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A Bewilderment of Boilers

Part Seven

In Part 6, I queried the change in number sequence from 29xxx series to27xxx, some of it would have been explained if I had managed to get to the N.R.M. to look at the Boiler Orders, but unfortunately I got 5 weeks in hospital and 10weeks of convalescence instead. My thanks to all the Members who sent me get well cards.

Back to the subject in hand Mr Bernard Harding has put me back on track with a list of Boiler Orders, and the Boiler Number to which they apply :-

Boiler Order No. 19 Boilers 29330 to 29334 (5 No.)
Boiler Order No. 22 Boilers 27960 to 27969 (10 No.)
Boiler Order No. 23 Boilers 29335 to 29339 (5 No.)
Boiler Order No. 25 Boilers 27970 to 27974 (5 No.)

Mr Peter Townend has given me sight of a Doncaster Memo in respect of the first two original 180 lbs./ sq. ins. Boilers fitted to Engs. No. 1470 and 1471. The Memo only gave a minimum amount of information with regard to usage, details of major repairs and total mileage. By adding other relevant information to the details given on the Memo, a reasonably full story of the lives of these two boilers can be built up. These are not Diag. 107 boilers, and in theory, should not be included in this discourse. However as someone at Doncaster took the time to get the fact's, probably with the intention of checking if they had had value for money.(??) I thought it appropriate to expand on the details to see exactly what happened with these early boilers to try and get a better understanding of later practices.

CLASS A1 ORIGINAL 180 lbs/sq in BOILERS

BOILER No. 7646

When new (1/22) onto Eng No. 1470 GREAT NORTHERN, into traffic 11/4/22, and remained with this engine until 4/3/27, a period of 4yrs 11mths. During this time the engine was in works for :-
1 N/C Repair -- 2 days
9 Light Repairs - for a total of 29 days
2 Heavy Repairs - for a total of 89 days
1 General Overhaul - for 111 days
A grand total of 229 days
During the General Overhaul (1/12/24 to 21/3/25), a new Firebox was fitted 1/25.

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 4/3/27 to 15/12/27, a period of 9mths.

Into traffic with Eng No. 4473 SOLARIO 15/12/27 remaining with this engine until 5/9/29 a period of 1yr 10mths, during this time the engine was in works for :-
1 Light Repair -- 3 days
1 Heavy Repair - 55 days
A grand total of 58 days

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 5/9/29 to 12/4/30, a period of 7mths.
During this time (12/29), new Casings and a new Firebox were fitted.

Into traffic with Eng No. 4478 HERMIT 12/4/30 remaining with this engine until 5/1/33, a period off2yrs 9mths. During this time the engine was in works for :-
1 Light Repair -- 14 days
2 general overhauls - 122 days
A grand total of 136 days

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 5/1/33 to 25/5/33, a period of 4mths.
During this time (4/33), a new Firebox was fitted.

Into traffic with Eng No. 4470 GREAT NORTHERN 25/5/33 remaining with this engine until 15/1/37, a period of3yrs 8mths. During this time the engine was in works for :-
2 Heavy Repairs -- for a total of 91 days.
1 General Overhaul -- 49days
For a grand total of 140 days

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 5/1/37 to 2/10/37, a period of 9mths.
During this time (9/37), new Casings and a new Firebox were fitted.

Into traffic with Eng No. 4474 VICTOR WILD 2/10/37 remaining with this engine until 10/8/42 a period of 4yrs 10mths . During this time the engine went into works for :-
1 Light repair -- 2 days
2 General Overhauls -- for a total of 82 days
For a grand total of 84 days
At 10/8/42 the engine went into Works to be rebuilt to Class A3

Summarising the above, the Total Life Span of the boiler was 20yrs 4mths, the Total Working Life was 17yrs 11mths, from which can be deducted time in works whilst remaining with an engine, 647 days (approx 21½ months), giving an Actual Working Life of 16yrs 1½mths. Out of use between changes of engine 2yrs 5mths, to which can be added, time in works with an engine, 21½mths, giving an actual Out of Use total of 4yrs 2½mths Total mileage was 1, 040,315.
Average miles per year over the Actual Working Life = 64,515 miles
Average miles per year over the Total Life Span = 51,171 miles
4 New Fireboxes were fitted, approximately every 4 years, or approximately every 259,000miles, when compared against the Actual Working Life.

BOILER No. 7647

When new (2/22) onto Eng No. 1471 (SIR FREDERICK BANBURY from 10/11/22), into traffic 10/7/22 and remained with this engine until 22/3/27, a period of 4yrs 8mths. During this time the engine was in Works for :-
Naming -- 2 days
7 Light Repairs -- a total of 87 days
1 Non Classified Repair -- 1 day
1 Heavy Repair -- 18days
2 General Overhauls -- 171 days
For a grand total of 279 days

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 22/3/27 to 5/4/28, a period of 11mths.
During this time (10/27), a new Firebox was fitted.

Into traffic with Eng No. 4476 ROYAL LANCER 5/4/28 and remained with this engine until 20/3/31, a period of 4yrs. During this time the engine was in works for :-
2 General Overhauls -- 99days

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 20/3/31 to 3/12/31, a period of 9mths.
During this time (10/31), a new casing and a new Firebox were fitted

Into traffic with Eng No.4479 ROBERT THE DEVIL 3/12/31 and remained with this engine until 16/8/34 a period of 2yrs 9mths. During this time the engine was in works for :-
1 Light Repair -- 40 days
1 Heavy Repair -- 48 days
1 General Overhaul -- 111 days
For a grand total of 199 days.

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 16/8/34 to 1/11/34, a period of 3mths.

Into traffic with Eng No. 4473 SOLARIO 1/11/34 and remained with this engine until 10/2/36, a period of 1yr 3mths . During this time the engine was NEVER in works for repair.

The Boiler was under repair and/or spare from 10/2/35 to 23/6/36 a period of 4 mths.
During this time (6/36) new Casings and a new Firebox were fitted.

Into traffic with Eng No. 2552 SANSOVINO 23/6/36 and remained with this engine until 12/7/43 a period of 7yrs 1mth. During this time the engine was in works for :-
1 Heavy Intermediate Repair - 21 days
5 General Overhauls for a total of 225 days
For a grand total of 246 days.
At 12/7/43 the engine went into Works to be rebuilt to Class A3.

Summarising the above the Total Life Span of the Boiler was 21yrs, the Total Working Life was 18yrs 9mths , from which can be deducted time in works whilst remaining with an engine - 823 days (approximately 2yrs 3mths), giving an Actual Working Life of 16yrs 6mths. Out of Use between changes of Engine was 2yrs 3mths, to which can be added time in Works with an Engine - 2yrs 3mths, giving an Actual Out of Use total of 4yrs 6mths. Total mileage was 1,061,548 miles.
Average miles per year over the Actual Working life = 64,336 miles.
Average miles per year over the Total Life Span = 56,616 miles.
3 new Fireboxes were fitted, approximately every 5½ years, or approximately every 353,848 miles when compared with the Actual Working Life.

What conclusions can be draw from the above. Were the fireboxes life expired when they were replaced or was it part of a preventative maintenance policy to replace the Fireboxes every 4 to 5 years.
If anybody has any information on this point, please write in and let me know, thank you.
Mr Peter Townend has also given me Boiler Diagram Sheets, for the No. 94 and No. 107 Pacific Boilers. Unfortunately these sheets are too large in their original format, to be reproduced in the magazine. I have therefore redrawn the sheet for the diagram 94 boilers, it being relevant to the two boilers above, and hope that it will be suitable for reproduction in the Magazine. ( The Diagram for the A4 Boiler No. 107 will be printed at a later date).
One point of interest from the Diagram, is that a figure is given for Boiler Horse Power. Anybody any idea what formula is used to calculate this Figure, Mr. Eddie Gibbons has given me some information on the subject, but using the data he has supplied, does not give me the same Horse Power as given on the Diagram

Researched and written by Mel Haigh,
Education Officer, Sir Nigel Gresley Locomotive Trust Ltd.
First published in Chime 137, Autumn 2005
Continue to Part Eight
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