I Couldn't Believe My Eyes...!!!!

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UrbanHermit
Posts: 284
Joined: Wed Jul 09, 2008 11:18 am
Location: Back of beyond, South Wales (Isn't it?)

Re: I Couldn't Believe My Eyes...!!!!

Postby UrbanHermit » Sun Apr 04, 2010 10:50 pm

Ah, but for me the West Country isn't the same without the Castles and Kings (Cries of "When d'yer get yer pension, mate?")...
"I fell out of favour with heaven somewhere, and I'm here for the hell of it now." (Kirsty MacColl)

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ngresley
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Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 9:18 am
Location: Canberra, Australia

Re: I Couldn't Believe My Eyes...!!!!

Postby ngresley » Sun Apr 04, 2010 11:43 pm

Gawd, this brings back memories of trainspotting in the '60's, albeit the other side of the world.

I was born in northern NSW, and my mum remembers me spending hours at the back fence watching the steam trains shunting.

When I was three we moved to Sydney, and spent the rest of my youth less than fifty metres from Australia's ECML, the Main Northern Line from Sydney to Brisbane. Jackpot!!! :D Steam lasted into the early '70s in NSW, and the memories... My official trainspotting career started with the (then) last run of 3830, last of the 38 class Pacifics (sort of an Australian Brittania) in late 1967. Saw the last run by two streamlined steam locomotives in Australia (3801 and 3803 double-headed), saw the last double-headed 38s (3801 plus a non-streamlined 38), saw any number of the huge 60 class Garretts (the most powerful steam locos in Australia), the American-built 59 class steam freight, looking so different from the rest of the British-inspired NSW fleet, and smaller steam freight locos. Took the train to school in nearby Hornsby, and regular as clockwork leaving home coincided with the North Coast Daylight Express, headed normally by a 40-class ALCO-powered diesel, the first NSW mainline diesels, but if I was lucky a 43 (also ALCO, but using a cab design only otherwise used by a one-off GE unit in the US!) and REALLY lucky an incredibly loud 42-class GM.

44-class mainline diesels and their 45-class "road switcher" cousins were the bread-and-butter by that time, also the 48-class, which although designed for branch workings were used on light freight on the main line, and sometimes up to *triple*-headed for larger trains. Most impressive were the British-built 46-class electrics, sometimes double-headed to pull enormous coal trains.

Meanwhile, Hornsby station was a great place for loco spotting. The 46-class (40 of them) was the first class that I completely "copped".

I must say that other trainspotters at school looked down on me as I was the only one that spotted diesel and electric as well as steam! I remember going on a school camp in the last '60s where the trip took us up around the Wyong area (between Sydney and Newcastle) which was the last strong-hold of NSW steam; some great views of locos from the bus and a bunch of very happy schoolboys!

Only regret was that the 57-class (huge heavy freight locos with Gresley 3-cylinder motion) were retired before my time.

Happy days... Too bad I'm now in Canberra where the only train station is the other side of the city and the only passenger traffic DMUs!
"I'd like to die quietly in my sleep like my grandfather, rather than screaming in terror like his passengers"

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50035 Ark Royal
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Re: I Couldn't Believe My Eyes...!!!!

Postby 50035 Ark Royal » Sun Apr 04, 2010 11:47 pm

Hi ngresley any chance of some pics of theese big diesel locos? :)
cheers
I
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ngresley
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Location: Canberra, Australia

Re: I Couldn't Believe My Eyes...!!!!

Postby ngresley » Tue Apr 06, 2010 10:27 pm

Here's the diesel and electric section of the NSW Rail Transport Museum:

http://www.nswrtm.org/exhibits/diesel.html

Just go down the side links - good collection of photos and info on each,

cheers!
"I'd like to die quietly in my sleep like my grandfather, rather than screaming in terror like his passengers"


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