Dimboola station. This great photo was taken by my son Craig

Friday, 27 July 2012

Murtoa grain hoppers

Some grain hoppers stored at Murtoa, Victoria.


The two rows included some VHHF grain hoppers. These were built between 1982 and 1984, with  one hundred and fifteen being constructed. They are about 24"/60cm longer and were numbered from 801 to 915. The first three wagons were issued to service in July 1982 as 401, 412 and 414, but by August 1982 the wagons were renumbered to 801, 812 and 814. All wagons issued after this date were numbered from 800.

Shows increased length in body and walkways.
Some VHGF standard grain hoppers, Murtoa

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Wimmera Stations + Wolseley

On return, stopped at Dimboola, just in time to see a Pacific National steel train depart. (All trains stop at Dimboola for a change of crew). Down in a siding rested G528 and XR558 coupled to a rack of VHGF grain hoppers.
PN steel train departing Dimboola

G528 + XR558
Dimboola Station
Onto Nhill. A nice wooden station building, surrounded by Grain Corps silo complex. At the Adelaide end of the yard is another Noske Brothers mill and silo: the large bin, the largest in Southern Australia.

Nhill Station
Noske Bros mill complex
Missed Kanvia, then stopped at Lillimur silo siding. Almost at the Victorian/SA border. Checked out the old post office again. Unfortunately the old gas lamp that stood on the road curb is gone: a V/Line bus stop in its place. The door was open, so sneaked a look inside. The post counter and fitting still in place.
Lillimur siding
Post Office
Was not planning to stop at Serviceton, but decided to. Luck would have, had a guided tour of the inside. The refreshment room and kitchen still almost original, except the huge cast iron cooking range was removed when V/Line closed the station. It use to operate 24 hours a day. Upstairs is the quarters for the chef cook. Much  of the building was converted to crew quarters, though the caretaker guys are planning to remove the added partitions and try to return the building back to its former layout.
Unfortunately Serviceton Station is under serious threat from VicTrack, which just wants to demolish this historically important building. Remember, before Federation, this was the border. When a passenger arrived from Adelaide, their fare only took them to Serviceton. Here they disembarked, crossed the border, then purchased a ticket to Melbourne. All freight had to go through customs and duty had to be paid.
All engines changed here, with both railways having large loco depots here (now all gone), and this continued till through running was introduced by Australian National in the 1980's.
The reason for the building been under threat, as it needs underpinning on the none platform side. The west wall is slowly moving away from the building, which is pushing the platform up. No heritage funding from the Victorian Government this far away from Melbourne.

The SA end of the station
Pacific National General freight passing through Serviceton.
Just before leaving Serviceton, a Pacific National general freight past through. This is first time that I have seen RLPY vans for Sadlier. I was suggested to take the back road to Wolseley. Another piece of luck, as G&W were loading grain hoppers: a mix of AHGX and CGAY hoppers. Up front, a clean GWU006, GM33, and a dirty GWU005.

To Stawell and more stackers

The next day, headed to Stawell; the Grampains Model Railway Exhibition was on. A check of the Horsham yard before leaving, and CSR 005 and 003 had returned with their train. The containers were being quickly unloaded and separated between empty and loaded.

The front unit is a Hyster: side lift 4 high container handler  H12.00XM-12EC. WCL also have another newer side lift container handler. An Omega unit

Brand: Omega
Model: 7ECH
Type: Empty Container Handler
Year: 2002

Cabin Options: A/C, Joystick control
Engine/Transmission:  Cummins 6CT / Clark 32000 APC 100
Drive Axle / Tyres:  Planetary with wet discs / 12.00 x 20
Steering Axle / Tyres:  Single cylinder / 12.00 x 20
Lift Height:  16,400mm
Attachment:  20'/40' Side Lift Frame
Capacity:  8,500kg
Stack Capacity:  7 High @9'6"

Patient drawing for side lift container handling.
Onto Stawell. The exhibition.
Crosby Station - preserved and operated by the Sunbury MRC: originally built by Kevin Shultz
Grizzly Flats, by Laurie Green.
Production sample of Powerline's new VLEX.

The station.

Stawell Railway Station
Stawell now has just the main line and one, little used siding. The goods shed: see a previous post is a bit more worse for wear. Remember, all of these none used railway building are under threat of being demolished by VicTrack. The Victorian Governments railway restoration programme gets less and less the further way from Melbourne the building is. The station has an art gallery in part of it, and has been restored as an Overland stop.

Murtoa Railway Station. Disused, but still has its centenary of western line plaque on the wall. Behind, just seen, is a brick stand railway water tower. Murtoa still has its yard, serving the grain depot down the track. Also, many VHGF grain hoppers are stored here.

Wimmera Intermodal Rail terminal
Finally, at Doeen, the site of  WIRT; about 10km from Horsham. The switch is in place. Off in the distance are light towers, and a few office buildings, plus the loading sidings. Nearby is Viterra's grain handling depot; which is not rail connected.

Another reach stacker. An Omega model. To give a sense of size, the rear tyres are about 6 feet tall (1.8m)

Back to Horsham

With the new Wimmera Intermodal Rail Terminal nearly completed, (to be opened by a whole load of pollies on 8th August) it was time to return to Horsham, to photograph Wimmera Container Line operations before they move out of the station freight yard.

The Lok shunt tractor in action, preparing the Horsham to Melbourne intermodal train for WCL. When finished, SCT's CSR 003 and 005 picked up this part of the train, to connect with the rear end on road three, before departing at around 3pm. SCT now have the contract for this train, supplying both loco power and container flats.

The yard a bit quieter now the container wagons had departed.