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The Semi-Retired Foamer has been a railfan since he was around 5 years old, a very young age when one really should avoid being involved with the gunzel community to any great extent.
After a few decades of train chasing, one decided to break with protocol and get married, thus leading to a severe cut in railfan activity.
Subsequent dealings with social misfits, lunatics, mental defectives and self-appointed experts lead to an even greater decrease in my hobby participation.
However things have changed thanks to our small group of trusted mate, interest has returned, and now I have become a bit more involved yet again. Having learned to laugh, with others, at all the more 'Moronic Foamers'.
.Oh the irony that lays behind that group name and the person who set it up..
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Friday, December 15, 2017



2017 S*M*U*T XMAS BBQ

It has been a big, and often none too pleasant, year for our S*M*U*T family.
We did have a number of gatherings, plus our successful day down at the Crookwell museum, where did much more than just hold the banner.
Sadly, a good portion of the year was marred by the failure of locomotive 3237, which was to be used on a tour to Boree Creek. While our group is limited to the seat allocations, souveniers and ticket sending, the large portion of the railfan community that do not have much talent for thought did their usual spraying of incorrect bollocks all over the net, both in 'supposedly' secret groups and more public forums, without doing themselves the favour of finding out facts before appearing to be stupid.
However, I am told that 3237 is about ready to go for her trials and I suspect S*M*U*T's small art in the whole thing will again be fully utilized for what promises to be a great tour.
  During 2017 we have farewelled a couple of family members, one in truly spectacular fashion, but welcomed quite a few more. All these do so much to make us the wonderfully varied group we are.

At the end of each year, we have our annual members Xmas party.
This year it was held lineside (legally for all you trespass nazis) at Sandgate and organised by Bradly Coulter, with help from his family.
BIG THANKS FOR YOUR GREAT WORK 
BRAD & FAMILY!

There were a number of interesting movements during the day, the winner being the recently purchased 42103 which was on it's way to Rothbury. Not sure how they ever plan to clear out of there if stuff keeps arriving.

Anyway, I've little more to add, other than to say that I look forward to all we get up to in 2018. Let's continue to ignore the troublemakers who seek to stop us, and forward the hobby even further.

Make it so.



Timing can not be any better.
Parked the van, walked up the stairs and this appears in the distance..











It all got a bit too much for the younguns.


"Yes we are more than 12 metres from the railhead"









A few FORD fans stand in amazement at the sight of an operational car.



8140 gives us a bit of a break from all the coal.

42103 on a Secialk :-) to Rothbury.



Aurizon push/pull coalie.

This is certainly the life.
Tezza enjoys the view.









Friday, December 8, 2017



As part of the task of cataloguing the massive collection accumulated over the years, I recently decided to start going through all the slides.
The of the 80,000+ print collection has been gone through numerous times, but the slides have not been looked at for a couple of decades.
Needless to say, I am finding a huge amount of surprises within the confines of those dusty slide boxes and, being the generous chap that I am, I shall be bringing forth a lot of these for your enjoyment.




Boorowa had not long seen it's last grain train when these shots were taken. The yard, such as it was, was still intact, as was the bridge approaching the yard, signalling and turntable.
In 2017, it is far from a pretty sight.
The classic truck in the top shot is believed to be an International.



One of the lesser known stations on the Sydney network.
Hope Street was a railway employees platform to the south of Delec.


Galong track diagram.



Galong station, facing north towards Sydney.
photo taken prior to the derailment that saw a good portion of the

down building demolished.


Grenfell station a few years after closure.


Forbes station, on the Stockinbingal-Parkes line, has not changed much more than a paint job into different colours.
Forbes opened in 1893.



Candy, it just improved the look of everything.


Not much was left of Sodwalls in the late 80s, but there was still 
far more than exists in 2017.
The station, complete with passenger amenities, first opened back in 1872.


As was the custom of the day, every Hunter trip commenced with a visit to the Toronto branch, before heading around to the Belmont line.
This morning we were a little earlier, being there to watch the sun rise up over Lake Macquarie. Sadly those shots did not scan well.
The morning sun had just fully lit the whole station when this shot was taken. Soon we would send the next couple of hours chasing spuddies back and forth to Fassifern.

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More slides from the SRF and S*M*U*T archive coming shortly.


Friday, December 1, 2017




Definitely nothing like it looks today, these photos are taken on the old Abattoirs loop. This area is all part of the current Olympic Park. 











Monday, November 20, 2017


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FAREWELL LADY NORTHCOTT


AGAIN.


I think October 22nd was the fourth time I have been in to Sydney Harbour to farewell the two harbour icons, LADY HERRON and LADY NORTHCOTT. Each time you feel saddened that you will probably never get to ride these ferries that you grew up with.
Only a couple of months ago we were riding LADY HERRON on the Taronga Zoo run, before going out to Balmain to see a retired NORTHCOTT.
 This time it was the other way around, HERRON at Balmain for a couple of weeks and NORTHCOTT carrying large amounts of passengers to the zoo.
  Large amounts they were as well. With a capacity twice that of the new garbage infesting the harbour, they do not leave people behind at the zoo (as the new VICTOR CHANGE was noted to do).
While this was to be the last day of operation, she did a few runs on Monday and Tuesday before heading to Balmain to join her sister resting and thinking about their long and glorious career.
However, all may not be over. With the more modern ferries unlikely to cope with summer traffic, it is expected that at least one will see some use over this peak period.
  While there is a hugely popular plan to retain them and a petition launched to give to the government.

Join me below as I look back on a days worth of cruising the harbour on it's finest lady.
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Wooohoooo, first time in the cab. Ahhhmmmm wheelhouse.







Nothing beats the beauty of Cremorne Point.
Thanks Taki.

















The new ferry DAVID HAMLIN heads back to the QUAY from Double Bay.


Trust you enjoyed your Sydney Harbour adventure.