Further progress on the Smokebox door

We thought we’d take this opportunity to share a collection of photos of the work currently being undertaken on the Smokebox door at the workshops of AJB Engineering. We have to thank Jamie Keyte of Keyte Smith Ltd for the photos and his work and also the fellows at AJB Engineering.

Photos 1 and 2 shows the dart being heated up ready for forging. The bar is 50mm diameter and the end needs to be thinned to a thickness of 25mm and 75mm across.  The chap doing the heating is Tom, Keyte Smith’s coded welder with Jamie at the hot end.

Photos 3 and 4 show the dart in the press having the end forged. This gets the initial thickness close to 25mm. The next stage is to upset forge the end to get the required width 75mm, followed by a final thickness setting. We needed about 20 tons to get it flat.

Photo 5 shows the material profiles for the hand wheel and the dart handle prior to machining.

Photo 6 shows the door mounted on the radial arm drill for opening out the hole to the required diameter of 90mm to accept the boss. The door profile was supplied with a 27mm pilot hole from Purdie. A temporary boss was made (just visible behind the top of the wheel on Photo 12) so that the hole saw had a true centre to pick up on. The hole is then prepped ready for welding in the boss. The door has also been marked out with horizontal and vertical centrelines (where the cross of red oxide paint is) so there are datums to work to once the centre has been cut away.

Photo 7 is more for general interest (although the door does feature in the background) and I put it in due to the railway connection. It is a wheel from an LMS dray (probably built at Wolverton) that is currently being restored. One of the Ed, one of the fellows at AJB Engineering is an expert in the ancient art of making things from timber and he owns the saw seen in this clip from the recent country show at Harby: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pIuGzha7L6I

Thanks again to Jamie Keyte and the teams at Keyte Smith Ltd, AJB Engineering and Purdie. We’ll be sure to keep everyone up-to-date with the progress on the door and on other developments as and when we’re able. As stated in an earlier post, the frame-plates will be the next parts to commence fabrication and we hope to have more information in due course.


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