Live Steam Club, Riba Roja de Turia, Spain

On a recent holiday to see our daughter Paula and her husband Ian who live in Valencia, Spain she arranged for us to visit a live steam club in Riba Rojo.  We were greeted by Esteban who spoke odd words of English but Paula was able to translate for us . Esteban showed us the warehouse/ workshop which was very impressive not only for the range of machinery but also the cleanliness and storage for members and club locos. The riding trollies  were very colourful and had been built in such a way that they could be stacked for storage.

I was  then introduced  to Fidelio who was pleased to be able to practise his English skills. He was working on the electronics of a model diesel/electric loco, it was powered by a petrol engine driving an alternator which fed to a large transformer and then rectified through a diode bank and then

controlled by a pulse width modulator unit to control the speed of the loco. After spending about 20 minutes with Fidelio we were then introduced to the president of the club, Fernando who was able to tell us  about the set-up of the club which is run as a charity and is in a small park and funded by the local municipal (council), it has approx. 650-700 metres of track running through trees and passing 2 large ponds. The trains circulate in both directions so there is a communication system between the 6 stations with a set of LED signals at various points along the track and guards at every crossing for safety. There were many ladies present helping run the station, drive loco’s as well as helping with maintenance of the engines and riding trollies. 

Fernando then offered us a coffee in their club room which also has a fully fitted kitchen with fridge freezer and cooking facilities. We were then asked if we would like a ride on a steam loco which was owned by Juan and took him 3 years to build. While waiting for the loco to come back into the station we counted 4 electric locos with 8 riding trollies each being loaded with passengers plus there were 2 more locos driving around the track. The riding trollies carry 2 adults or  2 children  and I adult; Children are not allowed to ride on their own. The trip around the track was very smooth because of the concrete foundation strip that the track was on; the track was made of the same material as ours all welded construction. Juan spoke no English and I spoke no Spanish but we understood what each was saying about the locomotive which was a 2-10-0  tender coal fired steam (vaporista)  and had a steam operated water pump which he had made and was very proud of. See photo below.

The trains only run on Sundays between 11a.m. and 1.30p.m. and the local Mayor has asked for more running time , but the members have refused as it is manned by volunteers. During 2016 they carried approx. 40,000 passengers at  2 Euros for adults and 1 Euro for children.

We had a very enjoyable afternoon and have an open invitation to return next year with an offer of driving a steam loco which Paula will be arranging for us.

Centro Ferroviario Vaporista de Riba-roja de Turia (CFVRT)

BDSME Newsletter October 2017

Your Chairman’s Report

Well here we are again, the AGM is just round the corner, it does not seem 3 years ago since I became your  new Chairman. Well it has been a very busy 3 years with all the Improvements to the track, first there was the revamp to the steaming bays, which improved the loading and unloading of the locomotives. Then Christmas 2015 doodling on youtube looking at other clubs track I had a brain storm to ballast our own track and  now 2 years later it has happened, this could not have gone ahead without a lot of dedication from the membership working Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays to which I am very proud of what they have achieved.

The AGM is on Wednesday 1st November  at 7.45 so please attend so everybody can have their vote to say who they would like to see running the club for the next year. Its your club, your vote, see you there, your chairman Dave Moore.

Your Secretary’s Report

We had our fun day in September and this turned out to be a real success . I am now looking forward to  Saturday October 28th when we will have a “HALLOWEEN” run, I have emailed you all, so far not  many replies , but it is early day’s. Start at around 2.30pm and run hopefully till its dark, to get some experience of night time running. Could turn out to be pretty spooky. See you all there.

 1st November 2017 which will be  our AGM, so if you can come then it is time for you to have  your say, in who runs our group. So again 7.45.

A small reminder that 19/20/21/22nd October is the Midlands Exhibition, this is a very good show and well worth a visit.

There is a celebration of 40 years at the I believe Halesworth MES on the same weekend 21st 22nd October 2017 this is being held at Ormiston Denes Academy at Lowestoft NR32 4AH if you want to go it is a £5.00 entrance fee, if you need any more info let me know.

Web site: We have a new web site, www.brandonanddistrictsme.com there is NO password, and you will be able to see what is happening at our club along with other items including the newsletter I hope this makes thing easier than before, so go along and see what you think.

General Interest  I have a lathe for sale Myford ML7 with a gearbox and  a speed controlled motor which you can make run at  a very slow speed and then turn up to a nice high speed. This also has a Myford stand and various additions.

I know of an old member who wants to sell his ML7 no gear box but lots of additions both need to be seen ,also a  C10 Warco lathe, and a Warco Mill/drill and a part built 2” Allchin. Local in Brandon.

 

The two pictures above were sent in by Derek E, this is the first time his engine’s dynamo was working. Looks a fabulous engine.

We have a new pod at the track.

The “ Sweet Pea “ pod.

There must have been something in the air during September  and early October as three of our members have each purchased a “Sweet Pea”, now if you would have said to me at our last steam up you will be the proud owner of a “Sweet Pea” I would have said get lost. But there is something about them that I have already found interesting, my one called “Mary”  steams well, is easy to fire, runs nicely, and is very easy to clean, I am more than pleased. Geoff E has “ Blueberry Tart” will the name last and will it still be blue, I do not think you should hold your breath, Ken W has purchased

 “ Cariad” a right Welsh name, all are various shades of Blue. All are different but the same basic engine, so watch this space, along with Hugh S,  “Sweet Pea” I do not think his has a name, and our bigger brother Andy G  “Sweet William” perhaps next year we can have a Sweet Pea Rally?  As they all get used to our Brandon track I will keep you all up to speed with there “development”. So we will keep you informed on our play days and perhaps if you want to drive an engine, you could be lucky.

 

News from the track 

We are continuing to upgrade the track, since we had the last 10tons of ballast, we have finished the track from the bridge up to the Ladies Loo, we are now ballasting the moveable track from the ladies to the Loco shed, we are having to be careful here as we do not want any ballast to high which would interfere with  the movement of the track, this is still ongoing. We have started to ballast round the turntable, this will make it easier for the tractor to mow the grass, this is also ongoing. We are not allowed at the track on a Thursday due to the shooting season, but we are there on a Tuesday and Saturday, Saturdays being mainly play days more than work days. Mike H and Mike S are installing new lights at eye level on the gantry, also ongoing, so watch this space and another update in Decembers newsletter.

Picture One shows another set of lights at eye level on the leg of the gantry.

Picture Two shows the preparation for the ballasting the moveable rails from the ladies up to the loco shed

Picture Three is where we are ballasting around the turntable

Picture Four show a picture taken on 8th October 2016, so, some advances can be seen.

Nothing but trouble.

The engineer comes to talk to the Chief engineer. I’m having trouble with  the power supply you put me to work on.

OK , lets talk about it, is it Oscillating?

No said the engineer, but it is stable.

How is the efficiency?

About 87%

Is there any ringing on the gate?

Nothing above normal.

What about the noise and ripple?

These are well within spec.

Then what’s the problem?

THE DARN THING IS ON FIRE.