Extra 14 to Rio

Very early on Saturday morning, before the first passenger trains were due, the FCPyF ran a freight extra to collect loads from the mine at Rio Paleta.

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Brief encounter at Cuarto

Freight motor #20 arrived at Cuarto de Pulgada earlier this evening with a flat car and a tank in tow. The tank wagon is loaded with fuel to replace an empty which is to be returned to Grande and was left on the loop track while #20 and the flat car were turned.

#20 then waited for #305 to depart for all stations to Grande before drawing forward to the goods shed for unloading.

When the turntable is clear the station shunter, #67, will attach the outbound empty to the rear of #20’s train before moving the inbound loaded tank onto the loco spur.

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Round trip

The train in this slideshow is making a round trip over the full length of the FCPyF. Starting in the staging yard (San Fernandez) then photographed at various locations en-route.

Mogul N0.7 works the train in each direction over the San Fernandez line and consolidation No.117 is in charge from Grande to Cuarto and back with uphill assistance from Sentinel No.14. Also seen in the pictures are railcars 305, 27 and 28.

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Seriously overrunning engineering work

Autoferro 27 is still stranded at Cuarto de Pulgada.

The platelayers have moved uphill a bit to jack and pack more of the track between Rio Paleta and Lago Cumbre.

On a different matter, I’ve lost the phone I was using to take photos of the railway so I went into Crewe this morning to buy a new one. I have to say that I am most impressed with the camera on it, less so with trying to get it and my laptop to communicate with each other via the USB lead. I eventually gave up and sent the images via email. I really don’t fancy all that rigmarole every time I want to transfer photos from the phone though, so I’m going to have to get somebody who knows how to work an iPhone to take a look at it.

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Engineering overrun

As expected the engineering works between Rio Paleta and Cumbre are overrunning and the line is still blocked by a heavy weight while the glue dries.

It being Sunday the railway would normally just be using the autoferros but, with 27 isolated at Cuarto de Pulgada, railcar 305 is deputising on the high line between Grande and Rio Paleta.

28 is on the low line, making a booked station stop at Resurreccion.

The two trains met at Grande just after midday, 28 arrived first and went for turning in the loco yard while 305 arrived to the bottom end of the platform. 28 then shunted to the departure end of the platform and both railcars were shut down until it was time for them to depart later in the afternoon. 21 is seen in the foreground, laying over for the weekend.

The view from the clock tower gives a close look at 28 with 305 behind it and 21 alongside the carriage shed.


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Weekend engineering works

Having got thoroughly fed up with the repetitive “Boom, tish, de, de, boom, Boom, tish, de, de, boom, Boom, tish, de, de, boom, Boom, tish, de, de, boom” of the muzac in the pub I came home early last night. I wouldn’t mind if the bass was turned down so it could be ignored, but it wasn’t.

Anyway with an hour or so to kill before bedtime I got round to doing an outstanding P-way job on the railway. The curve at the bottom of the incline from Rio up to Cumbre had developed reverse super-elevation when the supports below the baseboard were adjusted some time ago so I soaked the ballast in wet water to loosen the glue then packed the sleeper ends on the outer side of the curve and re-ballasted the track before soaking with diluted PVA.

In the true manner of weekend engineering works this will probably overrun and the glue won’t be dry in time for tomorrow’s trains. Replacement bus service? Not on your Nelly, you pay train prices, you travel by train. Even if that means waiting, and waiting, hey, we’re in South America, what’s the rush? Mañana!

While the high line was closed for the re-ballasting work the low line also received some late night attention.

This container normally sits on the platform at Grande, presumably used for small goods storage, but it also fits nicely on a converted Tri-ang track cleaning wagon to provide the weight needed in keeping the cleaning pad pressed hard on the rails.

Consolidation number 33 was in charge of the engineering train, the other two vehicles in the consist being a coupler adaptor wagon, with Kadee at the loco end and tension lock at the other, and a caboose, because – well just because.

The track cleaning wagon is used in Tunel Resurreccion.

It’s a lot easier than reaching in elbow deep from either end and still only just getting finger tips to the middle of the tunnel.

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Help required

Though No.117 managed a fairly long freight consist as a test train the passenger coaches are heavier and she needs help with the Cuarto Mail between Bodjio and Cumbre. This help is provided by a light engine move in advance of the train as far as Bodjio. When the train arrives it pulls clear of the junction, allowing the helper to be attached on the rear.

The reason for doing it this way is because of an awkward reverse curve as trains leave Grande and the risk of derailments this incurs.

The addition of a helper loco for the climb from Bodjio to Cumbre adds operational interest to the railway thus making it much more fun playing trains on the layout, and that’s what the hobby is all about.

Posted in My trains, Narrow gauge, Toy train chit chat