said detailed inscription on marker post where the North
Car Sidings were at Adelaide Station.
The well said text reads:
at peace lies the old S.A.R.
After carrying passengers and goods afar;
Laid to rest on the first of March '78
Never no more to haul long distant freight;
Cleaved in two, right between the ears
For faithfully serving the State for 124
two pics by Cliff Olds in winter 1979.
on small picture to see larger picture
SOME S.A.R. SILENT MOVIE
for those who can remember these better times.
To view this very well done silent movie footage of the
S.A.R.'s good ol days.
This movie footage taken in the early 1960's by the
late Les Packham a rail enthusiast.
file size is
22 minute footage of a trip back to the real
From an era when common sense around trains WAS
the order of the day.
on small picture to see a larger picture
WHAT A BEAUTUFUL SIGHT.
Bayer Garratt 409
made rare visit to Adelaide (big smoke) and
visited the National Rail
Museum at Port Adelaide to see an
old friend I had not seen since the total
closure of the Peterborough Narrow Gauge
in Jan 1970. I count myself very
fortunate when I got there, the Bayer
Garratt 409 was outside of the shed in the
open in all
her near full glory. Of course her full
glory would naturally be under full
head of steam on her last trip 23rd
December 1969 on 554 Pirie to
Peterborough. I was
very happy to see her again.
sight from any angle
Left hand side
Right hand side
Front view. Note:- Difference between
the Narrow Gauge and Broad Gauge track.
View of cab at floor level.
view looking forward.
Ah yes, this was the absolute best of the day.
Sitting in hot seat again. Was a great feeling.
Stood on here many times during shunting
these engines at Jamestown
comes close to the ROAR of these Bayer
If you have not heard the sound of a Bayer
Garratt in action elsewhere here on my website,
then click here and
turn your sound up loud for proper sound
MAGIC MUSIC Sound
Diagram of the Bayer Garratt 409
all volunteers of NRM Port Adelaide it is a magnificent
I was very impressed and well worth a visit, one would not be disappointed.
poster in the Adelaide Rail Yards. 15th
The National Rail Museum Film Collection DVDs.
These well presented DVDs of those great S.A.R.
If you loved, or been a fan of old S.A.Railways, these be a must to have in
To obtain a copy, contact:
National Rail Museum.
PO Box 3151
Port Adelaide. South Australia. 5015
Phone: (08) 8341 1690 or Fax: (08)
on the picture to read the DVD cover
an ex SAR / AN railwayman these DVD's are nicely done of
Also this 95 minute rail DVD
film Collection Vol 2. (2012)
this 2 hour rail DVD
film Collection Vol 3. (2013)
South Australian Railways 900 class
The very spacious cab of 900 class.
Built by the South Australian Railways
10th September 1951
Diesel locomotive with A1A-A1A wheel arrangement
Entered service as broad gauge 900 class diesel locomotive No.900.
Withdrawn from service July 1985.
Now resides at the National Rail Museum. Port Adelaide.
You can now view a WMV file of the 900 class loco in action,
Is great memory here
bought back to life momentarily.
Turn your sound up to enjoy best sounding diesel to grace your
this Manoora video the 900 class has to stop for a red signal and then
it starts off again.
Towards end of video, note the different types of rollingstock carried in
WMV file is
"Lady Norrie" at Manoora S.A. crossing Bluebird. June 1983.
(Duration: 4 minutes)
Oh, by the way,
Manoora does not look like this today. Is a terrible SHAME.
To save the WMV movie file right
click then: (Save Target As...) to download
the 26meg WMV file to your hard drive....
All free to keep and to enjoy.
This video footage was taken with the very
first VHS National Panasonic video camera, bought June 1980.
The camera itself was not overly heavy, but the video recorder part WAS. Everything was manually operated
on the camera
lens, a trial and practice in itself.
When one looks at the video cams of today, this was like
the old brownie box camera, but it
did a great job for it's day, hence this rare footage of the 900
if you were a youngster way back in 1953, you
may like this bit of old movie footage. 10
minute memory of the early days with the
900's up front.
Take note of a covering between 900 and 901
on the express leaving Murray Bridge.
WMV file is
South Australian Railways 520 steam locomotive
Malcolm Barclay Harvey"
Now you can get to see and hear
the 520 from those
good old days.
in Mt Gambier station and then a video car chase to
Cellulose, near Millicent in South Australia.
My wife is still near nervous wreck (joke) from that day as she had to drive the car
almost like Mr Wheeler, while I tried to film the
520 special train trip from the front and then rear seat of car and it was
nearly like a race track chasing the 520. This is another favourite
engine of mine I've played over and over 100's of times since 1984, when I
felt like reminiscing the old excitement of those good old rail days.
Please excuse some wind sounds on microphone, as is
impossible to stop that with car window open.
WMV video (is in two parts) of the 520 Mount
Gambier to Cellulose May 1984
Hope you enjoy
it as much as I still do.
Probably best to download the WMV files by right clicking
(Save Target As...) to your Hard
view them in your player.
Mt Gambier to Cellulose-Snuggery (Duration:
back to just past Tantanoola (Duration:
8½ minutes) PART
those using Dial-up, or limited downloads.
ALL these video files are quite LARGE to download.
above passenger cars scroll across the screen
and to hear the sound of 520 class Steam engine
( Works only using
South Australian Railways NG
"T" class steam locomotive
Sound of the "T" class Narrow Gauge loco
file size is 1.1megs
information on the "T" class
first put into service in 1903 the
‘T’ Class 4-8-0 locomotive was
affectionately known as 'Big Ben'.
This name was lost in later years but
the class remained the biggest 3 ft. 6
in. gauge power of the S.A.R. for just
on half a century. A total of 78 were
built between 1903 and 1917 and proved
a most successful engine.
Their leading bogie wheels had outside
axle boxes which were a common feature
of earlier classes of narrow-gauge
engines on the S.A. R. Similarly, they
also combined sloping cylinders with a
footplate which sloped over the
cylinders and terminated at the front
end of the smoke box saddle.
The top of the boiler was crowded with
protruberances both large and small. A
headlight was added to all engines
from the 1920s on in sympathy with the
desire of many enginemen to see where
they were going at night. The
smokestack was a masterpiece of
spartan economy which replaced the
elegant copper-flanged chimney that
adorned the original engines. Behind
this was a silencer to smother the
sound of the air compressor exhaust
which for many years kept the
residents of Naracoorte awake all
through the night.
Following this was a snifter valve (to
break the vacuum when drifting),
emergency blow-off cock, the essential
steam dome, the blowdown silencer, the
Westinghouse generator, the safety
valves and finally poking through the
cab roof-the whistle.
footplate presented no less a
collection of handy looking equipment.
Most engines carried a spare drum of
sand (over the cylinder)
followed by a mechanical lubricator
(worked by a link from the
cross-head), a lead weight, the
sandbox, another lead weight, the re-railing
jack, and two more lead weights. The
lead weights, incidentally, were added
during the lifetime of the engines to
increase their adhesive weight. As
built, they were inclined to be a
little slippery on starting and even
with the lead weights they were likely
to spin their wheels in inexpert
the final rebuilt condition with
superheater, improved front end and
cyclone spark arrester they were ugly,
ungainly engines but somehow they
carried an aura that assured them of
many admirers. With their chins
jutting forward and their small (43
in.) drivers digging into the rails,
they were completely overshadowed by
their out-of-scale tenders. Their long
dachshund boilers always guaranteed
enough of the essential ingredient to
keep them working when the going was
hard and fast.
clothing covered in patches, their
smoke boxes dirty and rust-streaked,
their paint-work marred by the
sediment from their blow-downs, the
'T's were nevertheless kept in good
mechanical order. The Peterborough men
would not allow rundown engines on the
main line. The 'T's handled the bulk
of the Broken Hill ore for 50 years
until replaced by the '830' Class
diesels. They worked on all the
narrow-gauge divisions of the S.A.R.;
the only line which never saw them
being the Glencoe line in the
South-East, whilst on the Beachport
and Kingston lines they only worked
part of the way.
truly universal narrow-gauge
locomotive, they were used for
shunting, passenger trains or goods
trains with equal confidence. Although
designed by S.A.R., builders included
Walkers Ltd of Maryborough,
Queensland, and James Martin of Gawler,
S.A., as well as the S.A.R. at
Islington. It is interesting to note
that five were converted to the 5ft. 3
in. gauge for a period, classed 'Tx'
and used on the light Murray Lands
branches, later being changed back to
narrow-gauge Class 'T' again.
(2) 161 in. x 22 in
Diameter of Driving
Wheels:............ 3 ft. 7 in.
tons 14 cwt.
Couplers:.................... 54 ft.
"Rusty Rails" By Mount Gambier group, 'Round The Bend'
The sound file is 3.5 megs.
rails into/through Mount Gambier now are only rusty rails,
hence the song.
History - South Australian Railways.
on small picture to see larger picture
& A.N. TRAIN ORDERS
Thanks John Evans )
Collects Train orders.
Train Order 1969
Jamestown Narrow Gauge
This Train Order taken by yours truly.
Train Order 1990
Mt Gambier Broad Gauge
Again by yours truly at Mt Gambier Junc.
next 2 train orders cross each other.
One from Jamestown end, the other from Peterborough end.
This was an unusual movement extra 91 was showing as a
passenger, headed with a Garratt.
Train Order given from Jamestown Note: Train Controller changed over
from this order to the next train order.
Assistant TC ran the Pirie board till 12am.
Train Order given from Peterborough Note:Afternoon shift there was 2
Midnight shift was with one controller who ran
the whole board on his own till around 8am.
Thanks Bruce Killmier )
ON THE NEW TRAMS
Also while in the big smoke to visit the NRM,
the next day I tried
out the new trams. Oh! they were okay, but I
prefer the older ones as I have many fond
memories of them when they ran Kensington Gardens - Glenelg
trams on the Norwood Parade Kensington in the
early 1950's, till Adelaide did a really stupid thing and pulled their tram lines up.
I was pleasantly surprised that the new
trams had a conductor selling tickets.
Hooray, someone is using their head at long last,
as one reason I not like to use suburban trains or
buses is hard for country bumkin(s) to feel
comfortable with self serve ticketing system. Okay
for the local peasants, not so good for
country bumpkins. Plus makes one feel a little more
comfy with a connie on board.
Where we got on the new tram at stop 12
Morphett road it was near the Glengowrie tram depot,
and inside tram depot I spotted two of the older trams.
They were for me the grand old days and glad
I not missed them.
Was good to see these again even at a distance.
THE NEWER TRAMS (in 2007)
ready to depart
An Interesting Railroad Fact
Does the expression, "We've always done it that
way" ring any bells?
The US standard railroad gauge (distance between the
rails) is 4 feet, 8.5 inches.
That's an exceedingly odd number.
Why was that gauge used?
Because that's the way they built them in England, and English expatriates built the US Railroads.
Why did the English build them like that?
Because the first rail lines were built by the same people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and that's the gauge they used.
Why did "they" use that gauge then?
Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building wagons, which used that wheel spacing. Okay!
Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing?
Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break on some of the old, long distance roads in England, because that's the spacing of the wheel ruts.
So who built those old rutted roads?
Imperial Rome built the first long distance roads in Europe (and England) for their legions. The roads have been used ever since.
And the ruts in the roads?
Roman war chariots formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels. Since the chariots were made for Imperial Rome, they were all alike in the matter of wheel spacing.
The United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches is derived from the original specifications for an Imperial Roman war chariot. And bureaucracies live forever!
So the next time you are handed a specification and wonder what horse's
ass came up with it, you may be exactly right, because the Imperial Roman war chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the back ends of two war horses. I'm really getting into this origin thing...it's great!
Now the twist to the story...
There's an interesting extension to the story about railroad gauges and horses' behinds. When we see a Space Shuttle sitting on its launch pad, there are two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the main fuel tank. These are solid rocket boosters, or
The SRBs are made by Thiokol at their factory at Utah. The engineers who designed the SRBs might have preferred to make them a bit fatter, but the SRBs had to be shipped by train from the factory to the launch site. The railroad line from the factory happens to run through a tunnel in the mountains. The SRBs had to fit through that tunnel. The tunnel is slightly wider than the railroad track, and the railroad track is about as wide as two horses' behinds.
So! A major Space Shuttle design feature of what is arguably the world's most advanced transportation system was determined over two thousand years ago by the width of a horse's
arse.... and you thought being a HORSE'S ARSE wasn't important.