Saturday, March 15, 2014

Budds on the coast

I have the pleasure of a rail bus ride on a crappy 30 year old bus which smells like it was parked at a tip overnight, so am thinking fondly of those days when one could jump on the Budd cars forming a South Coast Daylight Express service, maybe get a pie or at least Paul's ice cream bucket, and free chilled water.

Actually its just a chance to expose a few marginal shots of Budds in their glory days and long decline. Throughout this period, their ride characteristics were sublime. Perhaps V sets provided superior comfort, but they didn't have a lady in uniform selling ice creams.

First up, I think this shot dates from 1963. It shows a passenger service and a bridge in much more aesthetically pleasing condition than today's aspect.

Next up is a shot of an up passenger service on a dark day at Sutherland. It's from a grotty slide but the feeling of being close to Mordor is conveyed even though its just the Shire.

Time for a few late period snaps. Here's a Alco cross - 4461brings the down morning SCD into Kiama with its complement of depowered Budds trailing a power van and a Tulloch carriage, while   4474 is about to take its similarly-composed train north.

And here is pretty much where I lost interest in passenger trains on the coast... 42214 hauling the last loco-hauled SCD as it approaches Wollongong. 

And here is what the SCD turned into (figuratively) when it got to Sydney... A locoless service.

I can't leave this post at this point so it is time for one more. Regular readers of this blog may recall my incomplete series on trains passing through North Wollongong. So to finish, a Budd set in its heyday, looking marvellous and sounding better as it really warms up to the task of being an express passenger service.

Its amazing how the Railways managed to run these trains at top speed, 7 days a week until they fell apart, without the need to routinely close large lengths of railway line for weekend track maintenance. The modern trains must really pound the rails in a way the Budd cars never did. Just saying...

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Don't let the public touch the trains

Ok, here is the worst photo taken for a fair while but in my defence, I was laughing pretty hard.

It was taken at Marrickville just now and the reason for the laughter is in the next shot. Some wit has played with the word 'this'. Look closely... You may need to enlarge the photo.


Sunday, March 2, 2014

Rusty town - Enfield in the 60s

As diversification is the spice of life, I thought I would shift focus away from the Illawarra for a post or two, to return to the city.  Actually, I was at Enfield just yesterday and I came across L 282 in the grass.  It’s a little beauty, silently rusting away. 

At least when the oxidisation process is complete the remaining bits can be tossed into the adjacent skip.

The pathos of seeing a 4 wheeler in the dirt reminded me of when Enfield was equal parts wonderment and decay for this writer, when in his formative years.  So prior to diving into a few closer-up shots here’s a few sights from Wentworth Street Enfield in the Sixties.

Starting off on the bank at Enfield in 1963, it was still possible to see a row of stored 57s and 58s. On the adjacent row, 3376, 3094 and a 19 obscure the view. And yes, the photo has deteriorated but it was always really smokey in these parts.

The next two shots are from 1965, looking towards #3 roundhouse.  It is still a working steam loco depot at this time as evidenced by the 60 class in steam in the background.  Two tank engines feature in the foreground of these photographs – in the first it is 3039 and in the next its 3116. Antiquities lurk throughout these shots – a 19 and a 24 sit to the north of 3116 while the 30T in the foreground has towed a 16 class tender.


The next photograph is also from the middle of the decade.  In it 5345 and 3334 sit in front of a 30, a 26, a 36 and a 30T. 

The next photograph moves into the second half of the decade.  Coal is still king, although its delivered in 19th century thimbles which share a heritage to the L wagon mentioned at the top of this post. A plethora of standard goods class tenders sit ready for scrapping, to follow their locos.  Ominously, there are two orphan 38 class tenders around the turntable. Keen-eyed viewers will note two 35 class locos, apparently in working order in this shot.  I suspect they are 3526 on the left, and 3501 in the centre.  Around this time these two locos ran a couple of RTM tours.  The other candidates – 3531 and 3532 – were housed at Broadmeadow.  The splash of colour in this shot is that of 3830.

The next and final shot was taken in the late 1960s or even as late as the early 1970s.  There is no sign of steam; just the relics of the age of steam. Garratts are lined up for scrapping alongside standard goods locos and branchliners. Rust colours the afternoon. Not a bad place to stop this post...