Ida Bay Railway


I recently visited Ida Bay and rode the train with its Malcolm Moore,
Isusu engined, locomotive and was very impressed.

This line originally conveyed limestone from a quarry to a jetty on Ida
Bay and has been well documented in Light Railways of Autumn 1971 and
February and August of 2001

One of the more interesting historial aspects of the railway was the
braking system used on the limestone wagons

These were four wheel flat wagons and carried a removable box to contain
the limestone. Braking was effected by "wooden brake blocks which
dropped onto the wheels after being activated by the bunching of
couplings and released when the strain was taken up" (Light Railways
February 2001)

There a couple of very derelict wagons near the terminus at Lune River
and the brakes look very simple in operation and pretty robust

The sad part is that the wagons are in a very poor condition and are
mixed up with what will probably become scrap timber and metal

This braking system is at least uncommon and may well be unique and
examples would seem worthy of preservation

I think it would be a great project for some Tasmanian enthusiasts to
arrange with the operators to take on the restoration and refurbishment
of a couple of wagons that are fitted with this brakes and for them to
be available for viewing at the depot

I understand the railway is owned by the Tasmanian Government so perhaps
some heritage grant money could be made available?

Any takers?

Terry Boardman

Join to automatically receive all group messages.