At present our Fowler "Invincible" is under renovation. This engine was built in 1892 with an experimental boiler - first Fowler with flat top girder stay firebox. There are 52 tubes as compared with the standard 41, plus a host of oddball extras. The engine is being completely rebuilt, new firebox,
backhead, barrell, smokebox, chimney, tender, shafts & axles, rods etc. - in all 60% brand new. It is due for completion in August
2001 when it will then hold the accolade for being the oldest Fowler Traction Engine in steam in Europe. (It is known of an earlier one in Australia).
Here are a few photos of Invincible before & during renovation - hopefully it won't be too long before an after photo appears here.
Leaving Ireland - and it's first time back on British soil since 1892. As with all the engines we've owned personally there was a large pile of bits!
These photo's should give an indication as to the condition of the engine. Invincible seemed a very appropriate name for an engine that, despite it's condition, still carried an aura of importance and permanence.
Post primer - the engine after a lot of work is starting to look a bit healthier. However, as anyone whose been up on a footplate will tell you, the workings are all up top! Gearing, rods etc take a long time
Invincible has had to take a bit of a back seat lately with
all the boilerwork we've been doing but we're slowly getting there!