A gang of 8 had a go at manually raising the track, but did barely 10 yards in a day. It was really hard going, so the Jacker / Packer was hired in.
The 'lump' visible here is the height we need, so there is a lot more lifting required around it.
It didn't take very long to set the machine up. All you need to do is drive it to the site, and release the tines, which are secured (for travel) underneath.
Note the lifting hooks behind, which have already grabbed the rail in the picture.
A pair of hydraulic rams then pushes down, thus lifting the machine, which is clinging to the rails.
The height is determined by the operator, using sighting boards. The cant can be adjusted using a graduated spirit level inside, with each ram operated individually.
You can see here that the lift was a high one, and that we indeed now need more ballast here,as the sleepers can be clearly seen emerging from the ballast bed.
In due course we will run another ballast train over this, followed by a final tamping from the big machine.
As we move backwards towards the bridge, Peter, prone, confirms the progress while Bob, on board the machine, makes sure the rams go down in the right place. Our trainee Martin, already an experienced plant operator, but not on this one yet, looks on.
Here Martin is operating the machine, under the supervision of owner / trainer Bob.
It all went very well, it's not a complicated machine to learn.
Our conclusion was that the session went well, the machine did the job it was asked to do. It may well be useful elsewhere on the railway, if we keep it for a while.
Next, more ballast here, and the big tamper returns.
Back at Broadway, a customer came to collect 5 replica GWR platform lamp posts, cast specially for him in addition to those recently planted on platform 2. All profits go to the GWSR, so if you you want one or more for your railway or garden, get in touch via the company website.