Vehicle Storage Shed
As reported in our last issue, the Vehicle Storage shed is up and inside it are the two lorries and two carts. Our third cart, the G.W.R one, is currently with Ian Cryer at the dock immediately next to "S.S Great Britain" in Bristol.
We had a problem with the shed, in that it is erected on a massive piece of concrete hardstanding which was part of the surface of the old Coal Depot. As there is no actual seal between the frame of the building and this hardstanding, when it rained, water tended to run inside – most unsatisfactory. We put some shuttering inside and cemented up the frame of the building which was an improvement, but as we want to keep everything inside properly dry, we decided to bite the bullet and lay a concrete screed inside, raising the floor and sealing the water out. Needless to say, this meant emptying the building again for a few days. The job is done and everything is now dry.
In the last magazine I also mentioned that I was drawing up a design for a lean-to extension, based on the one at Stroud GWR Bus Depot. The drawings are now complete and we have ordered all the gusset plates to join all the steelwork together. To keep costs to a minimum these plates have been supplied undrilled. The steelwork itself will also be undrilled for the same reason. Further savings have been made by using an ex-GWR door rescued from the demolished station at Droitwich. Bob Brown and I have stripped all the old paint and repaired it by splicing in a piece of "old" timber to replace a big piece that had split off. We have also resurrected three windows from the signal box at Hartlebury. They were donated to the Friends when the box was fitted with modern double glazed replacements. These windows and the door are made from Pitch Pine which is resinous and very resistant to rot. They are about 100 years old and still as good as new despite little maintenance during that time. Why do we have to put up with such rubbish modern wood these days?
Inside the Vehicle Storage Shed the carts have been cleaned down and treated with Cuprinol rot killer. The decking of the Cambrian Cart was particularly bad having been infected with a dose of wet rot. Hopefully the rot killer does what it says on the can. The boxes of Thornycroft spares have been loaded on the cart in order to get them inside too. They will go in the lean-to, when it is built. Extra space for working on the Thornycroft has been created by leaving the Mechanical Horse Trailer outside. I am unhappy with this, but once the Thornycroft is complete there will be room for it inside, provided it is loaded with one of the carts to save space.
Prior to erecting the lean-to, it will be necessary to fit bargeboards and guttering to that side of the main shed at the very least. This has caused us some soul searching. The big tin sheds were fitted with galvanised steel lightweight gutter in GWR days (for cheapness). This stuff doesn't seem to be available nowadays. Do we fit the modern equivalent – plastic – or do we go for the very expensive option, cast iron?
We would like to avoid the plastic option. All donations very gratefully received!!
Mick Yarker. January 2006