Museum working party 3rd Aug 2023

A shower drenched Tywyn not long before the team assembled in Wharf yard this morning and then we were untroubled by the weather for the rest of the morning. Oliver Jenkins once more joined Allan Black, Pete Thomas and John Olsen to work on the Corris wagon and the ex GWR steel bodied wagon.

With the wagon cover off the new frame for the Corris Mail Waggon we used the drill jig, made for the rebuild of wagon no. 136, to hold the auger vertical to drill out the three marked holes for the drawbar bolts. The frame was then turned over and laid upon the upturned Corris wagon body to mark the positions of the four fixing holes. Two of the holes in the wagon body had been opened up with a file to provide maximum ‘wiggle’ room later in the rebuild. Following Pete’s suggestion for getting an accurate centre hole, John took the cordless drill fitted with a 20mm flat bladed wood bit under the body and used it to mark the four hole positions; getting out was much harder than getting in!

The frame was then placed back on the supports and the four holes drilled out using the auger and jig. Pete and Allan measured and marked the rough locations of the pairs of axleboxes while Oliver set to work on the rusty wheels once more with a wire brush and John cut off the four remaining fixing bolts holding a corner bracket to an old frame cross member. With the rough locations established the positions of the axleboxes were fine tuned to less than 5mm deviation and the centres for the fixing holes made with the cordless drill and appropriate sized flat blade bits.

It was getting close to eleven am so we stopped to have our morning coffee and chat with a selection of three different types of biscuit, two chocolate covered; we had just about finished when Ann McCanna and Tom Place arrived for their morning coffee.

Back at the worksite Oliver went inside the Gunpowder Store to complete the first coat of metal paint on the ex GWR metal slate wagon basket while Allan, Pete and John went round the eight vertical axlebox hole positions drilling them out with the auger and jig. The frame was then demounted and clamped on end to repeat the drilling of the horizontal fixing holes, first in the north side then the south; Oliver being called forth from painting to assist with the lifting and shifting.

The frame was put back upon the supports and the wagon cover placed over the upturned Corris wagon body to keep it dry for next week. The axleboxes were stored away in the covered wagon, no. 146, as space in the Gunpowder Store is severely limited by the presence of the metal basket.

The tools were packed away and the site tidied and left in a safe condition.

Photos by Allan Black and John Olsen.