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  • Writer's pictureChris Hoskin

Smokebox and wheels

More progress pictures have recently dropped into my inbox showing the latest stage with the smokebox.

The ring has now been permanently attached, as have the dart bar brackets, using threaded rivets.

Next step will be fitting of the door. All components are now to hand, so progress on the remaining work should be rapid (note the upside down saddle in the background of the second picture).

Last week I (the Webmaster) visited Didcot for a look around and a squint at the archives. It being a bit of a trek from York to Didcot I don't do it often! Here are a couple of pictures of the County from my visit, showing the centre driving wheelset in the wheeldrop pit awaiting refitting. The wheels had to be dropped to allow for some domehead rivets to be exchanged for flush ones as the change in wheel size (6'3" compared to a Hall's 6') meant the wheels were fouling some of the rivets - such is the nature of a conversion project compared to a new build.

With this complete, and the arrival of the smokebox, we will have the opportunity fairly soon to attach both the cab and smokebox in place and gain a real indication of how the loco will look for the first time.

In the meantime, here are two other photos from my visit - one of 4079 Pendennis Castle basking in the sun, and one of Hawksworth's other 4-6-0, the Modified Hall, 6998 Burton Agnes Hall in a typical shed scene.

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