dries the steam more, but significantly increases the pressure of the steam in the process. Once the steam has returned to the header, the steam is then supplied to the cylinders via the two main steam pipes.
The header to bolted to the front tubeplate and space is very tight. The original plan was to make this via a fabrication. i.e. a variety of steam parts are made and then welded together to make an assembly. However, in reason days, Andy Bennett has asked the design team to look at the possibility of making the part via a casting. This was the traditional method of manufacturer, and in BR days, most superheater headers where cast from a complex pattern costing a lot of money. Now, with new techniques in casting using styrene, it is possible to make a casting inexpensively if only one or two impressions are needed. Also, the styrene can be cut using SolidWorks drawings sent directly to the cutter. Our design team of Mike Nelson and Ian Gaylor have now modified the drawings and design to simplify the part to make it more casting friendly and we are waiting for some quotes to come in from modern casting companies.
Once we have agreed the method of construction, then we can make a final decision between all parties as to the best way to go. Hopefully this will not delay things too much, but we want to at least test fit the header before welding on the smokebox. This issue will need carefully managing over the next few weeks.
5. Drawings of the side tanks and bunker
There is a possibility that we may have identified a sponsor to make the side tanks and coal bunker. In order for them to make a decision, we need to show them the final drawings and we have been putting a bit of pressure on the design team to complete these out of synchrony. Traditionally, the further “out” of the engine the later they would be needed and drawn. However, with such a good opportunity presenting itself, we have had to ask the team to drop everything and complete the tanks. This they have nearly done, and by Monday 10th, they promise me that they will have them for manufacturing. Watch this space for a announcement in a few weeks time!
We have had a whistle that looks very similar to the original Baldwin for some time. However, we have just received a really generous and very opportune offer from down under! The Puffing Billy Railway is Australia’s premier narrow gauge line operating in Victoria, close to Melbourne. Although the Puffing Billy Railway is 2’ 6”, they use Baldwin designed locomotives that looks and operate very similar to our Baldwin. Through the kind offer of one of their drivers, Emile Badawy, they are donating a set of castings for on original Baldwin Whistle ( and paying for the postage as well !). Not only is this a very generous gift but will forge links between the 762 Club and another major Baldwin narrow gauge operator. We hope that over the coming months, we will share much information between the two organisations.
This month, the front cylinder covers have been made and are currently being stress relieved. These are quite big chunks of metal and support the slide valves. Hopefully, all of the motion drawings will be released shortly, and the next and most expensive stage, will start. Watch this space of more information in the Autumn.
8. Build Timetable
The 762 Club has been more successful recently in recruiting new members, raising funds from our new retail activities ( have you bought the A3 print yet?) and generating funds. As a result, we can increase the speed of the build and as a result, detailed discussions have taken place between the design team and principal contractor about the timetable for the next 12 months and beyond. We hope to be able to publish this timetable once the Board has agreed it, and will be the principal news item for the next Lynformation.
See the current and archived versions of LYNformation here: