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3801 Overhaul

Discussion in 'International Heritage Railways/Tramways' started by 76079, Aug 2, 2010.

  1. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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    76079 and The Saggin' Dragon like this.
  2. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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  3. huochemi

    huochemi Active Member Friend

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    www.3801.com.au has a recent press release. I see they have decided to abandon the new boiler and repair the old one.
     
  4. Spinner

    Spinner New Member

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    Then you see different to me. I see that the rivetted boiler will be repaired for use, then once 3801 is shouting defiance at NSW's abundant 1 in 40 graded mainlines, the new boiler will be brought up to Australian Standards ready for use in whatever 38 next needs an overhauled, serviceable boiler.
     
  5. 99Z

    99Z Active Member

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  6. geekfindergeneral

    geekfindergeneral Member

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    I doubt you actually believe it 99Z - I certainly don't. Every press statement about 3801 since it started going wrong has been Weasel Words. The chronology of events only offers circumstantial clues to the miserable truth. In 2007 there was an out-0f-ticket boiler in Australia. It must have been very bad for total replacement to be the most efficient option, but that is the path they chose.

    DB Meiningen was selected after an "open international tender" procurement exercise. This will have contained detailed spec and drawings of what they were expected to supply, otherwise DB could not have priced it . In 2010 the new boiler was delivered and found unsuitable. It returned to Germany, indicating the severity of the issue - it could not be resolved by sending DB boilersmiths to Australia to fix it there. lt was (presumably) reworked and on delivery back to Australia was still useless. Now they are having to follow a path with the old boiler that was, in 2007, worse than buying a new one.

    It is possible (although there is no history of "previous offending" by them), that DB built something different to the specification supplied from Australia. More likely to reach "on balance of probability" in front of a Judge (and it must be heading there) is that the specification supplied to Meiningen was wrong, but they built what the customer had specified anyway.

    It would be interesting to challenge whoever wrote the original spec to show he has clean hands. Was he even an Australian citizen (makes an innocent face)? When it left Meiningen (the first time), was it compliant with EU boiler standards? And who has picked up the tab for the fiasco? The New South Wales taxpayer, or the German ones through DB's subsidy? The money won't have come from anywhere else...and it will be what accountants call "a lot".

    I think we should be told.
     
  7. 99Z

    99Z Active Member

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  8. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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  9. 7822WelshSteam

    7822WelshSteam Member

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    Thank goodness they're using the original riveted boiler. That's the most iconic part of the loco.
     
  10. 242A1

    242A1 Active Member

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    Interesting. Given the general history of locomotives in the UK the boiler could be seen as a consumable. More boilers were built for a class than locomotives, boiler repairs generally take longer than the work to be carried out on the rest of the locomotive when the time comes for an overhaul. Spare boilers speed the process of returning locomotives to traffic. The point also comes in the life of a boiler when it is simply uneconomic to repair it. Once repair costs reach the point of being greater than the cost of a new replacement there is little or no point in continuing to indulge in repair work unless you are dealing with a particularly outstanding original design.

    It very much looks as though the original boiler in question in this case was less than well assessed. Preservationists and those who work with them continue to undertake evermore complicated work with great success. The conclusion that those who carried out the inspection of 3801 in the first instance had precious little understanding of what the preservation industry can achieve is hard to avoid.

    It will be interesting to compare the work to be carried out on this boiler with that carried out on the rebuilt boiler fitted to 4472.
     
  11. huochemi

    huochemi Active Member Friend

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    Thompson's history of the 38s has a detailed write up and pics of the overhaul of 3801 in 1985 when it had a new inner firebox, which itself is now 30 years old. Pressure however was reduced to 215psi.
     
  12. 7822WelshSteam

    7822WelshSteam Member

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    The difference between 3801's restoration and the practises of British Railways and earlier companies is that this is a restoration and every effort should be made to retain as many of the original components as possible. I agree that the most important thing is to see her running again but did she really need a welded boiler built in Germany? Shouldn't the work have been carried out in Australia? Japan seemed like a good option. They offered to build 2 riveted boilers for the price of one but they went with the Germans. They only had to look at the problems Tornado has had to see that this wasn't a good idea but this all happened after they'd placed the order.
     
  13. 242A1

    242A1 Active Member

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    I well understand that this is a restoration and agree that if the repairs were feasible and the funding was a surmountable issue then the work on the old boiler should have proceeded. I am sure that if, say, Ian Riley had been approached for advice then the old boiler would never have been seen as an insurmountable or even difficult problem.

    If you are engaged in a new build project then it has to be remembered that traditional riveted construction would not be countenanced by a current day designer. But you have to design for welded. Problems arise when adapting an existing design to welded, but there is no reason to suppose that that we will not get better at these adaptions.

    So far the example of 3801 reads very much like an exemplary demonstration of how not to achieve a restoration. Sad, but lessons can be learned - by those who wish to learn.
     
  14. 7822WelshSteam

    7822WelshSteam Member

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    Interesting. The most important thing is that these locos are kept in service but I like the fact that the original boiler has been deemed feasible.
     
  15. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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    Just spotted that there was a visit organised to the Chulora workshops on 21st November to see 3801's rivetted boiler [transport provided by historic former NSW Government AEC Regal IV 3197 (built 1959) single decker bus from Sydney Bus Museum!].
    Pictures and small write-up a short way down on the Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TransportHeritageNSW
     
  16. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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    3830's restoration appears to have been put on hold after more detailed boiler investigations, etc.
    However, this news release: http://www.transportheritagensw.com...ge-steam-fleet/c1ofn/571865ca0cf2b05e61f6ebf3 mentions "Today’s announcement does not impact ongoing work to return the much-loved and iconic steam locomotive 3801 to heritage service in the second half of 2017."
    Here's hoping this date is a reasonable estimation by the restoration team at Chullora rather than a politician's guess.
     
  17. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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  18. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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  19. Johann Marsbar

    Johann Marsbar New Member

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  20. buzby2

    buzby2 Active Member

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    Thanks for posting. Very worrying times indeed for 3801 Limited.
    4472 was based at the LES for all the Sydney tours during Aus Steam 88.
    I remember it well while over there for a short spell as part of the UK support team.
     

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