Engineering Update - February 2015

Locomotive Frame Assembly

Work continues on a number of fronts on the construction of The Unknown Warrior.

The Unknown Warrior is a 3 cylinder locomotive after the fitting of the right hand cylinder at outside Llangollen shed. 23rd January  2015

Photo – Kevin West

The biggest news this month is the fitting of the right hand cylinder to the locomotive frame assembly on 23rd January, making the locomotive a 3 cylinder engine.

This was followed by fitting the right hand Motion Bracket and lining up as described for the left hand side in last months report.

The volunteer painting gang continues work on the the locomotive frames and Driving Wheels.

Right Hand cylinder being lifted into position. The Motion Bracket lies on the floor ready to be lifted into position. Photo – Kevin West

Right Hand cylinder being lifted into position. Photo – Kevin West

Castings for the Front Cylinder Covers and both Front and Hind Valve Covers have been delivered to Harco Engineering for quotation for machining.  Patterns and castings for the Pistons will follow shortly.

Castings for Front Cylinder Covers, Front and Hind Valve Covers, Bolster Cups and Drain Cock operating gear brackets.

Castings for Hind Valve Cover Guides.

Castings for Bolster Domes and Inside Expansion Link Trunnions..


Photos – Kevin West


Design work is continuing on the remaining Valve Gear parts required.


Pistons, Valves and Motion

Machining of the Motion Girders has been completed at Harco Engineering. These have now been delivered to Llangollen for fitting to the Frame Assembly.

Also now at Llangollen after machining are the 6 new Slide Bars and the Bogie Centre Pin and associated Nut and Washers.

Motion Girders and Slide Bars (wrapped on the pallet) at Llangollen. Photo Jordan Leeds

The valve heads are at Tyseley Locomotive Works for machining. Tyseley will also be supplying the Pistons and Piston Rods, drawings for these have been completed and a pattern for the Piston casting will be ordered soon.

Manufacture of the Coupling Rod Bushes and Brasses is expected to start soon at Llangollen.


Detailed discussions continue with Tyseley Locomotives Works regarding assembly of the Bogie and with our Vehicle Acceptance Body (VAB) and South Devon Engineering over the assembly of the new Bogie Wheelset, to ensure it complies with the new RISAS standards.

Assembly of the Bogie is due to start at Tyseley in the next couple of weeks.


A major step in the construction of the Boiler took place at Deepdale Engineering in Brierley Hill on 12th March 2015, with the rolling of the two Boiler Barrel Rings. The 18mm thick plates were rolled to the required diameter and the seam then welded to produce the barrel sections. The welded seams are a requirement of our insurance company and reflect current practice. The Barrel sections will still be riveted together and to the Front Tubeplate and flanged Throateplate as in the original design.

After the first stages of rollng the barrel ring the ends are dressed ready for welding.

The barrel takes shape as the rolling progresses.

 The finished ring after rolling.

Welding the internal side of the seam. The action is taking place under the bead of powder flux.

Pictures – Kevin West

Work continues on the forming blocks for the outer firebox Steel Flanged plates at Tyseley Locomotive Works.

At LNWR Crewe, the Inner Firebox flanged Throatplate is formed and has now been drilling for the tube holes. Work on joining the Firebox Sidesheets and Crown to complete the Firebox Wrapper is about to start. The Wrapper, Doorplate and Throatplate can then be assembled to complete the Inner Firebox.

The Inner Firebox Throatplate being drilled March 2015

Photos – Oakwood Visuals

The new drawings required for the design changes to the boiler have been submitted to the insurance company for their approval.


Work on the refurbishment on the Tender Frames continues at Rowlescourt Engineering.

The design for the new tender tank has been progressing when time allows.

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