A £100,000 appeal for the cylinder block for new-build ‘P2’ No. 2007 Prince of Wales has reached 50% of its target – in just one month.
Launched on September 30 at the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust’s AGM, The Cylinder Club – which aims to fund the Gresley ‘Mikado’s’ cylinder block - boasted 54 members by the end of October, each donating £1,000 (plus Gift Aid) to the project in up to eight payments of £125 by standing order.
The news comes as the A1SLT reports a record-breaking fundraising month, with over £117,000 donated or pledged towards ‘A1’ No. 60163 Tornado and Prince of Wales.
Mark Allatt, P2 Project Director and Trustee, commented: “We are delighted with the level of support that the project to build Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive has received since its launch.
“Thanks to our supporters’ continued generosity, over £2.7m has now been donated or pledged. Our team at Darlington Locomotive Works has been focused on creating and assembling the boiler cladding over the past few weeks.
“We have now turned our attention to the cylinder block which is our next major design and manufacturing challenge. If we can raise £100,000 through The Cylinder Club over the next few months we are confident that we will be able to place the order for the cylinder block for No. 2007 Prince of Wales by the end of 2017 and remain on-track for completion of the new locomotive in 2021. Achieving pledges of over 50% of our target within the first month means that we are well on the way towards achieving this.”
The work involved in designing the new cylinder block includes:
· Convert the original ‘P2’ monobloc into a welded fabrication including Finite Element Analysis (FEA) to check for structural integrity
· Improve the layout of the valves to reduce the clearance volume (which affects cylinder efficiency)
· Re-route the steam and exhaust passages to physically separate them to prevent incoming steam from heating the outgoing exhaust
· Increase the size and improve internal streamlining of steam passages along Chapelon lines to increase maximum power and improve economy
· Reduce the overall width of the cylinder block to provide Prince of Wales with the widest possible route availability on the main line.