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Update on Class 89 Restoration
Posted on 25th July 2016 09:51
The overhaul of 89001 took a major step forward today with the locomotive moving on to the lifting pad outside the HNRC workshops at Barrow Hill to have its’ Field Convertors and Rheostatic Brake Stacks removed. The complete Field Convertor cubicles will be moved to Fletcher Moorland for a specialist electronics overhaul and testing to ensure that will ensure that each convertor is performing correctly before being returned to the locomotive. The Rheo Brake Stacks will be moved to Bowers Electrical for overhaul and repair; recent assessment work undertaken by ACLG volunteers has highlighted that there is likely to be damage to the #2 end brake stack – the resistances of a number of stages are outside of expected values.
A considerable amount of other work has also been undertaken by staff from Bralesford Engineering Services, HNRC and volunteers from the ACLG. Testing and inspection of the air brake systems has shown that it is operating correctly and the system is close to tolerance on air leakage. Specialist equipment is being developed to test the electronic ‘brake blending’ control that ensure correct operation of the friction and rheostatic braking systems.
The locomotive has been attached to various shore supplies to allow various 240V equipment to be tested; both battery chargers work and a number of the cooling fans have been test run. Last weekend, following the tracing and rectification of a short circuit on #2 end air conditioning unit it has been possible to test the air conditioning units for both cabs, achieving a cab temperature of 21C when the external temperature was 28C with air conditioning units that have stood idle for 16 years was a pleasant surprise.
The Microprocessor Control and its’ associated electronics has been surveyed, with considerable time being taken to assess the condition of individual cards and to investigate/understand the operation of the cards and the entire control system. A defect that was preventing the Microprocessor from ‘booting up’ has been repaired by the ACLG’s electronics specialist and the Microprocessor is now operating normally. The 1980s vintage Oyster terminal that is used to interrogate the Microprocessor has been replaced with modern software that is run on a laptop. Considerable efforts are being made to develop an ‘electronics strategy’ for the 89 to ensure good reliability and component resilience.
In addition to the major works and investigations there are various more general works underway including cleaning various filters, removing obsolete equipment, etc with a mixture of contractor and volunteer labour being used.
The unique and significantly ‘prototype’ nature of the 89 means in addition to the usual collection of spurious faults inherent in any locomotive under restoration there can be a number of puzzling and unusual problems, more learning for all involved – even for ex Brush staff. Whilst we have developed an extensive list of ‘areas of concern’ relating to the 89 we are pleased that in many areas the locomotive appears to work as intended.
Above Left: #1 End Rheo Brake Stack being removed (Courtesy Bralesford Engineering Services)
Above Right: #2 End Field Convertor being removed (Courtesy Bralesford Engineering Services)
ACLines 62 Ready to download
Posted on 12th June 2016 04:24The latest edition of the AC Locomotive Group's magazine, ACLines, is now available for download by members.
Please log on to the forum and member's download area via http://www.aclocogroup.co.uk/forum/login.php?redirect=../member.php
89001 Microprocessor Control Investigations
Posted on 11th June 2016 05:09
Work on recommisioning 89001 continues with a number of exam and inspections having been completed. One area of the 89 that has been identified as a risk to the locomotive's overhaul is the Microprocessor control system. Whilst the Microprocessor has been powered up and partially tested in the past it represents a significant 'unknown quantitity' in respect to its' current condition and function. In recent weeks the 89 has been powered up several times and on each of these the Microprocessor has failed to sucessfully 'boot up' and indicated an error somewhere in the locomotive's traction control system.
Following an inspection of the various cards that comprise the Microprocessor Control Rack (in addition to a card containing the Motorola 68000 microprocessor there are a number of buffer and input/output translator cards) it was concluded that the fault could not be resolved on the locomotive and the decision was taken to remove the entire Microprocessor Rack for assessment and fault finding off site; the picture shows the Microprocessor Control Rack removed from the locomotive prior to dispatch to the ACLG's electronics specialist.
89001 Control Circuits Energised
Posted on 15th May 2016 01:59
Following recent work by volunteers and staff from both Bralesford Engineering Services and HNRC we have successfully re-commissioned the Control and Field Convertor Batteries on 89001. Having the batteries in an operational condition is an important step in that it enables the locomotives' battery chargers and a number of other control systems on the locomotive to be energised and tested.The picture shows the control desk at #1 end energised on 14th May while the locomotive microprocessor controls were undergoing testing. Work on the bogies and brake systems on the 89 is also progressing.
As items are serviced and inspected the considerable number of documents relating to the design and maintenance of the locomotive in the ACLG’s possession are being reviewed to ensure that they reflect the condition the locomotive is now in and to establish a thorough understanding of the locomotive for maintenance and fault finding.
Class 89 Restoration
Posted on 28th April 2016 09:50
The AC Locomotive Group (ACLG) is pleased to announce progress on the restoration of locomotive 89001 and the imminent commencement of major repair work.
Over the last few months ACLG volunteers have completed an assessment of the condition the locomotive, reconditioned the battery systems, removed the obsolete NRN radio system from the cabs and commenced refurbishment of the cab interiors.
The locomotive will shortly be moved to the workshops of Harry Needle Railroad Company (HNRC) for the first stage in heavy overhaul works to be undertaken. The overhaul work will concentrate on two key areas; bogies and traction power equipment. Bogie work will comprise of an ultrasonic inspection of the locomotive axles and the locomotive being lifted to allow the removal of traction motors 4-6 for overhaul (traction motors 1-3 have already been removed and overhauled). The traction power equipment overhaul work will require the removal of the locomotive roof after which the field convertor cubicles, rheostatic brake stacks additionally the cab air conditioning units will both be removed. Removal of the field convertor cubicles will enable the repair of field convertors 1, 3, 4 and 6 to be completed; ACLG volunteers having already removed field convertors 2 & 5 by hand and both of these units have already been overhauled. Overhaul of the traction motors will be undertaken by Bowers Electrical and the overhaul of the field convertors will be undertaken by Fletcher Moorland.
In addition to the volunteer technical and project management team from within the ACLG Tim Bralesford (Bralesford Engineering Services) will be providing project management and technical services. Tim has unrivalled knowledge of the 89 as he worked on its design, construction and commissioning in the 1980s and its overhaul and re-commissioning in the 1990s.
The restoration of the Class 89 is a major project with considerable complexity and as such a date cannot be set when the locomotive will be returned to operational condition.
A technical ‘walk through’ of the locomotive (including some of the equipment to be repaired) is on Youtube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hxbv_-QCa6A
Funding for the repairs to 89001 is being provided from funds generated by the mainline operations of locomotives 86101, 86401 and 87002, the sale of locomotive 86213 and from donations to the AC Locomotive Group.
Railtours using ACLG Locomotives
Posted on 14th February 2016 09:01
We are pleased to announce that preserved AC Locomotives from our fleet will be used on a number of railtours this year.
The UK Railtours "Pines Express" on 30 April and “Atlantic Star” will both feature AC locomotives, details can be found at; http://www.ukrailtours.com/product/the-atlantic-star/ and http://www.ukrailtours.com/product/the-pines-express/
Class 86 and 87 locomotives are to be used by GBRf on a number of legs of their 15th Anniversary charity tour , details at; http://gbrfcharityrailtours.co.uk/railtours/sep-8-11th-gbrf-15
Mainline Fleet on Class 1 Duties
Posted on 28th August 2015 04:40
Tuesday 25th August 2015 marked an AC Preservation landmark with both 86101 and 87002 operating Class 1 passenger services. 86101 worked the 1M11 Glasgow-Euston Sleeper whilst 87002 worked the 1S26 service in the opposite direction. Meanwhile 86401 operated ECS services (5S96) between Wembley and Euston.
86401 returns to the mainline
Posted on 6th August 2015 02:27
On 4th August 2015 86401 was taken on a test run from Willesden Depot to Watford and return. This journey marks a return to service for ‘401 and is the first time in 11 years that she has run under her own power in the mainline network. 86401 will shortly join 86101 and 87002 working Caledonian Sleeper ECS services.
86101 has recently stretched her legs working services on various duties in Scotland and 1M11 Glasgow Central-London Euston sleeper on 5th/6th August.
Due to a defect that will be repaired shortly 87002 is currently restricted to ECS services between Wembley and Euston.
Restoration of 82008 and 85006
Posted on 18th February 2015 12:17
The ongoing restoration of 85006 is currently focussed a number of items of cab equipment, the locomotive air systems and cosmetic work on internal panels and covers.
82008 is the subject of some investigational work to assess the condition of its rectifier and the tap changer drive. Additionally some work has been undertaken on the auxiliary electrical systems with a view to running some of the cooling fans.
ACLG Polo Shirts
Posted on 29th April 2014 03:05
Polo shirts embroidered with the ACLG logo are avaliable for £14.00(members) and £16.00 (non members) each (plus £3.50 p&p). Adult sizes M to XXL are available, please specify size when purchasing.
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