13th December 2010
On Monday 13th of December, HVTR's new "Perth office" opened at 8 Old Perth Road Bassendean with the relocation from Perth Railway Station having been undertaken in stages over the preceding week by several very hard working, sleep deprived members. The new location is immediately across the road from Bassendean Railway Station, which has turned out to be very convenient for customers that have visited our old location.
The photos show the office frontage with Office Manager Mary Phatouros and our computer systems expert Justin Von-Perger of V Biz.Net, who are by fortunate co-incidence, conveniently located in the nearby arcade. Justin has assisted HVTR for over 20 years with its computer needs and systems including our ticketing system program which Justin developed.
The new office is smaller than previous city offices and is located in an area of lower rental rates which will save on costs significantly.
10th November 2010
This time last year, a week after the last Steam Ranger train, a grader damaged the HVTR line at Marrinup.
Well, hard as it may be to believe, it has occurred again, this time at the 3.8km occupational crossing just east of Alumina Junction. This time it was our own contractors working on our fire breaks and access tracks. We are unsure yet whether this is some new trend developing or just two 1 in 30 year events occurring back to back!
7th November 2010
The afternoon of Sunday 7th November was spent commencing the removal of flue tubes from the boiler of W945 once the special train workings to Dwellingup had been completed. The work progressed well with 6 tubes removed in roundly 3 hours.
This year, HVTR has chosen to stable at Dwellingup rather than Pinjarra, much of its fleet used on the Pinjarra -Dwellingup line. This will enable occasional services to be operated on the Alumina Junction to Dwellingup section over summer or beyond, without need for access to the WestNet Rail main line.
At 0900 Sunday 7th November, a transfer train was operated from Pinjarra to Dwellingup. Enroute, two Rail Tank Cars were shunted from the consists and left at Isandra Siding.
The photo above left shows the train approaching Scarp Road level crossing. The photo on the right shows the two locos as they head the train into the escarpment forest immediately after crossing Scarp Rd
With the RTC's stowed at Isandra, F40 and Xa 1401 double headed the 6 car empty coaching stock to Dwellingup. The adjacent photo was taken as the train passed the 11km peg which can be seen alongside the train.
The 'different' train working and DE loco Xa 1401 having an outing certainly created some interest and brought out the keen train photographers which was rewarding for the HVTR persons involved.
6th November 2010
On Saturday morning 6th November, two Rail Tank Cars which had been stowed at the old HVTR steam depot on the west side of Pinjarra yard, were shunted across to the HVTR Pinjarra East Yard workshop for brake adjustments and inclusion into the following day's train consist for transfer to Isandra Siding. These RTC's will be stowed at Isandra full of treated water (22,000lt each) as a strategic reserve of fire fighting water, accessible to local brigades.
31st October 2010
On Sunday 31st October, the final Steam Ranger service for the 2010 season ran to Dwellingup as a 6 car train with steam loco W920 assisted by diesel loco F40. On arrival at Dwellingup, W920 was stabled at Dwellingup for summer and the return service was worked by F40 alone.
The photo right shows F40 departing Dwellingup with the returning Steam Ranger train on the afternoon of Sunday 31 October 2010.
26th September 2010
On Sunday 26th September, DE loco F40 assisted steam loco W920 double heading a 6 car Steam Ranger service from Pinjarra to Dwellingup and return.
25th September 2010
As part of planning for future Diesel Services on the HVTR line to Dwellingup, Xa 1401 required a re-commissioning trial and F40 required turning and a basic trial & load test following its return to service with HVTR. These were all undertaken on Saturday 25th September between Pinjarra and Isandra, plus a little further on to the 12.5km point. At Isandra, the two locos were placed one at each end of the train enabling each to take a turn under heavy load between Isandra and the 12.5km point. Both locomotives performed faultlessly and returned with the 3 coach train to Pinjarra..
19th September 2010
The Steam Ranger service for Sunday 19 September had a special group booking for staff of Linney's Jewelers. These guests disembarked at Vezey Rd level crossing, adjacent to Mr Linney's farm, renamed "Geesebrook Siding" for the occasion. The name board can just be seen in the background.
Once the group had disembarked, the rear 3 coaches were stabled 900m further on at Isandra siding, enabling the single Loco to continue with the forward 3 coaches to Dwellingup. The returning service later in the day collected the stabled cars for return to Pinjarra.
30th August 2010
Monday morning 30th August saw the return of ex MRWA, ex WAGR, ex Westrail, ex A Ashcroft HVTR & Boyanup Museum, ex SSRS, ex new MRCo, ex Coote Ind, ex Gemco - 'EE' DE locomotive F40, return to HVTR towed from Midland by SSRS and CI loco RA212.
F40 was purchased from Gemco Rail on 25/8/2010 by V1213 Pty Ltd, following many months of dialogue, ending the possibility of F40 leaving the state or country as had been likely for some time. F40 will spend its foreseeable future with HVTR.
28th August 2010
On Saturday 28th August, DE loco C1702 was run from Pinjarra to Dwellingup. Although HVTR has operated the C class locos with trains on the Dwellingup Line previously, given their 16 tonne nominal axle load, the class never operated on the line in their commercial working life with the WAGR. Some time ago, prior to the bushfires, HVTR's consultant Civil Engineer carried out some investigative and calculation work on the dynamic loadings and practicalities of operating the C's over the line in its pre-fire condition. Part of the process was to operate a 'C' over the line to monitor for any adverse impacts and to check swing clearances, side bearer clearances, axle travel responses, braking tests etc. The trial carried out proved the C class locos and Dwellingup Line as being suitable for each other in moderation. This being the case, C1702 was stabled at Dwellingup as relief loco for the Steam Ranger services.
24th May 2010
On Monday 24th May, weed spraying was carried out from Alumina Junction to Dwellingup and Dwellingup to Etmilyn by Eradapest of Bunbury who also spray much of the WestNet Rail system. The Eradapest hirail spray unit pictured below is seen nearing the 6km peg heading towards Alumina Junction in mid afternoon.
9th May 2010
The Sunday 9th May Pinjarra Steam Ranger was first train to use the newly installed Del Park Rd level crossing at Dwellingup.
Although fully installed as automatic equipment, these crossing lights are currently manually operated whilst we await connection of Mains Power for the battery chargers.
8th May 2010
On the afternoon of Saturday 8th May, the level crossing lights electrical control equipment was installed including termination of the various cabling to the batteries, lights, bells and track circuits. The battery cabinet and chargers had been installed earlier.
5th May 2010
The electrical control equipment for the Del Park Rd level crossing lights at Dwellingup was built in the HVTR workshop at Pinjarra. The photograph at left shows the equipment under construction. The photo to the right shows the equipment mounted in the Location Case and all functions being tested prior to transport to Dwellingup for installation.
2nd May 2010
On Sunday 2nd May 2010, the first Steam Ranger service for the 2010 season departed Pinjarra at 10:30am.
The day went very well with the train being enthusiastically fare-welled by HVTR Patron, the Hon Alannah MacTiernan, Member for Armadale. Prior to departure, HVTR President Vince Baker presented Alannah with a copy of Roger Sallis's book "The Pinjarra-Narrogin Railway A History of Western Australia's Hotham Valley Line."
The first Steam Ranger for the 2010 season, pictured at approximately 12.600km, commences to climb the heavily graded section of the Dwellingup line. (12km to 19km)
Although out of the Restricted Burning Period, the local vegetation was quite dry despite significant falls of rain in preceding weeks. The running of a fire patrol 'hirail' vehicle following the train proved its worth when a small fire required extinguishing at approximately the 13.5km point.
18th April 2010
Sunday 18th April was a busy day involving a variety of train movements on the Alumina Junction - Dwellingup section. By the end of the day, rollingstock located at Isandra needed to be relocated at Alumina Junction, DM loco V4 needed to be in Dwellingup and DM loco SEC 1 needed to be in Pinjarra for heavy maintenance.
The day began with an early start preparing DM loco SEC 1 at Dwellingup for its light engine transfer to Isandra where it would assist with the rollingstock re-locations during the day.
SEC 1 is seen here crossing the 16km bridge en route to Isandra.
The first rollingstock move involved 4 QU flat cars loaded with a variety of equipment including freight bogies, passenger coach chassis, a steam crane and the frames of steam loco G71 "Menzies"
Following the assembly and inspection of the consist, the train set off for its slow, 5kph, journey over the 8km from Isandra to Alumina Junction. The train was deliberately marshaled between two locomotives, V4 and SEC 1, to ensure full and safe control of the train which had limited braking.
Following lunch, V4 and SEC 1 returned to Isandra from Alumina Jcn to collect the remaining rollingstock.
The two locos are seen here about to cross Napier Road.
The remaining rollingstock for transfer to Alumina Junction consisted of 7 aluminum fuel tank cars, owned by BP Australia and being stored for them by HVTR.
Once the locomotives were attached, the train was inspected and prepared for its 5kph journey over the 8km to Alumina Junction. These vehicles had not run for some 11 years and had been in the 2007 bushfires but despite this, the train brake was satisfactorily established following several hose repairs and the cutting out of only 3 brake cylinders.
Once again, the train was marshaled with a locomotive at each end to ensure full and safe control of the train.
With the rollingstock transfers and shunting at Alumina Junction completed, loco SEC 1 set off for its short Main Line journey to the HVTR Pinjarra depot.
The last movement for the day was the completion of loco V4's return to Dwellingup. Incorporated with this was the transfer of one QU bogie flat car from Isandra to Dwellingup, which was propelled at reduced speed.
The day drew to a close with all objectives safely and enjoyably met.
With the stowed rollingstock removed, the next stage of developing Isandra as a 'Stopping Place' will commence.
17th April 2010
On Saturday afternoon, 17th April, DM Loco V4 commenced its return journey to Dwellingup following several years undergoing a variety of mechanical repairs at Pinjarra Depot.
Here, V4 is seen stopped on the WestNet Rail Calcine Branch line to Alcoa awaiting the Switch Locked Points to be changed for entry onto the HVTR Dwellingup Branch at Alumina Junction.
Once on the HVTR line, V4 was operated to Isandra where it was stabled for use the following day re-locating rollingstock from Isandra to the new HVTR dead end storage siding at Alumina Junction.
28th March 2010
The final stage in repairing of the line at Grey Rd level crossing which was severely damaged by a grader on 11th November 2009, was carried out on Sunday 28th March by a team of HVTR volunteers. The damaged section of rail had previously been removed and preliminary civil works carried out, enabling a single concentrated effort on sleepers that required replacing and the insertion of the new 10.5m piece of rail which had been pre-cut, fishplate holes made and delivered to the site earlier also.
Half of the crossing at a time was worked on so that the crossing could be kept open for traffic throughout the day except for 20 minutes or so when the rail was being placed and secured. Once the rail was fully secured, the new sleepers were tamped using the tamping machine which can be seen in the background having been brought up from Isandra Siding the previous day.
As the day drew to an end, Grey Rd crossing was once again open for rail traffic thanks to the big satisfying effort by all involved.
7th March 2010
The Del Park Rd Crossing Lights project advanced a little further on Sunday 7th March with the installation of all the signal and control cabling.
3rd March 2010
Work continued at Alumina Junction Wednesday 3rd March with Colin and Philip attaching the levers and other apparatus to the previously installed frames. Once fully installed, these mechanisms will provide points changing, directional indication, unlocking & re-locking by Facing Point Locks, controlled from the lever.
27th February 2010
On Saturday 27th February, the two masts with their bells were installed at the Del Park Rd level crossing. The 'extra' base mount seen in the foreground of the right hand photo below will carry an indicator signal necessary due to the short approach track circuit available at close proximity to Dwellingup Station..
21st February 2010
On Saturday 21st February, base frames for points levers & locks were installed on the two HVTR main line turnouts at Alumina Junction.
The work involved attaching tie bar extensions to the blade chairs, planting of adjustable support 'feet' for the frames, drilling & screwing down of base plates and the support angle to the three long point timbers provided for the purpose.
The above photos show the drilling, screwing & 'landscaping' etc being done by Andrew & Darrell toward the end of a very hot hard days work as some late afternoon shadows provide some welcome relief.
The photos below show the installed frames ready for attachment of the levers and locking equipment etc.
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