After a break enforced by the corona pandemic, members of the society resumed the restoration works on the societie's own SKL (also see our article "On The Way To Revitalisation") in May 2020. In doing so, the team obtained help by two new co-workers that are no members of the society yet. This certainly will help the restoration to pick up speed.
Subsequently to the funding assurance by the ministry of homeland, municipal, construction and equalisation affairs of North Rhine-Westphalia (also see our article "State-Funding For SKL") the works started in August 2019. Since then, the hours of volunteer labour already add up to roughly 500 hours and lead to the current state of affairs:
- The braking system (consisting of pressure valves, brake cylinders, brake disks and many more) has been removed according to the guidelines of the maintenance management of the Rhine-Sieg Railway (RSE) and the maintenance directives for non-federally owned railways. Filth and deep-seated rust from numerous years of operation have been removed laboriously. The parts are now newly painted. They nearly look brand-new and now just have to be checked for dimensional accuracy before the reassembly.
- A detailed inspection of the driver's cab revealed obvious damages, rusty spots and other deficiencies.
An economic refurbishing appeared more than questionable.
Coincidentally, the societie's longstanding cooperation partner, the Rhine-Sieg Railway (RSE), could help out with a repairable replacement driver's cab. This is currently being refurbished by a specialist company, whereby diverse parts of the old cab an be re-utilised.
- To be able to be put to use also on DB-lines, three technical upgrades to the SKL are required according to §28 railway construction- and work regulations: a dead-man's vigilance device (Sifa), a intermittent automatic train running control (PZB), as well as a train radiocommunication equipment (GSMR). Herefrom considerable technical plannings for the pending works arise as a result, like the fitting of additional devices as e.g. an engine speed sensor, signal magnets or control systems. The respective parts already have been delivered to some extent. Some terms of delivery are still unknown for already ordered articles, as the companies reduced their staff in times of Corona.
- The time consuming and sweat-inducing works on the body are going like clockwork. This is of course just an interim stage, as the anti-rust protection will be overcasted by the final paintwork (standard colour black).
Works on the SKL
- A modified time schedule was agreed with the district government Cologne, the responsible authority for the administrative aspects of the funding. By that, the funding of the restoration works in due consideration of the Corona impacts is still safe.
This interim result makes clear:
The project 'SKL restoration' has overcome the corona pandemic quite good so far.
But some 'dark clouds' are recognisably:
In the near future, the lifting platform of the Rhine-Sieg Railway (RSE) will be required for the pending works. But this is occupied by work for third parties due to the coronavirus until further notice. As only now orders delayed by the pandemic can be dealt with, similar circumstances exist for works that cannot be managed by the preservation society itself.
But weak-spiritedness would be out of place.
Followup (Nov 20th, 2020):
On Friday 13th, November 2020, Rainer Gries, Günter Röling and Gerhard Mansel fitted the refurbished driver's cab onto the chassis by way of trial. The purpose of this work step was to check if the new driver's cab and the old chassis fit together.
Result: They fit together perfectly.
It fits like a glove...
The next step will be that the driver's cab goes back to the bodyshop again where it will be brought to completion. It will get another prime coating and then will be coated with paint.
There is progress, even if it is slow...