2017 & THE 457 IS NEARLY FINISHED
But it has not been an easy ride....
This project is going to be completed thanks to the generous support of Wulfrun Consulting.
OBJECTIVES OF THE PROJECT
From the outset it was confirmed by the SERA team that 67300 would never run again, either hauled or under its own power so the plan is to restore 67300 back to condition it ran in as the traction development unit. The restoration is to be for static display to exhibition standard, with public viewing required for both the inside as well as the exterior.
The project has been led by SERA member
BACKGROUND TO THE PROJECT
Vehicle 67300 was purchased late in 2001. The history of the vehicles can be found in the 'Our Fleet' pages. When purchased they had been stored at Eastleigh works for nearly ten years and had been robbed quite extensively of many fittings such as; shoe gear, cab fittings, internal parts from the saloon areas and much more.
The whole interior was coated in dirt, dust and grime from the long period of store prior to sale, seats had been removed and scattered over the saloons. Many of the internal panels in the ceiling had been disconnected so components for recovery could be accessed. The cab was notably missing seats, brake gauges and a speedo plus a raft of smaller components.
A FEW PICTURES OF THE CONDITION THE VEHICLE WHEN PURCHASED:
FALSE STARTS AND SETBACKS
Initial work succeeded in cleaning the interior up, replacing all the missing seating and refreshing the driving cab, including obtaining most of the parts that had been removed from it.
The project was hampered when vandals got into the vehicle twice, once in 2004 and again in 2006. Both attacks resulted in nearly all of the exterior windows being smashed leaving large amounts of glass shards over the floor and seats and resulting in damage through water ingress. They also broke through the bulkhead partition between the saloon and the cab vestibule. In addition the vehicle was daubed with graffiti leaving it in a worse state than when it was acquired.
By 2008 the security of the site was improved and the project was re-started.
THE WORK UNDERTAKEN SINCE 2008:
Restoration of the vehicle is so advanced that it has already been opened to the public on several open days at the Electric Railway Museum during both 2016 and 2017.
- Replacement of all the bodyside windows, this involved obtaining both spare panes from a redundant vehicle and having old frames re-glazed with new double skin panes.
- Replacement of sections of the floor in both the cab and saloon areas.
- Returning the exterior, saloon and cab lighting to working order from a domestic supply.
- Manufacturing new covers for the internal equipment and electrical cupboards to replace those that have been long lost prior to preservation.
- Sourcing and re-fitting numerous missing components such as the headlight, marker lights, cab to cab handset, chrome upright poles, glass draft screens and door open/close push buttons.
- Repainting of cab and saloon areas.
- Repainting of the bogies and underfloor electrical equipment cases, including having new labels made.
- Reconstruction of the cab vestibule bulkhead which involved sourcing the correct shade of Formica.
SO WHAT REMAINS TO BE DONE?
In order to finish the project during 2017 we have to undertake:
The repaint of the vehicle is scheduled to take place during late July 2017, the project is going to be completed thanks to the generous support of
- Replacement of the shoe beams on the leading bogie which we have obtained and have waiting in store.
- Replacement of exterior handrails and steps, these have been prepared and held in store until needed.
- Refresh the interior signs and labels with period correct reproduction items.
- Provision of information display boards about the story of the vehicle from 210 to 457 and the science of three phase traction.
- Full exterior repaint into 1991 era Network SouthEast livery.
This project has been a real roller-coaster labour of love and we are so very, very close to completion.