3801 Boiler and it's return to operation

 
  a6et Minister for Railways

Not too long ago THNSW said that the German built boiler would be fixed up to Australian standards as a spare boiler, from what I know that process will probably start once 3801 is finished
Has anyone any real idea of just what is wrong with it? Or is it still Too Soon?
'Has anyone any real idea of just what is wrong with it?

Good question to which an honest, accurate and detailed answer free of lies, spin and half-truths would be nice.


I believe (rightly or wrongly) that it has been said many times that it 'doesn't fit' ?
How German, Australian or Martian Standards relates to this fact eludes me - 'if it doesn't fit it doesn't fit' - regardless of whether you measure it in millimetres, inches, jumbo jets, Eiffel Towers, Statues of Liberties or bees' dicks.
That sort of comment does not get us far. For instance, could parts of the German boiler be used with an existing boiler? For that to occur, we really need to know where the new boiler does not fit. I have heard all sorts of theories, such as the barrel is out of round or that the firebox is out of dimension.

I find it hard to believe the boiler could be out of round. If it is not then surely the boiler would be amalgamated with an existing rebuilt firebox, perhaps with usable parts out of the German firebox.
nswtrains
I don't know if its in this thread or not, but I tend to recollect that the issue was more to do with the dimensions were incorrect around where the firebox sits into its cradle, as that part of the boiler was oversize.

As has been pointed out, the Germans made the boiler according to the plans supplied, but the problem was that they had not been checked off correctly against the original plans for a 38cl boiler.  If as I understand it, the whole of the firebox end of the primary boiler section will likely have to be taken apart and the affected areas rebuilt, just how much will need to be done is something I do not know,

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  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Stupid gunzel question, is the boiler of 3801 different  to the other (former) operational loco, 3830 ??
Most will know where I'm going with this.

Regards,
David Head
  c3526blue Deputy Commissioner

Location: in the cuckoos nest
Not too long ago THNSW said that the German built boiler would be fixed up to Australian standards as a spare boiler, from what I know that process will probably start once 3801 is finished
DCook
That is not an economic (or even common sense) proposition.  I was at a THNSW seminar when it was acknowledged (under significant pressure) that to fit the DB boiler to any existing C38 the engine itself would have to be modified to allow the boiler to fit.  

To my mind the DB boiler has so many defects (as acknowledged and demonstrated by THNSW itself during the three C38 boiler assessment) that it is effectively a boat anchor, or maybe it could be put to use as an artificial reef off Long Reef.

There are plans underway to continue the current large engine restoration program.  We will need to wait and see what is behind the light at the end of the tunnel.

Happy forecasting,

John
  c3526blue Deputy Commissioner

Location: in the cuckoos nest
Stupid gunzel question, is the boiler of 3801 different  to the other (former) operational loco, 3830 ??
Most will know where I'm going with this.

Regards,
David Head
dthead
David,


There has been a lot of information available (both published and unpublished) on the current boiler position for all NSW preserved steam.

In relation to the C38's the only 'spare' boiler is that DB one.  The other boilers have tabs that identify their origin (or in this case the loco which each boiler was initially fitted to).

There are currently four reasonably intact C38 boilers.  Three are fitted to 3801, 3820 and 3830.  There is also the damaged boiler that is part of the 3813 parts collection at Dorrigo.

As part of the post DB boiler return 3 boiler assessment I was informed on the status of the boilers associated with 3801 and 3830. The boiler repaired and most recently refitted to 3801 is boiler tab 3819.  The boiler fitted to 3830 is boiler tab 3801 (around 77 years old itself).  I do not know the boiler tabs associated with 3813 and 3820.

All four C38 boilers are reasonably identical, that is they were built to the same design.  Each boiler as constructed is somewhat unique due to construction and maintenance differences throughout their working lives.

Like any locomotive class the boiler from one C38 was quite often interchanged with another during extensive overhaul.  If a spare C38 boiler was available this could be repaired individually independent of an engine. An engine coming in for a major service could be fitted with the spare boiler and the removed boiler thus becoming a new spare and a candidate for rebuilding.

Unfortunately there are currently no spare C38 boilers other than the DB one and the one associated with 3813, which is now owned by Dorrigo, so effectively unavailable as a spare.

THNSW could now build their own C38 boiler from scratch (although unlikely).  Word from a recent 3801 inspection is that THNSW want to keep a large loco project going, but want to use 'in house' resources as far as possible.  To rebuild boiler tab 3801 it would need to be removed from 3830.  Initial work to repair boiler tab 3801 in situ was abandoned as when the boiler work commenced the damage was found to be more severe than what was apparent during the 3 boiler assessment inspection.

We will need to be patient (as was the case with 3801's rebuild) and await a public announcement.

Happy restoring,

John
  a6et Minister for Railways

Stupid gunzel question, is the boiler of 3801 different  to the other (former) operational loco, 3830 ??
Most will know where I'm going with this.

Regards,
David Head
David,


There has been a lot of information available (both published and unpublished) on the current boiler position for all NSW preserved steam.

In relation to the C38's the only 'spare' boiler is that DB one.  The other boilers have tabs that identify their origin (or in this case the loco which each boiler was initially fitted to).

There are currently four reasonably intact C38 boilers.  Three are fitted to 3801, 3820 and 3830.  There is also the damaged boiler that is part of the 3813 parts collection at Dorrigo.

As part of the post DB boiler return 3 boiler assessment I was informed on the status of the boilers associated with 3801 and 3830. The boiler repaired and most recently refitted to 3801 is boiler tab 3819.  The boiler fitted to 3830 is boiler tab 3801 (around 77 years old itself).  I do not know the boiler tabs associated with 3813 and 3820.

All four C38 boilers are reasonably identical, that is they were built to the same design.  Each boiler as constructed is somewhat unique due to construction and maintenance differences throughout their working lives.

Like any locomotive class the boiler from one C38 was quite often interchanged with another during extensive overhaul.  If a spare C38 boiler was available this could be repaired individually independent of an engine. An engine coming in for a major service could be fitted with the spare boiler and the removed boiler thus becoming a new spare and a candidate for rebuilding.

Unfortunately there are currently no spare C38 boilers other than the DB one and the one associated with 3813, which is now owned by Dorrigo, so effectively unavailable as a spare.

THNSW could now build their own C38 boiler from scratch (although unlikely).  Word from a recent 3801 inspection is that THNSW want to keep a large loco project going, but want to use 'in house' resources as far as possible.  To rebuild boiler tab 3801 it would need to be removed from 3830.  Initial work to repair boiler tab 3801 in situ was abandoned as when the boiler work commenced the damage was found to be more severe than what was apparent during the 3 boiler assessment inspection.

We will need to be patient (as was the case with 3801's rebuild) and await a public announcement.

Happy restoring,

John
c3526blue
John

Thank you for this post, seems that some of the previous information regarding the German boiler has as many issues as the boiler itself, a Tornado down under rather than cyclones.

I would repeat something that I was poo pooed on a little while back regarding what you say is the large engine fleet, atm there is really only 3526 in that category but its not really a large engine overall, the closest we would have to a large engine in steam under the THNSW is dead steam 3642, thus the heritage fleet as such is pretty much light on.  While 6029 is operational its possibly part of the overall operating steam fleet but who owns it, still in Canberra's listing?

Outside of 3801, there are 2 other 38cl under THNSW control/ownership, but boilers are stuffed, also under their control/ownership are the 3 pigs, 09, 16 & 42.  Without doubt 42 has served well and likely more liked by crews owing to the air assisted reversor as against the old heavy originals on the other pair, thing is there is, or were several new boilers that were donated by the railways some years back, how many are any good now is debatable, but the thing is how long can the fleet keep going with so few large engines in the operational listing?  I did not mention LVR's 59cl, but they also have an R that's near ready so add two more.  Although the garratt and 59cl would have the old 80km/h limitations on them, one would imagine.

I had suggested that if those pig boilers were looked at, and seen as being able to be used as replacements for the 3 pigs, that would increase the numbers of loco's available for use quite a bit, and provide the fleet with engines that adequately share a burden of long distance trips, also would think a bit more economically than 6029.

The aspects relating to 3820 & 30, could well be longer term projects that allow mechanical apprenticeships to be brought in to help into the future, quite a few have been lost after working on 01 at the Dockyard an 30 at East Greta, this is a vg opportunity for heritage to train up people for the future, and that is also going to help keep these old relics going for some time.  The idea of in house is great but, having local companies such as the people at Goulburn should also be able to assist in the restoration work of the steam fleet.

Much of the discussion surrounds the boilers of the locomotives and they are critical, but moving away from the 38, 59 & garratt each have cast frames, all the others in the listings have plate frames, which in a way gives some more future proofing should a frame crack, which happened on many steam loco's of all classes, the pigs had their share of, likewise the 32cl.  At least with having those classes of loco's in operational condition, it would provide a bit more of a secure future for loco's that can have new frames built if or when needed.

While the NSWGR had its own in house abilities in these areas, they are no longer needed as such those working on 3801 and involved in its restoration at Chullora and at Goulburn are valuable for the future of steam operations for THNSW.
  M636C Minister for Railways

As has been pointed out, the Germans made the boiler according to the plans supplied, but the problem was that they had not been checked off correctly against the original plans for a 38cl boiler.  If as I understand it, the whole of the firebox end of the primary boiler section will likely have to be taken apart and the affected areas rebuilt, just how much will need to be done is something I do not know,


The old drawings were provided to allow the design of a new boiler to be prepared, since the new boiler was to be of completely welded construction. The contract called for the design and construction of a boiler.


Meiningen prepared a design for an all welded boiler based on the drawings supplied which was examined and accepted in Australia.


The boiler was built to those drawings and to everyone's surprise, did not fit to the frames. I understand that the firebox was found to be too large and would not fit to the frame (although no real detail has been available on the actual dimensional error).


It should be possible to construct a new firebox to mate to the barrel of the German boiler but this would be expensive.


Peter

  a6et Minister for Railways

As has been pointed out, the Germans made the boiler according to the plans supplied, but the problem was that they had not been checked off correctly against the original plans for a 38cl boiler.  If as I understand it, the whole of the firebox end of the primary boiler section will likely have to be taken apart and the affected areas rebuilt, just how much will need to be done is something I do not know,

The old drawings were provided to allow the design of a new boiler to be prepared, since the new boiler was to be of completely welded construction. The contract called for the design and construction of a boiler.

Meiningen prepared a design for an all welded boiler based on the drawings supplied which was examined and accepted in Australia.

The boiler was built to those drawings and to everyone's surprise, did not fit to the frames. I understand that the firebox was found to be too large and would not fit to the frame (although no real detail has been available on the actual dimensional error).

It should be possible to construct a new firebox to mate to the barrel of the German boiler but this would be expensive.

Peter

M636C
Peter, you say it could be possible to construct a new firebox for the German boiler but would be expensive.  

1: Would you have a rough idea as to how much that would cost as against the building of a full new boiler?
2: Damage to 20 and 30's boilers are they repairable and if so at what sort of cost.
3: Full new boiler to be constructed according to original plans, to make a spare available into the future?
  neillfarmer Chief Train Controller

The suggestion to look for another 36 as well as 3642 has merit. 3616 could suit requirements well as it has a Geisl exhaust ejector which should reduce cylinder back pressure and increase available horsepower (up to 10% with similar improvements in water and coal consumption). It would have a similar performance to 3801 with it's previous reduced BP (215 psi). After fitting with the experimental exhaust device and shown to be successful the locomotive was mainly rostered on Mail Train duties. It was the only locomotive so fitted in Australia. There was a proposal to fit all 36 class with them but the proposal was dropped due to the short future life of the locomotives.
I understand there are two problems with the Meiningen boiler. One is it does not fit, the other is that there are some construction defects that would preclude it being approved for use.
  a6et Minister for Railways

The suggestion to look for another 36 as well as 3642 has merit. 3616 could suit requirements well as it has a Geisl exhaust ejector which should reduce cylinder back pressure and increase available horsepower (up to 10% with similar improvements in water and coal consumption). It would have a similar performance to 3801 with it's previous reduced BP (215 psi). After fitting with the experimental exhaust device and shown to be successful the locomotive was mainly rostered on Mail Train duties. It was the only locomotive so fitted in Australia. There was a proposal to fit all 36 class with them but the proposal was dropped due to the short future life of the locomotives.
I understand there are two problems with the Meiningen boiler. One is it does not fit, the other is that there are some construction defects that would preclude it being approved for use.
neillfarmer
Neil,  I worked on 3616 once and it had better coal and water consumption, never a worry with the fire being pulled either. One other 36 IIRC 3641 had the damper set up the same as 16 as shown with the outside handle on rear of smokebox behind the pump, it too was somewhat better than many of the others.  Going outside of those two, 3664 to me surpassed all but 3616, and that was in the latter years of its life when brought back into service after the stored years.

In the 60's from my time being 64 onwards, the 36cl shared common tonneages on the short south as standard goods, 38 and 59cl of 575tons, with 36cl taking slightly less in length 45 and the others 50 on single loads, with 60 for doubles.
  LowndesJ515 #TeamRog

Location: Not in Victoria
While 6029 is operational its possibly part of the overall operating steam fleet but who owns it, still in Canberra's listing?

*Cut*

While the NSWGR had its own in house abilities in these areas, they are no longer needed as such those working on 3801 and involved in its restoration at Chullora and at Goulburn are valuable for the future of steam operations for THNSW.
a6et
6029 is privately owned and under THNSW's accreditation. Nothing to do with Canberra anymore.

And those who work out of Thirlmere who have turned out 3526, 3265 and very soon 3001, as well as maintaining the current fleet!
  a6et Minister for Railways

While 6029 is operational its possibly part of the overall operating steam fleet but who owns it, still in Canberra's listing?

*Cut*

While the NSWGR had its own in house abilities in these areas, they are no longer needed as such those working on 3801 and involved in its restoration at Chullora and at Goulburn are valuable for the future of steam operations for THNSW.
6029 is privately owned and under THNSW's accreditation. Nothing to do with Canberra anymore.

And those who work out of Thirlmere who have turned out 3526, 3265 and very soon 3001, as well as maintaining the current fleet!
LowndesJ515
Thanks for that re 6029.

Never said nor intended to put down the work done by those at Thirlmere, thing is I see more than a few who are not getting any younger, as I mentioned as well in a previous post is how many young people who worked on the restoration of 01 and 30 in the Hunter Valley, all have gone and possibly lost what skills they learnt in those workings, albeit in a restricted area. With the boiler aspects as I mentioned with the work done at Goulburn the question is would those at Thirlmere have the skills and equipment to have undergone that work?

What I am suggesting is nothing more that widening the skills base but also in areas that have a lost a fair bit of these craft industry skills.  I have visited LVR at Cowra and those who work there are not exactly young and reports have it that they are going to restart the restoration work of the 53cl. Likewise with those working at Goulburn Roundhouse and not a few are getting older and does not help their efforts either.

Expanding the resource field can only benefit the efforts of those who are doing the overall work.
  SavyIsJoshoArts Station Staff

Location: Gold Coast, Queensland
G'day gentlemen.

I seen on one of the posts on the  NSWGR Steam Locomotive Fleet group on Facebook (Bookface as I love to call it.) There's a TAA out which now has the date when 3801's going out onto the network for it's trial run which takes place on 9th December. 2019 ( two and a half weeks time and as long there is no total fire bans in place on the night.)  Might be of good interest for those who been waiting to hear when the trial runs are. However it will be at midnight as to what the timetable on the TAA specifies.

Didn't expect she'd be doing the trial runs this soon.
  trainbrain Chief Commissioner

G'day gentlemen.

I seen on one of the posts on the  NSWGR Steam Locomotive Fleet group on Facebook (Bookface as I love to call it.) There's a TAA out which now has the date when 3801's going out onto the network for it's trial run which takes place on 9th December. 2019 ( two and a half weeks time and as long there is no total fire bans in place on the night.)  Might be of good interest for those who been waiting to hear when the trial runs are. However it will be at midnight as to what the timetable on the TAA specifies.

Didn't expect she'd be doing the trial runs this soon.
SavyIsJoshoArts
hopefully the end of a too long drawn out saga.............
  nswtrains Chief Commissioner

G'day gentlemen.

I seen on one of the posts on the  NSWGR Steam Locomotive Fleet group on Facebook (Bookface as I love to call it.) There's a TAA out which now has the date when 3801's going out onto the network for it's trial run which takes place on 9th December. 2019 ( two and a half weeks time and as long there is no total fire bans in place on the night.)  Might be of good interest for those who been waiting to hear when the trial runs are. However it will be at midnight as to what the timetable on the TAA specifies.

Didn't expect she'd be doing the trial runs this soon.
SavyIsJoshoArts
Why not? Once the boiler tests were done it should be a short time until trials were undertaken.
  DCook Junior Train Controller

So where will it be doing the trial runs
  nswtrains Chief Commissioner

So where will it be doing the trial runs
DCook
Probably around Chullora where it is being restored.
  TheFish Chief Train Controller

Location: Pyongyang
G'day gentlemen.

I seen on one of the posts on the  NSWGR Steam Locomotive Fleet group on Facebook (Bookface as I love to call it.) There's a TAA out which now has the date when 3801's going out onto the network for it's trial run which takes place on 9th December. 2019 ( two and a half weeks time and as long there is no total fire bans in place on the night.)  Might be of good interest for those who been waiting to hear when the trial runs are. However it will be at midnight as to what the timetable on the TAA specifies.

Didn't expect she'd be doing the trial runs this soon.
Why not? Once the boiler tests were done it should be a short time until trials were undertaken.
nswtrains
Sometimes, even if all mechanical work is complete, it can be a time-consuming process to repipe, renew fittings and complete the cladding process.  Given the compounding delays with this project, I would imagine they had ample time to prepare everything that needs refitting before the boiler returned to make to process as quick as possible.
  DM45 Station Master

Location: Redland City
ARTC has issued TAA 1322-2019 for Transport Heritage NSW to operate testing for 3801 on Mon 9th Dec & Tues 10th Dec, from Chullora to Enfield Junction, around the Sydney Trains network, back to Enfield Junction and Chullora. Timetabled for the early hours on both mornings. Out on Monday, back on Tuesday.
  michaelgm Chief Commissioner

Curious f it is still customery to fit "T" for trial for such operations.
Given the time elapsed since anyone has driven/fired a 38, are L plates appropriate?
  a6et Minister for Railways

Curious f it is still customery to fit "T" for trial for such operations.
Given the time elapsed since anyone has driven/fired a 38, are L plates appropriate?
michaelgm
I doubt it would be needed at night as the old Trial discs were used primarily for daylight LE trials, being at night the normal white and red marker lights would be all that's needed, although anything's possible these days.

The old discs were more an indication to signalmen/SM's to indicate LE than anything.

I can understand the night running as there would be little track space available in the day time.

The crews who would do the trials would know how to drive and fire them, doesn't matter how long between shifts on them doesn't take long to re familiarise ones self to them.  Thing is though under the old system, for the fireman, if he was trialed on 36cl he was ok for other classes.  Drivers had to do specific training/trials on them but again who knows in this day and age?
  DCook Junior Train Controller

ARTC has issued TAA 1322-2019 for Transport Heritage NSW to operate testing for 3801 on Mon 9th Dec & Tues 10th Dec, from Chullora to Enfield Junction, around the Sydney Trains network, back to Enfield Junction and Chullora. Timetabled for the early hours on both mornings. Out on Monday, back on Tuesday.
DM45
Does anyone have a link to that TAA
  theanimal Chief Commissioner

ARTC has issued TAA 1322-2019 for Transport Heritage NSW to operate testing for 3801 on Mon 9th Dec & Tues 10th Dec, from Chullora to Enfield Junction, around the Sydney Trains network, back to Enfield Junction and Chullora. Timetabled for the early hours on both mornings. Out on Monday, back on Tuesday.
Does anyone have a link to that TAA
DCook
is google broken?
  c3526blue Deputy Commissioner

Location: in the cuckoos nest
ARTC has issued TAA 1322-2019 for Transport Heritage NSW to operate testing for 3801 on Mon 9th Dec & Tues 10th Dec, from Chullora to Enfield Junction, around the Sydney Trains network, back to Enfield Junction and Chullora. Timetabled for the early hours on both mornings. Out on Monday, back on Tuesday.
Does anyone have a link to that TAA
is google broken?
theanimal
...... no, but the keyboard doesn't work.
  theanimal Chief Commissioner

ARTC has issued TAA 1322-2019 for Transport Heritage NSW to operate testing for 3801 on Mon 9th Dec & Tues 10th Dec, from Chullora to Enfield Junction, around the Sydney Trains network, back to Enfield Junction and Chullora. Timetabled for the early hours on both mornings. Out on Monday, back on Tuesday.
Does anyone have a link to that TAA
is google broken?
...... no, but the keyboard doesn't work.
c3526blue
The problem is more often with the HMI, I diagnose a severe case of laziness. Razz
  DM45 Station Master

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