Engineering Update May/June 2014

'The Unknown Warrior' is Wheeled

We realise that building a complex locomotive like the Patriot was never always going to be a straight forward exercise. The last few weeks have been interesting and challenging to say the least. From the outside it must have looked as though nothing was happening, but I can assure you it was a bit like a duck swimming across the lake, all calm above water, but below the legs are working furiously in all directions at the same time!

Thankfully, we are now over the minor technical issues that have delayed progress and significant steps in the building of the locomotive have taken place. This is the reason for this delayed report. At the end of May final wheeling of the locomotive was expected within a couple of days, which expanded to 20 days! Here is the detail.

Locomotive Frame Assembly

Work has continued at Tyseley Locomotive Works on final preparations to fit the wheelsets into the main frame.

These were completed for the Frame Assembly to be lifted for fitting onto the completed wheelsets on Thursday 12th June. However, as the frames were lowered towards the axleboxes several minor issues were identified and the wheeling was aborted. The frames were placed back onto the assembly stands while investigation of the issues was undertaken. As a result, a small amount of work was required on a couple of the axleboxes.

The locomotive frames being craned above the driving wheels on June 12th.

The locomotive wheeling was finally completed on Tuesday 23rd June. This was achieved using Tyseley’s ex Ipswich wheel drop.

The Leading Crank Axle wheelset in the wheel drop before being raised into the frames.

The wheelset rises towards the frame assembly. The Horn Tie is on the floor in the foreground.

The Axlebox engages into the Horn Guides.

Almost a small corner of Crewe works! The wheeled chassis of 'The Unknown Warrior' over the wheel drop with 6201 'Princess Elizabeth' alongside and the frames of Jubilee 45596 'Bahamas' in the background both undergoing overhaul to main line condition. Mouth watering prospect of these three locos in steam together in four years time!

As the engineering team at Llangollen Railway Engineering are busy on other work for the next couple of weeks, 'The Unknown Warrior' will stay at Tyseley for the Open weekend on Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th July before returning to Llangollen the following week, ready for our Members' Day on 19th July.

Tyseley Loco Works have been asked to remove the Inside Cylinder before the locomotive returns to Llangollen.

Inside Cylinder Casting

The fully machined replacement Inside Cylinder Casting is at Llangollen Railway Engineering ready for fitting into the locomotive on its return from Tyseley.

The Outside Motion Brackets and Smokebox Base Side castings have also been finished machined and are at Llangollen with the cylinder casting.

Outside Cylinder Castings

The pattern for the second Outside Cylinder is now at Coupe Castings, Preston and is expected to be completed by the end of the month.

Quotations for the for the machining of these castings are being obtained from several companies and the contract for this work is due to be placed in the next couple of weeks.

Pistons, Valves and Motion

The Motion Girders have been moved to Harco Engineering for machining.

Work has started on the preparation of CAD data and drawings for other areas of the locomotive. Parts include Cylinder and Valve Covers, Pistons, Piston & Valve Rods, Expansion Links and Eccentric Rods.

Tyseley Locomotive Works have been asked to supply the valve heads and rods. This is part of a bulk order that includes identical parts required for Jubilee class Bahamas being overhauled at Tyseley. Discussions over the supply of pistons and rods is also ongoing.


All parts are now at Tyseley Locomotive Works. Assembly of the bogie is due to start in July, with delivery to Llangollen at the end of March next year.


Detail work on the new drawings required for the boiler continues.

Work is progressing on manufacture of the flanging blocks for both copper flanged plates for the inner firebox at LNWR Heritage Crewe. The order for the outer firebox Steel Flanged plates is about to be placed with Tyseley Locomotive Works.


The design for the new tender tank is in progress.

Parts Store

In mid May, the Project’s storage unit at Llangollen was sorted with all parts arranged on the shelving instead of the floor as previously. All the parts have been catalogued. This will be expanded into a full locomotive part listing as time permits to aid acquisition of parts in the future.

Temporary mailing address: The LMS-Patriot Company Limited c/o 19 Highfield Road Hixon Stafford ST18 0LY
Temporary phone number: 07801 945689

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