Turnout Timbers

A slight change of plans, due to our assistance being required at Castlemaine to help change a carriage generator. So we tackled point timbers.

A load of timber was brought down from Maldon, then destruction began removing the old timbers.

Before long it was pull out the old and stick in the new.

Where possible we used pandrol plates, to improve gauge holding.

Lots of gauge correction was required as it was starting to work wide.

And the reason for the train in the background, was the fitting of this replacement genset under the carriage Macedon.

Of the 13 timbers we changed today, 6 have been fastened up, leaving 7 for tomorrow’s gang. Meeting at Castlemaine from 8.15am

Big Tidy Up

A massive tidy up effort around Castlemaine Yard kept us busy today.

We’ve shortened up the 3 siding extension, to ensure adequate clearance is always maintained to the workshop road. The pile of sleepers now the only remnants.

A lot of attention of paid to the ballast profile on B road, mainly to provide an adequate surface to allowing walking along, as the surrounding ground is quite boggy.

As part of our ongoing track inspections, signs of gauge working in this and the next turnout have now reached a point where we need to undertake some timber renewals before they’re a safety concern. Only 15 are required in turnout 43 and a further 5 in Turnout 28.

Thursday will see us making a start on the 6 monthly track walk, departing Maldon around 8.15am. However on Friday we’ll jump back into Castlemaine Yard where we’ll begin changing these turnout timbers.


Today saw the abutment timber completed, including the installation of the lock block.

Although a relatively straight forward task, it did still take a while. Requiring the modification of a few bolts and the removal of some of the old brickwork and mortar, which we think would give modern high strength concrete a good run for its money!

The afternoon was spent beginning a big tidy up effort, as we’ve now got items spread far and wide across the yard.

We’ll be back running Tuesday gangs again, with this Tuesday’s gang starting at Maldon at 8am, to sort out the great mess that’s currently on the gang truck. We’ll end up at Castlemaine around Morning tea where we hope to get a good deal more tidied up and get some drainage works underway to ensure all this new track doesn’t just fill with water.

Castlemaine Yard

Today saw further progress made on A & B loco roads. Lifting and tamping B road occupied the gang first up and a bit of tweak lining was undertaken on A road, really just to make it look snazzy.

The appearance of the loco shed now looks quite complete, with all three roads largely finished. Just some site tidy up and drainage to go now.

Today’s main task was the fitting of the abutment timber for the approach road that’ll align with the A/B road turnout.

Lots of delicate timber work to splice in an extension to the existing abutment timber was all that was required, however it is a lot easiest said than done!

As part of a rolling stock transfer to store some timber wagons undercover, a couple of loaded ballast wagons were dropped off, these will be needed to complete both A and B roads inside the loco shed.

During one of the many turntable rotations to check the lock block location, this unusual view shows how finished the trackwork into the loco shed now is.

With the location of the block carefully determined and marked out by Will and John, job number 1 tomorrow, will be recessing the timber and fastening the block in.

We’ll be back here from 8.15am tomorrow morning, meeting in Castlemaine Yard.