Light Railways 224, page 39 Steam Shovel


Stephen Percy Larcombe
 

The rail mounted steam shovel pictured at the Boulder Railway Station.

When I photographed it on 6th of September 2011, there was a sign on the other side of the shovel describing it as a 60 ton Ruston & Proctor shovel.

BUT, further investigation has revealed it to be a 15 ton shovel, which means it can lift 15 tons when rigged as a crane, it would weigh about 30 ton.
It was used in the construction of the transcontinental railway, and dug ballast. It was abandoned at Zanthus 160km east of Kalgoorlie. It rescured in the lat 70s and put in the park at the Boulder (Golden Mile) Loopline railway station.

It is intersting to note that there is a set of normal flanged railway wheels under the body of the shovel, at a gauge of 4'8 1/2", which would be used for long distance travel, and the double flanged wheels you can see in the picture (which are on the same axle) where a wider gauge and used for better stability when it is working.

Yours

Stephen

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