Saturday, May 15, 2010

Glasgow 812

Yesterday I was the conductor on 812.
Readers with Photoshop will be able to have some fun colouring Liverpool 869 as Glasgow 1055 to complete this Glasgow depot scene.

We had a junior school party from Nottingham who were working on a project to compare the experience of riding on new trams and old trams. Last week they had ridden on NET and this week it was our turn.
To reply to Rich, I think 812 is a wonderful tram to conduct and far far better than Glasgow 22 which used to be known as 'the flying dustbin'. 812 has everything to make the conductor's life a dream - a bow collector that behaves itself and no trolleys to turn, air brakes so no handbrakes to to release, convenient reliable bells and mirrors on the stairs and above the driver. Sure it rocks and sways but as conductor you know when that is going to happen and the visitors enjoy it. Finally it is quite fast you have plenty of time at Glory Mine to talk to your customers.

PS  Does anyone know why the trolley reverser at Glory Mine is out of use or even better when it will be repaired?
The most plausible explanation I have heard is that the trolley reverser is in working order but it is out of use for health and safety reasons because the conductor would be required to walk over uneven ground to operate the pull cord.
To answer Jack's and Christoph's comments, I am simply trying to find out what the problem is. I have been assured that when the pull cord was installed about 12 months ago the reverser was capable of being used. I have also been told that there are concerns abouts its safe useage because of the uneven ground. It would be straightforward to make a smooth walkway which gives credence to Jack's comments concerning sight lines and hand brakes.
I will continue to try and find out until someone has courtesy to tell me. Then perhaps I will be able contribute towards a solution.

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  1. Not conducted on this tram yet. What's it like compared to 22?
    P.S. Love the new header photo! Brilliant!

  2. Thanks for that, and it certainly can't be worse than 22! Earlier this year when I was doing some duties the drivers always wanted 22 because of the windscreen. I did one full duty on it: not again! lol
    And as to the Glory Mine trolley reverser: it was repaired a few years ago, but the workshop haven't tested it and said it is safe for use. It wouldn't take long and it would be very convenient (especially with 40), so they really should sort themselves out.

  3. In respect of glory mine trolley reverser, the fact is that it is fully usable and would be usable tomorrow. The fact is that a certain person at the museum doesn't want it to be used and will not say to use it. It was commisioned by JDM and used for several years. Hopefully it will be usable one day soon.

  4. Disagree re: 812's bow - didn't behave itself when I had it last season, it snapped and we ended up with 345 *shudders*

    The only good bit is that i've driven it twice - first time the photo is on this blog somewhere! - but it's still my second least favourite.

    Had 22 on the day I passed out - well, to be precise, passed out on it! Then swapped to 399. Or it was the other way round, I can't remember!

    Re: Glory Mine reverser, it was in use during 2008 and part of 2009, before modifications were made so that you needed to pull a frog to access it rather than being the default and requiring the ski-jump arrangement for bow collectors and not allowing Berlin 3006 to reverse through the loop, and instead have to turn in the loop. This was removed (allowing 3006 to be treated as any other car) and the reverser altered to the arrangement using a frog. It was like this for much of the 2009 season. It has been tested (I think...), but not passed for use yet. (Might be wrong). There's more to life than ease of use - I actually enjoy the use of the bamboo and it's another visitor attraction - sure, takes all of 30 seconds more effort, who cares? Try bamboo'ing 40 on a night duty, or 74 every trip both ends on your first passed out trip, or 399 every trip both ends the day you pass out!

    "so they really should sort themselves out. " - And that's just plain rude. If it wasn't for them you wouldn't have any trams at all to play with, show some respect.

  5. 'Rapids' Johnstone17/5/10 19:22

    Three cheers for Jack Gordon and the planet reality party! Respect due!
    As for Rich and ADJ, stop eating the blue smarties at bedtime, stop listening to the Town End gossips that spend all day dissin the efforts of others, finding fault with everything that has been done by others while they have been playing trams and get you facts straight before posting them on a blog!

  6. Had a check of my records today, and the last recorded use of the reverser was during Enthusiasts' 2008 - the tram in question being Rack 166.

    It was still in the old format during some early 2009 workshop test runs shortly after the Wakebridge track was finished as we took 812 up to test the bow on the overhead.

    I believe it was out of service for the start of the season (See 399 and 74 above) though I am not 100% certain and haven't got a record. It was, however, definitely out of use by Easter 1940s Sunday, as I was bamboo'ing 40 in the dark - fun!

    Finally, the day I had 812 then 345 (Date not recorded) it was definitely minus ski-jump as that was the first time I had been and 3006 was passed to use the entire loop.

    Might be wrong in some/all of what I have said, but my point is very much the one I finished on last time: "If it wasn't for the [engineering department] you wouldn't have any trams at all to play with..."

  7. Are we playing the bad old workshop vs. traffic game again, but this time in public on the internet?

    It would be nice to see all the infrastructure available in working order.

    Running the tram service is not "playing trams" for the crews. It is as much part of the visitor experience of "Crich Tramway Village" as the trams in their own right. It can be hard work even more so as you can not have a break as you require, you can not have a pee when you need it etc.. The show must go on.

    Look, you are all playing in the same team. Traffic could not run a tram service without the workshop. Workshop could not restore or maintain anything without the income generated by traffic. There is no time for own agendas or feelings of superiority anywhere. Realise it now!

    (By the way: I believe that the workshop-trafffic relationship was much better in a period about 2002 - 2006 than before and after. A question of the behaviour of individuals perhaps?)

    (By the way 2: I also believe that this discussion should be less public, but still on the internet. Anyone wishing to revive the attempt to install an internal forum or use the active Yahoo-group? Information available by email which is on my website under "Impressum")

  8. thanks to jack for his comment. he's got some of the facts right as well. in respect to eating blue smarties and spending all day dissin people, i actually get stuck in and do work by doing several jobs from organizing events to cleaning drains out. i also get stuck in when help is needed and do what i can for the museum in any way. it's comments like the one on here that is making me to start thinking twice about crich and whether to carry on working for a group who backstabs each other instead of working together like we all should be.

    enough said. watch the programme on the bbc iplayer about the british commercial museum, it's worth watching to see how another museum is run.

  9. i think this needs to stop its putting me off working at crich as am involved with keighley bus musuem and have been for just over a year they welcome you with open arms they did so with me and have let me take on the care and restoration of one thier buses and there is no back stabbing i know where il be spending my time in future it is a shame and its putting more than me off no wounders the museum is deprate for more people to help we should be promoting the museum as a friendly place and where people are welcome to come and help
    oh i don't mind putting my full name to it

  10. 'Rapids' Johnstone18/5/10 21:16

    I wasn't suggesting for a minute that it was you who was doing the all dissin ADJ or questioning what work you do, try reading my post again s l o w l y! Who is the 'certain person' that is stopping the reverser being used? Give us a clue please?
    Some very interesting comments and implications from Christoph as usual!

  11. As regards the trolley reverser problems, it needs to be understood that trolley reversers are fiddlesome things at the best of times. Constructing a trolley reverser that will work with a wide assortment of tram and trolley lengths is far from easy, and it doesn't take much to upset the geometry, then the wretched thing decides not to work with certain cars. Another few bumps, tweaks and tugs and it packs in totally. Why not join the overhead line gang (if Crich still has one)?

  12. It seems to me that there is just one "protagonist" in this drama, and it is a (high up) workshop person who many in operations/traffic disagree with. I do not wish to name an individual, but he is on the Board now, but wasn't a couple of years ago.
    It seems to be the view of the workshop (and I realise this is sweeping) that operations break the trams so that the workshop have to fix them.
    I try and see things from both points of view, but sometimes I can only find out things from one side, so it may be biased.

    Also, can people stop being so harsh on those (including myself) who express an opinion on this blog? And that includes when Richard has an opinion. I thought we lived in a society where people could express their opinions? If people do not agree then that is fine, but don't be cruel to those who don't agree with you.

  13. Sorry, Rich, what facts have you got to back up that statement? I'm a semi-regular workshop volunteer and certainly from what i've seen that's not the view they take at all. I don't know who you are referring to either, but if it is who I think you are referring to then I firstly suggest you go no further on a public blog as that /is/ something that, even by my standards, should remain internal, and secondly I also ask why were people voted in if there's this perception about them? If you've got a problem with someone and what they do, talk to them and find out what their views are, don't go saying things on a blog like this!

    Anyway, back on topic... Richard's edit to his post has jogged my memory regarding the reverser and I believe another factor may the fact that you cannot see the rear platform of the tramcar (or operate the brakes on handbrake cars) whilst pulling the pull-frog as there is a bank in the way. Uneven ground may have something to do with it, though I don't see it as big a factor because there's the same potential on the street setts or indeed the Glory Mine 'trolley-turning-bit'.

    Anyway, i've got an A Level exam tomorrow and should probably go do some last minute revision!

  14. Derby 1 Chesterfield 720/5/10 23:21

    'Can people stop being so harsh'? What do you expect them to be Rich when you appear to post so much unfounded and outspoken clap trap on an open forum? Yes, you are entitled to an opinion but have you really been around long enough to make such judgments or be making such sweeping statements?
    May I suggest that you stop listening to hear say and the malicious rumour mongers and judge people as you find them? You may be pleasantly surprised and find that the 'bad guys' on the 'dark side' may not be quite as bad as they're made out to be!
    Trust me, there is no Traffic vs. Workshop except in the imagination of the few, but you make your own mind up.

  15. I'm all in favour of constructive criticism, but this seems to have turned into a witch hunt! There's a clear difference and I think some people ought to take a step back and think about what they're saying here...

    As a regular visitor (not a volunteer) I see good & bad sides to most sections of the TMS - like most organisations really. I don't personally agree with all of the workshop policies, but from what I've seen most of the people seem like jolly nice chaps who work hard to help others enjoy themselves at Crich. Likewise, the operations side work very hard to keep things running, and again there are many very nice people. Can we try to avoid stirring the pot unless it could actually benefit, rather than harm, the Museum?

  16. Richard,

    when you write: "The most plausible explanation I have heard is that the trolley reverser is in working order but it is out of use for health and safety reasons because the conductor would be required to walk over uneven ground to operate the pull cord."

    please remember that drivers and conductors are required to walk over uneven ground, i.e. ballast, when testing the telephone.

  17. In addition to Christoph's comment, may I point out that drivers and conductors have to walk on uneven ground/ballast when turning the trolley pole around at Glory Mine anyway? And we are in more danger of falling over whilst walking with the sprung trolley pole in our hands and concentrating on that than when walking over to a pull cord!
    Two solutions to that: leave the ballast as it is, or tarmac Glory Mine. The former would be much easier, the latter quite impractical.

  18. I already said this...

    "Uneven ground may have something to do with it, though I don't see it as big a factor because there's the same potential on the street setts or indeed the Glory Mine 'trolley-turning-bit'."

  19. Be glad that you only have to reverse a trolley. Try to swing an Amsterdam bow collector around on uneven ground without damaging yourself, the tram or the overhead! The Amsterdam conductors are very good at this.
    Nevertheless, putting in a proper hard surface at Glory Mine is not a bad idea. In fact, that whole terminus is a bit in the middle of nowhere, which is not historically correct, except perhaps the then new route 17 in 1962 in Amsterdam, which was opened before the houses were build. The terminus in Osdorp got the nickname Sahara, because that's exactly what it looked like. Osdorp is nowadays fully developed, yet Glory Mine is still underdeveloped after 32 years.