Toolamba - Echuca line reopening

 
  Daryl Junior Train Controller

Location: Carrum Downs
Many years ago there was a lobby group campaigning for the Tocumwal to Mangalore line to be SG. That was in the days when the Tocumwal - Narranderra line was open and it would be cheaper to rail freight from Jerilderie to Melbourne/Geelong ports rather than Sydney.

Another example, when the Mt Gambier line was reguaged from NG to BG, the iron sleepers had dog spike holes for SG rails to be eventually laid as there was discussion during the '40s to standardize most of the country but didn't happen.

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  emmastreet Train Controller

Location: Goulburn Valley
Gang working today installing sleepers at Toolamba. They appear to have started at Rutherford Rd which is where they got to on the previous attempt to get to Echuca.
From what I can see new sleepers have been laid out to Craven Rd, Tatura. Packs of second hand sleepers after that.
  RustyRick Chief Commissioner

Location: South West Vic
Getting serious. A mix of old redgum, new redgum and another type of hardwood sleeper being strung out in Tatura. It looks like condemned sleepers have been marked with white paint.

Rick
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

Given the extended shutdown of the Bendigo Line due to RRL over the next school holiday break (June 28-July 14), could it be that they're trying to get this done before then so that the Deniliquin rice train can get access?

http://www.vline.com.au/home/news/bendigoservicechanges/850195964/article.aspx
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p
I find it somewhat ironic that the grain siding at Kensington has been fully relaid with brand new concrete sleepers (except the points), yet they're using second hand sleepers on the Toolamba - Echuca line.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
I find it somewhat ironic that the grain siding at Kensington has been fully relaid with brand new concrete sleepers (except the points), yet they're using second hand sleepers on the Toolamba - Echuca line.
VRfan

Easy answer. Victoria
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p
I think the lack of decent ballast on the Toolamba-Echuca line would contribute to the decision to use timber rather than low profile concrete, but I'm surprised they're putting second hand sleepers in.

Does anyone know what the total number of sleepers is? I also notice they're using hirail excavators with various attachments on them. I wonder how they compare to dedicated track machines.
  Galron Chief Commissioner

Location: Werribee, Vic
I think the lack of decent ballast on the Toolamba-Echuca line would contribute to the decision to use timber rather than low profile concrete, but I'm surprised they're putting second hand sleepers in.

Does anyone know what the total number of sleepers is? I also notice they're using hirail excavators with various attachments on them. I wonder how they compare to dedicated track machines.
VRfan
was good enough for artc on the main north south for victoria, why wouldn't it be for a victorian branch line. consensus i think is a proper machine will do the job better, but costs, and given they are not doing a full replacement by the sounds of it, may have played a part.
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

Would reckon the traffic ex Deni is not time sensitive, only two trains a day max, so guess they would be doing track up to Class - 4 standard allowing 65kmh for freight .    So good quality reclaimed mainline wooden sleepers with 10 years life left in them would be good enough at that level of traffic .
  woodford Chief Commissioner

From my experience the second hand sleepers are in first class condition, when they removed all the sleepers on the NE line reguage only the very best were selected and packed in packs for reuse, a lot of these going to the Oaklands line. You can also see some on the Dock platform at Albury.

On the machines, it probably depends on who got the contract. When they regauged the Oaklands line they used a very small sleeper extraction machine. The drivers though of the excavtors are no fools and I have found, inspite of what some people have said they do a first class job, taking great pride in there work. Multiple excavators have a major advantage over a dedicated machine, that is a single breakdown will not seriously hold up the show.

Incedently they other day i noticed a hi-rail excavator working just outside Echuca on the Toolamba line.

woodford
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Would reckon the traffic ex Deni is not time sensitive, only two trains a day max, so guess they would be doing track up to Class - 4 standard allowing 65kmh for freight .    So good quality reclaimed mainline wooden sleepers with 10 years life left in them would be good enough at that level of traffic .
kuldalai

Why the need for this line.  Strange question I know but could two trains per day be accomodated on the Bendigo to Echuca line?
  woodford Chief Commissioner

Why the need for this line.  Strange question I know but could two trains per day be accomodated on the Bendigo to Echuca line?
bevans

This I believe has been asked before. As far as I remember the Bendigo time table does not allow enough time between the VLocity pass's for a slow freight during the day and they appear to have deemed it easier to send them around via Toolamba and the line is there. The line of course from Seymour to Jacana being double track with spare capacity.

woodford
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Thanks for the response woodford.  Now makes sense to be.

Regards
Brian
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

Thanks for the response woodford.  Now makes sense to be.

Regards
Brian
bevans
The reason the route via Toolamba is being re-opened is two fold;  1.  It will allow for the Deni traffic to be railed in containers of greater height which will not fit through the tunnels on the Bendigo - Kyneton section,  2. It relieves pressure on the Echuca - Bendigo - Kyneton route allowing increased frequency of passenger services on the existing infrastructure to Bendigo & between Bendigo and Echuca (where VLP plan to run 3 Weekday trips each way.)
  Calgully Deputy Commissioner

Location:
.... between Bendigo and Echuca (where VLP plan to run 3 Weekday trips each way.)
kuldalai

Is that for real?
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

Is that for real?
Calgully
I have no idea but would seem to be commonsense, especially after 100-115 km/h running is introduced and the Epsom station is built.
  Spion_Kop Station Master

Given the extended shutdown of the Bendigo Line due to RRL over the next school holiday break (June 28-July 14), could it be that they're trying to get this done before then so that the Deniliquin rice train can get access?

http://www.vline.com.au/home/news/bendigoservicechanges/850195964/article.aspx
Carnot
The Deni rice train is going to Tocumwal during the shutdown.
  Spion_Kop Station Master

The reason the route via Toolamba is being re-opened is two fold;  1.  It will allow for the Deni traffic to be railed in containers of greater height which will not fit through the tunnels on the Bendigo - Kyneton section,  2. It relieves pressure on the Echuca - Bendigo - Kyneton route allowing increased frequency of passenger services on the existing infrastructure to Bendigo & between Bendigo and Echuca (where VLP plan to run 3 Weekday trips each way.)
kuldalai
I am led to believe that Sunrice has paid several million dollars to upgrade the track. They have gone in partnership with V/Line so they can get the freight off the satuated Bendigo line. Also the rulling grade loads are high on the Seymour line so they can take heaver loads and it is also shorter (via Essendon) (longer via Albion). Any Grain train that runs through Bendigo runs when there are no Pass trains around so they will stay on it.
  emmastreet Train Controller

Location: Goulburn Valley
Sleeper gang have reached Kyvalley.
Small ballast stockpiles at Toolamba and Tatura x2.

Just as an aside quite a few sleepers have recently been replaced at the Murchison East grain sidings.
Many if not all replacements are concrete.
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p
Is it the grain sidings or just the loop?

On another matter, if a company wanted to ship a product by road using b-doubles from their factory to a port, but not all the roads along the route were up to the required standard, would they need to pay the relevant authorities to upgrade the substandard parts of the route?
  Rodo Chief Commissioner

Location: Southern Riverina
Why the need for this line.  Strange question I know but could two trains per day be accomodated on the Bendigo to Echuca line?
bevans
There is also a possibility of container traffic out of Kyabram and an even vaguer one of Tongala traffic.

The possibility of passenger traffic on this line has also been canvassed for many years. A 65 kph freight speed could lead to an 80 kph railmotor speed, this may work out faster than present bus schedules.
  Flygon Train Controller

Location: Australia
There is also a possibility of container traffic out of Kyabram and an even vaguer one of Tongala traffic.

The possibility of passenger traffic on this line has also been canvassed for many years. A 65 kph freight speed could lead to an 80 kph railmotor speed, this may work out faster than present bus schedules.
Rodo
Given how out of the way some of the towns are to the highways (compared to the railway line going through the middle of town), I'd say the railmotor would definitely win out here.

Though, I can't speak entirely from experience. Most of my coach taking through the area is confined to Echuca-Tongala trips.
  Calgully Deputy Commissioner

Location:
The possibility of passenger traffic on this line has also been canvassed for many years. A 65 kph freight speed could lead to an 80 kph railmotor speed, this may work out faster than present bus schedules.
Rodo

One could barely imagine the ire of the rice men of Deni if, having paid for the Toolamba line to be upgraded to free their rice trains from constraints improsed by Bendigo passenger trains, their rice trains are constrained by passenger trains at metropoli like Byrneside and Kyvalley.
  Rodo Chief Commissioner

Location: Southern Riverina
A crossing loop about Kyabram or Tongala should take care of conflicting movements. I would doubt if those railmotor stops would be re-instated but you never know the district's population is increasing all the time.
  MelbourneCity Chief Commissioner

The reason the route via Toolamba is being re-opened is two fold;  1.  It will allow for the Deni traffic to be railed in containers of greater height which will not fit through the tunnels on the Bendigo - Kyneton section,  2. It relieves pressure on the Echuca - Bendigo - Kyneton route allowing increased frequency of passenger services on the existing infrastructure to Bendigo & between Bendigo and Echuca (where VLP plan to run 3 Weekday trips each way.)
"kuldalai"


It's my understanding that PTV have committed to four services a day to call at Epsom from the station's opening next year.

I understand the services to stop will be the existing Echuca services, plus two additional trains.

PTV have not said whether the initial services will go through to Echuca, or whether they will be extensions of Bendigo services.

Hopefully through services, and would it be safe to assume so, given Epsom is unlikely to have a crossing loop for terminating services?

I wouldn't be surprised if Epsom opens mid 2014 with the committed 4 trains per day & the promise of extra after the November election.

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