The
South Devon Railway
'South Devon Diesel Traction'
NewsLetter 2




 
April-June
D8110 [20110]
The loco is now ready for the start of the new season. The loco worked well on it's first outing (Sunday 23rd April), but on the Monday after shunting the stock into the platform, it would not start following a short shut down. A crimp connection was found to have broken on the fuel priming pump button inside the engine compartment. This was repaired and the loco was ready for use once again, but not see service until the afternoon as the timetable and stock were all over the place, due to the loco failing. A week later for the Thomas weekend all went well with the loco, but it was found that some finger contacts on the field diverts were showing signs of burning and these have now been replaced. 
"Everything Goes" weekend went well.

The loco was pressed into use on Thursday 29th June after 68011 broke and lost a spring at Staverton. On towing 680I1 & train back, Errol decided to derail on a right hand bend at about 51/4 MP. knocking off a main air cock and breaking part of the multiple working jumper housing. The main air pipe was plugged temporarily so the loco could still work and it returned a re-railed Errol with coach stock back to Buckfastleigh.

[D8118] 20118
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The cab has now been stripped of most bits (seats, cooker and all the wall panels) for cleaning, painting or replacement. By April the two cylinder heads that came off were back on (one being the Railparts one) and water had been put back into the cooling system. Some small leaks where found and put right. Two relays from inside the electrical cubical have been freed up, as they had seized. The fuel pump now runs, as one of the relays is in the start circuit. It's been found that around the camshafts and banjo joints that the lubrication oil has turned into a thick grey oily mess, blocking the jointsand that a fuel pump needed to be changed; this was done on Friday 26th May along with checking the tappets. With this done and the batteries charged up the engine was turned over, but no joy. One of the two start contactors in the cab was sticking open. This was due to the linkage that connects the contactor to two smaller contacts being very stiff.  With the linkage disconnected, and the decompressors out, the engine turned over blowing clouds of rust from the exhaust.  The decompressors were duly replaced and an attempt to start the engine was made, but one decompressor was blowing through, the bolt was tightened up for a second try but was still found to be blowing through so the bolt was changed to no avail.  The whole unit was changed and resulted in no blow and no start!

Due to low batteries  and the time was getting on it was decided to wait for for a new day. A second try was made on Sunday 29th, but it still would not start (it would turn but not fire); this was traced to a sticking fuel rack. With this free the start button was pressed once more at 12.32pm and 20118 burst into life at the first attempt. Not bad after being laid up for almost five years. After checking around it has been found that a cylinder head was blowing slightly, a gauge was not showing a reading for one of the turbochargers (though both turbochargers were working) and, on a positive note, the batteries were taking a charge. On to test the auxiliaries; first the compressor, this ran very quite quietly, then the exhauster; the motor was quite noisy, but smoke came out from the exhaust pipe under the loco which is a good sign. The blowers all ran  OK. Also we now know the engine over speed works correctly since it tripped and shut the engine down. A blow on  head `A3' (the reconditioned head from Railparts) was found. This head was removed and with no signs as to why it leaked it was put back on and no blowing was found on test.  Head `A4' was blowing so this was removed on Tuesday 27th June, but not without a severe fight. An arsenal of pinch bars, crow bars and bits of wood was employed together with lots of pulling on the rope.
All this effort was due to the many years of blowing; the carbon had built up so much around at least two head studs so much so that when the rope was let go the head simply stayed put half way up the studs! It had been blowing past the copper ring in three places. This head will now be cleaned and have its valves removed and reground in, also around the block will be cleaned. With this being done, the rest of the injectors will be replaced with overhauled ones.
The two small cab windows have been repaired. The bottoms of these window frames had to be cut out due to rust and have  been replaced with new metal; both windows are now back in place. Some more rust spots have been cut out around the cab and new bits will be welded in over the coming weeks. The plan is now to have the cab weather tight for the winter and the rest of the loco fully repainted before the end of the season so that next year will be free to make a start on the class 25.

D7612 [25262, 25901]
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The base has been cut out to have some new bits welded in. With this done just in time; the loco was used on Friday 2lst April to empty the main train set from the platform at Buckfastleigh, and run it to Totnes so as to allow an evening steam trip from Exeter to run up the branch. The coolant leak is still with us and now we had an exhauster (which makes the vacuum for the train brakes) arcing badly when it was running. This seams to have put itself right since it's now running arc free. The loco missed  its afternoon run on Monday 24th April due to the 20 failing and the stock being all over the place.
On Saturday 29th (The Thomas weekend) and we had a plastic air pipe blow off its copper pipe adding ten minutes to an already late running timetable at Bishops Bridge. The power on the return from Totnes was low. At slow speeds the power is all OK, but when the speed builds up the field diverts do not change ( the analogy for a loco stuck in  full field is that it's like a car with only first gear). As this is all electronic it's a bit of a headache. Three slide out modules have been changed to no avail.
Class 127
A working weekend by the Dart Wyvern group in April had a corridor connection fitted to the Totnes end power car. After doing some runs on the branch over the last two months or so the radiator leak has got a lot worse, and it now appears that some pipes are also leaking. It has now been formed up as a two car set until repairs can be effected; but not until after a drag along the line on Sunday 28th May with D7612 towing.
Class 122 - 55000
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Most of the panels in the small saloon have being refitted. It has been found that the saloon water heaters (fitted in the 80's) have all been disconnected for some reason. Only the guards heater is plumbed in and works.
Yorkshire
Running into trouble again. The fuel line broke/split and the engine shut down (whilst down the line), then the compressor was found to have shed all but one bolt! And yet again more batteries are needed. The loco is only to work around Buckfastleigh at the moment.
Fowler
Loco is now under cover for some body repairs.
Ruston
Now outside 'B' shop enjoying the sun (?)
Stock
MINK - No change.
CCT - No change.
SHOCKVAN - Repaint complete, just waiting for numbers etc.
MINK (No.2) - Has been moved for the first time in years, and is now in place for rebuilding to start.
BG - Up for sale. Say no more ! Offers ?
Other Items
Keep the aluminium drink cans coming in.

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Dates for the Diary (Diesels running)
July 8th/9th Thomas
September 23rd/24th Transport Heritage
October 21st/22nd Everything Goes
   
WORKING WEEKENDS
Saturdays & Sundays.
Mostly Sundays at the moment, with most work on 20118. If you turn up about between 09.30 and 10.00 someone will be around. But no guarantees on this.
   
Running Days
Sunday 2nd July D8110
Saturday 22nd July D7612
Saturday 5th August D8110
Saturday l9th August D7612
Sunday l4th September D8110
All the above will be four round trips as the second train.
First one departs Buckfastleigh at 10:00
   
The class 127 D.M.U. will be working one trip, late afternoon (17.25 dep) on the following dates.
Tuesdays/Wednesdays/Thursdays 25th/26th/27th July
  lst/2nd/3rd August
  8th/9th/l0th
  l5th/l6th/l7th
  22nd/23rd/24th
The class 127 D.M.U. will also be doing 'River Rail' on dates to be announced. Again it will be late afternoon.
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South Devon Railway Trust 2000