Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Wakebridge 17th December

These two pictures were taken nearly a week ago. Since then all the rail has been placed in position and bent, welded, clipped and tied as necessary. This morning just two fish plate joints were outstanding and a general tidy up was being carried out prior to the Christmas break. Work is scheduled to start again on 5th January.
I have been impressed by the track work at Wakebridge and am looking forward to seeing its completion in the New Year. My thoughts inevitably turn to what next?
I personally would like to see a scissors crossover at Town End. Whilst Wakebridge has been a like for like replacement I think that alternative track layouts should be discussed for Town End - the present layout was dictated by materials to hand nearly 50 years ago. My design objectives would be
1. level track for at least two trams at the reversing point
2. kerbside loading and unloading (many of our customers are elderly)
3. a separate level loading and unloading point for Berlin 3006 and any future single sided access trams
4. in the long term move the printing office sideways to give better clearances (this could be bundled in with the Ripley Police Station project)
For these reasons I would like a scissors crossover. I know that Ivan and his team will rise to the challenge so how about it? What do you think?

Thanks for your comments Colin, and for your support for a Scissors Crossover at Town End.

The only curved rails delivered to Wakebridge were short sections of Ri 60 that formed part of the point assemblies. The curved northbound track was made from straight lengths of 35G taken from the stack at Cabin Crossing. This was cut to length and then welded before being bent by the hydraulic jim crow. The technique used was the same as we used thirty years ago but to greater precision. Balfour Beatty also claim that the modern jim crow produces a better result because it acts on the foot of the rail as well as the web and the head.

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1 comment:

  1. Hi Richard, like the idea of a scissors for Townend.

    just a slight technical point on the 'bent' trackwork at Wakebridge. I rather hope that they have used rail to a precision curved radius and not bent. I think we have enough 'bent trackwork' as it is.

    thanks for the picies of the progress at Wakebridge, great to se what's going on as we aren't allowed access to the site for obvious reasons.