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SOLDER PLATED MERSEY 51
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the rat05


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 5:29 pm    Post subject: SOLDER PLATED MERSEY 51 Reply with quote

How many times in this hobby of ours have you wished you had said no when buying a steam engine?
This Mersey 51 on the face of it looked a bit rough but just how i like to buy them the worse condition the better, i think i have previously  said......i have had the engine a while but never really looked at it in a refurbishing sort of way so last week when it finally made it onto my operating table i saw the true horror of what awaited me....SOLDER...  in fact so much solder it was above the end caps.
So to work everything had to come apart, the ends caps and all the bushes were removed ..as the first end cap came off a river of solder followed it splashing over my shorts .. now with it all apart the boiler, end caps and bushes and the fittings were still covered in solder, this was painstakingly removed by heating up and wiping with wet and dry  many times to remove as much solder as possible from everything.    
Most of the solder was removed but now the hard work started rubbing down everything with wet and dry 280 grade for the stubborn solder... followed by 600 grade.. then a polish with tcut paste and a dremmil....total time from solder plated to no solder 7 hours.
It was now time to solder it all back together..for such a small engine i found soldering this engine back together one of the hardest i have done...First the end caps which need more heat so a bigger burner was used, first though the three bushes have to be placed inside the boiler as they are internally fitted...the boiler has to be placed upside down to carry this out otherwise the bushes will fall out! my plan of attack was to heat a boiler end and cap up really hot then apply the solder to the joint then immediately go to the open end and touch all three bushes with solder from the inside, you can only do this if you have built up enough heat from the end cap fitting, finally the other end cap can now be soldered into place making sure the boiler is upside down or the bushes will fall out as their solder will melt as you fit the end cap.. if you are quick all will stay in place with their solder intact..
The next pain for me was the piston post /engine frame, a simple affair with a complicated twist..steam pipe and exhaust pipe side by side at the top millimetres apart, this was a classic fill all the pipes with solder scenario  also the steam pipe has to be soldered into the bush on the boiler which if you remember is soldered into the boiler... so again you will have to solder it upside down or the bush will fall inside the boiler....now i do have a trick for soldering small pipes into piston blocks i use a plastic coated paper clip inserted through the pipes... wherever the paper clip is.. the solder will not adhere... the secret is to use a small burner and just enough heat to melt the solder then remove the heat as it runs, if you time it right you will have a perfect joint.. the same technique was used for the steam pipe to boiler ..small burner just enough heat to melt the solder then remove the heat as it runs and luckily the bush stayed in place.. remember all soldering requires both joints to be perfectly clean and always use flux.
The base of this engine looked like one my burgers from the barbecue and needed to be black and deckered ..two coats of light oak varnish were applied...the fire box was rubbed down to bare metal rust proofed then two coats of plastikote barbeque paint applied..it was cooked in the oven 70.c for 1 hour the 100.c for another hour...the piston post/engine frame was undercoated then two coats of black plastikote was applied.
With everything cleaned..polished and painted the engine was re assembled without any further aggravation... except for my deliberate mistake.    
very very annoying its all in the pictures below.
When i corrected my deliberate mistake the engine was hooked up to my compressor and run  on air... and it runs lovely
The burner for this engine is a reproduction as the original was sent separately and lost in the post
 Shooting POSTIE
Conclusion...What a faff... yes i did wish i had never started it ..yes i did call Mersey designers a few names, yes i did burn my inner leg with solder ..yes i did solder the steam pipe to the boiler forgetting to fit the boiler band... but i suppose at the end of the day these engines are obviously not designed to be pulled apart by some idiot with a big burner..  Do i love the engine now its done? just look at what it was and how it looks now.... of course i do ...Steve

MERSEY 51 AS PURCHASED


THE BASE LIKE A BURNT BURGER


THE FIRE RUST BOX


THE BOILER


THE BOILER


ALL THE BITS IN BITS


THE BASE AFTER BEING BLACK AND DECKERED


FIRE BOX AND HEAT PLATE BLACK AND DECKERED AS WELL


REMOVING THE END CAPS


END CAPS REMOVED


THE REMOVAL OF THE SOLDER BEGINS





GOING


NEARLY GONE


VERY NEARLY GONE


GONE


STEAM PIPE BUSH WITH SOLDER REMOVED


THE CHIMNEY BUSH BEGINS ITS SOLDER REMOVAL


HEAT IT UP


WHEN IT MELTS WIPE IT OFF


ALL THREE BUSHES WITH SOLDER REMOVED


THE BOILER WITH END CAPS AND BUSHES SOLDERED BACK ON


BOILER CLEANED UP AGAIN


BOILER POLISHED


THE STEAM PIPES BEING SOLDERED TO THE PISTON POST SHOWING PAPER CLIP IN PLACE


SUCCESS


THE BASE FINISHED WITH 2 COATS OF LIGHT OAK VARNISH


THE FIRE BOX RUST PROOFED





FIRE BOX WITH 2 COATS OF PLASTIKOTE BARBECUE PAINT


ALL THE BLING READY FOR FITTING


THE STEAM PIPE SOLDERED TO THE BOILER AND THE DELIBERATE MISTAKE


FIRST FITTING STILL WITH DELIBERATE MISTAKE

DELIBERATE MISTAKE FOUND AND CORRECTED


FINISHED


FINISHED


FINISHED


Steve
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kevin


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nice, sometimes you just have to be hard to be kind
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the rat05


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Kev i did not see a soft way of cleaning it up, solder is not easy to remove and as i prefer my engines to look new it just had to go one way or another.
I am pleased how it turned out....Steve
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MrDuck


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A very good job
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the rat05


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Petri a tough job this one it certainly made my hands ache..but well worth it in the end...Steve
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kevin


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

its what I would have done mate it was well beyond patina and into the abused area
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the rat05


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Kev i reckon the kid that had it all those years ago got a soldering iron and a bucket of solder for Christmas..i can hear his Father now .. its the future Son... Steve
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Rolling Boil


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lovely result! Nice job indeed.

Graham
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Spot99


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great job Mike! And an interesting account and pictures, you have done yourself proud, mate.
Just one job remaining - the restoration of Mrs Mike's oven glove?!!!

Cheers
Spot
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Spot99


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haha! Who is Mike?! I meant Steve obviously!! All that solder was making my eyes water!!!
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Celsius 100


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A first-class result and well worth the effort you put into it.
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The Denying Dutchman


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A great job indeed!  
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belugawhaleman


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 12:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well done
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Nick


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You always do nice work Steve

Keep posting your restorations with lots of pictures. We enjoy them!
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the rat05


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Graham, being so harsh in the removal of the solder i did fear i would do more harm than good...but i think i got away with it ...Steve
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