Maintenance Rail Vehicles?

 
  reubstar6 Junior Train Controller

Whenever I'm around Broadmeadows I often see one or two maintenance vehicles stabled in the siding there. They seem to come and go quite often. Does anyone know of their movements? Are they scheduled or as required? If you're after a number or type of vehicle I saw "Unimat 4S", I think. Anyway, it would be good to know when they move as it would be interesting seeing them in action going from one place to another. Thanks.

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  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
There are no trains Essendon to Craigieburn Saturday and Sunday 7/10 and 8/10 so I suppose that they might be doing something maintenance machine wise. Question

Track machines often travel in a convoy from job to job.
  reubstar6 Junior Train Controller

It's not just now, but often (when the Craigieburn Line is fine), but perhaps that might be one use for them.
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
Whenever I'm around Broadmeadows I often see one or two maintenance vehicles stabled in the siding there. They seem to come and go quite often. Does anyone know of their movements? Are they scheduled or as required? If you're after a number or type of vehicle I saw "Unimat 4S", I think. Anyway, it would be good to know when they move as it would be interesting seeing them in action going from one place to another. Thanks.
reubstar6
A 'Unimat 4S' is a tamping machine, specifically a switch tamper. They are often seen working in tandem with a smaller track machine known as a ballast regulator.

Marcus Wong has a good selection of photos of track machines seen around the Melbourne network: https://railgallery.wongm.com/track-machines/

As for scheduling and movements: they're moved around the network as required. For a layperson the best chance of seeing rail maintenance machines in action is to check Metro's website for where and when planned maintenance works are occurring. Ballast tampers and ballast regulators are the easiest track machines to see in action as they take a while to do their work and are used quite frequently. They are always deployed after a ballast train has been run, but they are also run on an opportunistic basis by piggybacking on other line occupations for rail maintenance & construction works such as rail replacement, overhead renewals, station rebuilds and track occupations for level crossing removals and so on.
  Lad_Porter Chief Commissioner

Location: Yarra Glen
Track machines were formerly often seen parked during the day in 4 road (the unwired one near the old goods shed) at Lilydale.  Now that 3 and 4 roads there have been baulked, where will such machines be parked in the future when work is to be done on the nearby main line?  The nearest sidings seem to be at Ringwood, and may not be available due to train stabling requirements.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
The baulks will disappear as an act of God when necessary. Smile
  Lad_Porter Chief Commissioner

Location: Yarra Glen
Oh ......  Is that the same as an Act of Metro?
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
Yes, one and the same. There is no other!
  trainbrain Deputy Commissioner

speaking to a couple of drivers at the VRI last Friday, the points are supposedly to be rpaired, mind u this was over a few drinks of the amber liquid.
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
Those same track machines are often stabled in the siding on the up side of Burnley.

I have also seen them stabled in the short siding at Bell on the South Morang line, and on the turntable road at Bacchus Marsh station.

The point I'm making is, they get around quite a bit.
  Lad_Porter Chief Commissioner

Location: Yarra Glen
As predicted, track machines were seen today parked in #4 road at Lilydale.  The baulk across the track was in place, the machines were sitting behind it, so it must have been removed and replaced.
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
Those same track machines are often stabled in the siding on the up side of Burnley.

I have also seen them stabled in the short siding at Bell on the South Morang line, and on the turntable road at Bacchus Marsh station.

The point I'm making is, they get around quite a bit.
Gman_86
They get around but do they actually do anything. There never seems any obvious improvement in track standard.
I suppose it could be argued that the track would be worse without them. Smile

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