Wednesday, 18 November 2009

'Mavis' develops

The Boys were busy in the workshop today working on Mavis's bodywork, which is taking shape nicely, as the photo shows. She will soon be ready for a paint job......

Photo: Brian M

Meanwhile, outside in the very blustery, but not cold (13-14 degrees), weather, John & Dave were fitting more of the 'H' sleeper supports for the isolating track sections.

Back inside, we were also doing some work to The Shay which involved fitting an operating rod to the new bell to give a positive action rather than the sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't ring we had with the cord method used on the old bell. Some touching up of the paintwork was also done.


Monday, 16 November 2009

Website feedback

We did a check recently to see what kind of use you nice railway fans out there made of our site, and were pleasantly surprised ! We found that since January this year we have had 2313 visits from 1578 unique visitors. You looked at 5726 pages with an average of 2.48 page views per visit, with the average time spent on the site being 2 mins 6 secs per visit.... So we have doubled our traffic in the last year with still 2 months to go! Our new versus returning visitors in 2008 was about 60/40 % returning whereas this year it's more 70/30, highlighting that we have a regular audience.
So thank you very much, we hope we can continue to improve and hold your attention ! We do have one or two new 'thingys' up our sleeves!


Friday, 6 November 2009

Le Lit d'Ashmanhaugh

As promised, photos of the embryo hydraulic loco lift/stand taken on Wednesday in a raised position, whilst we were assessing the method of modifying said bed into a mobile loading/unloading/repair/maintenance stand. The rusty box section (suitably cleaned and painted of course!), will be attached as shown with an angle iron 'stop' at the right hand end, and a pair of box section 'rails' will be fabricated to fit into the left hand end, detachable & hingeable to rest on the track for loading/unloading. We may fit a winch to assist in getting locos on and off the stand be used when the 'driver' doesn't fancy driving the loco onto it !.......

.....and just couldn't resist including these photos of another lovely Ashmanhaugh Autumn !

All photos: Brian M

Monday, 2 November 2009

This 'n that

Hello again.... just a short update regarding on going 'jobs' on the Railway. Some time ago we were given a 'surplus to requirements' hospital bed, you know one of the hydraulic foot operated ones, which we thought we could turn into a lifting platfom for carrying out maintenance and repair works to our rolling stock, safely and at a convenient and comfortable height for our maintainers ! some of whom are no spring chickens anymore !!!!). Well, now that we have a little more time, our engineering 'crew' have had a closer look and are confident that for very little cost (our 'honourable' Treasurer will be very pleased to hear this!!!), we can convert it into the said lifting ramp. This will be another step forward for us and will enable us not only to safely and comfortably carry out works to our stock, but will enable us to load and unload locos onto trailers whenever we want to take a loco elsewhere or receive visiting ones at the ALR. It will be used off the concrete area in front of the workshops with the help of short section of portable 'ramp' track to gain the foot (300mm) or so height of the ramp at its lowest level. Work is underway, photos to follow!

Our latest coach, Number 41, currently under construction, is to be named 'Mavis' we hear........

The Shay is having a new bell fitted which is much louder and more 'masculine' we think, than the existing one, and new suspension brackets are being made. We have the bits to fabricate a rear lamp for the loco which will contain red and white lights, and we are looking at making or obtaining a suitable 'chime' whistle, air operated, which will really annoy one or two ????? but you will know where the loco is ! It was suggested recently by our revered loco boiler inspector that the loco was just crying out to be converted to steam ! Thank you Brian, but we are very happy with our lovely loco the way it is thanks!

.....and, we are hoping for a nice dry evening on Thursday when the Club is holding it's 2009 'Bonfire Night' do, about 40 members and friends are expected so it should be a good evening...