Murray Basin standardisation

 
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: North Haverbrook; where the monorail is king!
I don't quite follow your comment about what rollingstock stays/goes pleasing people. Is there some disagreement over what the SRHC maintains/keeps?
TheMeddlingMonk
Oh, to be blessed with such innocence...

Read here, if you dare: https://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11365080-0-asc-s0.htm (just read the pinned post, it isn't really necessary to read the rest of it if you only have a passing interest)
As for Albury being a tour destination, that would require an operational SG heritage set (which, to my knowledge, does not exist in Victoria).
TheMeddlingMonk
Steamrail Victoria has a set of SG cars at Dimboola (ex-SAR K carriages). ARHS Canberra has a Southern Aurora set that travels south of the border every now and then.

Gauge-converting SRHC's Spirit of Progress set wouldn't be free, but as I've outlined previously there are plenty of good reasons for SRHC to justify Government funding for such a project.

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  TheMeddlingMonk Deputy Commissioner

Location: The Time Vortex near Melbourne, Australia
There you go. I didn't know about those details, so thankyou for the informative post, LancedDendrite.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
I don't quite follow your comment about what rollingstock stays/goes pleasing people. Is there some disagreement over what the SRHC maintains/keeps?
Oh, to be blessed with such innocence...

Read here, if you dare: https://www.railpage.com.au/f-t11365080-0-asc-s0.htm (just read the pinned post, it isn't really necessary to read the rest of it if you only have a passing interest)
LancedDendrite
What a mess....
  skitz Chief Commissioner

I saw a post on FB showing the rails being lifted from the Maryborough to Castlemaine line.  These rail perhaps destined for the dual gauge aspects of the Murray Basin project?  That would also mean the unused sections of the South Gippsland line could also be a candidate too, as was the case back in the 1990's where the rail beyond Leongatha was used to build SG crossing loops and the third rail between Maryborough and Dunolly.
  GD Train Controller

Location: Geelong Vic
I'm not sure about standardising the Shepparton line. Removing the BG to Seymour would cut off the heritage group there. Whilst I don't know how much of a say they'd have in the matter, I didn't think standardising this line was likely anytime soon, either.
TheMeddlingMonk
You don't need to cut BG access from Seymour.

There are currently 3 tracks to Seymour, 2 BG 1 SG with a SG crossing loop or 2.
Convert 1 BG to SG then leave the other for heritage access, the minimal movements that would be on the line means that the single BG track would most likely be sufficient without any crossing loops.

Therefore Shepparton should be relatively easy to convert, at least to the boundary of the Metro network.
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

I saw a post on FB showing the rails being lifted from the Maryborough to Castlemaine line.  These rail perhaps destined for the dual gauge aspects of the Murray Basin project?  That would also mean the unused sections of the South Gippsland line could also be a candidate too, as was the case back in the 1990's where the rail beyond Leongatha was used to build SG crossing loops and the third rail between Maryborough and Dunolly.
skitz
The points at Maldon Junction in Castlemaine have just been lifted.

You would hope that Moolort Silo/Quarry remains connected to the BG at Maryborough.
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

I saw a post on FB showing the rails being lifted from the Maryborough to Castlemaine line.  These rail perhaps destined for the dual gauge aspects of the Murray Basin project?  That would also mean the unused sections of the South Gippsland line could also be a candidate too, as was the case back in the 1990's where the rail beyond Leongatha was used to build SG crossing loops and the third rail between Maryborough and Dunolly.
The points at Maldon Junction in Castlemaine have just been lifted.

You would hope that Moolort Silo/Quarry remains connected to the BG at Maryborough.
Carnot
The existing rail weight in the Mildura Line 47kg is heavier than rail weight in abandonded Castlemaine - Maryborough line. So old rails from there or South East will not be used in North west sg and upgrade .  Certainly Manangatang -  Dunolly - Maryborough - Ararat will be re railed with hevier rail to handle the heavy axle laod mineral sands traffic.
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

I saw a post on FB showing the rails being lifted from the Maryborough to Castlemaine line.  These rail perhaps destined for the dual gauge aspects of the Murray Basin project?  That would also mean the unused sections of the South Gippsland line could also be a candidate too, as was the case back in the 1990's where the rail beyond Leongatha was used to build SG crossing loops and the third rail between Maryborough and Dunolly.
The points at Maldon Junction in Castlemaine have just been lifted.

You would hope that Moolort Silo/Quarry remains connected to the BG at Maryborough.
Carnot
No great drama probably worn out anyway.  Any future re opening Maryborough - Castlemaine then no junction at maldon Jct just bring parallel tracks into the Maine with Mbh line joining into plat 2 and Maldon line into plat 3 .
  woodford Chief Commissioner

I'm not sure about standardising the Shepparton line. Removing the BG to Seymour would cut off the heritage group there. Whilst I don't know how much of a say they'd have in the matter, I didn't think standardising this line was likely anytime soon, either.
You don't need to cut BG access from Seymour.

There are currently 3 tracks to Seymour, 2 BG 1 SG with a SG crossing loop or 2.
Convert 1 BG to SG then leave the other for heritage access, the minimal movements that would be on the line means that the single BG track would most likely be sufficient without any crossing loops.

Therefore Shepparton should be relatively easy to convert, at least to the boundary of the Metro network.
GD

There are currently 17 trains (including the Shep services) each way over a period of aprox 16 hours between broadmedows and Seymour. This means with the Seymour services alone a train can be seen at a single point on the line at slightly over ever 30 minutes, this is hardly minmal traffic. Its very likely the population along the line will only increase and  make this worse.

Another point I may put up is SG access to Southern Cross from Seymour is at best pathetic. There is not a snow balls chance in hell of it handling all Seymour pass services, all soon to be 4 each way VLine Albury services, the XPT's, not to mention the freights blocking the view north of Dynon.

woodford
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
I'm not sure about standardising the Shepparton line. Removing the BG to Seymour would cut off the heritage group there. Whilst I don't know how much of a say they'd have in the matter, I didn't think standardising this line was likely anytime soon, either.
You don't need to cut BG access from Seymour.

There are currently 3 tracks to Seymour, 2 BG 1 SG with a SG crossing loop or 2.
Convert 1 BG to SG then leave the other for heritage access, the minimal movements that would be on the line means that the single BG track would most likely be sufficient without any crossing loops.

Therefore Shepparton should be relatively easy to convert, at least to the boundary of the Metro network.

There are currently 17 trains (including the Shep services) each way over a period of aprox 16 hours between broadmedows and Seymour. This means with the Seymour services alone a train can be seen at a single point on the line at slightly over ever 30 minutes, this is hardly minmal traffic. Its very likely the population along the line will only increase and  make this worse.

Another point I may put up is SG access to Southern Cross from Seymour is at best pathetic. There is not a snow balls chance in hell of it handling all Seymour pass services, all soon to be 4 each way VLine Albury services, the XPT's, not to mention the freights blocking the view north of Dynon.

woodford
woodford
Would you need duplicate or triplicate SG track to cater for all traffic if the Goulburn Valley lines were standardised?
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

I'm not sure about standardising the Shepparton line. Removing the BG to Seymour would cut off the heritage group there. Whilst I don't know how much of a say they'd have in the matter, I didn't think standardising this line was likely anytime soon, either.
You don't need to cut BG access from Seymour.

There are currently 3 tracks to Seymour, 2 BG 1 SG with a SG crossing loop or 2.
Convert 1 BG to SG then leave the other for heritage access, the minimal movements that would be on the line means that the single BG track would most likely be sufficient without any crossing loops.

Therefore Shepparton should be relatively easy to convert, at least to the boundary of the Metro network.

There are currently 17 trains (including the Shep services) each way over a period of aprox 16 hours between broadmedows and Seymour. This means with the Seymour services alone a train can be seen at a single point on the line at slightly over ever 30 minutes, this is hardly minmal traffic. Its very likely the population along the line will only increase and  make this worse.

Another point I may put up is SG access to Southern Cross from Seymour is at best pathetic. There is not a snow balls chance in hell of it handling all Seymour pass services, all soon to be 4 each way VLine Albury services, the XPT's, not to mention the freights blocking the view north of Dynon.

woodford
Would you need duplicate or triplicate SG track to cater for all traffic if the Goulburn Valley lines were standardised?
jamesbushell.au
Three lines between  Mangalore & Craigieburn is plenty for all projected traffic . It is just a matter of how you use that capacity in future .  Currently 2 bg and 1 sg with loops.  Could be  (a)  2 sg and 1 bg with loops  (b)  1 sg, 1 bg and the centre line dg  (c)  1 sg, 1 bg and the centre line alternating sections of broad and standard gauge .

From Craigieburn in existing sg line will ultimately have to be duplicated to  Flyover  Jct at Nth Melbourne station.  Already duplicated dg from Flyover junction into Southern Cross .  Currently 3 dg platform faces at Southern Cross in platform 1, 2A & 2 B and if required  3A can also be converted to dg and accessed from  2 B Road which is already dg .  So parallel sg moves already available into/out of Southern Cross with RRL track layouts, and 4 sg platform faces would be plenty to handle at worst  2 x Sydney XPT each way , Albury  VLP 4 each way, Shepparton 5 each way .  (Overland will be an extinct species unless it becomes  XPT type or V/Locities) .
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
@kuldalai, I was thinking in the scenario where there was no BG anymore north of Craigeburn (or Albion for that matter).  Would 2 tracks be enough, or would a third up to Seymour/Mangalore find a use?
  Greensleeves Chief Commissioner

Location: If it isn't obvious by now, it should be.
@kuldalai, I was thinking in the scenario where there was no BG anymore north of Craigeburn (or Albion for that matter).  Would 2 tracks be enough, or would a third up to Seymour/Mangalore find a use?
jamesbushell.au
I'm not an expert on this sort of thing (far from it) but from what I've seen on UK videos double track with proper signalling and plenty of crossovers should be plenty. The GEML from Colchester into Shenfield is double track, and carries far more traffic than the Seymour line, with half-hourly Intercity trains from Norwich as well as EMU's from Ipswich, Colchester and the various branches coming from Colchester in towards London, not to mention the numerous freights. There's a couple of goods loops along the way, but most of it's just double track
  Z VAN Locomotive Driver

I believe the Tocumwal, Echuca and Deniliquin lines should be standardised.
Should broad gauge be retained to Seymour is another subject and I find the previous posts very interesting.
While talking my wish list throw in the Swan Hill line and beyond as well.
How V/line Passenger handle the change of gauge is more a matter of will than an impossible engineering problem.
They are operating on two gauges now so in time it will only mean more of one gauge in a different ratio to today rather than gee-wiz it is all to hard let us just forget about it.
What I hope is the Murray Basin lines gauge conversion does not blow out cost wise other wise it will then be another inordinate period before the Sheparton group of lines are gauge converted.
Z Van.
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: North Haverbrook; where the monorail is king!
Would you need duplicate or triplicate SG track to cater for all traffic if the Goulburn Valley lines were standardised?
jamesbushell.au
Duplication at most if you're not converting everything between Craigieburn and Seymour. If you're putting Seymour Vline services on standard gauge as well (which I wouldn't recommend if you want to keep the Kilmore East quarry freight going) then you could probably get away with duplicated track but keep the existing SG passing loops.

Kuldalai has outlined how Craigieburn-Seymour could go if you kept BG to Seymour. I'd advocate for his option a): convert the eastern BG track (aka centre track) to SG but put in BG passing loops at existing SG loops by turning the centre track there into a BG passing loop. Stations would need dual gauge tracks on at least one platform to cater for both Seymour and Shepparton services.

If the Goulburn Valley lines go to SG then the West track on the Albion-Jacana goods line could be converted, but you've still got unavoidable single-line bottlenecks at the Tottenham-Albion, Somerton Loop-Jacana and Somerton-Craigieburn sections that are going to be hard to make more room for.

One way to avoid some of that congestion (especially if Seymour goes completely SG) would be to divert passenger services to Southern Cross via Upfield using a reinstated Upfield-Somerton line. That would turn the Upfield line into an isolated electrified standard gauge line. To make a proper metro line, you could link it up with the Sandringham line as per the 2012 PTV Network Development Plan. By putting in a flyover north of the junction at North Melbourne to go over to North Melbourne platforms 6/7, you could run services to Sandringham with no Metro conflicts. Eastbound freight & Vline Pass movements would cross the line Up from SCS and go via the current Caulfield Loop Viaduct track, avoiding the need for dual gauge track over the viaduct.
  woodford Chief Commissioner

I greatly respect Kuldalai's infomation, but look at the history of complaints for both the Ballarat and Bendigo lines, a single track to Seymour would be another line where a single late train would destroy the timetable. As far as I am concerned if Sheparton is converted to SG then so also must Seymour be done.

Given VLine's managment of the current handling of the SG Albury service any more SG pass's would be a real pigs breakfast.
Before more SG VLine pass's are considered the current very poor situation simply ________________MUST________________ be solved and I ______________CANNOT________________ really see this happenning any time soon.

I will repeat a point I have made before, with a mass conversion in Victoria of lines to SG something is being wished for that most of the population does NOT want to pay for, this means its VERY unlikely it will occur.

woodford
  Z VAN Locomotive Driver

I agree Woodford the Good Citizens have no desire to pay for mass standard gauge conversion projects.
A traveller from Shepparton does not care what gauge the passenger train is so long as it is clean, runs on time and to schedule.
However we have passed the point (well soon) where after the Murray Basin lines are converted a good percentage of Victoria is standard gauge. Freight wise we cannot have isolated bits of broad gauge here and over there some standard gauge other wise you would have been just as well not converting anything.
I do not believe this would have been the correct course of action for purely economic and efficiency reasons.
Broadly after the Mildura group of lines excluding the Gippsland line we have to convert what I call the Shepparton group of lines purely to allow inter-change of rolling stock and other associated benefits of uniformity of operation.
Seymour is a special case and the best way to allow both gauges or not requires some series thinking.
The Quarry train is a hurdle as I would not wish to throw that traffic away to road if the lines to Seymour became pure gauge.
Break of gauge is and always is a mess and the unravelling is far harder than it looks but it can be done.
It is money yes but 90% mental attitude of how do we fix it rather than I wish NSW did not change its mind in 1854 or there about and that is it.
We are down the track so far and there is no turning back.
Regards.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
If there are proven economic benefits then I don't see why standardising shouldn't happen.  Its just another infrastructure project after all.  The Murray Basin business case noted that there had been no significant investment in broad gauge rolling stock since the early 2000s and this was not likely to change, and that rail freight costs were rising, pushing freight to road.  On that basis, standardisation made sense.  

Reading the boards, the documents and between the lines, the major hurdle is the passenger network and how it will be impacted by standardisation.  Murray Basin was easy to get off the ground as there was no passenger network to consider.

On the quarry, what is the issue there?  Is the problem with the destination end or the quarry end?
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: North Haverbrook; where the monorail is king!
On the quarry, what is the issue there?  Is the problem with the destination end or the quarry end?
jamesbushell.au
Destination end - the quarry train runs to Westall on the Dandenong line if memory serves me right.
  Greensleeves Chief Commissioner

Location: If it isn't obvious by now, it should be.
If there are proven economic benefits then I don't see why standardising shouldn't happen.  Its just another infrastructure project after all.  The Murray Basin business case noted that there had been no significant investment in broad gauge rolling stock since the early 2000s and this was not likely to change, and that rail freight costs were rising, pushing freight to road.  On that basis, standardisation made sense.  

Reading the boards, the documents and between the lines, the major hurdle is the passenger network and how it will be impacted by standardisation.  Murray Basin was easy to get off the ground as there was no passenger network to consider.

On the quarry, what is the issue there?  Is the problem with the destination end or the quarry end?
jamesbushell.au

The issue is the destination. Getting SG into the quarry siding wouldn't be an issue as the track crosses the SG there anyway, but one of the destinations is Westall. Right through the Metro area.
  james.au Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Thanks both.  No chance of conversion there until they get serious about Port of Hastings I guess.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
If there are proven economic benefits then I don't see why standardising shouldn't happen.  Its just another infrastructure project after all.  The Murray Basin business case noted that there had been no significant investment in broad gauge rolling stock since the early 2000s and this was not likely to change, and that rail freight costs were rising, pushing freight to road.  On that basis, standardisation made sense.  

Reading the boards, the documents and between the lines, the major hurdle is the passenger network and how it will be impacted by standardisation.  Murray Basin was easy to get off the ground as there was no passenger network to consider.

On the quarry, what is the issue there?  Is the problem with the destination end or the quarry end?

The issue is the destination. Getting SG into the quarry siding wouldn't be an issue as the track crosses the SG there anyway, but one of the destinations is Westall. Right through the Metro area.
Greensleeves

I fondly remember the days when a quote was provided to the Victorian Government of approximately $900m to convert the ENTIRE state to SG including all rollingstock.  This was around 1994 IIRC.

Oh what could have been in terms of economic benefit to this state.
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

Thanks both.  No chance of conversion there until they get serious about Port of Hastings I guess.
jamesbushell.au
And I have serious doubts that will happen in a hurry.
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

Incidentally, talking of the Piangil line - two options for future standardization IMO:

1) A new cross-country SG line across to the Manangatang line from Woorinen/Piangil.  Swan Hill passenger services remain BG from Bendigo.
2) Standardize line all the way to Bendigo.  Passengers would have to "all-change" at Bendigo station.  Freight via standardized Eaglehawk - Inglewood link.  Bendigo Workshops to have DG connection to the network.
  M636C Minister for Railways

People may recall that QUBE recently invested in a number of new broad gauge 24 metre container wagons, I recall the number being 80. These were classed SQEF and the similar SG wagons were SQEY.

I saw a set of these headed from Carrington to Dynon with an SQEF on top of each of a number of SQEY wagons.

Anyway, last Saturday I saw another SQEF in Goulburn, SQEF 00013.

This time it was on its own BG bogies with the wheelsets adjusted to SG.

A new BG freight wagon lasted less than a year on BG before conversion to SG.

I'd say conversion of rural Victoria to SG can't come soon enough...

M636C

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