There were two 'kettles' out today, and here is the second. 2807 used the space vacated by the departing Dinmore Manor south to attach to the northern end of its train, about to leave for Broadway.
It's a bit daunting, standing here in this cutting, as you think you are on a proper main line and a Penzance Express should come hurtling round the bend at 60mph at any minute. There's double track at each end of the cutting, with this short stretch of single line in between.
Although this wasn't part of the original plan, we did spend a few minutes also measuring up one of the ends of this crossing, which was showing signs of wear, and could do with a lifter plate.
Meanwhile, 2807 has settled down at the head of its train to Broadway and is ready to go, awaiting just a clear signal.
Below the first carriage you can see the turnout for the north carriage siding that we are measuring up. At the bottom of the picture is the catch point, a device that protects the running line from unauthorised access from the siding. The running line turnout under the first carriage is motor driven, as the signal box is way over the other side of the station, opposite the goods shed. The catch point is mechanically linked to the running line turnout by means of the rodding run on the left.
Now that we are stabling two rakes, end to end, the loco propelling the first rake ventures quite a lot further up the siding, and we need to upgrade its quality, principally by fitting more fishplate bolts, and fitting lifter plates where in the early days, a little bump in the siding caused by rails of different wear was of no great consequence.
Nigel was back from his hols and the famous sponge cake was on again. What a relief!
In the foreground is the fact sheet on which the measurements of each rail were recorded.
|The 15 arch Stanway viaduct - hardly anything visible from track level.|
While we were out here we decided to have a gander at the southern breather of the CWR stretch that starts beyond the viaduct. Having just walked out of the cutting, it doesn't feel very high up, until, once on the viaduct, you look down. Oops! It's quite high after all...
Nigel and Bert have reached the CWR breather. Out here the sun is unrelenting, and everyone has a bottle of water with them.
The answer was: Very well indeed, no problems to report. The concrete sleepers, and plenty of ballast, hold the CWR in place despite the heat expansion. Much of the breather's work is actually to protect the CWR stretch from the expansion of adjoining, normal fish plated track.
The CWR here runs all the way up to (Broadway) Pry Lane, a stretch of 3 miles! Since it was laid, it has given no trouble at all, a big feather in the cap of those that put it down.
Just for those that are interested, here is a close up of the breather gap itself.
You can see how the rails can slide past each other to open up or further close the gap. The wheels feel nothing.
Note that the outside temperature was 29 degrees today, while the temperature of the rails will have been considerably higher than that still.
This must have been tossed over either last thing on Thursday (after the last train left) or first thing on Friday, before we arrived at 9 am. What is the purpose of these 'doggie bags' if all the owners do is hang or throw them somewhere?
In the recent (somewhat more minor) bridge strike that we suffered the wasp striping was hit by a blunt object that seemed to be less hard than steel. It bent the bracket of the warning stripes, but seemed to just scratch the actual bridge itself.
Could the two be connected?