Old Groaner is a 1986 annual story.
James is grumbling to the other engines about getting old, but they take no notice. A few days later, an inspector comes to the shed and tells James' crew that people are complaining about a groaning noise that keeps them awake. The following night, James' crew listen to the noise carefully and it turns out to be James' groaning brake-blocks. After they are mended, James is glad to have a rest, but not when the other engines nickname him "Old Groaner".
- Sir Topham Hatt
- Edward (does not speak)
- Gordon (does not speak)
- Donald and Douglas (mentioned)
- BoCo (possible mention)
- Bear (possible mention)
- Henry's steam pipes are black.