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Not bitter and now not twisted

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 A few weeks back we reported that we had recovered the pair of 9"x3" oak sole plates for the final section of the carriage. These had been gently seasoning for 4-5 years in our workshop and whilst not expecting them to be perfectly straight (oak rarely is) one of the two was quite badly warped and twisted. One of the lessons learned from earlier sections was to ensure the scarfing joints between sections is manufactured prior to erecting the previous section. So we needed to attempt to straighten the timber to allow the joints to be made. Our previous experience steaming these big timbers has proven quite successful provided the process is given plenty of time. So out came our 12' steaming box originally designed for making roof hoops and the necessary steam supplies by way of 2 paint strippers plugged in and set in action. The offending piece of oak added and left for 5 hours to gently warm. The above picture shows the extent of the twist After 5 hours the twist had sub
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 Luggage End Door Construction 11/06/2021    Having completed yesterday's sort out it was time to return to the tasks which is the construction of 2 pairs of luggage end doors. The left-hand side originals were in a very poor state so definitely needed replacing, whilst the right side ones were not quite so bad but after consideration, it was decided that making 4 doors was not too much harder than making 2 although we may live to regret that decision! Anyway, the process was started before lockdown but as the picture below shows we have now progressed to a point that 8 stiles (the side pieces of the doors) have been produced and the tumblehome shape added. So now we will be moving on to the next stage of the process, cutting the 5 mortises on each side that take the cross-members that make up the full frame of the door. Watch out for further updates. The stiles that are shown represent about £4-500 worth of seasoned oak and probably 40/50 hours of work. So far we have hardly begun
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Workshop sort out 10/06/2021 Our need to extricate the next and final soleplates for the carriage necessitated a major operation to allow forklift access. The picture below shows the space we would have if we hadn't had to retrieve all the timber and equipment from the car park. The timbers on the immediate right are the components of section 3 which awaits assembly. Many thanks to our neighbours at Williton Pet Care for their assistance.    
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 A few more pictures of post lockdown activity 09/06/2021
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  At last, we have got back to some serious carriage building on 169. The floor for section 3 was assembled to refresh us exactly where we had got to prior to lockdown and final components identified for manufacture. The longitudinal intermediate flooring supports are now well underway. The area just above the nearest end is the main doorway and vestibule area.A reminder that we have all the major components of the carriage bodywork completed and ready for assembly. Pic copyright Francis Taylor.

Facebook Posts 2016

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 Facebook Posts from 2016 24/01/2016 A quick 169 update, amongst much other work continuing on doors and flooring of 'section 2' we have this week cut all the inside tumblehomes on the 12 main uprights. A very slow and steady job on 5" oak beams 7' long! Small uprights  below large windows 17/02/2016 You can never have too many clamps! 10/03/2016 Just 3 more days to get yourself a closer look at the work we've been doing on 169. So why not pop into Williton on Friday, Saturday or Sunday and see for yourself what we get up to. Especially for the Gala, we have put most of the bits we've been making together so you can see get an idea of how it's all coming along. Our fundraising stall will be open for business along with lots of other interesting displays and stands. Here's a taste .............but there's more to see. 30/06/2016 Auto 169 Getting to grips with rebuilding the floor and 2 rebuilt vestibule doors
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History from the Website There has been a lot of progress with the "kit of parts" starting to come together hence this page of photos of Autotrailer 169 as on view during the West Somerset Railway's 2012 Autumn Steam Gala.   First an outside view from the driving end.   Trial erection of the second bay's timbers. The inner end has been moved back in place, it will have to be largely dismantled   A closer look at the driving cab framework.   Looking across the cab with handbrake pedestal in place - and smartly painted.   An interior view with two seats temporarily in position and examples of some of the parts and the associated jigs. View from the saloon to the cab - and the Barclay saddle tank in front. Detail of the roof hoop construction. Some of the team showing visitors around the autotrailer - many thanks for donations received! Please help us to continue our restoration of this historic Great Western Railway Autotrailer