Rail Bonding

Today’s job was rail bonding. It wasn’t a case of sharing our innermost feelings with the rail and developing a relationship, as some of the gang had first thought… rather it is the process of install a low resistance electrical link between rail joints.

This is all part of the Bendigo Rd flashing light installation, with this being the last major civil input into the project.

The day started rainy so we set up a gazebo, however the day actually dried up early on and it just became a wind shelter at meal breaks (not a very good one with no sides, but it was up so we used it).

We purchased an adaptor to drill the holes with the rail drill, which for various reasons ended up being a failure, so we’ll research that one a bit more.

So we went back to the trusty old electric drill and hand held clamp, which after a very rocky start worked very well. The trick was not to use sharp drill bits! They just bite too hard and when they grab, it usually means the end of the drill bit, however a slightly dull bit and lots of coolant drills a perfect hole very fast!

Again learning lots of skills and no doubt we won’t need them again for years

The odd clip was removed to aid drilling, but generally it all went very well.

The stainless steel wires are held in the holes with channel pins, knocked in until tight. It’s a pretty easy job, but all at ground level of course so the knees hurt after a few hours.

Today saw all the required joints (79 joints) bonded, either side of Bendigo Road. With two bonds installed at each to give some redundancy. Hopefully this should give years of trouble free operation once the lights are active.

Given the Covid Lockdown effective from midnight, tomorrow won’t be a workday, the weather is also looking poor, so stay rugged up safe and sound and well post details of next week once we know more.

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