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S160s 5197 & 6046

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S160s 5197 & 6046
Posted by samoht on Wednesday, June 01, 2011 3:32 PM

It's been a while since I last posted on here about the 2 S160s on the Churnet Valley Railway. All work virtually stopped on the restoration of 6046 whilst we entered an agreement to restore a mothballed line in partnership with a commercial railway. This now gives us access to a further 7.5 miles of track but it was all hands to the pump for 12 months. Work has now restarted on 6046 and the last month has seen the motion go on,the ashpan fitted and a new smokebox fitted.  The tender is completed and painted. Iis hoped to have it all done by the end of the year. Meanwhile the other one 5197 is on display and will be overhauled as soon as 6046 is done. So hopefully in a couple of years time both of them could be echoing down the valley.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Wednesday, June 01, 2011 5:42 PM

I have to admit I'd never heard of the Churnet Valley Railway, so I did an online search for some information.  Found it. WOW!   If I ever get over to Britain I'll definately have to come and see you folks! The pictures on the site are just great and I love how those Limas picked up a "British accent" in the years they've been over there.  Like an old friend of mine once said, "it's a wasted day if you haven't learned something new!"

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Posted by samoht on Thursday, June 02, 2011 2:31 PM

Glad you liked the CVR website, I volunteer there and work on the p/way. If ever you come over Iwould be glad to show you around the railway. The line we have refurbished is the Cauldon branch and is steeply inclined. Cannot wait to see 6046 go up it with a good load on, The sight,smell but most of all the sound should be tremendous.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Thursday, June 02, 2011 7:06 PM

Thanks for the kind offer of the tour!  It won't be anytime soon, but maybe one day...

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Posted by samoht on Wednesday, June 08, 2011 11:41 AM

 I have posted 5 photos of the S160s on my facebook they were taken today. Jeff Higginson

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Posted by uphogger on Saturday, June 11, 2011 7:28 AM

Are you repainting them as USATC engines?  I didn't have a chance to look at any photos, btw.

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Posted by samoht on Saturday, June 11, 2011 11:10 AM

 5197 awaiting the 10 year overhaul is in black with USA on the tender,  Before its repaint it was grey with USATC on the tender, Not sure what 6049 will carry but the completed tender is painted black, will ask the owner on Wednesday ( the day I volunteer) and let you know, Thanks Jeff.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Saturday, June 11, 2011 1:24 PM

Paint them any way you like, my friend.  They're the Churnet Valley's engines, so  please yourselves and don't worry what anyone else says. 

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Posted by samoht on Saturday, June 11, 2011 2:38 PM

 Well we like them  in any guise, they go down particulary well at the Stations at War Weekends so it will be in that sort of vein, Can't wait to see them tackle the new extention with the 7,5 mile gradient. This must be the largest preserved class of locomotive in the world so it's a tribute to American Engineering and they are great embassadors for the USA.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Saturday, June 11, 2011 7:42 PM

As an American I'm honored you folks want to paint the  S160's in US Army markings.  As an aside, when I was in the Marines in 1976 we stopped in Portsmouth on the way back from a NATO operation, and the folks in Portsmouth were great to us!  All I could think of was the guys who were there in WW2 must have made a great impression on the British people.  I was also introduced to your quaint custom of  "Penny for The Guy?", but that's another story.

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Posted by samoht on Tuesday, June 14, 2011 4:00 PM

 If you go on www.churnet-valley-railway.co.uk there is a nice 5 min. video of S160 5197 on the railway in, events, video diaries theres also some photos in the 2006 steam gala.They were putting bands on 6046 today  ready for the outer boiler casing, they were also rolling the outer casings

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Posted by uphogger on Thursday, June 16, 2011 10:44 PM

Took a look at the photos of 6046 being restored.  Looks like an extremely thorough job, considering they don't exactly have a huge, fully equipped shop.  Nice to see these engines getting the attention.  That 8F the CVR has is very nice, too.  Eight-coupled engines seem to have a versatility lacking in other classes, i.e., they could be used in just about any kind of service.  I suspect that grey paint on the tender is just a primer coat.  Makes me want to don the fatigues and come over and run her for you.  I spent 18 years in the US Army, albeit mostly working in intelligence rather than transportation, but am now a qualified locomotive engineer for Union Pacific.  I have a great appreciation for both railroads and the military.  Whatever, nice job, lads!

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Posted by samoht on Friday, June 17, 2011 12:45 PM

 You're right the shed is not as big would like but we are doing as much as possible in house for example we are rolling all the boiler clading there, all the  motion has been assembled and we have a all round good machinist and backup team. If you look up on youtube you'll see that other locos went up the Cauldon  Low line on the reopening gala but you're right it is suited to 8 coupled engines. It wiil be great to see one or both S160s double heading up there. Save your money and come over for the double header in a couple of years. Cheers Jeff.

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Posted by samoht on Saturday, June 25, 2011 8:01 AM

 Things are now really moving with 6046 this week. The boiler cladding has been fitted,  the cab secured in place and the firebox doors also fitted, Don't you just like it when a plan starts coming together.

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Posted by samoht on Thursday, July 07, 2011 10:26 AM

 Missed last week due to gout, Don't laugh is's very painful. Anyhow went up today it really is coming on in leaps and bounds.The smokebox is being assembled and today they are putting the bands on the boiler clading. I've put 2 photos on my facebook page and as you see the workshop is a bit confining.

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Posted by samoht on Wednesday, August 03, 2011 3:09 PM

 Quick update, Work has started on the boiler, steam tubes are on order and are due in soon. Elsewhere the cab is being outfitted and bits and pieces being add to the frames, the way its going it should be in steam this year. Two latest photos on my facebook. Cheers Jeff.

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Posted by samoht on Wednesday, August 10, 2011 1:00 PM

Have changed my avitar to the latest photo taken today.  6046, the running boards are in position and the steam tubes will be arriving this week. The group assembling the loco have been told that is has got to be running by the last week in Nov. at the lastest by the owner.

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Posted by samoht on Thursday, September 01, 2011 3:14 PM

 Have changed my avitar to one of lastest photos, theres another on my facebook. Work being done at present time, work in smokebox, rods being  remachined,fittings going in cab and a few bits and pieces still being done on the clading. It looks touch and go for November.

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Posted by samoht on Friday, October 28, 2011 7:32 AM

Sorry so long in posting but in working on the p/way on the line, in conjuction with CVR/MCR agreements, have not had a lot of time to see how the S160 has been coming along. This week finally the tubes have arrived, but what has surprised me  is the number  of bits and pieces that have been bolted on the running boards, smoke box and anywhere else where there is a space. Compared to a British engine it looks like a Christmas tree and I don't mean that in a detrimental way, just a comparision. It seems to be coming on well but with the extentions  being so labour intensive it could be early new year before it's running again,but stiil keeping fingers crossed for Chritmas.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Friday, October 28, 2011 3:35 PM

Take your time brother and don't rush, a few more months won't hurt anyone.  Always good to have more trackage available  to you.

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Posted by samoht on Saturday, October 29, 2011 8:52 AM

 Thanks Firelock76, The owner of the S160s is also a director of both the CVR AND the MCR. He would like to run on special occausions one or both when done on the mineral trains. To see what their objectives are go to their website www.mcrailways.co.uk

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Posted by uphogger on Sunday, November 20, 2011 5:39 PM

Very few US locomotives were built strictly with aesthetics (I'm too lazy to find an online dictionary for spelling)  in mind.  They were built primarily for pulling power with ease of maintenance in mind.  Streamlined engines obviously were somewhat of an exception.  The Delaware & Hudson also tended to follow English practice in much of their styling.  The S160's were built to operate in a variety of circumstances and were standardized and simplified to the extreme.  A few years back I watched the two Iowa Interstate Chinese QJ's operating with the Milwaukee Road #261, a well-heeled 4-8-4 and the difference was like comparing a thoroughbred with a couple of non-pedigreed draft horses.  The Chinese engines had none of the refinement that the big Northern had, but nobody can claim they weren't a decent design.  The same goes for virtually all of the USATC engines.

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Posted by samoht on Monday, November 21, 2011 2:05 PM

The 2 S160s we have here are by different builders, 5197 is built by Lima and 6046 by Baldwin. Are there any differences in the manufacturing between them or the other builders or was everything standardised to the nth degree?.

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Posted by Firelock76 on Monday, November 21, 2011 5:26 PM

If they were anything like the weapons used by the US during World  War Two then they were probably built to the same specifications as  specified by the War Dapartment.  It would have made maintanance and parts replacement a heck of a lot easier.  Having once been in the gun business I used to get a silent laugh when collectors of say, the M-1 carbine would claim one manufacturer, say Winchester, made a better piece than National Postal Meter.  Guess what, they were all made to the same specs, one's as good as another!  Mind you, I'm just guessing on the locomotives!

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Posted by 54light15 on Thursday, November 24, 2011 4:35 PM

I visited the Churnet Valley last spring on a charter train tour from London with some friends of mine. I was very impressed with the ambitious plan for extending the line and connecting back to the national network.  Wasn't there an issue of stock to accomplish this?

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Posted by samoht on Friday, November 25, 2011 8:16 AM

Glad you enjoyed the tour, we worked hard to open the almost 8 miles up to Cauldon last year and some more work will be required before the freight runs up there again. We have started on the line back to the main line and have progressed to Endon (3miles)  where passengers could use the station  for the first time in over 20 years. As regards stock,another coach has been refurbished and a another on is due in the carriage shed around Christmas. If required other coaches  will be hired in. On the engine side we have 2 hired in  and a 3rd the S160 6046 should be ready for the gala. As you see we have a busy time ahead for a few years yet.

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Posted by 54light15 on Friday, November 25, 2011 12:00 PM

The tour I was on was apparently the first to use the Cauldon line since it was reopened. I'll be back next March to the UK and will be going to the Severn Valley for their open days. Sure looking forward to it. Not to get off-topic but I understand that heritage railways are a billion pound a year business in the UK. That's something, eh?

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Posted by samoht on Tuesday, November 29, 2011 11:04 AM

We're not quite in the 1st division table of heritage railways but I think in the coming few years we will get there with a total of about 30 miles of line on offer. The Severn Valley is a great railway with some lovely stations and variety of locos. A billion pound  business not sure, but certainly the top 5  do take a lot of money but then railways take a lot of money to run.

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Posted by samoht on Thursday, December 08, 2011 12:49 PM
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Posted by samoht on Wednesday, December 21, 2011 3:21 AM

 The good news is the S160 6046 has been retubed and will be steam tested on Christmas Eve. Even better news is that it should make its UK and preservation steam debut at the steam gala the last weekend in February. Cannot wait to hear the whistle for the first time up the Cauldon Line. Sorry about the last posting but for some reason it would not post the message. Merry Christmas to all you wonderful folk over there in the good ole USA.

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