Starlight Express

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  lynnr on Tue 23 Dec 2014, 8:05 pm

Coal and a match possibly will not work. You need to install the starter key.

Don't you know these engines run on batteries!

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Tue 23 Dec 2014, 8:21 pm

Idea yes key start on a petrol driven generator in the second wagon driving my big compressor in wagon 1 which in turn powers the engine.Just need a smoke maker to finish off. Maybe on second thoughts coal fired would be easier. Smile

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  Kiwiconnection on Wed 24 Dec 2014, 3:22 am

Merry Christmas to all who follow STW. Very Happy

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Sun 11 Jan 2015, 7:02 pm

Hope everyone had an enjoyable new year. Have not had the opportunity to do to much since my last post as the sun has been shining and the surf to good to miss. Some photos of the pin striping on the motion guards and the exciter. With any luck this will be the last lot of pin striping required on the engine.

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Next job the canopy .

Cheers Shane

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Sun 11 Jan 2015, 7:06 pm

couple more photos.Must be doing something wrong with my posting



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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Sun 11 Jan 2015, 8:09 pm

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  Tony King on Mon 12 Jan 2015, 2:51 am

As ever... WOW!!....Amazing Shane!!

Just to make you jealous (NOT) I'm looking out of my window here at a complete white out snow storm!!.. So I'll be leaving the surf board where it is for now!!

Regards,
Tony

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Re Starlight Express

Post  AndrewR on Mon 12 Jan 2015, 11:08 am

Stunning as ever Shane,
When are you going to put some coal and a match in it? I need an excuse to bring my engine down!!!!!!
Andrew

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Mon 12 Jan 2015, 11:54 am

Thanks Tony, My family tree can be traced back to the Fletchers who immigrated from Ballachulish to Dunedin New Zealand in the late 1800s.To experience a white Christmas in Scotland is definitely on my bucket list.It will give me a better insight as to why they immigrated! And no they were not on one of those convict ships. They only went to Australia.

Andrew not long now and you will be one of the first to know when the big day is.

Cheers Shane.

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  Kiwiconnection on Mon 12 Jan 2015, 12:10 pm

Its about time you got that thing dirty.... I think that most of the Tauranga club members where hoping for new sun glasses this Christmas.....

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Mon 12 Jan 2015, 6:41 pm

Ha ha Phil. While the gestation period is probably a little over cooked you will need to be patient for this baby. Have a few odds and ends to tidy up and hopefully at one of our club play days in March/April we will light a fire in her belly. Lord Darby should be on his wheels by then and  can witness the event . Catch up soon. Cheers Shane

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Sun 01 Feb 2015, 12:07 pm

Hi comrade builders and others interested. Have started on the canopy for Starlight Express .Wow you certainly get an appreciation of the size of the engine. Quite imposing really and well worth the wait. The canopy went together beautifully after of course trial fitting all the ribs etc. Small amount of work with the chisel but nothing too onerous.

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My mate Murray a part time classic boat builder and now a traction engine canopy builder has assisted me with the build. His experience has been invaluable. We used his brad nailer or finishing gun to attach the roof .For those interested the nails were 15mm long and 18 gauge.A tool well worth using to attach the roof strips.

[img][/img]

With the centre strip on we checked that all the other strips were straight and fitted. Wasted our time cos they were !

[img][/img]

Clamped some board at the front of the canopy with blocks on the inside to ensure board straight. All the roof planks butting up to the board ensured they were kept even.

[img][/img]


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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Sun 01 Feb 2015, 12:23 pm

We used two pack boat builders glue and tried to clean up as much as possible after each plank was nailed. Last plank.Allow plenty of time.It took Murray and I all day to glue and nail the planks

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A better shot of the board at the front to keep all even.

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Good days work. Steve Traill gave me good advice at Dorsett to make each plank look like tongue and groove. Murray had the table router and quite easily done if you do before installation!

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Starlight express with the canopy  now has a certain presence.

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Still to finish fibre glassing the top,painting and pinstriping.

That all from me.

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  lynnr on Sun 01 Feb 2015, 12:44 pm

Hi Shane.

Looking bloody bonza mate.

If you can? Reinforce the location on the uprights behind the chimney where the countersink hex screws go through the half round bar. Both mine snapped there where there is little metal. Good weld all round the head of the screw and ground flat would be my suggestion.

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  Tony King on Mon 02 Feb 2015, 3:03 am

As usual, excellent pictures of progress Shane, it certainly does change the appearance of the engine! Can't wait to see you get the paint on!!

My one BIG regret is I didn't chamfer the underside of the roof boards, it makes such a difference, to get that "traditional" appearance!!

Regards from "snowy Scotland"!!

Tony


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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Mon 02 Feb 2015, 12:03 pm

Hi Lynn and Tony. Thank you for your comments .Good advice Lynn. I will try and cobble something together. Tony I would never have thought to chamfer the edges of the planks(and ribs including intermediate ribs for pin striping ) if Steve had not mentioned it and put some photos up on his build thread. Don't feel bad about it both you and Lynn have had the honour to led the pack for us followers. Easy to follow but bloody hard to cut the track. I guess one of the big advantages of these build threads is that you can share ideas etc. and we followers have a far easier run. Snow you've got it easy.We have had one of the hottest summer in years and the farmers are facing drought conditions throughout the country if we don't have rain soon. Next thing we know the powers that be will be banning the use of steam engines which occurs quite regularly in Australia. There is always the option of visiting us down under next summer and have a look at our national model engineering convention being held early Jan 2016 .I am on the organising committee and am sure could arrange accommodation etc if needed. Phil(Kiwi connection) as part of the convention is organising an off the rails miniature traction engine run through town which should be a lot of fun. Kind regards Shane

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Best view

Post  Steve Traill on Tue 03 Feb 2015, 1:15 pm

What a great job there Shane, my favourite view is the one looking from the back under the canopy although they look great from all angles. The roof is surprisingly strong & rigid once it's all put together, I know when I was building Deans I did wonder if all those bits of bendy ply would have enough strength but once it's all pined and glued it almost becomes a monocoque chassis type roof, very strong. I was tempted to use a pin gun but in the end pilot drilled & pinned them all by hand, I didn't want to either miss or split the ply beams. I really like the repetitive type parts of the build, like the belly tank rivets etc, quite therapeutic after a busy day. The trick is not to look at how many there are to do but to enjoy every one & before you know it you've finished! Basketball

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Tue 03 Feb 2015, 5:04 pm

Hi Steve, Thankyou for your comments. I owe you an ale or 3 cos would not be looking like that if it hadn't been for your advice at Dorset. The finishing gun did a surprisingly good job but you had to be careful and mark out topside where each rib went. We had half a dozen or so nails come out the side of the ribs (our aim was not off they just they hit some glue-that's the official version any way) with no splitting damage etc.Murray the boat builder assures me easy to fix. Must be good quality ply that STW have used. Love the progress you have been making on your crane engine and can't wait to see videos of its operation on the rally field. Cheers Shane

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Tue 24 Feb 2015, 6:11 pm

Hi All,An interesting day last Saturday. After waiting and waiting and still waiting my patience for Tony to fire his engine before mine evaporated (in a puff of smoke) and I just had to light a wee fire in Starlight Express' belly. First had to sort some issues out with the water pump. The nipple at boiler end of pump delivery pipe was leaking badly. My expert witnesses (both engineers) wanted to re silver solder the nipple in situ. After waving the blow torch around my nice paint work I had to pull rank and call stop work while I removed the pipe all together. This necessitated removal of wheel, fly wheel etc. Bob had it fixed in a jiffy. Should have done the other end as well as it started leaking later on. Must have been brazed by STW towers on a Monday after a bank holiday weekend.

[img][/img]

Lit the fire. Thought I had lost more hair than photo indicates with the challenge of the build.

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No forced draw on this baby. The cardboard tube from the local carpet worked a treat. My advisors thought that the tube would catch a light and shorten considerably. Proved them wrong.

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All went well. Brought up to steam over 2 hours and no more than 90 psi for first steaming. Sounded awesome. Thank you to everyone at STW.

Now Tony this is the photo you don't want to see-

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Tony you will however be pleased to know I had my engine all cleaned up in an hour to an "as new" condition.Oil was easy to remove from the paint work while still warm. The "smeech" caused by smoke around the fire hole a bit more tricky to remove. Meths seemed to do the trick with no damage to paint.

[img][/img]

I will try and post the video Murray (the boat builder)took when I can get my hands on it next week.

I will need to steam another 2-3 times to sort some minor matters before my boiler inspector hopefully signs off next month.

Will keep you all up dated
Cheers Shane




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Re: Starlight Express

Post  lynnr on Tue 24 Feb 2015, 11:36 pm

Congratulations Shane on first Fire.

It is a joy to see another of these stunning engines come to life.

Tony has an excuse in not lighting up. He does not to want to get his engines wet in this very cold and snowing weather we are having. Crystal totally agrees. She is dry and snug under her covers sleeping cuddlying her heaters. But don't tell Tony's engines but Crystal wants to surprise them when they do wake up by being there in steam to show them how it's done.

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  Tony King on Wed 25 Feb 2015, 12:07 am

Congratulations Shane, wonderful achievement. And yes that picture of the top of your boiler with that unmentionable stuff on it was horrific!!! However it has to be said that your shiny stuff is so shiny that it's almost impossible to see past it to the "mess" underneath!!!.... Well done for taking the plunge..... I'm still trying to psych myself up for the "great day"!!!.... As Lynn points out, weather here definitely precludes "ANY" possibility of my engine going outside at the moment, wet, cold, dirt.... I'm really scared now!!

Regards,

Tony

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  Tim Watson on Wed 25 Feb 2015, 6:21 am

Great to see another dirty engine. Worth considering an extended drip tray under the slide bars Shaun: catches a lot of those oil drips.

Tim

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  mikero on Wed 25 Feb 2015, 7:49 am

Ah the patina of oil stains on the paintwork, just what an engine needs Shane.

Mike

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Wed 25 Feb 2015, 12:00 pm

Thank you Lynne, Tim, Tony and Mike. It would appear your English weather is challenging at the best of times. Hopefully the mercury will start moving the right way soon and Tony can cross the line and have his engine ready for your rally season. Mike no oil stains on this baby between steaming. My cleaning crew will be well trained to remove Star light express' work clothes after each outing and return to showmans condition in readiness for the next play in the dirt .Kind regards Shane

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Re: Starlight Express

Post  showman shane on Sun 01 Mar 2015, 1:16 pm

Hi All,
As promised a video of my first steaming Sat week ago. Quite emotional to see the engine come to life after 2 or so years building using every bit of spare time I had. I think the better half was quite relieved  as the very long list of jobs to do around the home might be started.



The video below is one of my second steaming last Saturday and un planned road run. Certainly caused a bit of a stir with traffic stopping to take photos and near by residents coming out of houses to have a look.



Still a few more bits to sort before my steam accumulation test.

Great day was had by us all.

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Re: Starlight Express

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