Ride to Matheran on steam engine powered by diesel

From June, railway enthusiasts will again have a chance to witness a “steam engine” hissing its way up the hills of Matheran. The engine was last seen in Matheran’s hills in November 2011.

It was pulled out of operation after embers from the coal-fired steam engine sparked fire on dry grass along the route. After the forest department and locals objected to the plying of the coal-fired train, the Central Railway (CR) has now found a solution to the problem. “Instead of coal, the newly modified steam locomotive will be fired by diesel,” said CR’s divisonal railway manager, Mumbai, Mukesh Nigam.

The modification of the B-794 steam locomotive is being carried out at Golden Rock Workshop, Tiruchirapalli, in South Eastern Railway at an approximate cost of Rs 20 lakh. “The steam engine has its own charm and there were many requests to run the services through such locomotives,” Nigam added.

Despite the modification, it will have the authentic sounds of the steam whistle. The engine will also get a fresh coat of corrosion-free glossy paint.

The refurbished locomotive is scheduled to arrive in the last week of May. The trial will be carried out for a few days after which the locomotive will be pressed into service in June. The train will be run only as a chartered service. It will be able to pull three coaches. The tariff is yet to be finalized. An official said, “Due to huge demand, we decided to re-introduce the service.”

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/Ride-to-Matheran-on-steam-engine-powered-by-diesel/articleshow/20116120.cms

Mysore Railway museum will soon have model of steam engine

The Mysore Railway Museum is home to some warhorses which have done the length and breadth of the nation. The museum, set up by the Indian Railways in 1979, is the second such museum after the National Railway Museum, New Delhi. A model of a steam locomotive engine will soon be installed here. A toy train has also been a major attraction for children.

There are four indigenously designed steam locos, including one of the last steam locos, but they are non-operational.

Among others, what’s on offer for visitors is an exhibit on old mechanism, wherein trains chugged by burning combustible material, usually coal, wood or oil, to produce steam in a boiler. Both fuel and water supplies were carried on the locomotive, either on the locomotive itself or in wagons that it pulled.

Steam locomotive was synonymous with rail transport in the 19th century. As far Indian Railways was concerned, steam ruled the roost from 1853 till the middle of the last century, he said.

Kashi said the model of a steam engine was designed at Mysore divisional workshop. The model is fuelled with kerosene and installed at Mahrani’s Saloon, which is a prized possession of the museum.

A 6m track has been laid adjacent to the saloon to run the model. “The steam engine will certainly entertain the visitors, especially children,” he said, adding that they will install the steam locomotive engine in a month.

. The museum recently installed a new toy train run by diesel. The new train is fitted with three coaches, and each can accommodate 24 children. The earlier toy train was battery operated, and had two coaches.

The museum also has other coaches, equipment and records relating to Mysore State Railways, Indian Railways and railways in general.

The museum has a footfall of 200 per day. The entry fee is Rs 5 for adults and Rs 2 for children.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bangalore/Railway-museum-will-soon-have-model-of-steam-engine/articleshow/18702647.cms

Darjeeling station to be recreated in sylvan UK town

LONDON: The romance of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway will be recreated at a station in sylvan Cornwall, England as the heritage train’s oldest
surviving locomotive will ferry visitors on August 19 and 20.

Steam engine enthusiasts are looking forward to the event as the Launceston station in Cornwall will bear the sights and sounds of Darjeeling. Stalls selling Indian crafts and shehnai music will be played on the public address system during the two days.
Organised by the UK-based Darjeeling Himalayan Railway Society (DHRS), the money raised during the two days of ‘Darjeeling ambience’ will be used to support the needy through education and medical facilities in India.

Managing Director Nigel Bowman said the event had been publicised nationally in the specialist railway press, and hoped it would attract lots of visitors.

“The fact that the money raised will be used to alleviate poverty in the area is an added bonus,” he said.

During the previous DHRS annual event, the station of Sukna was recreated, but this year the society has decided to transform Launceston into Darjeeling.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/news/world/indians-abroad/Darjeeling-station-to-be-recreated-in-sylvan-UK-town-/articleshow/4894103.cms

Century-old steam engine chugs in at Matheran

Another era returned to Matheran’s quaint hillside on Tuesday morning when a wagon brought a newly-refurbished steam engine to the popular hill-station. This engine, numbered 7-38 and a veteran of the steam engine era, was one among four bought from England in April 1907, over a hundred years ago.

Part of the Indian Railway’s drive to restore its heritage, it will now once again run along the picturesque Neral-Matheran section.

“In two or three days, a crane will be brought from Kurla to take it out from the wagon. Then, on May 22, Divisional Railway Manager of Central Railway M C Chauhan will come to Neral for a trial run of this engine,” said a railway official at Neral, even as residents and tourists gawked at the slice of rail history.

According to railway records, this steam engine was bought from German firm Orenstein & Koppel. The engine was one among a group ¿ engine numbers 7-38,7-39,7-40 and 7-41 ¿ that ran along the Neral-Matheran section from From 1907 to 1982 before being phased out in 1983. Between 1987 and 1992, by the order of the then general manager of Central Railway, 7-38 was stationed at the main gate of the heritage headquarters of CR, the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/new-attraction-at-matheran-centuryold-steam-engine-chugs-in/462591/

Published in: on May 21, 2009 at 9:51 am  Leave a Comment  
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