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Quainton News Archive - Quainton News No. 30 - Winter 1976
Standard Class 4 2-6-0 76017
The Mogul, 76017
In Quainton News No. 19, Spring 1974, we recorded the arrival of 76017, a Standard Class 4 2-6-0 at Quainton. In the past three years The Mogul has become a firm favourite for many visitors and this article has been prepared with the co-operation of the Group who purchased the locomotive and are working towards its full restoration in working order.
By way of introduction to the theme, perhaps we should reproduce the paragraphs from the Quainton Stock Book describing 76017, (with permission of course!).
'The British Railways standard Class 4 2-6-0 locomotives were developed at Doncaster from the LMS H G Ivatt class, the sole remaining example being 43106 on the Severn Valley Railway. The prototype standard engine was built at Horwich works in 1952 and in the six years to 1957 the total number in the class grew to 115, construction being concentrated at Horwich and Doncaster.
The locomotives were designed for mixed traffic duties and had coupled wheels 5ft 3in in diameter. Their weight in working order was 59 tons 2 cwts and the maximum load on any axle was 17 tons, thus giving the class a wide route availability. The two outside cylinders had their steam events controlled by Walschaerts valve gear and the high running plate not only gave maintenance personnel easy access but also imparted a distinctive appearance to the class which was enhanced by a closed cab.
Maximum interchangeability of detail fittings with other BR standard designs was achieved and this reduced spares stocks and further facilitated maintenance. The standard No 2 tenders used on the 76's, except 76053 to 76066, carried 6 tons of coal and 3500 gallons of water. The exceptions had flush sided tenders with 7 tons of coal and 4725 gallons.
The class were used by all Regions except the Western and 76017 went to the Southern at Eastleigh in June 1953 where it joined other engines of the series in replacing the ageing LSWR 4-4-0 and 0-6-0's on passenger and freight duties in the Southampton area. After seven years it was transferred to Salisbury shed which remained its home until withdrawal from service in July 1965. The only recorded exciting incident in the BR service days of 76017 took place on 23rd September 1954 at Whitchurch (Hants). On that day the locomotive was working down the Didcot, Newbury and Southampton line on the 7 am Banbury to Eastleigh freight train when it became derailed at the south end of the loop which was on an embankment at that point. The Mogul took a nose dive down the bank and to this day it carries a few scars from this unintended journey into a field.
The familiar melancholy last departure from the Southern to be scrapped in South Wales was undertaken by 76017 in January 1966 when our Mogul was sold to Woodham Bros., Barry Docks. The end appeared to be near but as we now know, many of the 150 engines already gathered at that time at Barry were to rise again like Phoenix from the ashes. The first possibility of saving 76017 took shape when the embryo plans for the reopening of the Swanage branch were being made and the Isle of Purbeck Preservation Group were formed. The twenty members of the Group considered the prospects of obtaining three locomotives from Barry scrapyard. These were 34016 Bodmin, the N Class 2-6-0, 31874 [Note 1], and our subject, 76017. The first two on the shopping list are now at Alresford [Note 2] but the Standard 2-6-0 remained of interest to several former Purbeck members despite the collapse of the Swanage venture. (At this point it should be mentioned that the Swanage Railway Society is very much alive and still hopes to restore the branch from Wareham to full operation).
In 1972 permission was sought to bring 76017 to Quainton. Meanwhile she rested in the sidings at Barry and, compared with the other Standard Moguls, appeared to be in the poorest external condition. However a diligent search of the remaining BR records and a professional inspection by a competent railway engineer revealed that 76017 was in good mechanical condition and had a good boiler. Her tender was not at Barry because it had been sold to Briton Ferry steelworks for use as an ingot carrier, so the tender from 76077 was earmarked. This was slightly different from the original because it was a London Midland Region Type 2A, (a Type 2 was fitted new), and it has a water scoop, larger weatherboard windows and handrails.
When the QRS agreement had been concluded there was a mad dash for finance to complete the purchase from Woodhams before VAT was introduced on 1st April, 1973. The deadline was reached just in time! On Friday, 30th March, 1973 the money was paid and the Group became the owners of the locomotive, tender and a quantity of spares. The next problem was haulage to Quainton. Tenders were obtained and after nine months a reasonable quotation was received from Wynns and the deal was clinched.
It was a very memorable day when 76017 arrived at Quainton Road up yard. It was New Years Day, 1974! The journey had been made via the Severn Bridge and Waddesdon - to name just two well-known locations! The tender travelled separately and did have one or two problems with the road trailer but Wynns solved these without too much delay.
At this point in the story it should be recorded that the Group working on the locomotive at Barry had numbered sixteen but at Quainton there are now six members devoting their time, enthusiasm and cash to restoring 76017. Reverting to Barry again; before leaving the yard 76077 was stripped of all useful spares, 76017 was given a coat of black 'household' paint as a temporary preservative and the engine was jacked up to inspect and lubricate bearings. All mechanical parts were greased and careful preparations were made so that the move to Quainton was made without any problems. A major effort was also made to obtain sponsors to give financial aid but only two replies with a total of £6 were received from three hundred enquiries! The first task tackled at Quainton was the cleaning of boiler tubes and the smokebox. Surprisingly, the boiler was remarkably clean. Unfortunately, the steam pipes in the smokebox had been cut out at Barry so the remaining studs were removed and new ones obtained. Work was next carried out on the outside of the boiler barrel. After the rotten sheet steel cladding had been removed, the shell plates were found to be corroding badly so they were wire brushed and scraped and coats of red oxide paint were applied. At the same time all the boiler mounting studs were removed, (not an easy job!), and blanking off plates and plugs were prepared in readiness for boiler hydraulic testing. This was ready in November 1975 but the tests were postponed in case frosty weather should occur and work was then concentrated on cleaning and stripping the frames, tender and cab.
Good progress continued and a new cab floor of fire resistant Jarrah wood was made and a new vacuum tank was constructed, tested and installed under the floor. The old tank had severely rusted away in the aggressive mixture of a cement-like mixture of ash and coal dust which had surrounded it! The firehole door was repaired by building up with weld metal, work was done on the badly distorted hopper ashpan doors and the cab restoration completed with the exception of piping.
In the spring of 1976 the frames and wheels were very successfully cleaned with the aid of high pressure water jet equipment although hand removal of some deposits of the coal and ash concrete was necessary. The tender was stripped and thoroughly cleaned, rubbed down and prepared for the very high standard of paintwork which many have shared. Also on the tender, the Timken roller bearings have been inspected and they are all in good order.
At the end of June this year, (1976), the locomotive boiler was finally prepared for its hydraulic test and on 29th of the month it passed this crucial landmark in its new life with flying colours. There was not a single drop of water to be seen! A visual dry test was also carried out on the boiler and firebox. The result was a report of 'A1' condition for operation at 225 psi.
Work then started on reassembly. The insulation chosen was fibreglass secured by chicken netting. New cladding sheets had been made and after some adjustments they have been fitted and clamped by new boiler bands and fixings. On site at Quainton and off site at members' homes the multitude of restoration jobs are being carried out. Components such as valve gear items, cylinder relief valves, footplate fittings and so on are being dealt with, many having originated from 76077.
When the better weather returns the painting of the frames, wheels and other external work will be completed. The tyres are in such good condition that they will not require reprofiling and no major problems are envisaged in these final stages of restoration. The colour scheme being adopted is BR black with LNWR lining of red and grey. To dispel any rumours, the Group announce they have no plans to name 76017 and we agree this is a pleasant change from the current practice elsewhere. The prospects are that 76017 will be the first large locomotive to be steamed at Quainton Road since the Society arrived and we wish the Group every success in this happy conclusion to their sterling efforts.
Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
Page Updated: 11 November 2017