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Flying Scotsman

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by 73129, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. MuzTrem

    MuzTrem Member

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    Back in 2004 HR claimed that the cab and possibly the rear half of the frames were original. Now, I've know we've just discussed that railway magazines are not the most reliable sources, but if this is so, then at the very least the cab front and the area around the side windows are still original 1923 material (the lower side sections having been replaced during the current overhaul). So the Flying Scotsman of 1923 is still not quite dead!

    (Though I take your point that the important mechanical bits are all newer, with the possible exception of the rear half of the frames. Nevertheless, the basic point that she's getting old and needs looking after still stands.)
     
  2. mike redditch

    mike redditch New Member

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    Are they not the villians?????

    Is it therefore acceptable for the Director and the Engineering team to be paid to overhaul 4472's frames to a 'finished standard ready for the mainline' for a contractor to then find so many faults??

    Is it therefore acceptable that they have in effect paid for the locomotives frames to be stripped, repaired and overhauled twice??

    This would therefore suggest that the project has been poorly managed and that the NRM no longer has the skills or knowledge on how to overhaul a steam locomotive.
     
  3. 8-10 Brass Cleaner

    8-10 Brass Cleaner Member

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    I dont often comment on things like this, but.

    Certainly the NRM has handled the overhaul of Flying Scotsman poorly.

    When you overhaul any machine, you take it to pieces, inspect the pieces, decide what wants doing, and get on with it.

    It seems that early doors that whoever was responsible for the inspection side of it, or possibly more likely those responsible making the decisions of how and where to spend the money made some poor judgement calls. And those calls are now what the current team are finding what is biting them in the arse.

    I'm affraid also that you railway enthusiasts have a lot to answer for, painting the dam thing black, and assembling it, before it was all done, so that people like you could see it is frankly a waste of time and money. The fact the NRM panders to you is at times ludicrous.

    Mr Smith at Carnforth has the right idea, first thing you buggers know about it, is when one of you sees it while standing on the footbridge parapet at Carnforth in steam....

    The NRM seems to have finally taken stock, found all the problems, and are sorting them. Certainly the question should be asked why it wasn't sorted sooner, but hindsight is a wonderfull thing. Frankly Mr Wilcock doesn't need to ask it if is an embarrasement to the NRM, we all know that it is.

    Now as for Steam Railway. Its publishers has a reputation elsewhere with its other titles, that is 'they' decide 'policy', and the editor has to put up, or sling his hook......
     
  4. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Part of the furniture

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    Was someone murdered? Was anyone hurt? The word "villain" is both strong and totally ridiculous.

    Not the same team nor the same director which started the overhaul project. That doesn't excuse the current outcome but you are attacking the wrong people.

    Why don't you ask the same question of Jeremy Hosking with regards Royal Scot, which is again the most telling aspect of this saga?

    Two locomotives with incredibly similar mechanical problems more or less overhauled twice by their new prospective owners and overhaul team. Are we seriously saying that every single problem found on Flying Scotsman has been made and caused by a lack of inspection? Who has been in charge of maintaining the locomotive over the last fifty years?

    What other locomotive do you know of in private hands other than these engines which have had remarkably similar lives over the last decade, were in the state that these two engines have been found to be in, after extremely costly overhauls?

    Flying Scotsman was overhauled for Marchington for the best part of £1 million between 1996 and 1999. Back on the mainline in 1999, it was withdrawn in 2005 (6 years running with relatively little time actually spent on trains?) by the NRM with a list of problems so long you could climb a ladder to heaven with it.

    Royal Scot's previous overhaul has cost Bressingham one of their star attractions, and is still being worked on 3 years after being "finished".

    So you tell me: is Scotsman's current plight all the failure of the NRM or is there something more at work here?

    Again, it's very easy to condemn, attack and aggressively put down a public body which has to make public everything it does (for all the right reasons, I might add). So little has been said on Scotsman's and Royal Scot's past history in the railway press that you have to wonder who exactly is pulling the strings in our railway media.

    Both may well be true, but they are not the cause of the mechanical defects of the engine, only factors in how quickly the mechanical defects came to light and much it will cost to finish the overhaul.

    There is an absolute desire, nay, committment to a witch hunt with regards the NRM and Flying Scotsman and frankly I think the burning torches and pitchforks ought to be aimed at the people for whom not a single word in the railway press has been uttered.

    There are far, far too many coincidences in 4472 and 6100's mechanical conditions and continued protracted overhauls that I am amazed that the railway publications haven't picked up the baton and started to ask questions. But then I suspect it's going to be a case of cowardliness there.

    I agree with that wholeheartedly. But at the same time, having yet another go at the current team doing the work is doing no one any favours.

    If you do want to demand answers, "get your pound of flesh", etc etc, ask those who led the NRM and Chris Beet's team to the situation they are at now, not start throwing stones and demanding recompense at these hard working people who are trying to fix the situation as best they can.

    And so the "Flying Scotsman Cycle" continues...when will it be done, why isn't it done yet, who do we blame, what livery should it be painted it and how much money has been spent/wasted/carefully set aside/blown/etc.

    It'll be done when it's done, cost what it will cost, and it'll be a damn sight better locomotive than it was in 1999 or 2005. That is for certain.
     
  5. Neil_Scott

    Neil_Scott Part of the furniture

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    After a couple of million quid and a few years spent working on it, deadlines come and gone, I'm not sure what the late Dr Marchington has to do with locomotive now.
     
  6. paulhitch

    paulhitch Guest

    Indeed. Just like the tabloid daily papers I compared this publication with earlier. This is why it is a waste of time taking this matter up with the editor; go to the owners.

    P.H.
     
  7. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Part of the furniture

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    Put badly by me, for sure. Marchington himself wasn't the problem, but he put in a six figure sum and...got what exactly out of it? An unreliable locomotive which had less than six years working after "the most extensive overhaul in preservation" (citing most of the major railway magazines there).

    For sure, the NRM have got things wrong in the inspection and stripping down of Flying Scotsman, it has cost more and more money and there's no way it should have cost the brunt of £2 Million thus far; but ask yourself how it was allowed to get into the state it was in when the NRM bought it?

    The NRM has made mistakes, as a public body, but I'd still rather have them in charge of the locomotive and its overhaul than in private hands again. The very fact it is accountable to the general public is a good thing and it means a level of transparency we haven't had previously with this engine.
     
  8. Neil_Scott

    Neil_Scott Part of the furniture

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    That isn't the question people are asking or interested in though. People want to know:

    1) Where has the money gone?
    2) Why is the locomotive not running?
    3) Why didn't the NRM pick up all the faults that are now being rectified at Bury?
     
  9. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Part of the furniture

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    All of which could have been answered Neil, without resorting to the ridiculously heavy handed and aggressive tone that David Wilcock took this month. All of which are also easily answerable on request from the NRM. I know - I've asked previously.

    That's my major objection - not the questions (for they are reasonable requests for information), but the manner in which they've been presented yet again by a publication and journalist who seem to be at their happiest making anyone working on the engine utterly miserable and painting them as money laundering, locomotive kidnapping despots...!
     
  10. irwellsteam

    irwellsteam Member

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    The advantage of it being publicly owned is that it probably can't be in safer hands, as i recall there were some bids for her from overseas. Not quite sure about transparency tho, as of late
     
  11. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Part of the furniture

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    A fair comment, but I would add that the sudden silence and lack of updates seems to have been started by...Steam Railway's reporting on 4472 and its tone from last year.

    It's such a difficult position the NRM have been placed in, where any and all updates are twisted beyond recognition, and keeping silent leads to more complaints of a different variety.

    I'm not sure I'd have the level of patience that Steve Davies, Chris Beet and the rest have, frankly.
     
  12. martin butler

    martin butler Part of the furniture

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    I am sure that the mistakes made by the NRM over the handling of this engine will be learnt by them , indeed they already have, that is why Ian Riley is now going through 4472 with a fine tooth comb, you can write off what ever work was done previously, because for what ever reason faughts either have come to light, or have happened since so the team have no option but to look at every part of the engine
    what else could they do? ignore the hornblock cracks, the streatchers? of course they can't i dont think its a case of that York hasnt the people, it has, but 4472 was a wreck and if this was not 4472 would have been concidered as not worth restoring but as the NRM had committed its self to overhauling it had no way out of it, In my view the engine was too far gone for their level of expertise, no other engine in the national collection was ever this bad .
     
  13. Chris86

    Chris86 Well-Known Member

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    Hope its back soon, will be pleased to see it out and about again, the article in Steam Railway does read pretty awfully.

    If someone had started interrogating me in those tones inferred by reading the artcle- I think its fair to say that I would not have entertained it, in fact I probably would have resorted to putting on a handkerchief on my head, donning an eye patch and a false leg and regaling them of tales of how '4472 is a curse, I curse I tell ye!' and answering each of the questions with that statement. That way the answer could be just as irritating and about as constructive as the questionning!

    At the end of the day progress is being made and the end result should be great, yes mistakes have been made and the project has gone on a lot longer and cost a lot more than expected- how many overhauls don't though. I respect them for admitting the problems and making sure the utmost is done to resolve them.

    Good luck NRM team (if any of you are reading this!- I suspect you probably have more pressing matters!)

    Chris
     
  14. Fred Kerr

    Fred Kerr Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    As one who still recalls the transfer of ownership to the late Alan Pegler in 1963 I too have a great interest in the fate of this iconic locomotive and appreciate the effort being made to restore the locomotive to main line condition. The NRM is unfortunately bound by many decisions taken by previous owners and in accepting the option of a complete overhaul the NRM accepted the risk of potential previously-hidden faults being exposed and corrected.

    I must admit to a feeling of concern at the aggression shown by David Wilcox in his interview and admiration at the patience shown by Steve Davies in the face of such aggressive questionning; I'm sure that many lesser men would have curtailed the interview and reciprocated by declaring D. Wilcox as "persona non grata". Irrespective of belief the Head of the NRM deserves a degree of respect which David failed to either show or acknowledge.

    I feel that the published interview says more about David Wilcox the interviewer than it says about Steve Davies the interviewee.
     
  15. MuzTrem

    MuzTrem Member

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    It was painted black and reassembled last year to appear at an event organised by the NRM themselves. The event that enthusiasts really wanted 4472 for was "the Fab Four" at Barrow Hill - and the NRM didn't bow to pressure on that one.

    Also, referring to "you railway enthusiasts" implies that you don't consider yourself a railway enthusiast - in which case, why are you here?!

    S.A.C Martin, you seem to be hinting at the fact that the last overhauls of 4472 and 6100 were led by the same man. I agree that it is a notable coincidence...however, it may be that it really is just a coincidence. It may be that the individual concerned did a good job on 4472 last time, and then wasn't given the resources he needed to keep her in that state. It may be that he did his best as a human being to deal with the many problems of these engines, and failed; given that the world's largest railway museum is now struggling to get the root of these problems, it shouldn't surprise us that one man couldn't do so on his own.
    At the end of the day, few of us on these forum have as much engineering knowledge as the individual concerned - so we have to give him the benefit of the doubt.
     
  16. Spamcan81

    Spamcan81 Nat Pres stalwart

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    On another thread 8-10 Brass Cleaner took umbrage at being called a railway enthusiast, he then stated that he was a steam engine enthusiast.
     
  17. Lplus

    Lplus Well-Known Member

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    Was that for the unveiling at the NRM or the Railfest? I believe the problems with the frames had not even been found at the original unveiling.

    So:-

    For what ever reason the loco was in an appalling state when NRM bought it, and this wasn't spotted during the frame rebuild at York - Boo to the NRM

    Then someone at Riley's spotted a crack during final stages of the rebuild, leading to deeper and deeper investigations. - Yay to Riley's (or at least the sharp eyed person who spotted the problem)

    Then the NRM bit the bullet and agreed to spending whatever it cost to get the loco fixed properly - Yay to the NRM.

    Now FS will be properly repaired and owned by a public body -- Yay to Riley and the NRM.

    Lets hope it isn't thrashed to death this time. Since it only has an A3 boiler at least it won't be run at 250 psi as it was after the last rebuild.
     
  18. MuzTrem

    MuzTrem Member

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    I was referring to the original unveiling.
     
  19. Anthony Coulls

    Anthony Coulls Well-Known Member

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    The black is an undercoat and will be carried for running in before final coach painting.

    (Oops, paint froth again...sorry!
     
  20. 242A1

    242A1 Well-Known Member

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    I must admit that I admire West Coast's approach but such an option is not one that the NRM can adopt.

    If you honestly think that 4472 is the only engine where work has been put off until a later date or has been missed you could well be in for a surprise.

    If you look at the facilities used for the overhaul of the locomotive in the past there should be less surprise at the range of issues discovered this time around.

    I am surprised that the initial inspection process missed so much. Perhaps it was in part facilities related. Maybe it is time to think about having a centralized works facility having full lifting and material testing facilities, traditional and cnc machine shops etc. shared between the NRM and the preservation movement as a whole. You could also use such a works for national skills development and retention. I appreciate the fact that we have IR and a few others. But no one is around for ever.
     

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