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Swanage Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by Rumpole, Oct 10, 2012.

  1. twr12

    twr12 Well-Known Member

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    Swanage Railway has two engineering apprentices, both started in September 2021.
    One is a mechanical fitter on steam locos and occasionally diesel shunters; the other is a machinist, who is also learning fitting work.
     
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  2. 80104

    80104 Member

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    Thanks for the update and pleased to hear of this progress.

    I follow the news on both the Swanagerailway.co.uk and Swanagerailwaytrust.org.uk websites but there was no mention of this.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2022
  3. Paul42

    Paul42 Part of the furniture

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    Screenshot_20220414-211627.png
     
  4. gz3xzf

    gz3xzf Member

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    80104
    I would also keep an eye out for Swanning Around it is a volunteer produced newsletter giving a look at what's happening around the Swanage Railway that is available to the public.
    https://www.srstaff.co.uk/swanningaround/index.php
     
  5. DcB

    DcB Well-Known Member

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    I could not find any mention on a websearch other than the job ads.
    Good the SR is investing in the future to keep knowledge required for the running of steam trains.
    Hope they are well looked after and qualify in about 3 or 4 years time.
     
  6. DcB

    DcB Well-Known Member

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    I see The Southener" has posted a video about Manston and 30053 in the workshop.
     
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  7. buzby2

    buzby2 Well-Known Member

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    Most unlikely that the current engineering base at Herston Works would get planning permission for boiler work to be undertaken.
    It has adjacent offices and other businesses as well as local residents within a few hundred yards. I suspect they would not take kindly to riveting and other noisy boiler work.
    I believe the SVR at Bridgnorth do not have neighbours as close as at Herston but still had to upgrade their previously outdoors boiler work by building the specialist George William Knight Boiler Repair Shop at no little expense.
    There is presently no space that I know of, on Swanage Industrial Estate, that we could rent from the local authority near to Herston Works.
     
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  8. M59137

    M59137 Well-Known Member

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    D6515 looks fantastic - one of Swanage Railway's jewels in the crown!

    Sent from my moto g(8) power using Tapatalk
     
  9. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Just a thought, but how many fully equipped boiler shops do UK heritage lines have already and how many do they actually need between them?
     
  10. mdewell

    mdewell Well-Known Member Friend

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    I should think the difficulty in trying to count them will depend upon your definition of 'fully equipped'. Most railways could probably handled retubing and new stays, but replacement of large sections of plating and/or foundation ring would be a different matter.
     
  11. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    True. This comes purely from a pleb's PoV, but I was thinking anything much beyond a retube (would that include superheater elements?). I'd imagine changing firebars, or reseating the odd fitting is almost as routine as washing out. Less so new throatplate, foundation ring, stays or barrel section.
     
  12. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    Off the top of my head the following will do major boiler work:
    NYMR
    SVR
    Bluebell
    WCRC
    NNR
    SDR
    Isreal Newton
    Ian Riley
    Northern Steam engineering
    Heritage Boiler Services
    Locomotive Maintenance Services
    Crewe

    No doubt there are others.
     
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  13. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    The Flour Mill could be added to that list too.

    Tom
     
  14. ady

    ady Well-Known Member

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    Mid hants have a boiler shop too
     
  15. DcB

    DcB Well-Known Member

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    NNR seem to very capable and have a contract to overhaul a boiler from Switzerland.
    They have finished Sidmouth's boiler which is sadly going to Sir Keith Park instead for the SVR.
    A websearch gives Swanning around showing 30053's boiler being worked on in 2019 at the NNR. Yet 3 years later still to be completed?.
     
  16. DcB

    DcB Well-Known Member

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    Maybe the NNR contract for the 30053 boiler did not specify an end date?
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2022
  17. 80104

    80104 Member

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    I would argue that boiler smithing is a core competency and given the annual mileage SR run (number of steam locos utilised) should therefore be "in house".

    Out sourcing such an activity means that SR are hostage to fortune. Reading through various HR newsletters etc over the years seems to indicate that lengthy waits for the return of out sourced boilers seems to be a common occurrence.
     
  18. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    Could you explain why it is sad that Sidmouth's boiler is going to keep SKP running? Sidmouth is years from being ready to receive a boiler, so is it not a better idea to keep SKP running and earning money to pay for Sidmouth's restoration?
    Regarding 30053, there could be technical difficulties, unplanned extra expenditure, supplier issues etc. It is unwise to blame (or imply blame on) the NNR
     
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  19. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Perennial problem of outsourcing versus doing work in house. One important point is that if you outsource, it doesn't remove the requirement to have sufficient skills and knowledge to both specify, and oversee, the work being carried out on the railway's behalf. As an example, if you send a boiler to the NNR for repair, that is a really long day out from Swanage to go and inspect the work, possibly two days with an overnight stay; and you may well be needing to do that monthly. That's a not inconsiderable overhead. The Llangollen / Patriot saga is an illustration of the importance of needing a proper quality control process in place if you outsource work. Of course, you still need quality control if you do it in house, but the logistics are easier, and also potentially you can go through the query / discussion / decision cycle more rapidly when issues arise.

    Tom
     
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  20. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    But the flip side of that is that maintaining the capacity in house requires a consistent workload to keep the staff (paid or volunteer) gainfully employed, plus a level of investment in ensuring that the skills remain current and do not degrade. Reading between the lines, Llangollen also shows how a railway can be vulnerable to that degrading effect in house if not managed properly effectively.

    I would be interested to know how many in house boiler repairs are also delayed, but not reported on in the same way because of different expectations.

    There is no right answer here, and the trade off will vary for different places at different times. Pity the poor boards of trustees and directors having to make these decisions about where to allocate their limited resources.
     

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