Centenary of the Opening of the Trans Australian Railway - Port Augusta

 
  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

Locomotive NB 30 had the same engine and transmission, presumably a spare that became available as the NDHs went out of service. Has anyone looked at NB30, and is the engine an upright version?

Peter
NB 30 has an upright 6-71 rated at 140hp and had an Alison 500 class (630) torque converter attached. This was joined by a small tail shaft to a David Brown forward/reverse reduction gearbox which in turn drives the jackshaft which drives the conrods of the original steam engine. The Alison torque converter has been replaced with a Twin Disc unit from the old SAR recovery crane. The advantage of the Twin Disc is obvious to everyone who ever had to drive the thing and try and change between forward and reverse on the David Brown. By leaving the changing mechanism on the DB alone, it is very easy to change direction with the Twin Disc unit. Fitting the Twin Disc had its problems with the tail shaft needing to be shorter and the resulting angles reduced, but it works.
nm39
I was up at Quorn during the early years and NB30 was giving trouble because of the limit switch which detected when the forward/reverse dogs on the DB gearbox were fully engaged. I was asked to take a look when NB30 refused to move; I did get it going by some judicious fiddling with the limit switch settings. I recall the look I got from Charlie Rosewarne when I pulled a little brass bristle brush (as used for suede shoes)  out of my tool kit to polish the contacts.
The Allison/DB combination relied on a transmission brake so the dogs could engage but the same brake could stop the dogs engaging so there was a pneumatic arrangement to rock the shaft until the dogs slid into place, hence the limit switch arrangement.

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  steam4ian Chief Commissioner

Locomotive NB 30 had the same engine and transmission, presumably a spare that became available as the NDHs went out of service. Has anyone looked at NB30, and is the engine an upright version?

Peter
NB 30 has an upright 6-71 rated at 140hp and had an Alison 500 class (630) torque converter attached. This was joined by a small tail shaft to a David Brown forward/reverse reduction gearbox which in turn drives the jackshaft which drives the conrods of the original steam engine. The Alison torque converter has been replaced with a Twin Disc unit from the old SAR recovery crane. The advantage of the Twin Disc is obvious to everyone who ever had to drive the thing and try and change between forward and reverse on the David Brown. By leaving the changing mechanism on the DB alone, it is very easy to change direction with the Twin Disc unit. Fitting the Twin Disc had its problems with the tail shaft needing to be shorter and the resulting angles reduced, but it works.
nm39
I was up at Quorn during the early years and NB30 was giving trouble because of the limit switch which detected when the forward/reverse dogs on the DB gearbox were fully engaged. I was asked to take a look when NB30 refused to move; I did get it going by some judicious fiddling with the limit switch settings. I recall the look I got from Charlie Rosewarne when I pulled a little brass bristle brush (as used for suede shoes)  out of my tool kit to polish the contacts.
The Allison/DB combination relied on a transmission brake so the dogs could engage but the same brake could stop the dogs engaging so there was a pneumatic arrangement to rock the shaft until the dogs slid into place, hence the limit switch arrangement.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
'as used for suede shoes'
Blue suede or desert boots QuestionLaughing
  Train1959 Junior Train Controller

I though KA Smith deserved another mention near the top of the page..................

I am over NB 30 as interesting as the conversation is..........Cool

Fact 77 / 100  –  Commissioner Keith A Smith

Keith Smith was born on the 4th of May 1915.

He graduated with honours from Sydney University. Keith Smith served his apprenticeship in NSW and was later employed with the Australian Iron & Steel Works at Port Kembla. He later worked at the Eveleigh Running Sheds of the NSW Railways.

Mr Smith worked as Supply and Equipment Engineer at the Chullora Tank Assembly Shop for two years during the war. The factory produced Cruiser tanks for the Australian Army. After the war he took up the position of Assistant Engineer for Locomotive Running for the NSW Railways.

In July 1948 he was appointed Production Engineer for the Tasmanian Railways.
   
Keith Smith was appointed Chief Mechanical Engineer Commonwealth Railways on the 11th of December 1950. He was later to act concurrently in the capacity of Chief Civil Engineer for almost 2 years. He oversaw the construction of the Stirling North to Marree standard gauge railway for a 12 month period.

After the resignation of Commissioner Hannaberry, Keith Smith was appointed acting Commissioner on the 10th of April 1960.

He supervised the transition of the Commonwealth Railways to the Australian National Railways Commission that incorporated the former South Australian and Tasmanian Government Railways. Keith Smith was the longest serving Commissioner of the Commonwealth Railways, before becoming the first Chairman of Commissioners of Australian National, retiring from that position in 1981.

He was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1970.

He retired in Encounter Bay SA. He passed away on the 16th of July 2011, aged 96 years.

My Note:  I never really knew KA as he was the generation before me back in the days when you were better off neither seen or heard when the boss was in the vicinity! However I did meet him when he travelled all the way to Port Augusta from his home south of Adelaide to attend our Open Day back in 2008 for the setting up of a CR Heritage Centre in Port Augusta. He was enthusiastic and on the ball even taking into account his advancing years. He speech impressed the many people who attended . Sadly the Council were not as easily convinced and we continue to wait! Maybe October 22nd may convince them otherwise!  

  DJPeters Station Master

Over the years I have met him several times K.A. Smith that is and he was always the gentleman and polite to you. Last time I talked to him was the opening train for Steamtown at Eurelia while waiting and watching the locomotives run around the train etc there! I have both his books here and I just wished that he had lived a bit longer to put more of his experiences and yarns on paper though.
  M636C Minister for Railways

During the late 1960s, C.A. Cardew, who was then Assistant CME of the NSWGR, read a paper on the development of steam locomotives in NSW to the ARHS. One illustration was a drawing of the smokebox arrangement of a D55 class locomotive. After referring to the drawing in its context, Cardew said "that drawing was drawn by Keith Smith: he was always a heavy user of black ink." So it seems clear that K.A. Smith was involved in locomotive design with the NSWGR.

At another meeting, Keith Smith himself spoke about the CR and recent developments. I think this was prior to 1970 and through running. The trade magazine, "Railway Transportation" reported on deliveries of new rolling stock. Apparently a fourth sleeper observation car had been ordered as part of the red steel cars built by Comeng, to be class ARFA. The decision was taken to buy a single twinette sleeping car instead, which became ARH159, but the magazine just reported the delivery of the ARFA. To clarify this, I asked Keith Smith about this during questions after the talk. He confirmed my supposition about the change. I later heard from the editor of RT (who was at the meeting) who told me that Keith Smith had written to the magazine to correct the listing.

Peter
  Train1959 Junior Train Controller


Fact 78 / 100  Housing & Staff Numbers

By 1968 the Commonwealth Railways was reaching the peak of its powers.

At that time the Commonwealth Railways had over 3,400 employees with
around 1,300 buildings system wide of which over 900 were residences.



  Train1959 Junior Train Controller


Fact 79 / 100  Concrete Sleepers and Extending Crossing Loops

The Commonwealth Railways began testing concrete sleepers in 1956.

During 1960-61 nineteen concrete sleepers (from a Swedish design) were added to a test strip in the Wirrappa Station Yard.

The following year a further 6,000 block type concrete sleepers pruduced at a pilot plant set up at Port Augusta were introduced between Stirling North and Winninowie.

The main problem with the new sleepers concerned the fastening of the rails to the sleepers. Varying types of fastenings were trialed during this period. Further testing occurred during 1963.

In March 1960 an additional siding named “Lyons” was opened at the 565km.  During 1961 many crossing loops were lengthened to accommodate double-headed trains. Locations lengthened included Pimba, Wirraminna, Kingoonya, Barton, Hughes, Reid and Chifley.  

In 1962-63  Bookaloo, McLeay, Burando, Kultanaby, Forrest, Mundrabilla and Karonie were extended.  

The large scale use of concrete sleepers began in 1970 when CR.1 prestressed concrete sleepers were ordered for use on the Port Augusta to Whyalla railway. When the Whyalla line was finished in 1972 arrangements were made to re-sleeper the entire Trans-Australian Railway.

Plants were set up at Stirling North and Parkeston. The Stirling North plant also supplied the Tarcoola to Alice Springs Railway. The plants produced about 500,000 sleepers per annum half of which were used on the TAR.  

Source:     Riders of the Steel Highways - Monte Luke

Note:        This is merely a summary of the facts as I see them

  Train1959 Junior Train Controller


Fact 80 / 100  Train Order Working

Following installation at all wayside stations between Port Augusta and Parkeston of a new telephone system for use on the train control circuit, arrangements were made to discontinue the Electric Staff Train Working System and introduce Train Order Working. The changeover was made progressively as follows:

Port Augusta – Tarcoola                             11/11/1962
Tarcoola – Cook                                             25/11/1962
Cook – Parkeston                                          9/12/1962  


Fact 81 / 100  Employment of Aboriginal Workers

In the early 1960’s the Commonwealth Railways were the biggest employer of Aboriginals in Australia (this applied to all parts of the system not necessarily the Trans-Australian Railway).


They were an integral part of the Commonwealth Railway system with many having long and distinguished careers.


  Train1959 Junior Train Controller


Fact 82 / 100  Father Christmas

Although presents had been delivered for railway children for many years it was not until 1954 that the Welfare Car on the Tea and Sugar began to bring along a very special guest. Father Christmas came to the Trans-Australian Railway in person for the first time by train in 1954. The Commonwealth Railways supplied the gifts saving Santa the time and effort of hauling them all the way from the North Pole which was a nice touch!

Father Christmas volunteers over the years included Bill Crowe, Peter Heneker, Archie Hearne, Howard McConnal, Jack McAdam and from 1966 – 1996 Alf Harris.

  steam4ian Chief Commissioner


Fact 80 / 100  Train Order Working

Following installation at all wayside stations between Port Augusta and Parkeston of a new telephone system for use on the train control circuit, arrangements were made to discontinue the Electric Staff Train Working System and introduce Train Order Working. The changeover was made progressively as follows:

Port Augusta – Tarcoola                             11/11/1962
Tarcoola – Cook                                             25/11/1962
Cook – Parkeston                                          9/12/1962  


Fact 81 / 100  Employment of Aboriginal Workers

In the early 1960’s the Commonwealth Railways were the biggest employer of Aboriginals in Australia (this applied to all parts of the system not necessarily the Trans-Australian Railway).


They were an integral part of the Commonwealth Railway system with many having long and distinguished careers.

What were the Staff station?
I recall in the late 60s (or even later) staff instruments in the Port Augusta Station including one painted blue and marked Hesso Sub.
Train1959
  Train1959 Junior Train Controller


Fact 83 / 100  Cooinda Club Opened  

On the 20th of May 1967 the new institute club “Cooinda” was officially opened in Port Augusta by Commissioner Keith Smith. “Cooinda” or “Happy Meeting Place” served the railway population of Port Augusta and visiting rail workers from the line locations very well until its closure in 2016.  

  Train1959 Junior Train Controller


Fact 84 / 100  Standardisation, Indian Pacific and largest, heaviest passenger train

24th of November 1967                New Mary Elie Street Station opened at Port Pirie.

3rd of August 1968                         Kalgoorlie to Kwinana (WA) standardised.

29th of November 1969               Standard gauge Sydney to Perth line completed.

February 1970                                Commonwealth Railways CL 1 into service + first Indian Pacific.

April 1970                                        Longest, heaviest passenger train at the time on the Trans-Australian Railway
                                                           
                                                           29 cars, 1,405 tonnes, 792 metres in length with two GM class locos


  Train1959 Junior Train Controller


Please find listed below an updated "Official Program" for the celebrations at the Port Augusta Railway Station on Sunday the 22nd of October, 2017. The Pichi Richi trains will be steam hauled unless a fire ban is in place. There may be some slight alterations to accommodate other planned activities but train times have been finalised.    



CURRENT LIST OF ACTIVITIES




Opening of the Trans Australian Railway


100 Year Anniversary Celebration at Port Augusta

                 

Sunday October 22nd of October 2017



Official Program


9.00am            Platform Gallery opens.  Vintage Cars on display at front of station building.
                       
9.30am            Standard Gauge locos can be viewed on Platform 1.
                       
10.30am          Pichi Richi “special” train arrives at Port Augusta Railway Station
                       
11.30am          Pichi Richi Stirling North shuttle departs station
                       
12.30am          Pichi Richi shuttle returns to the station.
                       
12.45pm          Official Commemoration Ceremony & Monument unveiling

1.15pm            Richi Richi Stirling North shuttle departs station
                       
2.15pm            Pichi Richi shuttle returns to the station
                       
2.30pm            Special Great Southern Rail Indian Pacific prize draw.

3.00pm            Special Pichi Richi train departs for Quorn.
                       
3.00pm            Standard gauge trains remain on display.
                       
4.00pm            Conclusion.




  M636C Minister for Railways










                 

Sunday October 22nd of October 2017





9.00am            Platform Gallery opens.  Vintage Cars on display at front of station building.
                       

Train1959

Do we know which vehicles are to be displayed yet?

I'd expect SS44 and AF27, but which other vehicles will be available?

Will there be an opportunity to photograph the cars being positioned, since the platform is a poor location for photos?

Peter
  Train1959 Junior Train Controller

Sorry to disappoint you Peter!!!

The "cars" are motor vehicles belonging to the Port Augusta Vehicle Restorers Club. They have a range of vintage cars dating from 1917 - 1970.

As for SS 44 and AF 27 to the best of my knowledge they are no longer in service. Someone may be able enlighten me on this but I do not think they have been in service for a while now and I am not even sure they are certified for mainline travel. Either way we did not ask for them to be in Port Augusta and they were not offered.

We hope to display a number of standard gauge locomotives on the day with access to the cabs however what is actually there will depend to some extent on rostering around that time. If you are not guaranteed something, don't advertise it!

A list of the day's activities and participants will be published in the coming weeks.
  Train1959 Junior Train Controller

Pichi Richi Railway Special Train - October 22nd


Pichi Richi are hoping to run a "double header" special train down from Quorn on Sunday the 22nd of October weather permitting.

If there is a fire ban in place the train will be diesel hauled (mid to late October in this region can be a little fickle!).  

They will try and replicate as best they can a SAR train from the 1917 era. The train will then be split at Port Augusta to run the Stirling North shuttles (one in the late morning and then another in the early afternoon) before they return to Quorn later in the day.

More details on the train consist as they are made available.



Port Augusta Vehicle Restorers Club

The Port Augusta Vehicle Restorers Club have kindly agreed to have a display of their vintage cars at the Port Augusta Railway Station for the anniversary. The vehicles will be on display in the cutting throughout the day with cars ranging from 1917 to 1970. We thank them for their support of this event.
  Spletsie Deputy Commissioner

It looks like a terrific program of events.
  Train1959 Junior Train Controller

Participant List for Sunday the 22nd - part 2


  • Pichi Richi Railway - Special train and shuttles
  • Port Augusta Vehicle Restorers Club - vintage cars


The Royal Australian Mint

The Royal Australian Mint are travelling to the event from Canberra. The RAM have minted a commemorative coin set for the centenary. The mint will be bringing their mobile press that will allow visitors to strike a counterstamp on their $1 Centenary of the Trans-Australian Railway coin. The silver and gold coins will also be available for sale.


Australia Post

Australia Post have printed a special set of stamps for the centenary. This was released in July.

Australia Post will be in attendance on the day and those wishing to have the Official Program postmarked with a special TAR Centenary mark can do so. People will need to purchase the TAR stamps and attach them to the program for it to be postmarked 22 Oct 2017.

Australia Post has held over the stamp sets for use on the day.



  Train1959 Junior Train Controller

Fact 85 / 100  CL Class locomotive enters service

With the upgrading of lines to standard gauge at both ends of the Commonwealth system during the late 1960’s the Commonwealth Railways decided with the forecast increase in through freight and higher tonnages that they would require more powerful locomotives.

The new more powerful 3300/3000 hp CL class locomotive were ordered from Clyde Engineering. They were similar to the WAGR L class but instead of the North America hood design they chose to stay with the streamline style. In fact they were the last locomotive to receive the streamline look in Australia.

At 126 tons they were only 16 tons heavier than the GM class but twice as powerful.

The first trial run of CL 1 took place in NSW on the 16th of January 1970. It entered service on the Commonwealth network on the 9th of February 1970.

CL 1 headed the inaugural Sydney to Perth “Indian Pacific” between Port Pirie and Kalgoorlie.  

Source:  Locomotives and Railcars of the Commonwealth Railways - NRM
  DJPeters Station Master

Fact 85 / 100  CL Class locomotive enters service

With the upgrading of lines to standard gauge at both ends of the Commonwealth system during the late 1960’s the Commonwealth Railways decided with the forecast increase in through freight and higher tonnages that they would require more powerful locomotives.

The new more powerful 3300/3000 hp CL class locomotive were ordered from Clyde Engineering. They were similar to the WAGR L class but instead of the North America hood design they chose to stay with the streamline style. In fact they were the last locomotive to receive the streamline look in Australia.

At 126 tons they were only 16 tons heavier than the GM class but twice as powerful.

The first trial run of CL 1 took place in NSW on the 16th of January 1970. It entered service on the Commonwealth network on the 9th of February 1970.

CL 1 headed the inaugural Sydney to Perth “Indian Pacific” between Port Pirie and Kalgoorlie.  

Source:  Locomotives and Railcars of the Commonwealth Railways - NRM
Train1959
They were in fact the last bulldog nosed units built anywhere by EMD or it's associates!
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
' CL 1 headed the inaugural Sydney to Perth “Indian Pacific” between Port Pirie and Kalgoorlie.  '
CL 1 and two GMs hauled the inaugural westbound Indian Pacific on the TAR.
It was originally intended that the train would be hauled by CL 1 alone but 'in view of the extraordinary engine power precautions on the other systems' it was decided to use CL 1 plus 2 x GMs.
I think that the SAR used a 600 plus an 830 but I am not sure. Can anyone confirm/correct this information?
Does anyone know what the NSWGR and WAGR used on the train please?
  Pressman Spirit of the Vine

Location: Wherever the Tin Chook or Qantas takes me
' CL 1 headed the inaugural Sydney to Perth “Indian Pacific” between Port Pirie and Kalgoorlie.  '
CL 1 and two GMs hauled the inaugural westbound Indian Pacific on the TAR.
It was originally intended that the train would be hauled by CL 1 alone but 'in view of the extraordinary engine power precautions on the other systems' it was decided to use CL 1 plus 2 x GMs.
I think that the SAR used a 600 plus an 830 but I am not sure. Can anyone confirm/correct this information?
Does anyone know what the NSWGR and WAGR used on the train please?
YM-Mundrabilla
Remember that the first IP had two sections which ran from Sydney to Port Pirie where they were combined into one train

On Monday 23.2.1970 the inaugural Indian Pacific departed Sydney. Two trains left Sydney and were formed into one train at Port Pirie. The first train departed at 2250 with engines 4601 and 4602 hauling HGM 204 , ER 210 , ARL 249 , ARL 247 , ARJ 241 , CDF 266 , DF 264 , AFC 239 , ARJ 240 , ARL 261 , ARM 253 , ARM 252 , SSA 260 , HM259 , whilst the second train departed at 2300 with engines 4603 and 4604 hauling HM 257 , ER 204 , BRJ 214 , BRJ 218 , BRJ 215 , CDF 229 , DF 235 , AFC 236 , ARJ 242 , ARL 262 , ARM 251 and HM202 . Double 421 class engines hauled the train from Lithgow with South Australian Railways double 600's on the first and a 600 leading an 830 on the second between Broken Hill and Port Pirie. The Commonwealth used a CL and two GM's hauling all 27 carriages and Western Australia two L class engines.
comrails


http://www.comrails.com/cr_carriages/sda00100.html

As a side note I travelled to Brisbane in 1988 to attend the expo.  I took the IP to Sydney.
It was Hauled by 2 x CLP Keswick to Broken Hill; 2 x 422 class BH to Parkes; 2 x 80 class Parkes to Lithgow then 2 x 85 electrics to Central
  DJPeters Station Master

' CL 1 headed the inaugural Sydney to Perth “Indian Pacific” between Port Pirie and Kalgoorlie.  '
CL 1 and two GMs hauled the inaugural westbound Indian Pacific on the TAR.
It was originally intended that the train would be hauled by CL 1 alone but 'in view of the extraordinary engine power precautions on the other systems' it was decided to use CL 1 plus 2 x GMs.
I think that the SAR used a 600 plus an 830 but I am not sure. Can anyone confirm/correct this information?
Does anyone know what the NSWGR and WAGR used on the train please?
YM-Mundrabilla
Each system used their own locomotives on their sections of track and I think it was a 600/830 combo on it although it might have been twin 600's. NSW probably used 46 class electrics on it up to Lithgow or wherever, I think it was and from there on behind 44 class locos or whatever was on the NSW western system at the time. WAGR used a L class from memory or a pair of them. It was well after the first IP train that intersystem running started though!

I think the reason for the CL and a pair of GM"s was more to do with being able to keep the train running should the CL fail, insurance locomotives if you like. Or I think the two inaugural IP's were combined into one train at Port Pirie so it might also have to do with the load!
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
' CL 1 headed the inaugural Sydney to Perth “Indian Pacific” between Port Pirie and Kalgoorlie.  '
CL 1 and two GMs hauled the inaugural westbound Indian Pacific on the TAR.
It was originally intended that the train would be hauled by CL 1 alone but 'in view of the extraordinary engine power precautions on the other systems' it was decided to use CL 1 plus 2 x GMs.
I think that the SAR used a 600 plus an 830 but I am not sure. Can anyone confirm/correct this information?
Does anyone know what the NSWGR and WAGR used on the train please?
Each system used their own locomotives on their sections of track and I think it was a 600/830 combo on it although it might have been twin 600's. NSW probably used 46 class electrics on it up to Lithgow or wherever, I think it was and from there on behind 44 class locos or whatever was on the NSW western system at the time. WAGR used a L class from memory or a pair of them. It was well after the first IP train that intersystem running started though!

I think the reason for the CL and a pair of GM"s was more to do with being able to keep the train running should the CL fail, insurance locomotives if you like. Or I think the two inaugural IP's were combined into one train at Port Pirie so it might also have to do with the load!
DJPeters
It was originally intended that the train would be hauled by CL 1 alone but 'in view of the extraordinary engine power precautions on the other systems' it was decided to use CL 1 plus 2 x GMs.

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