6029 is owned by the Australian Railway Historical Society, ACT Division and the restoration is proudly supported by their tourist operations and by the generous donations of members and public supporters.
The society operates rail tours out of Canberra with our heritage fleet of steam and diesel locomotives and rolling stock every few weeks.
To travel in style on any of our tours, or to learn more about our collection and operations, go to Canberrarailwaymuseum.org

Dec 12, 2011

Saturday 3rd December 2011

Work continues to focus on the leading engine unit and associated sub assemblies as part of the critical planned  path of re-assembly. The two leading sand boxes were taken out of storage and fitted but it took a few goes as the mounting bolts have to be assembled in the correct order to prevent them fouling each other. David also took the added precaution to run a die nut over all of the threads to ensure easy fit all...the torque gun created an effective, don’t argue with us approach. After the boxes were secured into place the painting team moved in with paint brushes and applied the standard black enamel paint.

Andy Heys put his carpentry skills to the test building all new timber packing’s that acts as an interface between the engine unit and the front water tank. The finished job looked so good that it will be a pity to paint over the new wood. Work was also taking place at ground level with the fitting of the right hand leading  valve gear including  the radius rod and expansion link with its die block. Many of the old tapered locking pins have been assessed as unserviceable but replacements are no longer available and the final fit of the valve gear cannot take place until the pins are manufactured new. Regardless, it was still pleasing to actually fit the polished valve gear into place.

The smoke box fit out continued with Graeme Kidgell fitted 22 of the 44 7/8 BSW saddle bolts that secure the smoke box to the boiler cradle. This job has not been an easy one as many of the bolt holes were welded over when the boiler was used at the saw mill in Victoria. The welded over holes had to be cut out with the use of a small pilot drill and oxy touch as they welded material was almost glass hard. A finish off with the die grinder and the bolts were tightened up with the good old torque gun.... only 22 to go!

The next few workdays will continue around the leading engine unit with the testing and commissioning of the oil lubrication system and some minor cosmetic work around the cylinders. Once completed the leading tank will be final fitted into position and inturn the water system hook up will commence with gusto.

Alan Gardner     

Nov 25, 2011

Sunday 20 November 2011

Work continued on and around the leading engine unit in preparation of lowering the tank into position. The main steam pipe from the boiler cradle to the steam cylinders was fitted with surprising ease. This included lapping of the two steam tight lens rings and fitting 12x 7/8” BSW bolts. While in this area the opportunity was taken to fit the reverser reach rod with its patented designed Beyer Peacock universal joints. Ian continued to fit and test the lube lines for the right hand leading lubricator.

Malcolm and his daughter had a go at cleaning out the residual mess of grease and grime from where the stoker trough was once fitted. It seems that the grease points that are situated outside of this area were never checked to see if the lines were actually delivering the grease where it was designed to go. The end result was years of congealed grease mixed with coal dust forming great lumps of crud. They also had a go at applying some long over due grey primer to the top deck above the hind water tank.

David continued with the rebuild of the crinoline bands that will support the fitting of the boiler cladding sheet metal. The boiler now sports several horizontal string lines that will help align the boiler bands correctly. The myriad of counter sunk screws that hold all of the bands in place have had to be rebuilt as many of the tapped holes had rusted out. As the bands are only ¼” thick a new nut has been welded into place under each side to make up for the poor thread.

During recent weeks, Alan has also been working to remove the life expired electrical cables from their conduits all over the loco. The insulation has hardened from years of exposure to the heat of a steam engine, and likely also from the temperature extremes from years of outside storage in Canberra. As such, all the wiring on the loco will be replaced, in some cases with new technology to help us work safely into the future. You can see from some of the pictures just how bad some of the wiring is.

Alan Gardner

Oct 24, 2011

Foreign Orders...

Yep, that's right.... Our next workday will involve a foreign order and even better a trip across the border.

Lindsay has asked for some help with some track work in Queenbeyan, so we are going to take CPH 37, our rail motor and some willing volunteers for a short train trip like we did in the old days.

edit 26/10/2011.. I have just been advised that 3016 will be providing the motive power for the trip, so there is even more reason to come along for the trip....

Volunteers are welcome and we will be leaving from the Canberra Museum platform at 8.30AM, do a little track work on the turntable road in Queenbeyan and then should be back for lunch at 1pm. Come for the ride and get in a little exercise as well! It should be fun.

Oct 21, 2011

With the Garratt undercover, the team continued to work around the cab. First priority was the erection of a decent work platform and steps to help with getting in and out of the cab. Once this was up and in place, the refitting of the cab gauges and pipework continued. As you can see, a most of the gauges and valves are now in place, with some pipework to be completed in some areas. The cab was also bolted down to the frames, so this is where it will stay now for several years.

While the cab was being worked on, the motion was also getting some attention, with Mal starting to polish the rods in readiness for crack testing and refitting. There are a lot of them, so this work will continue for some weeks.

Oct 5, 2011

Saturday 1 October 2011

After five years of open air work, 6029 now resides undercover for what we are now calling the fit out stage. The cab has been lowered into position and as a result, we can now start the fit out the countless small bore pipes that make up the loco's control systems. This includes the power reverser, the brake system and the support systems for electrical power and even steam to brew the tea. The timber floor for the cab has been made and fitted by Paul Nowland, Jack Barker and Alan Gardener and the crew took great delight in actually standing at the correct footplate height for once. The fit out of the seats and the injector control valves that protrude through the floor will be next.

At the opposite end of the boiler, the smoke box is stating to fill up with the pipes that connect to the air compressor and the blower. Both of these components are fed with steam from the superheater header which itself is also receiving some final attention with throttle cam and valves soon to be refitted. Once that is done, the control linkage that runs from the header back to the drivers cab will be fitted.

6029 is fitted with what is called a front end throttle. Put simply the control of steam from the boiler takes place at the front in the smoke box and is controlled by the driver back at the cab end via a system of levers and rods. It was a much more efficient system when compared to the more traditional system inside the boilers dome.

For a few years now we have been completing the rebuild of many smaller components only to put them into storage awaiting final fitment. Now that the locomotive is under cover, theses components can be fitted. Ian delivered the first of the four mechanical lubricators (right hand leading) and with the help of a few strong arms it was lifted into place. The lubrication feed pipes are now being cleaned out one by one and with some head scratching, the stamped identification acronyms are actually starting to make sense.

The move into the shed however, does not come without some pain, as the team headed by John and Kyle started moving over the many tools, benches and storage cupboards. Having said that, Saturdays weather was very wet and generally unpleasant but being indoors at long last meant a happy and dry team could continue to work in comfort.

Alan Gardner

Sep 22, 2011

Sunday 18th September

With the Garratt having been moved into the shed during the week, today was mostly spent collecting parts that we need in the next few months and moving them closer to the new work area. As such, not a lot of progress is visible in the photos, but its all work that needs to be done. Welcome also to a few new volunteers, Duncan and Rory.

Jobs that are high on the list include refitting the stokers elevator tube and firing table in the cab, followed by a new floor. The ashpan is receiving attention in Goulburn, and should be ready to fit shortly, along with the grate assembly.

You can see from the photos that our regular steam hauled trains with 3016 are looking great, they are a great way to pass a day if your in the area. It wont be long and we will be able to put 6029 to work at the front of the train... Now that will be nice!

Sep 17, 2011

A Riveting Day!

For those that are interested in the almost lost art of hot riveting, here is a video of the work we did.... Its noisy, hot and requires a team of people to make it possible, but it is very satisfying work when you look at the end result. Thanks so much to our old mates from Goodwin Alco, Steve, Creagh and Dave... Without their invaluable help, the cab would not be finished and already back on the loco.

Video by Steve Preston and Creagh Maywald... Thanks Guys!

Sep 15, 2011

What A Day!

It was a big day for everyone today.... Not only did Malcolm drive the cab to Canberra after it was loaded, Alan managed to get the Garratt out of the siding where we were parked in by 4468 and some other rolling stock... He even got the cab back on the loco as the sun went down and the Garratt shunted into the shed in the dark.

Also delivered from Eveleigh on the truck today were a lovely set of new crew seats for the Garratt and 2 repaired and recovered seats for one of our CPH Railmotors. The work was done by master trimmer Matt Fasan, and kindly financed our old mates at Goodwin Alco. Thanks Matt... Awesome job!


BIG News!

Yes....thats right!

The day is not over yet and there are more photos to come, but the cab is on its way from Sydney, and by tonight, will be reunited with the loco. While the cab was being loaded. Al has done a shunt in Canberra to get the Garratt out from behind 4468 where we have been working and is now ready move it into the shed so that we can work in comfort, and relative cleanliness as we progress the reassembly.

Word has it that the loco was very easy to move and shows no signs of the binding that caused it to derail last time it was moved.... Awesome news.... Well done to everyone!


Sep 12, 2011

Sunday 11th of September

The rivets are done and the cab will be on the move this week!

Finally, after a lot of work and a lot of waiting, the cab is pretty much finished. The final riveting was completed today with the invaluable assistance of Goodwin Alco.

Steve, Craig and Dave from Goodwin Alco and Mike R and Mal from the ARHS ACT got together and finalized the riveting in order to allow the cab to be removed from Eveleigh's Large Erecting Shop... And just in time too!

As you can see in the pictures, the lions share of the work is complete, and if you compare the before and after pics, it really is looking quite good.

Even better is that the Cab will go directly from the back of a truck onto the loco.... Now that will look good!

Once it is back in place on the loco, some new glazing will be sourced and fitted, along with new handrails and associated fittings. This will also allow Al to complete the brake system refit the reverser and fit the new floor in the cab.... Awesome, its all coming together!

There is definitely light at the end of this tunnel!
Mike Reynell

Sep 7, 2011

Saturday 3 September 2011

The plan for the day was very simple... it was to compete all outstanding tasks to ensure that 6029 could be safely shunted. So we started off in the smoke box as the forty 7/8 BSW bolts had to be fitted to secure the boiler in place. The problem is that all of theses holes had been welded up when the boiler was used in stationary service. As fast as we were trying to drill out the holes the drill bits would become blunt and useless. Solution, get a bigger drill, use plenty of cutting fluid and keep sharpening the drills. By lunch time we had roughed out about 12 holes and we had had enough, so our next workday will involve a very large air drill and maybe some colorful language.

Mark and Alan started the fit up of the air compressor's Nathan mechanical lubricator and associate pipe work. Tony continued to dot around the locomotive with black paint as it seems we had missed few spots, it is over 100 feet long!

Back at the cab end Graeme Kidgell completed the installation of the fireman’s side boiler feed lines. Andy Heys prepped the last of the cab mounting bolt holes and also had time to sneak in a few cups of tea. You just cant get good help theses days!

By days end we received news that the Eveleigh team had almost finished the cab and that one more day should do it.

All being well the cab will be back in Canberra before then end of the month and will go straight onto the locomotive. Updates will be posted as the details firm up.

Alan Gardner

Aug 23, 2011

Sunday 21 August 2011

The day started with the usual time honored cup of tea and a chat. The completed cross compound compressor was on site as it had been delivered during the previous week and the first job for the day was to fit it to the smoke box. Once bolted down the associated pipes were hooked up including the governor and lubrication piping.

The two main reservoirs were offered up and fixed in place with the retaining straps. Sounds easy to say in one sentence but the alignment and fitting of the pipe work was no easy task. Anyone would think that we are getting good at this type of thing. The outstanding smaller valves such as the independent release valve were fitted into place and as the main reservoirs were now fitted we are basically done with the brakes. The only outstanding task will be the fitting of the three and four control pipes that run from the drivers brake valve to the distributing valve. These pipes cannot be fitted until the cab is in place.

The trailing pivot nuts were adjusted/backed off and after the usual three man pull helped by a four foot long extension bar, the unit settled down into position. The constant contact side bearings were checked for alignment and all was well. As we had a good turnout of volunteers we were able to also have another look at the stoker trough and it was decided to remove the two leading support brackets. As originally fitted they were held in with bolts however, later in life they are welded into place. That’s OK in service but it prevents the stoker trough from being removed as designed. The use of an angle grinder and about six cutting discs later and both brackets were removed. The fork lift made easy work to slide the trough out and as suspected it will require a full rebuild.

To say that we had a significant workday would be an understatement as we completed a few milestones that are noteworthy in context to the overall project. These being the completion of the brake system, the removal of the stoker trough and the adjustment of the pivots. Having completed these tasks the locomotive can now again be shunted safely. From a strategic overview there are no more strip and assessment tasks to complete. In essence we are putting 6029 back together and we hare now planning for the steam testing and subsequent operational systems checking. To this end the hind bunker/tank has be fitted to facilitate the up coming steam tests later this year. However we have a lot to do before this can take place... for instance the ash pan and fire grates still have to be rebuilt and the smoke box fit out will be the next major tasks. We still have to fit 20 superheater elements, the blast pipe, main steam lines and the front end throttle assembly.

Alan Gardner

Aug 15, 2011

Restoration in the open!

Just in case you thought that we always had it good here in Canberra, take a look at these two panoramas of our outdoor resto's. Its cold and the rain was about to set in and stop work.

6029 is coming along very nicely, and will soon be moved undercover to have some of the finer work completed. We are all looking forward to having a roof over our heads, with a dry environment free of rain and sunburn after 5 years in the open. In truth, we have had a really good run, with very few workdays called off due to bad weather, but with the drought over and summer coming, that may all change.

4468 however will have to remain out doors for a while longer. You can see from the picture, that there has been a lot of work done already on removing and controlling corrosion in the frames that support the body, but there is still a lot to do. Note that the shop bogies look so wrong under a large diesel... In their past life they were under a 30 class tender.

Aug 8, 2011

Saturday 6 August 2011

As the weather forecast wasn’t that promising, the team got off to an early start. Paul Nowland fitted up both the brakestands with the overhauled valves. While in this area, Tony fitted the new driver's side sub floor ably assisted by Paul. This is a two man job with Tony inserting the bolts on the top side and Paul tightening up the nuts on the bottom side, or was it the other way round?

Graeme Kidgell continued with the drivers side injector feed pipe system, working through to the steam starting valve adjacent to the outer firebox wrapper. The last pipe that joins the steam manifold to the injector starting valve was trial fitted and to no surprise, wasn’t even close. After a few goes at heating the pipe with the oxy it was decided that it would be replaced and in actual fact the pipe was found to be suffering from fatigue cracks. For safety reasons both the drivers and fireman’s side pipes will be replaced with new.

Just before lunch the team moved onto the final adjustment of the leading pivot and the new 3 ½ inch AF socket, and inch drive ratchet made this labour intensive job slightly easier. Well only just. The adjusting nuts were backed off and re-set. The next task will be to fit the pivot locking plate with four off 1 1/8” BSW nuts.

While the crew stopped for lunch the rain started coming down and a couple of morning showers soon turned into constant deluge. At 14:00 hours it was decide to call it a day and go home to a hot cup of tea.

Alan Gardner

Aug 7, 2011

The Air Compressor

Alan Gardner has been quietly working away on the Garratt's cross compound air compressor for a while now, with little bits being ordered here and there as money has become available. Some time ago the piston rods were hard chromed by Diamond Hard chrome in Sydney, and the castings were all sent to Melbourne specialist, Laurie Cameron from East Australian Engineering, where they were given a top notch overhaul. The bores were accurately re-machined and measured before being kindly returned to us by PBR member, Graham Clark on a trailer.

Just recently the new rings were ordered and that has allowed him to begin the reassembly in his spare time, and as you can see in the pictures, it is almost complete and looking very, very good. Now he is only waiting on some new gaskets, before it gets tested on air and refitted to the loco...

With stuff like this happening, you can really see the loco returning to steam in the not too distant future.

Jul 20, 2011

Sunday 17 July 2011

The brake system rebuild continued today with work on the main reservoir piping. This included the one inch steel pipes that deliver compressed air from the main reservoirs to the brake stand and the distributing valve. Most of the pipes are in good condition and they only required a clean up and a coat of paint. One small section of pipe that is about 2 foot long is missing and if we cant find it we will make it new... Murphy's law will ensure that the missing pipe will re surface once the job is done.

Andy continued with the fitting out of the large bore injector feed pipes and by days end all of the drives side was completed and looking like new. Tony cleaned up the water balance pipe isolating vale and associated fittings. The only outstanding large bore pipe on the drivers side pipe is the feed lines from the injector to the clack vales on the top of the boiler.

The stoker trough that is attached under the coal bunker is in very poor condition and will required a complete rebuild. Most of the afternoon was dedicated to extracting the 24 one inch BSW bolts that attach the front of the stoker trough to the coal bunker. No amount of force would remove them so the oxy torch was deployed and about two hours later the team tried to drop out the assembly. Despite our best efforts it resisted and with the fading light, it was decided to make a tactical retreat and leave it until the next work day.

Another project going on behind the scenes is the overhaul of the Westinghouse cross compound air compressor. It was stripped down and assessed in 2009 and although in reasonable condition it was decided to give this vital piece of equipment the gold plate(aka Rolls Royce) treatment. Since then, the piston rods have been hard chromed and ground to size. The cylinder assembly and shuttle valve head were sent to a specialist contractor and line bored back to specification, and a complete set of piston rings was recently delivered and fitted with excellent results. The pistons now move up and down the bores with a good running seal.

New gaskets have been ordered and when delivered they will be fitted in no time. That will leave only an air function test before fitting the complete unit to the smoke box.

Alan Gardner

Jul 12, 2011

Saturday 2 July 2011

The brake system rebuild is progressing as a high priority. The distributing valve has been fitted up to the auxiliary/relay chamber followed by the dead engine isolating cock. The 3 & 4 independent brake control pipes that run from the distributing vale to the cab were found to be in poor condition and will have to be replaced.

In general terms the brake system rebuild is almost complete with only a few pipes still to be refitted. The project manager spent most of the day tracing pipes under the cab floor. Not any easy task as this space is fast filling up. Paul Nowland has been working at home on the automatic, independent brake valves and the feed valves. Thanks to Paul the brake system rebuild has progressed at a fast pace.

The two main reservoirs have been passed by the boiler inspector and will be fitted into place shortly. Once the reservoirs are in place, the system will be charged up and testing will follow soon after.

As the cab floor is not yet in place and access is readily available, the six inch water feed pipes and elbows that run under the foot plate have been refitted and the painters have finished off the area before the floor is fitted. The new replacement sub floor plate was painted and the mounting brackets for the equalising reservoir were fitted ready for final assembly.

Graeme Kidgell continued to fit up the boiler feed pipes and the injectors including the associated handles that control the water flow. The boiler feed pipes are very large, heavy and awkward to fit, in some cases it requires four people to persuade the pipes into their proper position.

In terms of the projects critical path, we are working hard to complete the tasks that will enable us steam test the boiler in the near future. This includes, but is not limited to, the injectors and their pipe work, safety valves(rebuilt but not fitted), fire grate, ash pan and finishing the smoke box fit out. We will also look at the stoker trough in the coal bunker as this has renewed and refitted before we can fit the coal bunker/water tank.

While all of this has been happening, you can see from some of Howard Moffat's photo's, that progress is also being made on other locos in the fleet. Work continues on 4468's body frame repairs, the cab of 4807 has received some attention and a few mucked in and got stuck into the brakes on 3016...

Alan Gardner

Jun 23, 2011

Sunday 19 June 2011

Once again we started of the day with sub zero temperatures but it wasn’t long before the thermometer soared to a massive 2 deg C. Yes as usual a cup of tea and hard work would soon warm everyone up.

Work continued around the driver’s side cab sub floor and associated brake systems. The new floor has been pilot drilled (small holes) and checked for fit and alignment. The floor sheet was lifted off to allow the welding of the sub floor support bracing. Graeme Kidgell welded the bracing to the boiler cradle main cross member in no time. This is bracing supports the sub floor and rear cab sheet. Graeme then turned his attention the brake stand support bracket with the fitting of the horizontal six 7/8 BSW bolts. The brake stand was next and the end result speaks for it self. Tony was next with the usual wire brush clean up and grey primer.

Back at the floor sheet David opened up the pilot holes to ½ inch and cleaned up all of the sharp burs and edges that were previously oxy cut. The old angle iron that supports one side of the sheet was welded in lieu of rivets.

As we are starting to put the brake system back together, Kyle and John were tasked with fitting the relay chamber to its support brackets located near the smoke box on the drivers side. After some initial problems it was discovered that the support brackets were in place upside down. Yes the project manager fitted them a while back, oh well you can’t get good help these days. After the brackets were re fitted the correct way up the chamber fitted with ease. The two inch diameter brake and brake cylinder pipes were fitted with only 3 or 4 control pipes to go. If we can find them amongst the tons of stored small bore copper pipes.

After lunch the team started to sort through the bundles of stored pipes starting with the injector and feed system. The fireman’s side injector had to be fitted first as the pipes have to attach to something in the first instance. Graeme has many years of experience behind him when he was working for Puffing Billy Railway in Melbourne. By his own admission the injectors on the 60 class are a tad bigger.

The front tank has been lifted off to allow the final fit of the steam pipes and sand boxes. This will also make it easer to fit the remaining super heater elements. This can be done with the tank on but having the tank off expedites an awkward job. The fireman side sand box resisted but eventually yielded for final fit. The leading steam ball joint was lifted in to place just ahead of the smoke box. We only have ten feet of steam pipe to fit and the leading unit steam piping will be finished.

Alan Gardner

Jun 6, 2011

Saturday 4 June 2011

The last of the top coats of black paint were applied to the top half of the hind engine unit with very pleasing results. The entire locomotive is looking almost like ex-works condition and in fact even better. The team also took time to clean down and paint the newly installed buffers. So in essence we have been from front to back in just four short years. Pity about all those bits in the middle. Now that we are again in the middle(the boiler cradle) the new drivers side cab sub floor was pre drilled using the old section as a template. A trial fit confirmed all was well and about 30 half inch holes where drill through ready for final fitting.

The brake systems rebuild was helped along with the final fitting of the flexible pipes that bridge from the engine units to the cradle. It was good to see the old replaced with new without compromise to historical design. Not much has changed in 60 years with regard to flexible hoses. The drivers side brake stand has been completely rebuilt with all new copper pipes and fittings including all four feed valves. Paul Nowland continued with the rebuild of the automatic and independent brake valves.

Gavin and new mate Tristan installed four more super heater elements. Probably not the best initiation but at least we only have sixteen to go! More tee bolts will need to be sourced before we can complete the element installation.

Alan Gardner

May 25, 2011

Cab Progress in May

It has been a while since I have updated you on the cab and its progress at Eveleigh.

Overall, the cab looks again like the cab that came off the Garratt a while back, with the notable exception of the corrosion that was present in the panels and frames. I would estimate that at least 25% of the cab has been replaced just to repair the damage caused by all those years of exposure.

The majority of the riveting is done, with the exception of 4 lines of rivets that could not be completed until the roof is properly attached. One more day with the team from Goodwin-Alco will see that all completed.

The last workday saw the roof more or less completed, with just a little welding to be completed and one small panel to be cut and fitted. The roof is all new, and is completely devoid of the holes that caused the ultimate demise of the original unit. All attachments are now internal and with new hatches that are stronger and easier to use, the cab should be a nice place to work. As part of the work, we have also added proper lifting points to allow damage free lifting of the cab from the frames and the roof from the cab in the future, a small detail, but one that will be appreciated when we have to do any heavy maintenance on the boiler or mechanical stoker.

There is some detail work to be completed, like new window frames in the rear of the cab, but there is most certainly light at the end of this tunnel!

Mike Reynell

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Today, the hind unit brake cylinder piston cup seals were replaced with the new neoprene type. This was not an easy job as the new seals are very stiff and don’t squash down easily. Once the seals eventually slide into place the felt follower seals present another set of problems. Again after much grunting and pushing the tee type securing bolts were fitted into place securing the head to the cylinder . The push rods and subsequent pins will be final fitted on our next workday.

The brake system is in general terms, continuing at a good pace but the cab sub floor piping requires significant work. So much so the it has been decided to replace the drivers side cab sub floor sheet for two reasons. The first being that it has seen better days and the second being access to a very cramped space. The floor was cut into two sections to allow the brake stand and sub assemblies to be removed for assessment and repair. The grimy, rusted pipes only yielded after we applied heat with the oxy torch helped by hydraulic jacks. The four feed valves and many smaller fittings are now off site being rebuilt as home work and yes they are seized and full of that rusty grime.

The cabs steel sub floor is about four inches below the timber floor and supports many sub assemblies including a myriad of pipes, both steam and air. Much of the rust and grime in the area is a direct result of coal dust and over use of the cab hose. Maybe the manufactures knew this as a this would ensure the purchase of new locomotives for future sales. Oh well bad timing you might say as diesels were well into production when 6029 was new!

Our next workday (Saturday June 4) will see us continue around the cab sub floor area. Hopefully the new replacement sheet for the sub floor will be on site ready for fitting by then.

Alan Gardner

Apr 19, 2011

Its been a while...

but we have not been resting on our laurels. In Sydney, the cab has been riveted back together, while in Canberra, the work has been continuing at the usual pace.

The cab has been riveted over 2 days, with help from Goodwin Alco's Steve Preston, Craig and Dave, along with the two Mike's and Malcolm. The days were very noisy, and it was good at the end of the day to see lots of bolts replaced by rivets. Photos will follow shortly.

In Canberra, the hind unit has again been getting some attention. There has been some abrasive blasting performed to clean up some areas, the rear draft package is back in, and I am sure that there has been more black paint applied wherever there was bare metal.


The boiler has also been getting its fair share of attention, with the crinoline bands bing refitted in preparation for some new boiler cladding. More info shortly.


Mar 21, 2011

Sunday 20 March 2011

Now that the boiler cradle is well and truly in place the boiler itself has become the next stage in the critical path of assembly. In fact the Thursday before the workday also saw the use of a 80 ton mobile crane to lift the boiler into position next to the locomotive in preparation for the workday. The boiler was packed with timbers to give relative easy access to the foundation ring so the last of the broken ash pan mounting studs could be drilled out. This job went surprisingly well as upside down work was is never easy and after an hour of the usual grunting and groaning we were done. The lift itself was a bit of an anti climax as the boiler was lowered into position with ease.

With the boiler in place, and after a quick check for clearance, the expansion slides were fitted in preparation for the expansion brackets. They could not be bolted down as some of the studs will have to be replaced. The exhaust steam ball joint that attaches to the blast pipe was checked and it comes as no surprise that some major surgery will be required.

After lunch some of the guys were treated to a ride around the yard on locomotive 1210. It was a pleasant change from eating grinding dust. With all that out of the way, the team started to piece together the remaining crinoline bands. As the name suggest these bits are the frame work that holds the cladding sheet metal in place. Some of the lower parts of the bands are rusted out so new sections will be made as required.

Looking forward, and the next few months should see the cab returned to Canberra for final fitting. With the boiler and cab in place the steam pipes and fittings will be hooked up for the eventual steam test. We are asking for everyone to make that extra effort and attend the next few workdays as the big move is on. Come April, we see 6029 shunted into the large shed to facilitate the fit out of the lubrication system, cab floor and anything else that needs doing. We will also need all hands on deck to help clean up the large shed before 6029 moves in.

Alan Gardner

Mar 20, 2011

Ok.... so we didn't expect this!

I don't need to say much... The pictures say it all! Hands up those that are impressed with the progress the team have made in the last month, and if you can, dig deep and help us finish what we have started... Donations are always welcome.

From Boiler in

Mar 8, 2011

Saturday 5 March 2011

The first day of spring realized mild temperatures that were a welcome relief from the summer heat. The day started with the usual drill of running out of the power leads and a cup hot strong coffee.

The first job was to screw down the two large tension bolts that form part of the self adjusting pivots. They are designed to be pre-set at a tension which allows the pivot to self adjust for any wear. The adjustment of the screws required the combined effort of Paul, Tony and Andy utilizing four foot long pipe on the end of a four inch AF spanner. After about an hour of grunting and groaning both screws were at the required tension. For the record, a gap of 11/8" is called up on the manufactures drawing. The male pivots on both engine units had accumulated some minor surface rust and David soon cleaned off the offending iron oxide and applied a liberal coat of cylinder oil.

All this activity was leading to the project milestone of once again having the three major elements of the two engine units and the boiler cradle back together. Both the engine units were positioned to approximately the correct distance from each other. The boiler cradle was gradually lowered onto the engine unit’s, one end at a time. The end result of seeing the locomotive back together satisfied the crew to no end.

With the boiler cradle off the ground, the opportunity was taken to give the site an overdue clean up. The clean up will facilitate the long anticipated lifting of the boiler onto the boiler cradle. With only some minor prep work to complete it is anticipated that the boiler lift will take place in the next few weeks. This has only been made possible with the generous donations made recently by our project supporters, thanks to all who have contributed.

Our next workday is Sunday the 20th of March 2011

Alan Gardner

Mar 7, 2011

Stop Press

It will come as a surprise to some, but Saturday saw the boiler cradle reunited with the loco units... More info soon, but certainly a milestone, and a sign of big things to come... Plus, not a mention of bogie's, well OK, just one!

More info, and more pics very soon!

Feb 21, 2011

Sunday 20 February 2011

4-8-4 + 4-8-4. Theses numbers may not be significant to an bystander but to the 6029 team it is a significant milestone. After 14 months of hard dirty work we rolled under the last of the four bogie. As we are now proficient with Garratt bogies an initial trail fit took place to double check for clearance and alignment . A wise decision, as we found a problem with the bogie in place. The two outer driving wheels had no contact with the rail head by about 25 mm. Further investigation revealed that the brake adjusting pull rods were not backed off and consequently the brakes where holding the driving wheels clear of the rail. Both four inch AF adjusting screws were backed off and on the second lowering the wheels settled back in the correct orientation. Sighs of relief all round and the crew was very happy to step back an enjoy the fruits of their labor.

The hind units headstock and coupling area was stripped down for assessment but not before a nest of wasps were evicted from their home inside the casting crevices of the automatic coupling. The project manger was stung by one wasp who took exception to being moved out. After the wasps finally got the hint, Andy and Howard removed the coupling carrier plate, brake isolating cocks and with some persuasion, the automatic coupling. The short brake pipes from the isolating cocks to the first barrel unions will be replaced as they were in poor condition. The step on the right hand side of the head stock was straightened and repaired and in truth it has not been on the locomotive for many years. The damage sustained was due to a rough shunt many years ago. The hind unit draft package friction springs are being manufactured new by the local spring manufacture. Once the replacement springs are delivered the draft package and automatic coupling will re-fitted to the hind unit headstock.

Now that the bogies are in place the "A" team of Kyle and John completed the fit out of the brake and flexible hoses connecting to bogies to the engine units. Some of the pins and bushes on the brake hangers were replaced as the team was not happy with the sloppy fit. The flexible lube lines received a final visual inspection and as predicted all were in the correct place and are a good fit.

As a direct result of today’s work, we are now in a position to start planning the lowering the boiler cradle onto the engine units. Both pivots will be preset in accordance with the manufactures drawings. The pivots will be cleaned for the last time and then on goes the boiler cradle. We can now move onto this vital stage as we have recently received a significant donation from some of our supporters. Thank you to everyone who has contributed and because of your efforts, the next couple of months will see 6029 back together in three distinct pieces as an articulated locomotive. This will make the way clear for lowering the boiler into the cradle in the next month.

So its all go systems go for some exciting times ahead.

Keep steaming

Alan Gardner

Feb 7, 2011

Saturday February 5 2011

The last of the four bogies was the main focus of the days work. The team fitted the flexible lube lines in time for Ian to deliver the next two sets of Nathan four way lubricators. The completed bogie was then transferred behind the trailing engine unit in preparation for its installation. We had to pinch ourselves...yes we were there, all done. All four bogies are ready to grace the network metals again, well done team. The opportunity was taken to complete some long overdue housekeeping around the space occupied by the bogies for the past year.

Andy and Tony started the clean up around the hind engine unit and cylinders in preparation of the installation of the forth bogie. As predicted bucket loads of baked on cylinder oil and road grime are prevalent and we expect quite a few hours of toil here. The next couple of workdays should see this task completed with only the bogie to roll under.

As the bogie work is all but completed the boiler cradle leading pivot was the next job on the list. Graeme and Shaun fitted both halves of the very large bronze pivot castings. The reconditioned tension spring nuts were screwed down to the pre-set clearance. While we were working on the leading pivot, Marc and Paul removed the live steam ball joint that is situated just above the pivot casting. The two lube lines that supply oil from the mechanical lubricators were found to be completely broken off. The cavity that the ball joint sits in was completely block solid with congealed oil and again lots of crud was cleared away. Needless to say, the lube lines will be repaired to the usual standard and maybe the oil will again be delivered to where it is required.

The good news is that we are now almost ready to start the reassembly of the engine proper. The first job will be to lower the boiler cradle into position followed by the boiler soon after. Having said that, we now need to raise the funds to facilitate the crane hire. We are asking for everyone to chip in and in fact, $3,000 will see the mighty 60 class starting to look like the real deal again.

Our next workday is Sunday the 20th of February and if we get a good turn out of volunteers we will be almost ready for the big reassembly.

Alan Gardner

Jan 18, 2011

16-17 January 2011.

Our first workdays of 2011 got off to a good start as for once it wasn’t raining in Canberra. Large puddles of water were still prevalent but at least the forecast was for a fine and sunny weekend.

The object of the weekend was to install the third bogie(hind inner) under the hind unit. Andy and Tony continued to clean up the hind unit bogie pivot and sub assembles to facilitate the final fit of the bogie in question. No surprises here except for more coal fines in the frame casing cavities. This area directly below the coal screw conveyer and bunker so we guessed that there may have been some overflow when 6029 was being filled up for its runs. The final fit out of the bogie consumed significantly more time than we estimated as the project manger couldn’t work out the difference between left and right. As a result of this three attempts were made to fit the pedestal keep plates, third time lucky hey!

Paul stripped down the hind unit draft package(the big spring that absorbs the in train buffing forces) on the hind unit and as usual more road grime was present. The bottom retaining plate holding the draft package in place was cleaned down and crack tested with no issues identified. However the ¾" nuts were almost non existent from the effects of rust...Replacement nuts and bolts have now been ordered.

At 16:00 hrs on Sunday the inner hind bogie was lowered into position will little bother or fuss although the hot and tired crew were ready for a well earned drink and pat on the back.

Alan Gardner

While this was happening in Canberra, the cab was again receiving attention at Eveleigh, with more new panels being fitted. In one of the best turnouts we have had for a long time, Mike, Mike, Ron and Malcolm were onsite for the day. Lots of hands made light work, allowing the new roof panels to be trial fitted and they are a surprisingly good fit. The roof is made in three sections and are yet to be trimmed and welded together, but there is most certainly light at the end of the tunnel.

By the end of the day, all the panels that make up the sides of the cab had been refitted and we had even managed rehang a door with new hinges...It wont be long now and we can rivet it all back together.

Jan 11, 2011

What happens when an armament fitter gets interested in steam?

Ian Senini has outdone himself with his latest project.... Take a look at the wonderful job he has done on the mechanical lubricators for the Garratt!
He has transformed the old, neglected lubricators into what I suggest is easily better than new condition.

Have a look at the before pictures, and compare them with the after... You will see what I mean! And then look at how complex they are... Every output is an individually metered, self contained pump, and Ian has rebuilt every one...

Well done Ian!