your locomotive prior to steaming it. Check for loose fasteners and
damage which may have occurred while in storage or transit. When the
locomotive is not being operated for a period of time, rotate the drive wheels a
few turns every two weeks to prevent the pistons and rods from becoming
stuck. Inspect the water gauge glass for cracks and replace it if any are
found. The gauge glass fittings should be tightened finger tight otherwise
the glass may be broken. Never tighten a water gauge glass while the
boiler is under steam.
The safety valves
should be continuously inspected to assure that they are working properly.
Lift the valve stem with a pair of tweezers to assure it is not stuck
shut. If a safety valve blows at a very low pressure (ie. 1 kg/sq
cm), it may have become overheated and must be replaced. NEVER
ATTEMPT TO ADJUST OR REPAIR AN ASTER SAFETY VALVE. CONTACT YOUR DEALER FOR
A REPLACEMENT PART.
Insect the fuel
system to assure that all fuel lines and wicks are in good condition.
It is good policy to replace the wicks every year.
the locomotive, empty the boiler, the lubricator and the fuel tank (on alcohol
fired locomotives). Dispose of the residue in an environmentally safe
manner. Refill the lubricator with steam cylinder oil. Wipe the
surface of the locomotive clean using a soft oily cloth. Do not use
cleaning agents as they may damage the locomotive's finish. Remove
any dirt and debris from the wheels and valve gear and lubricate all bearings.
locomotive for loose fasteners and tighten as necessary. Be sure that all
dummy brake shoes are tight and do not rub against the wheels. It is a
good practice to use a thread locker, such as Loctite 222 or an equivalent, to
prevent small screws from continuously loosening. When using the
thread locker, tight the screw until it seats. After the thread locker
cures, there will be sufficient "break away" torque to retain the
screw under all normal operating conditions. Screws and bolts fitted with
lock washers should be tightened until the lock washer compresses.
O-rings on the safety valves and filler plugs and replace them if they are
damaged. Always leave the regulator, needle valves and filler plugs
slightly open or loose when storing the locomotive to prevent them from
sticking. Be care not to lose any removable parts. When
installing safety valves and filler plugs, which have O-ring seals, tighten by
finger until the O-ring just starts to distort. Over tightening may cause
the O-ring to seal improperly.
The boiler should
be hydrostatically tested as intervals not to exceed two years. Listed
below is the recommended procedure to follow.
1. Close the
regulator and blower valves.
the safety valves and fill the boiler completely full of water. Roll the
locomotive back and forth to remove all air bubbles. Add additional water until
l it begins to flow out of the safety valve bosses.
3. Install a
short bolt, fitted with an O-ring, in one of the safety valve bosses. Install
an industrial pressure gauge, with the proper thread or adapter, in the other
safety valve boss. This gauge should read up to 10 kg/sq cm. Ensure
that the the bolt and pressure gauge do not extend into the boiler and damage internal
4. Using the
feed water pump, or trackside pump, slowly pump water into the boiler until the
pressure gauge reads two times the boilers' normal working pressure. The
normal working pressure is given in the locomotive's specification list within
the assembly instructions booklet.
there may be a small leak around fittings, it may be necessary to continue
pumping water to maintain the required pressure. Maintain the test
pressure for ten minutes and then repeat it two additional times.
6. If there
are any leaks at a silver soldered joints and / or if the boiler ends
plates are distorted, replace the boiler as it is unsafe for further use and
could cause injury.
which do not have leaks in silver soldered joints and are not distorted can be
continued in service for two years after which the test and inspection must be
the date of testing, test results and witnesses present. Retain this
testing is completed, remove the industrial pressure gauge and the bolt
plug. Replace the safety valves after emptying the water from the boiler.
Maintenance can be
as interesting as operations. A well maintained locomotive will reward its
owner with many years of faithful service. Patience and care are essential
for successful maintenance. Patience and care are the most precious tools
of a skilled model engineer.