The restoration of 216 NQR, being run by our Tuesday volunteer team, is progressing well. The brand new underframe has been fully welded and, after cleaning up with a grinder, has received a coat of primer.

The new underframe has been designed to use steel sections to the current Australian Standards, and these differ from the sections which would have been available when the Victorian narrow gauge rolling stock was manufactured. As a result, the underframe differs slightly in how the parts fit together, and this has meant modifications to the design during the fabrication process.

At each end, the draft gear pocket castings and striker plate have been riveted in place and painted, ready to accept the coupler yokes and draft gear springs.

Above you can see modifications made to structure and holes match-drilled from the striker plate, ready for riveting, and below, riveting in progress.

Brake components are being prepared, painted and refitted including, above, the handbrake screw shaft, brackets and handwheel.

Below, Westinghouse combination brake unit, incorporating auxiliary reservoir, triple valve and brake cylinder in one unit. Slotted brake arms provide the lost motion necessary to combine the brake linkage for both air and hand brake,

The truss rods, when tensioned, resist the tendency for the underframe to ‘sag’ in the middle when loaded. Currently being made, these are steel bars with threaded ends, and a turnbuckle fitted between the 2 halves allows the tension to be adjusted.

As a goods NQR, the new underframe of 216 needs to be fitted with all the brackets to locate the stanchions for the drop down doors, lashing eyes, and chains for the locking pins, some of which have already been attached.