China Report February - March 2015
11 March
12 - 14 March
15 - 22 March
28 February - 2 March
4 - 8 March
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12 March 2015

Four steam and 2 diesel at the stabling point for shift change.

In the workshop, 1195 in steam, 1320, 1376, 14xx

In use, 1210, 1395 General Zhu De (number on the back of tender only),1396, 1460*, 1818 (formerly 1414 apparently changed 'for luck')

* originally reported in error as 1480, 1460 is correct

We caught 1395 on spoil tip with the fly ash train and confirmed that almost no dust cloud is produced these days.

There is a new settling pond part way up the tip which is good for sunset shots.

A new operation is deep mine spoil going from Wulong mine (and at least one other mine via the main yard) via Pingan and into the open cast mine for tipping. The loco runs round its train at Pingan before propelling into the pit.

In the afternoon,we saw this in action with 2 trains in the 1.5 hours we where at Pingan. The preserved electric loco and coach have moved further into the mine at Pingan and there is now a dead SY on the same track. Following the active track from Pingan to the tipping point (around 2 km) does give you a view into the open cast eventually. Tipping is not directly over the edge, a front end loader does that job after the spoil is dumped from the wagons. We later found a better view of this from the south side of the open cast.

The sunset shot at this time of year is part way up the spoil tip just after the first junction. All trains are going to the higher, more inside sections to tip. A new settling pond provides a possible reflection shot at sunset if you get a train at the right time.

13 March 2015

A 6 am departure from the hotel for the same spot on the spoil heap. Two trains are likely in the period 6 - 7:30. We were blessed with no wind and a clear sunrise and one train down and one up and down. Zhu De and 1210 (with the red star) were the locos in use. Tipping the 5 wagon trains takes only a few minutes and the effort of bringing just 5 wagons up may be the limit for the SY but seems very inefficient. It seems likely that tipping inside the deep pit will increase at the expense of trains up the spoil tip as this will also please the Fuxin residents who live near the spoil tip.

During a visit to the open air museum, we saw a fly ash train go past from the other power station steam hauled so there is still the occasional steam train out to the north east.

1378 in use in the afternoon in addition to locos previously noted.

We had four locos on the depot after 4 pm with nice light and good glint. Servicing was efficiently done and by sunset there was just one loco 1818 left at the depot.

14 March 2015

Final entry for Fuxin. After a visible sunrise, the sun rose into the murk and the cloud didn't clear before we left. There was plenty of action at Wulong mine in the grey conditions and then we had to go to Jinzhou Nan for our D train to Beijing.

Yesterday, after finally and definitively being denied access to Wulong mine ng electrics, I attempted to find those around the back of the open cast at Sunjiawan. They do exist but are almost entirely confined to a high-walled compound apart from a short section to the east where the line is briefly on public property but we saw nothing move.

In the afternoon, some of the group decided to accept Mr Gu's offer of a 25 km ride south west to an ng electric spoil tipping line at Aiyou. This is a line we had previously identified on Google Earth. Nothing much was happening on a Friday afternoon but two mine electrics with pantographs on towers were seen. At 4 km from the mine with no obvious security, it should be possible to visit without permission or Mr Gu.

Locos seen in steam: 1195, 1210, 1378, 1395, 1396, 1460, 1818
Diesels in use: 0065, 0080