It's been a long time, but we are pleased to say D8001 is finally back in operation for the first time since September 2013, working a test train at the Midland Railway Centre, Butterley on Sunday 26th March, ready for the coming season. We were planning a Mini Gala with so many of the Class at the railway at once with the possibility of 8001 and 20007 running as a pair of Pilot Scheme loco's, but unfortunately it was not to be.
D8001 ran the test train with 20189, with the multiple wiring working fully, we found out both fuel gauges needed to replaced after she ran out of diesel on the second train, but after re-fueling and bleeding started again. The test run revealed a couple of other wiring faults, horn valve sticking and a couple of defective gauges to replace in the coming weeks, ready for the forthcoming season.
Over the past few months we have had to resolve a very long list of faults as a result 60 years of rust and not running for so long. The jobs ranged from resolving a wiring fault to the control desk to the loco start switch, only to have to remove the desk to replace a rusted brake pipe, then replace a a rusted section of air pipe to the horn switch (see photo below). To get to the pipe as it bent around the sub frame we needed to to remove the coupling hook - and on and on. The rusty pipework was a result of the floor under the desk being filled with spray foam, presumably to stop a draft, but creating a perfect moisture trap.
The floor has now been rust proofed and sealed and where water was leaking in under the secondmans window was masticed and silcon applied around the whole cab/bonnet gap on both sides to hopefully seal it waterproof it once and for all.
The cab paneling and floor has been replaced where looking worse for wear, the control desks have been prepared and re-painted and the whole cab repainted in green and cream. We have rebuilt the floor and trim, renewing panels where required.
We found neither speedometer worked, probably due to the conduit being completely full of water, where a running board drain drain discharged above it. The wiring was replaced and one speedo replaced to get them working again.
Numerous interesting wiring faults have been worked through and wiring replaced to get the loco to start properly and the exhausters working correctly.
Thanks to Chris, Lester, Lee, Will, Steve, Dom, Trevor and anyone I've missed for their hard work on 001 over the Winter which is finally starting to pay off.