Penrice stone train

 
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
I looked for the Stonie on my trip to SA last week but didn't see it (probably the wrong day).  I have to say the state of the tracks through the Barossa is pretty poor - I actually thought I was looking at a closed line at first until I realised on closer inspection that it was actually in use.

Incidentally you can actually see the Stonie on Google Maps near the intersection of Light's Pass and Penrice Roads.

Is it the only broad gauge freight traffic left in SA or are there others?

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  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

I looked for the Stonie on my trip to SA last week but didn't see it (probably the wrong day). I have to say the state of the tracks through the Barossa is pretty poor - I actually thought I was looking at a closed line at first until I realised on closer inspection that it was actually in use.

Incidentally you can actually see the Stonie on Google Maps near the intersection of Light's Pass and Penrice Roads.

Is it the only broad gauge freight traffic left in SA or are there others?
don_dunstan

Sadly, Yes and No.
  greasyrhys Chief Commissioner

Location: MacDonald Park, SA
I forgot to mention that last Tuesday's Stonie (April 29) ran about 5 hours late for some unknown reason, departed Penrice about 3:55pm hauled by 844-843-841 with 20 hoppers.
  bingley hall Minister for Railways

Location: Last train to Skaville
I looked for the Stonie on my trip to SA last week but didn't see it (probably the wrong day). I have to say the state of the tracks through the Barossa is pretty poor - I actually thought I was looking at a closed line at first until I realised on closer inspection that it was actually in use.

Incidentally you can actually see the Stonie on Google Maps near the intersection of Light's Pass and Penrice Roads.

Is it the only broad gauge freight traffic left in SA or are there others?
don_dunstan

Only runs Tuesdays and Fridays and timings have been erratic of late.
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Only runs Tuesdays and Fridays and timings have been erratic of late.
bingley hall

Okay, thanks - as per GreasyRhys above I was there last Tuesday around lunchtime.  The line traverses some really interesting scenery, it's a shame the Wine Train wasn't viable.
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
If Penrice Soda is not sold either as a whole or in sections as has been advertised here by the administrator then whenever you see it, it could be the last time you do actually see it. If Penrice Soda closes then the stone trains will cease to run!
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
If Penrice Soda is not sold either as a whole or in sections as has been advertised here by the administrator then whenever you see it, it could be the last time you do actually see it. If Penrice Soda closes then the stone trains will cease to run!
David Peters

If it's a profitable operation, as you said earlier, then hopefully they can keep the business going while finding a solution to the debt. It would be a shame to see one of the last intra-state freight operations in SA go for good.
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
Well sooner or later it would stop anyway as the plant at Osborne is starting to get long in the tooth and if they had not got into financial trouble like they have they would have had to upgrade the plant etc. One does hope that someone does buy it but I would not try holding my breath actually over it! Not being negative here just looking at things on paper does not paint a pretty picture at all. The loans they have are the real killers and a bank etc or something is going to want it back or get as much back as they can anyway.
  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

David.

Will you please type out all your future messages in brown. Laughing

Unfortunately you are right regarding the future of Penrice as Soda Ash producers. However the reduced operation has eliminated a lot of obsolescent high maintenance plant and is much more streamlined.

Penrice has a future with the Bicarb and Lime if it can unshackle itself from its past.

What is needed is the banks to foreclose on the place and then sell it off to a somebody waiting in the wings to pick au a potentially profitable operation for a song.
Due to the cost of remediation the land value is not as high as could otherwise be anticipated.

A not unlikely scenario if people hold their nerve and it isn't being talked down by those who don't know.

Ian
  nscaler69 Deputy Commissioner

Location: There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots.
The loans they have are the real killers and a bank etc or something is going to want it back or get as much back as they can anyway.
David Peters

I was under the impression that is exactly why they are in administration, the finance companies want their money back i.e. are pulling their finance out. It reminds me of what happened to the Alice Springs to Darwin rail line Freightlink company.
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
I was under the impression that is exactly why they are in administration, the finance companies want their money back i.e. are pulling their finance out. It reminds me of what happened to the Alice Springs to Darwin rail line Freightlink company.
nscaler69

Yes that is just it in a nutshell the finance companies want their money now they dont really give a fig about Penrice Soda really just as long as they get there money paid back. To be honest it is only a small company alongside say Holdens here so it would not really be a huge problem employment wise. It only has 180 employees the Administrator said so it is not going to be a big disaster eployment wise, it is a bit of a disaster though especially if they close for those employees.

Steam4ian if no one is going to lend them money to either upgrade or repair existing plant they cannot keep it going forever as they are. Usually when a company like this goes like this and the debt is not that bad they get bought out pretty quickly, but in this instance I think the debt is just too much and the administrator might not get any nibbles at all. If he does not then get it sold it will have to shut in the end which might be soon hopefully not for those working there though. But it will end up just another South Australian company that went bust. Along with the likes of Trims and a lot of others as well.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

Potentially some positive news:

WORKERS of struggling, for-sale SA manufacturer Penrice Soda Holdings can take heart from a number of robust bids to take on the business as a continuing operation, administrators say.

News Corp (open in private window)
  greasyrhys Chief Commissioner

Location: MacDonald Park, SA
Interesting. Thanks for sharing the link Justapax.
  CL1 Station Master

Location: nuri
I looked for the Stonie on my trip to SA last week but didn't see it (probably the wrong day). I have to say the state of the tracks through the Barossa is pretty poor - I actually thought I was looking at a closed line at first until I realised on closer inspection that it was actually in use.

Incidentally you can actually see the Stonie on Google Maps near the intersection of Light's Pass and Penrice Roads.

Is it the only broad gauge freight traffic left in SA or are there others?
don_dunstan


http://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11377854.htm
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
http://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11377854.htm
CL1

Thanks for that - did you take that video yourself?
  CL1 Station Master

Location: nuri
Thanks for that - did you take that video yourself?
don_dunstan

yes, Iphone
  Sitec

Hi all.. First post here.. Regular forum user, but not on this format, so bear with me!! I work along side the 'Stoney' railway, between Gawler and Lyndoch, so see it often.. I'm still learning what's what with the local railways, but have noticed that they use three matching loco's and one odd one.. (Guessing that's the one that was talked about earlier in this thread and how unreliable it is!). I might be wrong, but are the two green loco's the ones that used to run the grain line headed north?
      The drivers of the stones are a mixed bunch.. Some wave, some don't... We had an amusing morning, where I introduced my Amtrac K5LA horn to the driver... I got several blasts back, and they thought it was great. Once I learn how to post pics of it, I'll post some on here! Cheers for now. Simon.
  greasyrhys Chief Commissioner

Location: MacDonald Park, SA
Welcome to Railpage Sitec.

With the locos you've mentioned, 841 & 843 (830 class) are in the old AN (Australian National) green & yellow livery, with 844 in the GWA (Genesee & Wyoming Australia) livery. The loco that you mention as 'the odd one' is 704 (700 class), which has proven to be unreliable at times. Since about late April/early May, the 3 830's have hauled the Stonie.
  greasyrhys Chief Commissioner

Location: MacDonald Park, SA
If the Stonie does continue running for, say, another 5-10 years, then I wonder if GWA will eventually replace the current rolling stock (locos & wagons)? I know the 830's have proven to be more than reliable, but they're just too old IMO. One alternative could be for GWA to perhaps lease a G class from CFCLA? Unlikely though.
  SmAshmoto Beginner

Any updates on whether the stonie is still running sporadically or is it back to daily? I wouldnt mind heading out to have a look but I live at the other end of the hills and would hate to drive all the way for nothing!
  brianph Locomotive Driver

Location: Bethany
Any updates on whether the stonie is still running sporadically or is it back to daily? I wouldnt mind heading out to have a look but I live at the other end of the hills and would hate to drive all the way for nothing!
SmAshmoto

Twice a week - Tuesdays and Fridays.  Down at Tanunda about 0645.  Up - sometime between 1100 and 1230.  Usually with 20 wagons and (now) consistently three 830 class locos.

Brian
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
While Penrice Soda remains in administration then it will probably remain at twice a week for the foreseeable future, but if it is sold it might go back to daily though, however there is the other option no running at all if no one buys Penrice Soda! What happens is anyone's guess though!
  brianph Locomotive Driver

Location: Bethany
While Penrice Soda remains in administration then it will probably remain at twice a week for the foreseeable future, but if it is sold it might go back to daily though, however there is the other option no running at all if no one buys Penrice Soda! What happens is anyone's guess though!
David Peters

David, the Soda-ash plant was closed well before the company went into administration leading to the reduction in the number of services from 7 a week to 2.  It is highly unlikely that it will re-open unless someone is willing to inject a huge amount of capital - and with the debts the company already have, that is unlikely.  

It is unlikely we will ever again see one train a day: indeed, there is some doubt that the current level of service will be sustainable for GWA.

Brian
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
David, the Soda-ash plant was closed well before the company went into administration leading to the reduction in the number of services from 7 a week to 2. It is highly unlikely that it will re-open unless someone is willing to inject a huge amount of capital - and with the debts the company already have, that is unlikely.

It is unlikely we will ever again see one train a day: indeed, there is some doubt that the current level of service will be sustainable for GWA.

Brian
brianph

I said something similar a few posts back and copped a lot of flack for it. But you are right, I just put it up in a more palatable wording so as not to cop any flack.

Could this line be another line that GWA want to close though because if the service is not sustainable for GWA then it could also get the chop and GWA would then have only a two gauge system rather than the current 3 gauge system!
  AN830 Locomotive Driver

Location: Adelaide, South Australia
Is this end of the line for the Stonie?

The Soda Ash plant at Osborne is closing.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-06-24/penrice-soda-ash-plant-closure-osborne/5546974?section=sa

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