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Bure Valley Railway

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by andrewshimmin, Jul 5, 2018.

  1. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    "Beaching the bars" we called that (and the shingle was referred to as "beach"). I'm not sure I would call Welsh coal superb, not least because fire bars are expensive - whatever its other virtues, regularly replacing firebars puts your daily running costs up.

    Tom
     
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  2. clementi

    clementi New Member

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    It's like rocket fuel! There's little smoke and ash and tons of heat once it burns through. Long lasting as well which can catch you out. It collapses like a souffle towards the end of the cycle and you get an "oops" moment if you don't keep an eye on it. From a performance view it works well. However, as you say, other things have to be factored in. With the firebar issue solved I assumed that was the end of the matter, but it seems I may have been wrong.
     
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  3. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    It's unusual for a boiler to be totally condemned on an inspection; more usually, the inspector requires certain work doing. Whether, the owners consider them to be not worth repairing is a different matter. It is known exactly what the problems are? If new boilers are required, it will be a relatively long wait, even for a small boiler.
     
  4. clementi

    clementi New Member

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    That is exactly the case. However this particular boiler has needed a lot of specialist welding costing many thousands of pounds so far and much work over the last few months.

    Andrew Barnes again. "In the autumn we encountered a number of problems with No.7 Spitfires boiler during the course of it’s 10 year overhaul. The cap welds on the stays within the inner firebox showed signs of deterioration. This was attended to with all the stay welds being ground out to good metal and rewelded. Together with replacement of the washout and fusible plug bosses, we were positive when the boiler was presented for NDT testing. Sadly the inspection highlighted hairline cracking radiating from the tell tales on the bottom two rows of stays. This required the bottom two rows of stays to be cut out and replaced."
    "The bottom two rows of stays were cut out and replaced and further NDT testing undertaken and all looked good.
    Wednesday of this week saw the boiler inspector visit to undertake the Hydraulic test. Disaster struck, with a load bang, one of the side stays snapped. Immediately the test was abandoned. The requirement of the inspector was to remove the inner wrapper and replace it and all stays."

    How much money do you throw at a boiler which when it is done will still be a 25 year old boiler? At what point to you say you are not going to throw more money at a boiler? Each visit from the boiler inspector costs, the coded welder costs and so on. Bear in mind this year with only about a quarter of the normal income BVR has spent a lot to get to this stage of stay failure. To send the boiler away and have the firebox dismantled, the wrapper and stays replaced will probably be getting on for half the price of a new boiler. The other issue of course is you never know what you are going to find when you open up a boiler! So the decision to put this boiler aside for the time being and go for a new one is the right thing to do imho.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2021
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  5. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    I've 'liked' this post, not because of what it says about the condition of the boiler but because of the honesty in saying it.
     
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  6. Davo

    Davo Member

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    Just been announced on rail advent that experimenting with home fire E bio coal on blinkling hall has proved to be a success and burns and raises steam up just as efficiently tested against fros y Fran Welsh steam coal but with more ash content but less hazardous fumes whilst been burnt, hopefully if this method of raising steam on a standard gauge loco with bio coal was successful (would anyone on here know more about that) it could solve the problem of a alternative fuel for raising steam besides sourcing coal from overseas when our last U.K. open cast coal mine shuts next year.
    Davo 56F
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2021

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