We apologise for the recent lack of updates here; these have been due to personal circumstances of some of the admin. We currently have a temporary team in place until things are resolved. Please bear with us.
Anyway; You may recall from a recent post that work had taken place to clear and prepare the trackbed formation near the tunnel portal compound, and that rails had been moved here.
Well, while waiting for wagons to arrive with materials, Dave, Baz & Jim undertook some more work in this area with 5 new wooden sleepers being recovered from the loop line (currently unused, and these sleepers will be replaced with older ones from the running line).
These sleepers were set out with wide spacing mainly just to hold and align the rails of the panel. The 60ft rails that were out ready were then hauled along using cable and a winch to get positioning; the left hand rail is now in place with a few Pandrol clips holding it, the right hand rail needs pulling north a bit and then put into the chairs. The panel will then be slewed so the ends meet and will be fitted with fishplates. This will be completed during a future works weekend.
Anyone wondering why we are using wooden sleepers rather than concrete on the Northern running line – it’s really down to the ability to handle the items. Wooden sleepers can be moved by two people (as long as they’ve had their wheatabix) whereas concretes are a bit heavier and really require mechanical aides. If anyone has a spare RRV 360• excavator then please drop us a line!
The work stopped as Boyd’s wagon had arrived with the panels from Methil. There are 3 30ft panels of flat bottom rail on concrete sleepers with Pandrol clips. These will be stripped and the materials used for future track work developments. Ballast has also been delivered so that continuation can be made of the programme to ballast and pack the running line towards the tunnel.
All of these works, and the materials involved cost money. We are in requirement of further track ballast, wooden sleepers, and p-way components such as fish plates and clips.