I finished fitting the cladding and cleading today.
The first step was to cut the insulating material to size. As the boiler is broadly symmetrical I found it easiest to fold the material in half and then mark up the locations of the dome, safety valve and steam turret openings and cut these. I then folded the material around the boiler to half way and marked that. I removed the material and cut it to size with a scalpel on a cutting board leaving it oversize towards the smokebox and firebox.
The instructions say to wrap the barrel but, having discussed with Matt at Polly I have extended that to the firebox too.
The material is held in place using string. In this case, Mrs Petley, came to the rescue with some very handy mercerised 4-ply cotton from her crochet stash!
The next stage of the process is to fit the covering at the firebox end. This is very tricky! The wrapper has to fit down into the frames and also has to fit over the fitting at the top left hand corner of the firebox which will be the top of the gauge glass. After much fiddling, I got it on. If you are doing this I recommend filing down the bolts that hold the reverser to the frames and the bolts on the reverse frame itself.
I then trimmed the insulating material back with a scalpel.
And now for the most tricky part; fitting the boiler barrel cleading.
To do this you have to spring the cover over the barrel and then somehow pull it together at the same time as getting a band round it, at the same time as fitting a nut and bolt through the end of the band. Too may things, not enough hands!
You can see in this photo that I rigged up some string with a loop to tighten against and then tied off around the chimney.
This gave me the spare hands to get the middle boiler band on and the bolt tightened sufficiently.
Once one band is on it is more straightforward to get the other ones on. One at the smokebox end and one at the firebox end.
The bands are done up and then slid round so that the bolts are underneath. Before tightening up. I am going to ask Polly just how tight they need to be.
One final tip, I noticed that if the middle band is absolutely in the middle that the bolt would fowl the weighshaft so I have moved it back a little. Again I am going to ask Polly if that is OK.
She really is looking like a loco now. There is one more element to this kit; the handrails on the smokebox. Hopefully that will be less of a fiddle.