Weekend Rails

what we do for our kids

Sunday, 02 March 2014 00:00

Of raffles and revisions

2nd March 2014

At 08.30 Monday morning an e-mail polarised in my Inbox containing Revision C of the plans for the shed floor. My revised spec to the Structural engineers, which had included a large amount of “as built” information on CAD, had limited that area where the Mattersons are to be used effectively down to one quarter of the building. Thus while this retained the “nuclear shelter” concrete thickness, the remainder of the floor could be reduced to “normal” standards.

Published in 2014 Jan-Mar
Sunday, 23 February 2014 00:00

Of banners and beams

23rd February 2014

Work resumed at Darley Dale on Monday with the gable ends, side purlins and various concrete panels still to complete. A framework for the personnel door at the side was duly incorporated, but a framework for the other door, which goes at the far end between the planned roller shutters, is not yet ready leaving that end of the building strangely skeletal.

Published in 2014 Jan-Mar
Sunday, 16 February 2014 00:00

Of lists of things to do

16th February 2014

Right, make yourself a cup of tea, or pour a beer, because this might take some time.  And for once, when sometimes I feel guilty that there is only one, or even none, in the way of photographs, this week there is lots to report and lots of pictures to show it with.

Published in 2014 Jan-Mar
Sunday, 02 February 2014 00:00

Of locos moving and being moved

2nd February 2014


So, there we were on Monday having a quick meeting with the contractor and reviewing progress to date. We are all agreed that the floor design wants modifying, and that none of us can work out exactly how we are supposed (in reality) to get the DPM to go the way the drawings show it, so I have gone back to the Structural Engineers with fresh drawings and asked them to come up with an alternative scheme.  Meanwhile I was sorting out the personnel doors, and the concrete panels that will form the inside walls of the building up to head height. We had agreed with the contractor that work would commence on the steelwork on the 17th February, and I planned deliveries accordingly.

Published in 2014 Jan-Mar
Sunday, 19 January 2014 00:00

Of things going up in the air and down in the ground

19th January 2013

So at 07.55 Monday morning I was driving down to Darley for an 08.00 start when my mobile rang.  Not having the hands-free on and not recognising the number I ignored it, and called it back on arrival. It was my contractor to say that there was a problem with plant transport and start would be delayed. My first thought was to head back home, but then I remembered the portable loo was due between 08.30 and 09.00, so I decided to soak up the solace of Darley Dale from the inside of my nice warm Portakabin. At 09.05 I tried to ring the portable-loo-man without success. At 09.15 I headed back home (to find his landline number)  and as soon as I walked in the door, my phone rang. It was the portable loo man to say he was outside the gates.

Published in 2014 Jan-Mar
Sunday, 20 October 2013 01:00

Of watchers and watches

20th October 2013

Well now, this weeks instalment may be a disappointment. It has been a quiet time. Amongst other things, I've been down to the Eurostar depot at Temple Mills. (That's Temple Mills on the East side of Borisville: I gather there was some sort of sporting event held near there last year.) I've been in to lots of rail depots over the years, but never before have I had to empty my pockets, and pass through a metal detector whilst my personal particulars are X-ray'd, not to mention a nice (but not English) lady searching my car.  Of course, were I to work at a Heathrow  I daresay all this would be commonplace and not raise an eyebrow, but it just seemed so unnecessary just to get into a rail depot.

Published in 2013 Oct-Dec
Sunday, 13 October 2013 01:00

Of Guards and Brakes

13th October 2013


Oh what a miserable morning
Oh what a dis-mal day
I've got a frightening feeling
Blizzards are coming our way.

Published in 2013 Oct-Dec
Sunday, 06 October 2013 01:00

Of reflections

6th October 2013

As I was saying, Andrew had the day off on Monday and so we were to spend it at Rowsley. In a surprisingly generous mood, he invited me to nominate what I would like to do (aside from heading back home, sleeping, resting, etc) and on reflection I decided I would like to start on “Ashdown”'s new windows.

Published in 2013 Oct-Dec
Sunday, 22 September 2013 01:00

Of 16 trips to Sainsbury's

22nd September 2013

As I have said before, there are weeks when I am doing too much unpaid for the “collection”. This week has been one such. On Tuesday, although D8 Penyghent, was rostered according to Peak Rail's website, in practice we had been asked to provide and man 14 901 as D8s regular driver had a hospital appointment. I had been hoping that, by now, we would have had drivers trained up and ready to enjoy this experience, but although I am 'keeping up the momentum' on training (as per my instructions), we have no-one yet who has had experience of driving in passenger service and with all these person-carrying things in tow. So it was down to me to drive the loco, supported by one of my trainees to act as Secondman, and, as he to was not signed to act as a pilot, Rob S to perform that role. And I was under strict orders that I must do all the driving.

Published in 2013 Jul-Sep
Sunday, 15 September 2013 01:00

Of on-train training

15th September 2013

OK, so if you are a regular reader, or at least been here before but not for the last week or so, what you are seeing looks a little different. Not much, you understand, we've kept the same colour scheme and the header photos, but the sub-title “what we do for...” has, at the insistence of my daughter, changed to “...our kids” as she felt that 'kids unspecified' might give rise to unsavoury interpretations.

Published in 2013 Jul-Sep
Page 9 of 15

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