Grain Harvest Thread 2017/2018

 
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
Rice is the last crop we should grow in Australia along with cotton. Too much water used.
nswtrains

Possibly right, it's a contentious issue of managing our environment and supply life saving food to probably millions of people.

I am referring to rice, mainly but I guess there is plenty of marginal cereal growing country as well and in a good year makes for pretty good farming country, but in a bad year, very ordinary.

So not only our water ways but also plenty of cropping land have to be managed with care.

As for cotton, well we have seen recently on Landline, how deep the water stealing goes, in some sectors, there.

I certainly understand  your point, though.

BigShunter.

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  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Rice is far less destructive than cotton given it uses far fewer chemicals.  Rice and cotton are not in the same league.

Cattle do widespread environmental damage due to the emissions they produce (ag is one of the biggest emitters of GHG worldwide, and one where almost nothing is being done to address) and destruction their hooves cause to fragile soils, plants etc.

Im not saying cattle should be banned either, but what im saying is dont look at one input (ie water) and use that as the sole benchmark to say what should and shouldn't happen in Australian agriculture.

Re water, there are definite issues there - fix them and then lets see what happens to water prices and enterprise profitability.
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
Rice is far less destructive than cotton given it uses far fewer chemicals.  Rice and cotton are not in the same league.

Cattle do widespread environmental damage due to the emissions they produce (ag is one of the biggest emitters of GHG worldwide, and one where almost nothing is being done to address) and destruction their hooves cause to fragile soils, plants etc.

Re water, there are definite issues there - fix them and then lets see what happens to water prices and enterprise profitability.
james.au

james, do you know how much water is required per Hectare to grow rice, compared to cotton ?

Sheep, cattle any cloven hooved beast can have problem's with soil degradation, in fact any farming practice will be environmentally damaging, if managed incorrectly.

As for the water regulation, well how many times has that been reviewed or restructured and the pilfering and theft / deception, still continue's.

Anyway there with be plenty of rice trains from Denni, to keep Greensleeves and his camera, on the go for a while yet.  Smile

BigShunter.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Cotton’s average irrigation requirement is 7.8 megalitres per hectare. This compares to rice (12.6ML/ha), fruit and nut trees (5.6 ML/ha) and cut flowers and turf (4.9 ML/ha)
Cotton Australia


Rice used to use 20ML/ha in the 70s but R&D has reduced this significantly.  I am aware of some varieties using less than 9ML.
http://cottonaustralia.com.au/cotton-library/fact-sheets/cotton-fact-file-water



However refer to the table here though for some more complete and interesting stats on water needed to produce food.

https://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/jan/10/how-much-water-food-production-waste

Some of the highlights.

1kg of beef requires 15,415L to produce.
1kg cotton - 9980L
1kg rice - 2497L
1L milk - 1020L
1L wine - 426L
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
Spotted this in the April edition of Railway Digest, an article reporting on a rather large movement of grain from Hillston.

On Wednesday 21st Feb, Southern Shorthaul Railroad ran their first train to Hillston and was destined for GrainCorp silo's at Port Kembla.

The train consisted of 59 BGKF and BGVF wagons, which due to the very slow loading capacity, took 2 days to load, gross weight of 4,793 toonnes and 1,051 meters in length.

Now that is a decent load of grain but ridiculously slow loading rate, what's happening out there GrainCorp, are you using a wheel barrow ?

james this is the size train we need to be running in Victoria, at least most of our sites can load at a respectable rate, a 40 block train, all things running well, 3 - 4 hours.

A comparison on how they do things in W.A. at some sites at least, where they are a little more serious on the movement of grain.

Australia's longest grain train

Australia's longest grain train winds its way through the Avon Valley, past Bells Rapids, to deliver more than 9,000 tonnes of wheat to CBH Group's Kwinana Grain Terminal.

The single 1.8 kilometre train has 120 wagons and three locomotives and is a new Australian record length.  

Cut from the ABC Rural web page, link below as well as video.

https://www.facebook.com/ABCRural/videos/vb.120462627634/1901684326531185/?type=2&theater

BigShunter.

Ps; if someone has the article and can take a picture of and post it, may be better.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Hillston is an older site AFAIK and probably hasn't been upgraded.  Given the variability of yield in that area is pretty significant, some years it probably wont have enough for a train load so a 2 day loading time might be the most cost effective in the long run.  

The fact that PN didnt run the train which suggests they probably didnt want (or couldn't afford) the contract, whereas SSR did see merit in doing it, suggesting to me that they are willing (and/or able) to wear the additional costs of loading.

Which locos were used?

I saw the CBH video about the train (refer link here) over the weekend.  Impressive but it seems like a one off like the Moree SSR train was.

Agreed, there needs to be more work right across the network to increase train lengths and therefore tonnages.  Im not sure how long is the optimum but there will be limits imposed in certain places (eg ports).  Being able to run homogenous trains across NSW and VIC (and elsewhere) will really let some cost effiicencies flow.
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
james, the locomotive power, was provided by; RL 4917 and two NREC/Cummins Genset loco's 1201 + 1202 and it says the RL detached at Yenda.

I'm not sure about much of that but the loco in the picture, I would call a T Class in the SSR Yellow and Black.

BigShunter.
  mikesyd Chief Commissioner

Location: Lurking
The 2 days to load could be for many reasons, and add some together and the time blows out.

- Loading Equipment;
- People to Operate that equipment - after so many hours they need a break, probably no night loading either;
- Weather during loading - you don't want it getting wet;
- Train Crew availability - one crew would need their rest break - and so the train doesn't move.

And probably some more.
  a6et Minister for Railways

Rice is far less destructive than cotton given it uses far fewer chemicals.  Rice and cotton are not in the same league.

Cattle do widespread environmental damage due to the emissions they produce (ag is one of the biggest emitters of GHG worldwide, and one where almost nothing is being done to address) and destruction their hooves cause to fragile soils, plants etc.

Im not saying cattle should be banned either, but what im saying is dont look at one input (ie water) and use that as the sole benchmark to say what should and shouldn't happen in Australian agriculture.

Re water, there are definite issues there - fix them and then lets see what happens to water prices and enterprise profitability.
james.au
Cotton sucks a lot of nutrients out of the soil as well, it means the ground has to be built up with fertilisers more often than wheat or edible grains.

I read a report some time back now on the cotton fields and how the southern states of America had huge lots of unproductive land after the constant annual planting of cotton for ages.  Much of the land is now better but a lot of fertilisers were used over the years to build it up again.
  a6et Minister for Railways

The 2 days to load could be for many reasons, and add some together and the time blows out.

- Loading Equipment;
- People to Operate that equipment - after so many hours they need a break, probably no night loading either;
- Weather during loading - you don't want it getting wet;
- Train Crew availability - one crew would need their rest break - and so the train doesn't move.

And probably some more.
mikesyd
As said Hillston is an older type silo complex, unless changed there is 2 loading areas there, in town silo has three high cement bin and would most likely have a slow flow rate loading schute, along with a more modern iron type, again it does not have higher speed loading. There is also a temporary dump site on the Roto end of the station.

The area really is a bit marginal for wheat owing to it being hot and drier than other more productive areas, meaning its cheaper to keep the existing slow rail loading options than to upgrade it.  The way many of the branch line trains operate these days, its possible that the loco's could be stabled somewhere in the yard environs, with crews who likely come from Narranderra going out by taxi each day to perform any shunting, unless they have crews that would stay at Hillston in a hotel/motel for the days of operation.  That was a common working many years ago and read of some operators having floating crews.

Unless there is good rainfalls soon I doubt there will be much wheat sown in the area this year.
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
The 2 days to load could be for many reasons, and add some together and the time blows out.

- Loading Equipment;
- People to Operate that equipment - after so many hours they need a break, probably no night loading either;
- Weather during loading - you don't want it getting wet;
- Train Crew availability - one crew would need their rest break - and so the train doesn't move.

And probably some more.
mikesyd

Yep, thanks mikesyd, am aware of all the above possibilities, the reference to a very slow loading rate, I was actually para phrasing the author of the article, John Hoyle and Hillston is actually one of GrainCorp's primary sites so, would have thought the loading equipment may have been more up to date.

Agree Hillston's locality, grain yields may vary dramatically, although given that, you would want everything in your favor, for a quick turn a round time.

Interesting article, all the same and good to see a serious length train, in the remote sector's of the rail system.

BigShunter.
  2LaGrange Train Controller

A train that big (59 Wagons) can’t be loaded at this site in one day.
There are several reasons.

The silos at Hillston, Merriwagga and Goolgowie were all built in the 60s being the final design of concrete silo in NSW. When the silo is full and loads on gravity can load maybe 6-7 Wagons per hour but once grain is below spout level elevator has to be used to raise grain loading slows down to 3 Wagons per hour.

Factor in 59 wagon train is too long so train has to be broken up into 2 or 3 sections for loading more shunting is required.

There are level crossings at both ends of siding adding to time and shunting limitations.

Like train crews Grain Corp loaders are restricted to max 12 hour shifts.

Most likely can only load during daylight hours and a train that big will take 2 days to load at this site or similar sites.

PN usually only load max 40 wagon trains which can be loaded in one day at most sites.

The biggest issues Rail companies and grain growers face loading bigger grain trains in a timely efficient manner is the steam era infrastructure built for short trains not to cope with today’s larger trains. Slow loaders, short sidings with road crossings all slow down the loading process.

There have been some improvements with Grain Corp recently opening new silos and loaders built at Ardlethan, Barellan, Caleen, Burren Jct and Nevertire. These new loaders have longer sidings and can about 15 Wagons per hour and have longer sidings but most sites still have to contend with road crossings that interfere with loading longer trains in one go.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Youve got to remember too - unless its a huge site like Ardlethan/Barellan/Cunningar with 100,000 or 200,000 tonnes, the economics of upgrading for mightn't work.  Especially in marginal areas like much of the western part of the wheat belt is.
  BigShunter Chief Commissioner

Location: St Clair. S.A.
Thanks for the info 2LaGrange, thankfully Victoria has gradually moved out of the steam powered era ( to some degree ) and infact GrainFlow whom I used to work for, where very proactive in this dept, all but 20 years ago, their 4 sites in Victoria were built, with balloon loops or full length ( 40 wagons ) sidings to load. I think the loading bins above the rail site, where 1500 tonne each, so you make fast work of loading a train.

GrainCorp has been closing their smaller sites, consolidating and up grading their primary sites, over the last few years, to streamline their operations, which is pleasing. As far as Hillstons site, yes I had a look on Google Maps, yes it's in a swine of a spot for loading and all things taken into acct, now wonder loading is slow and no doubt, an arduous task.

As for upgrading Hillstons site, would be interesting to know an average intake of grain but you still won't escape the shunting and mucking around with the train.

Thanks for the info, interesting.

BigShunter.
  a6et Minister for Railways

A train that big (59 Wagons) can’t be loaded at this site in one day.
There are several reasons.

The silos at Hillston, Merriwagga and Goolgowie were all built in the 60s being the final design of concrete silo in NSW. When the silo is full and loads on gravity can load maybe 6-7 Wagons per hour but once grain is below spout level elevator has to be used to raise grain loading slows down to 3 Wagons per hour.

Factor in 59 wagon train is too long so train has to be broken up into 2 or 3 sections for loading more shunting is required.

There are level crossings at both ends of siding adding to time and shunting limitations.

Like train crews Grain Corp loaders are restricted to max 12 hour shifts.

Most likely can only load during daylight hours and a train that big will take 2 days to load at this site or similar sites.

PN usually only load max 40 wagon trains which can be loaded in one day at most sites.

The biggest issues Rail companies and grain growers face loading bigger grain trains in a timely efficient manner is the steam era infrastructure built for short trains not to cope with today’s larger trains. Slow loaders, short sidings with road crossings all slow down the loading process.

There have been some improvements with Grain Corp recently opening new silos and loaders built at Ardlethan, Barellan, Caleen, Burren Jct and Nevertire. These new loaders have longer sidings and can about 15 Wagons per hour and have longer sidings but most sites still have to contend with road crossings that interfere with loading longer trains in one go.
2LaGrange
From my understanding Hillston has 3 different ;oading points, one is a 3 stall cement silo as I posted a while back, the other a more model Steel Silo. Then there is the temporary/outdoor section on the opposite side of the other two and further along on the line towards Roto.

Each have different methods of loading, but each have older slow types of systems, with only the steel shed having a mini bin above the loading shute. Which likely is slightly faster than the cement silo

Each are slow processes individually, but the temporary section could have more than one low level loading facility that could be again marginally faster to load, other aspects to consider is that often during harvest and the storage of grain, the types are graded and depending on the type and grade of grain they can be stored in separate locations. EG the steel storage can be separated with two types of grain in it, each of the 3 cement silos could also contain different grades of grain along with the quality. As such the temporary storage is usually used for the least quality, or the greatest amount of grain in one of the quality levels.

What also happens when time for shipping grain especially these days, its often better to take large shipments from the same location which also means that location can be closed earlier and placed into maintenance mode.
  a6et Minister for Railways

Thanks for the info 2LaGrange, thankfully Victoria has gradually moved out of the steam powered era ( to some degree ) and infact GrainFlow whom I used to work for, where very proactive in this dept, all but 20 years ago, their 4 sites in Victoria were built, with balloon loops or full length ( 40 wagons ) sidings to load. I think the loading bins above the rail site, where 1500 tonne each, so you make fast work of loading a train.

GrainCorp has been closing their smaller sites, consolidating and up grading their primary sites, over the last few years, to streamline their operations, which is pleasing. As far as Hillstons site, yes I had a look on Google Maps, yes it's in a swine of a spot for loading and all things taken into acct, now wonder loading is slow and no doubt, an arduous task.

As for upgrading Hillstons site, would be interesting to know an average intake of grain but you still won't escape the shunting and mucking around with the train.

Thanks for the info, interesting.

BigShunter.
BigShunter
If you consider the landscape around Hillston, for wheat and grains the area is very much at the extremities of viable production and successful  cropping.  If you do a google earth search and then go up to the main western line, the closest silos on that line is to be found at Euabalong West, and while its now a largis complex when the SG was opened in 1970, there was only a small cement silo there.

Crops are now able to be sown on a lot of areas once considered totally out of the question, today though with different types of grain, especially wheat, these newer varieties can be sown more reliably in poorer areas than before.  Even in the 80's mainly areas that were good cropping are now no longer sown for sale crops. Case point in many respects is the areas along the old Inverel line and even the Barraba line, where wheat is now a small commodity.

Interestingly also is how the Walgett line which used to be more stock and wool with some grains is very much now a cropping area owing in the main to the better and more productive variants.

To upgrade a lot of those sites really is not cost effective owing to seasonal conditions often meaning a 1:3 season of good harvest or less.
  2LaGrange Train Controller

Very true about far western NSW being marginal. Around Walgett farmers on average get a good crop 3 years out of a 10 year cycle but those 3 years are very productive. Last year was very good with the Walget line alone having over 1 million tons available in storages along the line to Narrabri West.

The process is even slower when the grain is loaded directly from a storage bunker as generally it’s loaded by front end loaders into trucks that bring it to the silo, up the elevator and into rail wagon.

Euabalong West is the western most loading point on the line from Parkes to Broken Hill and has an E type Silo which is a large rectangular bunker with a gable roof and loads at a rate of about 6 Wagons per hour.

SSR has been loading grain trains directly from the “farm gate” where the grain is stored on a farm and trucked directly to an approved point on a mainline where a specialist mobile loader that has a ramp trucks drive over and tip grain onto a conveyor with a boom that reaches over grain Wagons. They can have up to 4 trucks tipping at one time on the largest machine. They load 6-8 Wagons per hour.

There are some innovations and completion to Grain Corp out there and it’s good to see things improving and keeping rail viable. Local roads would be in an even worse state if all grain moved by road.
  a6et Minister for Railways

Very true about far western NSW being marginal. Around Walgett farmers on average get a good crop 3 years out of a 10 year cycle but those 3 years are very productive. Last year was very good with the Walget line alone having over 1 million tons available in storages along the line to Narrabri West.

The process is even slower when the grain is loaded directly from a storage bunker as generally it’s loaded by front end loaders into trucks that bring it to the silo, up the elevator and into rail wagon.

Euabalong West is the western most loading point on the line from Parkes to Broken Hill and has an E type Silo which is a large rectangular bunker with a gable roof and loads at a rate of about 6 Wagons per hour.

SSR has been loading grain trains directly from the “farm gate” where the grain is stored on a farm and trucked directly to an approved point on a mainline where a specialist mobile loader that has a ramp trucks drive over and tip grain onto a conveyor with a boom that reaches over grain Wagons. They can have up to 4 trucks tipping at one time on the largest machine. They load 6-8 Wagons per hour.

There are some innovations and completion to Grain Corp out there and it’s good to see things improving and keeping rail viable. Local roads would be in an even worse state if all grain moved by road.
2LaGrange
Thanks for that info.  Its been a while since I was in the areas and on the job as driver but, things have really changed since then.
Another line that was good cropping has now got a lot of farms reverting to Sheep, and that is the area from Blayney to Cowra. Not sure about the areas away from the main road, such as Woodstock and the like but all the old cement silos have been closed at least that was how it was when I travelled out there around 4 years back. Once in close to Cowra and out to Canowindra it was different with Canola far outstripping the wheat paddocks.
  2LaGrange Train Controller

There are issues with the Blaney to Demondrille line and the Branches to Eugowra and Grenfell. Grain crops are still fairly common on the southern end of the line and branches with some silos still being used for storage and all grain obviously coming in and going out with road transport.

Rail has to compete with the price per ton delivered to the port that trucks can do it for.

In many cases rail is far cheaper but this line is an exception to this and most other lines closed that had silos. Trucks have a far more direct route by road from say a silo at Cowra or Young to Port Kembla than rail does. Factor in also the need for more locomotive horse power due to the 1 in 40 gradients and rail can't compete unfortunately. Axel loadings also limit the type of locomotive that can be used and how much wagons can carry.

Loading trains at Cunningar not far from Demondrille or locations further south is competitive to Port Kembla as grades facing a loaded train on main south are better with ruling gradient being 1 in 66 so less horse power required to haul same train. Wagons can also be loaded to 92 ton Gross and no locomotive restrictions.

Also the Carcoar tunnel has clearance issues that cause rolling stock limitations.

There is a plan to reinstate Demondrille to Young section of the line but no activity yet.
  a6et Minister for Railways

There are issues with the Blaney to Demondrille line and the Branches to Eugowra and Grenfell. Grain crops are still fairly common on the southern end of the line and branches with some silos still being used for storage and all grain obviously coming in and going out with road transport.

Rail has to compete with the price per ton delivered to the port that trucks can do it for.

In many cases rail is far cheaper but this line is an exception to this and most other lines closed that had silos. Trucks have a far more direct route by road from say a silo at Cowra or Young to Port Kembla than rail does. Factor in also the need for more locomotive horse power due to the 1 in 40 gradients and rail can't compete unfortunately. Axel loadings also limit the type of locomotive that can be used and how much wagons can carry.

Loading trains at Cunningar not far from Demondrille or locations further south is competitive to Port Kembla as grades facing a loaded train on main south are better with ruling gradient being 1 in 66 so less horse power required to haul same train. Wagons can also be loaded to 92 ton Gross and no locomotive restrictions.

Also the Carcoar tunnel has clearance issues that cause rolling stock limitations.

There is a plan to reinstate Demondrille to Young section of the line but no activity yet.
2LaGrange
That was my point with the line and grain being not the commodity it was on the Blayney end, while the branch line issues are old, it would not take a lot to fix much of it. The Eugowra line could be viable as far as Canownindra but the bridge wash away just short of the town is the primary issue, aside of course that all the wooden sleepers now would be rotted away from white ant damage, which would be the case with all the wooden sleepers in the whole area.  Therefore nothing short of a full steel or concrete sleeper replacement would work, given that much of the main part of the line from Cowra to Demondrille is predominately steel sleepered now, 2nd hand heavy rail from other main line replacement programs could help fix the line.

The washed out section is worse now only because nothing has been done since the closure, same with so much of the line being overtaken by tree growth which would likely affected the formation and its foundations, rabbit burrows likely would not help either.

Certainly the 1:40 grades are problematic but with track upgrades it allows for more MP up front as is happening in other areas with the more loco lash ups on the trains.

As for Carcoar, the biggest issue now with the tunnel is the heritage listing on it, meaning it cannot be demolished and opened up.  However given the actual track gradient and curvature at that spot, a by pass of the tunnel to the west could readily solve much of the problem, as the area has a lot of rock and the property on that part would want compensation for the loss of any land, an opening up and large half Armco pipe positioned under the highway and through the property, then covered over with spoil and dirt is not a hard option.

That could also actually bypass the station area allowing the station and surrounds to be a nice heritage area fitting well with the history of the town. Carcoar like Millthorpe attracts a lot of tourists who go on to Cowra and Canowindra owing to their "old world charm".

What many do not realise is that the Cowra region is still a productive one and Cowra itself has grown significantly, and there are a lot of businesses that want to use rail as against road, much of the reason is that most of the road transport operating in and out of the town come from elsewhere and mostly larger areas and capital cities, they see employment for the area as a benefit.  

The line will re-open beginning with the Section to Maimuru ready for the next decent cropping season, and that's up to the weather to come good.  There is still a 6-8 week window for general wheat and a bit more for the short season varieties to get enough soil moisture for sowing.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Just on Hillston and possible upgrades, there are competitor sites in the region that might make GrainCorp think against it.  Emerald and also Northern Riverina Grain operate decent sized sites and with good trucks available now, farmers can get lots of volume to these sites which I believe are better performers cost wise.  So Graincorp, with other investment options in mind, might invest elsewhere and leave Hillston as it is as theyre just less competitive there.
  a6et Minister for Railways

Just on Hillston and possible upgrades, there are competitor sites in the region that might make GrainCorp think against it.  Emerald and also Northern Riverina Grain operate decent sized sites and with good trucks available now, farmers can get lots of volume to these sites which I believe are better performers cost wise.  So Graincorp, with other investment options in mind, might invest elsewhere and leave Hillston as it is as theyre just less competitive there.
james.au
James that is a very good point, and one farmer IIRC in the Moree district Boree Creek has been in the headlines regarding the direct rail transport of grain from up that way.

Thing to remember though especially with that area is the tag that's applied to it is with good reason, Golden Triangle.  As it usually produces a fair harvest even in bad seasons owing to the thunderstorms that can give the rain at appropriate times.

Haven't heard much about the Northern Riverina one though, but I would think in that area, that Rice would be a fair crop for them to be involved in as well.

Owing to the marginal aspect of the Hillston district, and for storage of the grain, depending on the quality and amount, its not unusual if there is big seasons, and this applies to other areas as well, as the silo's fill, shorter trains are often used to bring grain from those locations into the main sub terminals in the district, which in this case would likely be Junee or Temora.  The worst aspect of that is its double handling but its also works as there is the ability to mix grains together of the same quality/type when its in large quantities.  Used to see it a lot at Moree and WCK.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
as the silo's fill, shorter trains are often used to bring grain from those locations into the main sub terminals in the district, which in this case would likely be Junee or Temora.
a6et
I dont think this has happened for around 30 years, at least for Temora.  It is more common to see 81cl running all the way out instead of the 48s (though the 48s sometimes do lash up for power in the place of an 81cl).  Ive seen 81cl running out to West Wyalong and beyond for at least 20 years.  The days of the sub terminal i think are over given the double handling costs that you mention.
  a6et Minister for Railways

as the silo's fill, shorter trains are often used to bring grain from those locations into the main sub terminals in the district, which in this case would likely be Junee or Temora.
I dont think this has happened for around 30 years, at least for Temora.  It is more common to see 81cl running all the way out instead of the 48s (though the 48s sometimes do lash up for power in the place of an 81cl).  Ive seen 81cl running out to West Wyalong and beyond for at least 20 years.  The days of the sub terminal i think are over given the double handling costs that you mention.
james.au
Thanks James, and I guess with the motive power now available along with the huge use of temporary storage facilities its easy to see why that old system has changed.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
as the silo's fill, shorter trains are often used to bring grain from those locations into the main sub terminals in the district, which in this case would likely be Junee or Temora.
I dont think this has happened for around 30 years, at least for Temora.  It is more common to see 81cl running all the way out instead of the 48s (though the 48s sometimes do lash up for power in the place of an 81cl).  Ive seen 81cl running out to West Wyalong and beyond for at least 20 years.  The days of the sub terminal i think are over given the double handling costs that you mention.
Thanks James, and I guess with the motive power now available along with the huge use of temporary storage facilities its easy to see why that old system has changed.
a6et
I think it might be the case that these 81cl etc trains might top off the loads at terminals like Temora/Junee/Cunningar etc, to the full loads down to port but yes, the sub terminal concept i dont think has been used for quite some time.  I think they are no longer referred as such either.

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