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Old 1st September 2019, 06:59
aussiesteve's Avatar
aussiesteve aussiesteve is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Bathurst
Posts: 421
G'day BW,
Ah yes, the old wait until the wheels fall off and then ponder alternatives scenario seems to pervade most rail operations.
Once radio communication became more available here, passing trains would comment about the other train going past.
All OK, train complete "so and so".
And, yes all signallers were supposed to provide a train roll by inspection from their box if possible.
However, that started to dwindle when "foreigners" started belting around the network.
They now being the COMPETITION pinching work off you.
The Roll By became mandatory under capitalised private mobs during train crew relief.
But, that only affected that train and crew, not the opposition slinking past.
I was always of the opinion that any infrastructure that improved operational aspects was worthwhile.
The ETU providing info to assist with situations that might arise.
If the air goes, YES, you are aware of it on the footplate.
But, the BOG don't tell you if it is a burst hose or the train has divided.
The ETU distance counter will give an indication that the rear end is getting further away if the train has divided.
The old rule of thumb still kinda applying when going down hill and the air goes.
Depress the independent handle to release the loco brakes and power before the PCS cuts the throttle out.
If the train has divided, the rear half could run into you with a big THUMP if the front portion stopped too quickly.
I did come apart once after departing Blayney yard.
Down hill and passing through a 25 kph turnout onto the main line, so you just let the thing roll with one notch of power applied.
Then rip em open at the bottom of the dip for the climb to Murrobo.
The auto knuckle behind the locos had apparently not fully locked when we coupled up and I gave it a test pull to check it.
It was like a Saturn V blast off.
Them locos went hurtling down the track until I shut off power and slammed on the independent brake.
Daytime, so I could squiz the train leaving us behind in the rear vision mirror.
After me assistant closed the rear loco brake pipe tap, I drove back to snag the train.
Gave it a real good nudge and drag to make certain that the auto knuckle was fully locked shut.
Not supposed to hit anything over 5 kph when hooking on.
I disobeyed that rule for the second attempt.
When you loose the air and you is SOLO in the cab, that can awaken you quickly.
Thankfully, that ETU gives you a bit of an idea of just what has occurred.
Plus, it also came handy when locos shut down inside Rhyndaston tunnel.
Provided that you still had one percolating, you could set back clear of the south portal.
Let em cool down and attempt to restart em and have another go at climbing the 1 in 40 through the 800 metre long tunnel.
But, due to a farm level crossing barely 1 km south of the tunnel, trains were not to set back beyond the south portal.
But, in the dark tunnel interior in the swirling exhaust fumes during the night time, just HOW do you know when you is about to pop out of the south portal.
Well, the ETU radio karks it upon entering the tunnel.
And, as you are sliding backwards, when the lead loco is almost near the south portal, that radio link comes alive again.
Slam on the brakes to stop the train.
I did notice when perusing yer Gort 3056, that you lot have got some wagons with the German style brake system.
P personenzug and G gueterzug valve settings.
That is an interesting system.
Though, I didn't espy the real high speed version though, R reisezug.
Steve.
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