Museum working party 15th Feb 2024

A very grey and wet morning in Tywyn that precluded any work in the yard, to which end all the wagons remained covered over. Max Birchenough Charles Benedetto, Andy Sheffield and John Olsen worked inside the museum on general housekeeping and an important repair job.

It had been noted that the window winder operating the three fanlights over the big window facing Neptune Road had become very stiff and would effectively jam when they were only part open. John inspected the winder mechanism and the openers earlier in the week and found that they were not the problem, however he noted a lot of filings in the winder which indicated a likely problem in the conduit. This morning was the first opportunity to dismantle the winder and first section of conduit, that had two curved sections in it before the first opening mechanism, as John suspected this was where the PTFE conduit lining had failed and the operating wire was rubbing on the outer aluminium wall, causing the excessive friction and the filings.

Assisted variously by the other team members in between their cleaning jobs, John removed the inner operating wire and the first conduit section; extracting the wire from the rest of the system was very easy but it required much more pull to get it out of the curved conduit; case proven. Using spare conduit and operating wire left over from the installation, John began the repair by replacing the damaged conduit section, bending it in much larger radii than the original so as to minimise any future tendency for the wire to abrade the PTFE lining.

Having gotten a successful fit for the conduit between the winder and the first window opener, coffee break was called. We were joined in the cafe by Keith Theobald, Barbara Fuller, Ann McCanna and Tom Place, enjoying caffeine and chat with three different styles of chocolate biscuits. Yum.

Refreshed we returned to the museum to thread the new operating wire through the system and then set the open and closed positions of the windows before testing the operation several times. It was now time to tidy up; the tools were returned to their respective tool boxes and we cleared away the detritus of our industry ready for our next visitors.