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.

Friday 17 September 2021


There had not been much progress recently until the glass for the windows arrived.

Fitting the glass

The glass was ordered from Highland Joinery and Glazing of Dalcross who very generously waived the cost as the Strathspey Railway is a good customer.  6mm laminated glass was chosen for safety reasons.

As explained in an earlier post, the original rubber moulding that located the glass in the aluminium frame is no longer available, so a rectangular "U" channel moulding was used instead.  This was cut to size and mitred using a jig and then a bead of adhesive was applied to the channel and the moulding placed around the glass.

With the rubber moulding on all four sides, a further bead of adhesive was applied to the inside of the the aluminium frame.  The glass and its moulding was then carefully offered up the the frame and pressed firmly home.

After 24 hours curing, a further bead of sealant was applied to cover the small gap between the moulding and the frame and allowed to cure before finally cleaning up.

The adhesive/sealant used was Bostik ISR 70-03.  Application was made much easier by using an inexpensive pneumatic caulking gun fitted with a pressure regulator to control the flow rate.

A piece of glass with a length of moulding fitted

The finished windows all cleaned up

The sealant and pneumatic caulking gun

Chain Oiler

It appears that some later Runton 48DS locos were fitted with a chain oiler, for example the one at Rogart station (although we haven't inspected this yet to see how it was done).  It is important that the rollers on the chain are oiled to ensure they do not seize on the pin.  The maintenance manual states that the chain should be regularly brushed with light oil, but this involves getting under the loco.  In order to make operation of the loco more "foolproof" it has been decided to fit an automatic chain oiler.

Two ex-steam-loco drip-feed oil pots were found in the locoshed and refurbished (one for each chain).  Each will be fitted with a 12 Volt solenoid valve which will be connected via a pipe to a wire brush lubricator in contact with the chain.  The oil pots can be adjusted to get an appropriate drip rate, and the solenoid valve will ensure that oil will only get through to the brushes if the engine is running.

At the moment the oil pots are the only parts we have.  They will be mounted under the bonnet, one on each side of the engine.

The refurbished oil pots