Museum working party 21st July 2022

The sun was shining on Wharf yard this morning as the working party team of Charles Benedetto, Andy Sheffield and John Olsen was reinforced by Ian Evans.

The first item on our agenda, once the first train of the day had left and we received the all clear from control, was to hand shunt the wagons on the Wharf Edge siding. We wanted to extract the TR wooden bodied wagon from in between the museum wagons and remove the FR flat loaded with scaffolding to allow the shunting to take place. With the FR flat parked on a separate siding we shuffled the wagons so that the two slate wagons were at the north end, closest to the museum, then came the incline and splayside wagons and finally, separated by a space to show the wagon turntable from the balcony, the covered wagon. The wooden bodied TR wagon was shunted up behind the covered wagon as it is an appropriate association and can help us tell the story of the transshipment outwards of finished slates for sale and inwards of foodstuffs and coal for the villagers of Abergynolwyn.

We took our coffee break at this point in the company of Malcolm Phillips, David Broadbent and Mike Green.

Before starting any further work John took down one of the moving words displays so that Malcolm could perform a firmware update ready for new text to be loaded by Keith. We then crossed the tracks to work on the new wagon frame for the rebuild of the three slat slate wagon no. 136, which we placed upon the stands recycled from the condemned frame of the same wagon over 3 years ago.

Charles and Ian used the angle grinders fitted with abrasive discs to remove the paint from the underside and inner faces. This follows the precedent of the frame of the covered wagon, no. 146, which did not have paint on these faces and was in very good condition with no significant rot; the unpainted surfaces were allowing the water that did penetrate to safely evaporate. Andy took a roll of masking tape and a tin of grey topcoat metal paint to complete the touching up of the covered wagon. John took on the task of knocking off the loose paint and rust from the inside of the door of the incline wagon, which was showing signs of extensive corrosion after last winter standing outside unprotected from the weather.

At the end of the mornings proceedings the wagon frame was covered over with the black maintenance cover and the site tidied up.

Photos by John Olsen.