Nigel Day spent many years working on the Snowdon Mountain Railway (SMR), where (at the time) motive power staff had responsibility for all aspects of operating and maintaining their locomotives. He first started to modify one of the line's 0-4-2 rack tanks, No.7 Ralph, in 1986. This being successful all the SMR's operational steam locomotives were fitted with improved exhausts (Lempors) and other modifications in accordance with his designs.
He subsequently carried out important work on oil firing systems, SMR locomotive No. 4 "Snowdon" being fitted with his own design of oil burner for burning gas oil. Whereas previous attempts to oil-fire SMR locomotives had failed, No. 4 became an excellent performer giving fuel savings of 25-30% compared to the coal fired engines.
In parallel with his work on the SMR, Day went into business with Shaun McMahon forming 'Day-McMahon Steam Technical Services'. This partnership was responsible for the first stages of development on the SMR oil firing system. In addition the partnership specialised in redraughting locomotives beginning with the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway (WLLR) in Wales which has now fitted all its locomotives with Lempor exhausts which are hidden within the outline of the original chimney. Typically the WLLR locomotives achieved a reduction in coal consumption of 10% with a 16% increase in power with no change to their external appearance.
When McMahon departed for South Africa in 1994, Day formed 'Modern Steam Technical Railway Services' through which he has undertaken redraughting work on railways across the world including: the Ffestiniog Railway in Wales; the Isle of Man Steam Railway; and the Puffing Billy Railway in Victoria, Australia.
In addition to redraughting, Modern Steam Technical Railway Services offers advice on modern boiler water treatment regimes.
Day is an accomplished craftsman, especially in brasswork and in the production of brass whistles. These have been fitted to locomotives on SMR, to BR 4-6-2 71000 Duke of Gloucester, locomotives of the Llanberis Lake Railway and 15 gauge locomotive Northern Rock II. This locomotive was build to order by the Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway for export to Japan. All his whistles are fabricated rather than cast.
In 2011, Nigel began working on the West Coast Wilderness Railway in Tasmania (Australia) where he has installed Lempor and Lemprex exhausts on their three locomotives - see photos below:
WCWR Nos 5 and 1 after prototype Lempor exhaust had been fitted to No 5.
[Photo courtesy of Nigel Day]
Lemprex exhaust components being fitted to WCWR No 3.
L-R: Exhaust pipes combined into a Kordina; Lemprex Nozzles; Nigel Day standing beside diffuser; Installation in locomotive's smokebox
[Photos courtesy of Nigel Day]
For further information on Nigel's work at the West Coast Wilderness Railway, see Martyn Bane's website.
In relation to the 5AT Project, Nigel has given valuable assistance to David Wardale in the preparation of the Fundamental Design Calculation No 11.2 covering the oil-fired combustion system.
For more information on his services click here for his information sheet. He can be contacted by e-mail at Nigelsteamday@aol.com. See also http://www.martynbane.co.uk/modernsteam/nday/nigeldayhome.htm.