Sandstone Heritage Trust - Rail News

RN 241 - Weekly Steamshed report - 2nd - 9th September 2006 - By Gert Jubileus

Shunting, shunting and more shunting! .

This week the Hoekfontein Station was a very busy marshalling yard when we had to shunt out wagons to free up some space in the storage line for the new wagons, saved from Port Shepstone. The Barclay was steamed in place of the Hunslet that is still busy shunting wagons in Port Shepstone. First of all we shunted out flat wagons, Dz’s and B wagons and took them to the Pandora Pond where they were left to be loaded with locomotive and wagon spares out of the salvage yard.


Below are photos taken of the shunting and the clearing of wagons to Pandora Pond:

Below left: The Barclay working very hard in the Hoekfontein yard
Below right: The Barclay with the first four wagons at Pandora Pawn.


Below left: Henry immediately started with the loading of wheels and spares out of the salvage yard.
Below right: Derrick loosened the brakes of the five B wagons, just before departure to Pandora.
A total of 13 wagons were left to load at Pandora.

We then shunted out all the un-restored wagons to hook up the XC wagon, next for restoration.
Below: The Barclay, working her heart out to move these wagons out of the way.

Finally, the XC was free to be shunted down to the shed. Another special wagon will now be restored.


At the same time, we shunted out five wagons, specially selected for having very good condition bogeys (left photo) and then we shunted the first ten wagons from Port Shepstone into the storage line in the Hoekfontein Station where they will await their turn for restoration.

Henry then took the wagons of their bogeys and very, very momentarily stored them on sleepers near the Railway line.

All the bogeys then were moved to the Locomotive shed where they will be restored.
In total sixteen bogeys are lined up and ready for restoration. Jacob started immediately with removing of all the old axle box wool. All the axle box dust covers will be fitted, all the brake blocks removed before they will be sand blasted and spray painted with Copper Berry paint.
Eight of these bogeys will be overhauled to spotless condition to be exported.

On Monday morning, we offloaded the six wagons that came from Port Shepstone.
Below are photos taken of the offloading.

Photo right: Almost looks impossible, but Henry managed to reverse through the trees with the B wagon.

On Friday afternoon another six wagons arrived from Port Shepstone. Below are photos taken just as the Freight liners arrived at the Main complex at Hoekfontein.

Another mission accomplished!

We then offloaded two of these wagons.

Below: An St wagon on its way to find her feet on the Sandstone Steam Railroad railway line.
A foundation to stand on.
The Sandstone Wagon Report

This week Petrus sanded off the Cattle wagon number 3292 and varnished the wooden sides.
He then started with the painting of the framework of this wagon and will complete it in next week.
Petrus has taken on the task of restoring this wagon all by himself!

Below are photos of 3292

Next week Petrus will finish the painting of the frame and will then paint the interior of this wagon with Battle Ship grey.

Once this wagon is completed, he will start with the restoration of the XC wagon. One of the new ST wagons will also come to the shed for restoration.

B Wagon 2968

This week Derrick made new hinges for the doors of this B wagon and fitted the doors to it. In next week he will finish the doors and then spray paint the wagon to complete the restoration.

Below: Photos of 2968
The Locomotive Report

This week we fitted back the spark arrestor plates of the Kalahari that were removed for Boiler Inspection purposes.

The Ratanga Locomotive

Henry loosened the boiler of the Ratanga Locomotive and is busy removing the smokebox of this locomotive. The Boiler will now be taken to the Bloemfontein workshop for a complete boiler restoration.

Below: Photos of the Ratanga Locomotive restoration.

Henry will now go on with the restoration of the motion of this locomotive.
Once the boiler is restored, he will be finished with the motion and Henk will be finished with the tender of the locomotive.
All will then be fitted together and she then can ride the rails.
The O&K

This week the regulator of the O&K was taken off and the valve was faced.
The resgulator then was fitted back and the steam pipes too.

Track maintenance

Oupa went on with the track maintenance on the line between Hoekfontein and Mooihoek, and finished the maintenance at Mooihoek Station. He will now continue with the section from Mooihoek to Vailima.
This was not the only work done on the track this week. We had to make the gab bigger between the point blade and the run through rail on the points at the tri-angle. The gab was too narrow for the wheel flanges of some of the locomotives. The gab is now 2 cm wider.

Below: Photos of the gab before and after (right blade).

Below: Derrick working on the points.

The Peerless Truck

Derrick finished the restoration of the Peerless this week.

Below: Derrick and Jacob completing the restoration.

A daunting task indeed is to keep the workshop clean. I have inserted a photo of the woman who (with a lot of guts) keeps the floors shining and clean every day!

Below: Jemina.

In memory of 3349

Class 19D number 3349 resting over a weekend at the coal stage in Theunissen, August 1985.

This was long before the end of steam, though she did not know that within years she would be gone, and her only memory would be in a photo like this. In 1985, there was steam everywhere, fitters running up and down and whistles joyously sang out their songs. Trails of smoke hanging over the steam towns, a scene to make believe it never going to end.

It was a way of living, the sounds of locomotives shunting the yards and then the Express passenger train storming through the station leaving a trail of smoke and a rumble in the Station windows. Today it is silent and these machines now only live in our memories and on photos fading as time goes bye.

Just one question, who could cut up a beautiful face like this?

1.) To finish restoration of 3292
2.) To finish restoration of B wagon 2968
3.) To start with restoration of XC and ST wagon
4.) Track maintenance section Mooihoek – Vailima
5.) To offload wagons from Port Shepstone.
6.) To empty Pandora salvage yard.
7.) To overhaul 16 bogeys
8.) To remove rear unit of 153 and to do needed repair work.