New Build Progress Report No. 2007 Prince of Wales P2 Steam Locomotive

The P2 Project has released the latest update on the progress being made to build a P2 2-8-2 Class Mikado.

Sir Nigel Gresley designed P2s to haul 600 tonne trains on the arduous route from Edinburgh to Aberdeen and were the most powerful express passenger locomotives to operate in the UK.

Work is progressing well on the new build 2007 Prince of Wales P2, and this latest progress report provides an update on the production of the cylinder block.

Precision fabricator Howco in Irvine, Scotland has made good progress with initial machining of the cylinder block parts and has begun welding them together and assembly of the center cylinder assembly is progressing well.

Progress with the middle cylinder. Credit: Howco.

Meanwhile, William Cook Cast Products (WCCP) of Sheffield has completed the casting of the six steam port castings. Their seal faces are now skimmed so they can be hydraulically tested for leaks.

Although Howco hydraulically tests the entire cylinder block before delivery, it is prudent to test the castings separately, as some faces of the vapor ports will be inaccessible when welded.

WCCP will have performed extensive non-destructive testing (NDT) on castings, but previous experience with bronze castings, even with x-ray inspection, shows that it is not always possible to see tiny pinholes that could lead to leaks, hence the approach to the belt and suspenders.

The Newly Sunk Steam Ports - David Elliott
Newly molded vapor ports. Credit: David Elliott

Some detailed machining drawings for the valve ports and cylinders have been produced, the valve gear and cambox drawings continue to be checked, and a one-third scale model of a cam box has been completed. Hardware specifications for critical components, including cams and cam followers, are being refined.

The manufacturing drawings for the cam box and its internal components are largely complete, as are the elaborate designs for valve shaft lubrication and oil coolers for the cam boxes. A 1/3 scale 3D printed model of the cambox and its internal components was also produced.

Jose P. Rogers