While the main focus of the Strathspey Railway is running steam trains for the paying public, a small but dedicated group of volunteers has been restoring other items of heritage interest in spare moments between working on the loco fleet and improving locoshed infrastructure and facilities.

The current project is a Ruston Hornsby 48DS diesel shunter of 1948 which worked at Longmorn distillery until 1980 (even though Dr Beeching had closed the adjacent main line in 1967). Because it was presented to the Strathspey Railway repainted with advertisements for Queen Anne blended scotch whisky, it is known to most people as “Queen Anne”.

To find out more about our aims, follow this link or click the [About] button above.

This Blog was started over 5 years after the project began, so most of the initial blog entries are retrospective.

Sunday 25 October 2020

Latest Progress

 Painting - Topcoat Applied

The brown topcoat has now been applied over most of the loco and the buffer beams finished in red.  The colours are the same as those used on the Hornby model (see here).  For the record, the brown colour is NCS S-7020-Y30R and the red is RAL-3000 "Flame Red".  The roof has been painted gloss black.  As the following photographs show, she is looking very smart.


There are a few more details to complete and some more work inside the cab, but since the space in the Carriage Restoration Shed is now needed, Queen Anne has been moved out.  It is hoped the paintwork will be completed later in the year.  The artwork for the advertising vinyls is ready and these will be ordered once painting and lining is complete.


Some investigation was done to see if 3D Printing could be used to produce the rubber seals for the windows.  Unfortunately the 3D Printer available was an early (and now obsolete) model which failed, and most printer software does not readily support printing in flexible TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane).

So it has been decided to use commercially available rectangular U-channel rubbers and glue them to the aluminium frames.  This has been tested using a piece of 6mm plywood to determine the correct glass size.  The windows will eventually be glazed with 6mm toughened glass.

Glazing rubbers trial fitted using 6mm plywood

 The frames will be pre-painted with brown on the outside face and cream on the inside.  This will allow them to be glazed "on the bench" and bolted onto the locomotive once other painting is complete.

Other Videos

There is a short video clip on the P-Way blog (see "Associated Blogs") of Queen Anne on the move in the yard in her new brown livery taken on 17/10/2020.  Also, a video was uploaded to Youtube in 2010 of Queen Anne being craned out of the isolated section of track next to the old Speyside station :-

Strathspey Railways Queen Ann Geting Lifted (Part 2)

Friday 11 September 2020

Queen Anne Moves Again


 Queen Anne has now moved (under her own power) into the Carriage Shed for painting.  She is currently in primer.

Primer paint applied

First Moves

The last time Queen Anne moved under her own power was somewhere around 35 years ago.  The first test runs were carried out recently in the yard at Aviemore.

Only a few minor adjustments were required.  The brakes needed tightening up and the clutch spring for first gear needed adjustment.

A short video of the first moves has been produced :-

An initial load test was also carried out and a coach was pulled in and out of the carriage shed without any problems.

Tuesday 30 June 2020

A Few More Pictures

There obviously hasn't been any progress in the last few months, but here are a few pictures taken earlier in the year.

The one-piece bonnet doors were made by bonding the 2mm sheeting to a steel frame using industrial adhesive.
The glue is applied to the steel frame

The frame is clamped to the steel sheet
 The bonnet doors were fitted with gas struts to make them easy to open and close.

Trial fitting of gas strut and brackets

The doors are finally fitted
When the original folding louvre doors were replaced by one-piece doors prior to the locomotive being donated to the Strathspey Railway, a 2 inch gap was left front and back to provide ventilation for the engine as the louvres had gone.  To keep the new doors at the correct spacing at the bottom, special stops have been made with a powerful magnet in the end.  The magnets provide an additional closing force to prevent the doors opening of their own accord in the event of wind, vibration etc.  With the gas struts fitted, it only requires a force of a few kilograms to begin opening the doors.
The magnetic catch/stop
 More of the paintwork as been rubbed down and undercoated in preparation for the final top coats.
Undercoated cab and buffer beam

Wednesday 6 May 2020

Announcing New S&T Blog

There is now a Blog covering the activities of the S&T department at the Strathspey Railway.  Please take a look by following this link https://signallingstrathspey.blogspot.com/ or via the "Associated Blogs" on the right-hand side of this page.

Sunday 19 January 2020

Bonnet Door Progress

Door Fabrication

As stated in a previous post, it has been decided to initially restore the locomotive to the state in which it was delivered to the Strathspey Railway with flat bonnet side doors and "Queen Anne" whisky advertisements.  This means that the original bi-fold doors (which are more difficult to fabricate) can be made and fitted later, and also means the loco looks the same as the recently-released Hornby 00-gauge model.

The side sheets have been cut from 1.5mm steel sheet and the top edge folded over at 90 degrees.  Sections of 6mm steel strap have also been cut and bent and these will be welded together to form a rigid frame under the steel sheet.  Some lengths of continuous steel hinge have been obtained and cut to length and drilled to fit the locomotive.  The remains of the old hinges which were part of the bonnet and rusty and distorted have been cut off  leaving a straight edge to the bonnet.
LH Door sheet temporarily clamped

RH Door sheet temporarily clamped
The hinges have been bolted to the bodywork and the side sheets trial fitted using clamps.  The appropriate dimensions for the doors have been obtained by referring  to a number of old photographs of Queen Anne, as we no longer have the old doors to refer to.

Detail of the continuous hinge
The original "Queen Anne" doors were propped open using hinged rods bolted the the running board.   This would have been slightly awkward to use, not to mention the risk of the bonnet door falling on one's head.  For the new doors a gas strut will be employed on each side.  Using a gas strut means that the doors will slowly self-open once pulled beyond a certain point and slowly self-close after being pushed back.  The force required to open and close the doors is only a few kilogrammes - much less than the weight of the doors.  Fortunately there is a website with a very good online calculator that allows you to design your own gas strut system.

The original Ruston bi-fold doors were much lighter, as there were 2 doors on each side.  The design was quite clever - when opened the rolled bottom edge of the door could be hooked behind the edge of a channel running down the middle of the bonnet to retain the door in the open position.
A bi-fold door in the open position


The wheels have now been needle-gunned / wire brushed to remove the old paint and primed.  This was the only part of the locomotive that had not been cleaned up.
Newly primed wheels