David Fletcher who designs live steam models for Accucraft visited us some time ago and we assisted him with pictures for the Decauville model. One of the examples is our own “Bathala”. Our picture gallery shows David Fletcher with the full size “Bathala” and some pictures of the smaller version. You can learn more about the
Accucraft Decauville on the following link : https://www.accucraft.uk.com/products/decauville-type-1-live-steam-0-4-0t-in-78ths-scale/
The magnetic particle inspection is now complete and the wall thickness testing complete. No cracks were detected in the tube plates and all wall thicknesses are well within specs bar the two back corners but these are cleared by the engineer for welding up. All the small tubes are now annealed and are ready for swaging (all 152 of them!). Window patches for the damaged smokebox are being fabricated and the hollow stays, part of the GPCS inlet system, have bored out. This was quite a long job as the original weld had spread making them difficult to remove. As a critical part of the GPCS system this job has to be exact. Our picture gallery shows the firebox end tube plate after all the weld seams have been measured, the small tubes after annealing, forming of the smokebox patches and the secondary air inlets during machining to remove them.
Further news on the boiler repairs. The firebox tube plate has been polished ready for the magnetic particle and wall thickness inspection on the 19th February. The inspection will include both tube plates and all the welded seams inside the firebox, around the hollow stays (for the GPCS) and the wash out plug holes. Our gallery also shows the new tubes being annealed and the condition of the stays in the water space between the inner and outer firebox.
On Sunday, 16th February 2020, Sandstone hosted a group of 20 from the Western Cape of South Africa. This was a research team and soil management advisors, led by Dr Johann Strauss, who are passionate about Conservation Agriculture. The team consisted of grain and animal farmers focussing on no-till, cover crops and crop rotation.
The group stopped over at Sandstone on their way to a farm visit in Reitz to view our Heritage Site and the collection. A team of 12 oxen were in-spanned to the delight of the group. This was the highlight of their visit and all were in awe! The collection was also a big hit as they could not believe the variety of vintage equipment on display.
“What an experience!”, one comment in the Visitors Book, which summoned up their visit!
While work continues on the boiler in Pretoria, Gert Jubileus and his team have been busy at the Sandstone restoration facility. The overhaul of the engine units for number 155 has begun as our picture gallery shows. The bearings proved to be in great condition and all the components have been stripped from the frames and thoroughly cleaned. The loco has been out of service since 2000 when its boiler ticket expired at ACR so 20 years of accumulated grime had to be removed.
The front tank which was removed from the loco on arrival at Sandstone in 2002 has been brought up to the workshop for refurbishment. The loco will be turned out in its original red livery when the restoration is complete.
Accommodation at Sandstone
Whether you are a day visitor to Sandstone to view our heritage collection or looking for affordable accommodation while visiting the Eastern Free State, Sandstone can offer self-catering accommodation in our Victorian Cottages for up to 24 people. The Victorian Cottages can sleep four in two twin bedded rooms and have a kitchen and bathroom with shower.
Pricing is R1771-00 per cottage per night, inclusive of VAT.
Our Railway Cottages offer accommodation only for 8 people in twin bedded single rooms with a bathroom with shower. Meals can be arranged at the Waenhuis in the main complex of Sandstone. Pricing is R295-00 per person per night inclusive of VAT.
We can also offer camping on site with pre-paid electricity for our visitors. A modern fully equipped ablution block is on site. Pricing is R380.00 per stand per night inclusive of VAT.
Read more for contact details and the weekend’s attractions.
Preparatory work on the boiler of number 155 has begun in Pretoria with the old tubes being removed and the tube plates and boiler internals thoroughly cleaned. We now have the specifications for the Gas Producer Combustion System (GPCS) inlets on each side of the firebox which comprise a hollow boiler stay with a steel insert. At each outer end are “swirler” plates which rotate the air entering the firebox above the fire bed. Amazingly we have located a number of new ones in the Sandston store which must have arrived with 155 so many years ago that they were forgotten! Our picture gallery shows arrival in Pretoria and work on removing the tubes and cleaning the boiler in preparation for the retube.