The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, the registered charity that is building Tornado, the first new mainline steam locomotive in Britain for 40 years at a cost of more than £1.7m, has announced that its 6ft 8in driving wheel sets have now been completed and delivered to the Darlington Locomotive Workshop for fitting.
The wheel sets, comprising the six 6ft 8in driving wheels, two plain and one crank axle and the roller bearings have been a major undertaking for the trust.
They cost more than £89,000 and involved nine suppliers over five years. The wheels were cast by William Cook.
The building of Tornado required the first new set of wheels to have been commissioned and completed since British Railways received its last steam locomotive in 1960.
David Elliott, the head of engineering at the trust, said: `The completion of the driving wheel sets is a big step forward for the trust and a giant leap for the heritage railway movement. In addition to keeping steam alive into the 21st Century by building new locomotives, we aim to apply the best modern and traditional engineering methods, processes and technology – seen at its best in Tornado’s wheel manufacture.’
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