A beautiful sunny day, just right for working outdoors on the footbridge steps.
Neal had his full carpentry kit with him, and here you can see him marking out the angle between the intermediate landing and the lower half.
Once the angle has been marked out, the end of the timber is cut to fit with the router, and a few odd bits chopped off with a chisel.
Things don't always fit first time, so a little planing is required for the final fitting.
The scaffolding put up is on three levels, following the roof line of the steps.
Then on to the top half of the timber, which is bolted on very securely to the roof of the centre span.
The underside of the sheets is still in primer, so there is more work here to be done.
The draft plan of the canopy team is to get the steps finished by the end of the current running season. However, you won't be allowed down the other side as platform 2 is not ready for passenger use.
It's a bit of a confused picture this one, all scaffolding poles and planks. In there among them are the timbers we fitted today. They echo the stringers underneath.
The view from P1 is slightly clearer, you can just about make out the two parallel lines, one in wood and the other in metal.
The canopy extension which will go on the left will have this glass on both sides, making for a very airy circulating area, lit by a big, central hexagonal gas lantern. This is being sponsored by a supporter of the project. It will look brilliant!
Saturday at Toddington
It was hot! How do you know this? The short sleeves came out in the mess coach, it was like an oven in there.
We had a great turnout of 15, and two jobs to do: Kango pack 6 sleepers overlooked by the tamper at Toddington, and beef up siding Nr. 1 there, which has had some defects on it since the day it was laid back in the 1980s.
The two sites selected for the two GWR yard lamps are shown in the pictures above. One by the water tower, the other nearer the yard throat. Two pits for the foundations have been dug out.
We have also settled on a definite design for replica lamp tops, and are ready to order their manufacture, which will take 3 months.
|Chris and Neil start to free up sleepers marked with an 'X'.|
Siding Nr. 1 is a bit of a misnomer, as it is not used to stable anything, but is the main approach road to Toddington station from the yard throat. It is very busy, used by every loco coming off shed. It follows +/- where the up line used to be.
About 25 sleepers have been marked for replacement, and a full review of all the fishplates used, most of which have only 2 bolts.
This is a typical fishplate that needs attention. It has only two bolts ( permissible, but we prefer four) and you might notice that there is also a step to the next rail, so a lifter is needed here.
Steve, who worked with us today, was there when Siding Nr. 1 was laid back in the '80s, and he mused somewhat ruefully that he was paying the price today (heavy digging out) for the mistakes made then. But it was all we could get at the time, and it has served for 30 odd years, after all.
Another issue we had with these fishplates is that some gaps were large...
... and others small, so that we had to loosen this rail and knock it back a bit.
When the gap was right, finally, we couldn't get the fourth bolt in (remembering that before it had only 2) and the reason for that, we found, was that the 4 fishplate bolt holes had different spacings between them. Would you believe it! No wonder this one had only two bolts fitted back in 1982.
|Foremarke Hall returns from Cheltenham|
After lunch one of Dave and Diana's friends came to visit us in his private plane.
He seemed pretty pleased to see us, and as we waved to him he gave us a little aerobatic performance, which was rather breath taking.
This packing job was done with Kangos, powered by the generator on the trolley.
That's another job ticked off the list.
|Get a grip, Chris!|
On Siding Nr. 1 we continued with sleeper replacement, a very slow job. Particularly the digging out of the sleepers first thing was back breaking, and we decided to stop after doing 6.
In the afternoon we pulled out the old sleepers, although some people did it wrong, and only pulled out half a sleeper at a time.