Bloemfontein Steam Workshop Year End Progress Report

2011 was a very busy a year as the Sandstone Bloemfontein Workshop. Lucas Nel and his team had their hands full restoring, maintaining and rebuilding various locomotives.

As 2011 draws to close six locomotives are in various states of restoration and refurbishment. However the main focus in the workshop at the moment is NGG11 number 52.

Detailed below is a list with the status of locomotives being worked on in Bloemfontein.

1. NGG 11 number 52 SANRASM

Locomotive No.1 end. A new water tank has been manufactured as the old water tank was beyond repair. The side rods and the valve motion were also manufactured and have been put in place. The repairs to the boiler are well under way but will still take around another six months to complete before we can think about re-tubing it. Thereafter the hydraulic test on the boiler will take place.

Locomotive No.2 end. Refurbishment of the coal bunker has been completed. The frame with axle boxes, springs, wheels as well as the coupling rods with valve motion rods under currently in the process of being manufactured. The connecting rods, return cranks and most of the valve motion will be fabricated with the assistance of an outside contractor. The estimate time needed to complete the No.2 end will take around another four months.

2. Arn Jung 847 ex Angola

The water tanks and coal bunker have been fabricated and repairs to the frame have been completed. The manufacture of all spares needed to assemble the side rods and valve gear was outsourced. The items were received at the end of November and will be assembled in early December. The plan is to repair and re-metal the axle boxes will in the weeks as well.

The intention is to refit the wheels to the frame of the locomotive by early 2012 and we hope to have her running by March 2012. The boiler is currently under repair by Stevens Mechanical in Kwa-Zulu Natal.

3. Avonside 1624 SANRASM

The locomotive was completely stripped down and some major defects to the frames, front ends and boiler were found.

New frames are under construction at the moment as they are not only bent but broken just behind the cylinders. Equipment from Transnet is needed to do the repairs and is used whenever the equipment needed for the repairs available. The wheels as well as the side rods and valve gear were missing and drawings were made in order to fabricate to the parts that are missing. Some of this work needed to be outsourced.

The Avonside is not on the high priority list so we there is no time scale for the completion of the rebuild.


The locomotive was completely stripped and drawings to fabricate missing parts are on the drawing board at the moment.

The locomotive boiler was filled with a mixture of cement and gravel when stabled. Work is on the go to remove the filling. All boiler tubes were removed last week and once the filling is removed the boiler can be repaired.

We need to machine both cylinders liners and machine the valve faces. We intend to remove the cylinders during December and these will be sent for repairs to an engineering firm in Bloemfontein.

We cannot provide a time estimate to repair this locomotive as we need to rebuild the complete locomotive with the exception of the boiler shell.

5. O&K 12140 ex Angola

All the spares, including the side tanks and the cab, except for the boiler have been fabricated and are now available for assembly.

The boiler is awaiting a rebuild.

6. O&K 11112.ex Angola

The locomotive needs to be assembled as all spares except for the boiler and boiler mounts have been fabricated or repaired. This includes the side tanks and the cab.

The boiler is awaiting a rebuild.

7. NG10 No. 61

The locomotive has been completely stripped as further work is pending.