With the bunker pretty much complete, work is focusing on the final assemble and riveting of the side tanks.
This is the left hand tank base, with inner and outer angles riveted in place. Positioning the base vertically at this height off the ground is ideal for riveting. Photo: John Whitcomb.
The underside of the tank base, showing how some of the rivets have been countersunk. The lower ones, where the tank sits on its longitudinal supporting angle, are all countersunk. The upper ones are only countersunk where they sit on a supporting bracket attached to the mainframes. Stiffening plates have been welded on for the rear balance pipe (far end) and the large pipe through which the boiler feed pipe passes (centre). Photo: John Whitcomb.
The left hand tank base, right way up and back in our compound. At around a quarter of a ton and over 19 feet long, it's still just about manoeuvrable, but the rest of the riveting will need to be done at Bridgnorth where craneage is available. Photo: John Whitcomb.
Back under our shelter with the outer side sheets re-attached. The long splasher on its left covers the tops of the driving wheels and will ultimately be welded in position. Photo: Tony Summerton.
The heavily-corroded nuts have all been removed from these expansion plates which allow the firebox to slide along the frames slightly as the boiler heats up and expands. A lot of heat and persuasion was needed! Photo: John Whitcomb.
This newly-rolled plate fits under the boiler cladding and supports the safety valve bonnet. It's bolted onto the 'crinolines', which form a base for attachment of the cladding sheets. Photo: John Whitcomb.
A newly-fabricated front end cover for the left hand cylinder. The large aperture is for the cylinder pressure relief valve. Photo: John Whitcomb.
Further work in progress on the cladding at the front end of the loco - these will be new end-covers for the valve chest. Photo: John Whitcomb.