South Devon Railway
'South Devon Diesel Traction'
NewsLetter 6

D8110 [20110]
A replacement head arrived from Railparts of Doncaster at the start of the month and was lowered onto the engine on Sunday the 8th April.  On Saturday 28th April the loco received it's batteries back from 118 and was started up on the Sunday.
All was ok, and the loco is back in service. The only thing is, if you shut the engine down, you can not restart immediately as it appears to be dead. After about 10 minutes it can then be started again. This fault has been traced to M2 relay, but did not stop the loco working the Saturday over the Thomas weekend. On the Sunday the loco had the replacement head valve settings checked after a day of running. On Saturday 19th May the loco was prepared for use, only to have the main control fuse blow when the anti-slip button was pressed. This will be looked into at a later date. After a trip to Totnes to bring back a milk tank and brake van for use on Sunday, some more shunting at Buckfastleigh took place.
Whilst this was taking place the loco gave the 25 a kiss to No. 2 cab damaging the sand boxes and steps on both locos. The sand box was removed and the steps straightened out. The rest of the shunting was finished off. On the Sunday (Gala Day) the loco had to stand in for the 25 on the 09.57 departure (10.48 from Totnes) and later in the day for 118 on the 13.22 & 16.54 due to a failure, sadly this put double heading from Staverton to Totnes out the window, but all went well with the loco. The following weekend the loco run two round trips on the Sunday and one in the afternoon on the Monday without problem. The M2 relay has been cleaned up and seems to work better. The loco did a spot of shunting on Friday 15th June to get things ready for the Steam Gala on the weekend (16th & 17th).
On the 17th the loco had to work the goods back to Bishops Bridge vice steam. And the following week it had it's brakes adjusted. This will be the last time, as a set of new brake blocks will be required next time. 
[D8118] 20118
It has been found that the power unit is now putting oil through the exhaust on  'A' bank. The loco had been moving around Buckfastleigh at the start of April and was meant to take part in the Devon Diesel Society (D.D.S.) AGM, but only managed a small part. Black spots on the face was the order of the day for the window hangers! On Sunday 8th April the fault was traced to A2 cylinder. By mid April the head was off and a couple of days later the piston was taken out to reveal that a piston ring was stuck in and that the bore was part covered in a layer of rust. As for the head, two valve guides are warn and the valves all need regrinding. This head will (if all goes well) be rebuilt as a spare for emergence use and a reconditioned head from Railparts to go back on the loco. The piston was replaced back in the cylinder with a new set of rings and two days later on Thursday 10th May and the new head was lifted back on as well. Despite the loco working last year plus engine running and about 100 or so gallons being transferred into the 25, the fuel gauge was still showing 400 gallons! On removing a gauge the tank was found to be almost empty. The gauges have both been freed up and now show nearly zone. The loco was towed round for fuel on Friday 18th May and later back in the yard where it was jump started from 110. The new head had to have it's tappets adjusted, after which it ran without throwing oil out of the exhaust. Two or three test trips to the starting signal were made towing the 25. On the Saturday the loco had a good wash and polish ready for the Gala Day on Sunday. On the Sunday the loco made two round trips of the line without fault, but on taking power for the third trip a battery cell blew taking out the main control fuse. The fuse was replaced but the loco could not be jump started because of the blown cell. The loco was towed to shed and 110 took over 118's work, with one round trip being cancelled. And as you can tell the new batteries had not turned up for this weekend despite waiting for quite some weeks. The following week the new batteries turned up and were dully fitted,  but the engine would not start, so they were charged over night. On the Monday the loco was jumped started from the D7612, after a short shut down, it still would not start on the button. On Friday afternoon (1st June) a examination of the batteries was made, only to find two dead cells. The dead cells were replaced by the battery company, and a week later a second try was made.
This time the loco started, but only after three tries on the start button. A check around a few days later found another dead cell (reading 0.06, whereas the rest showed between 2.09 & 2.14 volts) this one was one of the four that were spare when D8110 had it's new set. The compressor governor has now been changed, and works fine, stopping the compressor at 140 psi and re-starting it at 120 psi. During the week commencing 18th June, the replacement batteries arrived, and were fitted a couple of days later. The loco now starts first time.
D7612 [25262, 25901]
With the two 20's stopped the loco has had a bit of work to do with shunts and the D.D.S's AGM on the 7th April. It also worked over the 15/16th April on the Grand Easter Transport Gala, but only just! With only 50 gallons in the tank it went for fuel, only to find the main fuel tank on site was empty! With the tanks on 20118 almost full, or so we thought, (see 20118 report !) a fuel transfer was made with the locos side by side.

The loco worked again over the Thomas weekend on Sunday and Monday with a fault free performance. Saturday 19th May saw a bump from D8110 (see D8110 report) a sand box has been replaced and the steps have been straightened out, but a piece of skirt is now missing. The loco failed to start on Gala Day (Sunday May 20th) for some reason, but was up and running the goods from Bishops Bridge in place of D8110, which was doing the 25's passenger trip. The loco worked again the following weekend, doing three round trips over the two days. All went well over both weekends. By the start of June the loco was still in service, awaiting 20118 batteries being sorted out.

Below is the advice to drivers of the new sub class 25/9. This has been taken from the BR. L.M.R TRACTION BULLETIN No.421986 for drivers.


16. Class 25 Locomotives

It has been decided to allocate 12 Class 25 locomotives for 
specific freight purposes. The locomotives will be restricted to a 
maximum speed of 60 mph and renumbered into the 25/9 
number series. 

The renumbering will be carried out as the locomotives pass 
through depots for maintenance examinations. 

T.O.P.S. Locomotive Characteristics will be amended as and 
when the renumbering take place. 

The number sequence will be as follows:- 

25 901 (25262)     25 902 (25288) 
25 903 (25276)     25 904 (25283) 
25 905 (25286)     25 906 (25296) 
25 907 (25297) 
25 908 (25307)     25 909 (25309) 
25 910 (25315)     25 917 (25316) 
25 912 (25322)

Class 09
This loco was started up for the first time in a very long time on Friday 20th April. The engine soon settled down to run nice and smooth. Now the loco is started every two weeks or so. All that's needed is the bottom of the loco to be repaired, and away we go. A drop of fuel will be needed soon, as the main tank is now showing empty with only a few gallons left in the service tank.
Class 127
The trailer (2nd class saloon) has had a window broken by persons unknown, so the trailer has been put to one side awaiting a replacement to be fitted. The Ashburton end power car has blown the Local fuse giving problems and was not available for the BBQ at Totnes on Saturday 2nd June.
Class 122 - 55000
The welding around the cab windows is still to be done, but the new bits to be welded in are all ready. With some dry days the cab, guards & small saloon have had a coat of grey undercoat applied. The first window of the big saloon has now been removed. 
In Service
In Service, no change from last time.
No change from last time.
South Devon Diesels' Drewry 04
This made two trips of the branch on Saturday 7th April with the D.D.S's AGM trains. Some minor faults showed up, but all went well until the last return trip. The unloader valve stuck open letting the main air drain out. A special stop had to be made to reseat the valve with a specialist piece of equipment, (a hammer!) Sunday 29th April one blue loco, Monday 30th April one Black loco! A quick repaint into black ready for the Thomas weekend on May 5/6/7. Some fault showed over the weekend. First a key came loose again (this key is what keeps the counter weight on the drive shaft under the cab steps) a temporary repair was carried out to hold the key in place, and second, a seal on the exhauster started to leak quite badly. Gala Day (Sunday 20th May) saw the loco (now numbered 11216) make two round trips of the line and some shunting. The loco is now having some repair work done. The key that holds the counter weight on the drive from the gear box has been removed, along with the weight and connecting rod. Also under repair (or replacement) is the vacuum exhauster, which had a blockage in a oil way and has caused some damage.
MINK - No change.
CCT - No change, though it has made a few trips to Totnes over May 20th, and a week in the siding at Bishops Bridge by mistake. It also had some use over the Steam Gala on Sat/Sun 16th & 17th June. 
SHOCK - No change
MINK `B' W125814 ~ The van is now under cover close to the workshop and the wood for it arrived on 1st May.  By mid May the floor was all down and the walls started going up by the end of the month. At the end of June all sides were cut, primed, fitted and given a second coat of primer.  A start on fitting out the inside with shelves/racking has been made.
BG - Parts to be sold off, then broken up or maybe going away !
Keep the aluminium drink cans coming in. 
Dates for Diary (Diesels running)

July 7th & 8th Thomas Weekend
August 26th & 27th Branch Line Weekend 
September 22nd & 23rd Transport Heritage Weekend
Working Weekends
Mostly Sundays at the moment.
If you turn up about between 09.30 and 10.00 someone will be around. But no guarantees on this.
Running Days
 No running days planned unlike last year, but the 17.15 from Buckfastleigh on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 24th July to 30th August, is programmed for diesel haulage though it may be possible to put a loco out on the service train instead of the DMU, but this will be a last minute arrangement


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South Devon Railway Trust 2001