Monday, December 6, 2010

Internal rearrangements

Back to the carriage itself. This time I thought I’d review what I’ve been up to on the inside.

I took the above pic on the very first day that I saw 1072 and, as you can see, the original layout of these carriages was nine compartments separated by full width bench seats and the whole length of the carriage was open above the seats. There was a door on either side of each compartment and you can see that two of the doors on the right hand side were not attached when I got her but luckily they were inside lying on the floor. You can also see that the toplights had been panelled over by QR so a big part of the restoration so far has been making the frames and glazing them (all 46 of them!) to bring her back to something like her original condition.

I didn’t need 18 working doors and so 14 have been screwed shut. This in itself has been a problem in that all the doors have drooped a little over time. For the now-permanently shut doors, this was simply a matter of jacking the door back up until square and screwing into position. But the working doors took a little more attention. A mate of mine who’s handy with a welder took some T-section steel and formed up braces like this one. The doors were then jacked up into square and the braces attached using some hefty screws. They’ve been in for over 2 years now and look to be holding well. These will all be covered over with interior lining, hidden away but keeping the doors square and true.

The T-section steel came from the backs of the seats. I didn’t need 18 seats and I certainly didn’t need them going the full width of the carriage so most of them were removed completely. I have retained one at each end and two have been shortened to form a dining area with an aisle down one side.

Which brings us to the last pic in this post. Taken earlier this year looking in the opposite direction to the first pic on this blog, you can see a lot has happened! Most of the seats have gone, walls going in for the bathroom and main bedroom, walls being lined ready for the kitchen and, most impressively, the original floor professionally sanded and polished. That floor has come up beautifully – 80-year-old Hoop Pine with a deep honey colour and a frame of some reddish hardwood that I can’t identify. You can also see the new toplights as well as most of the drop-lights that have been reinstated. When we go her, around half of the windows had been smashed so they have all had to be reglazed – mostly with thick glass recycled from a skip at Macquarie University!