Author Topic: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning  (Read 45870 times)

Jason M Lamontagne

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Hello all,

If you are planning on attending this year’s (2019) FWW as a general track crew aid, and are able and willing to spike, please let us know here.

We have a hefty track laying goal this fall, with spiking being the major crew need.  The full intention is to retain hand spiking, for the community it builds amongst our volunteers, a demonstration and means of preserving this part of railroading’s past, and for improved quality.

There was mention made of not spiking all weekend.  A request: if you’re physically able but lack stamina for constant spiking, spend your days on the spiking crew anyway.  Rotation is critical.  Spend your off-spiking time on a nipping bar, or getting a drink.  Pick someone who is spiking and cheer them on!  The camaraderie is the source of the fun- it takes a village to make it happen.

Ive been meaning to post this- but Dana’s valid concerns are a timely kick in the butt.  Spiking this much track won’t just happen.  We can’t collectively leave it to “the spikers” and assume all will be well.

Friday, in particular, followed by Sunday, Monday and Saturday are the spiking crew pinch needs.  Please consider this the priority.

We’d like to address the concern with 3 concise efforts: preplanning, largely on this forum, so we can come to understand how many folks are coming with different work disciplines, including spiking, in mind.  Second we plan to have a coordinator stationed such that incoming volunteers can be directed.  Lastly we plan to make a concerted effort to keep the shop crew minimized.

In particular, the tank car project, if it proceeds will likely be carried out by four or so specific volunteers by invite.  In this way, other volunteers can feel welcome to peak in to see the progress, but can clearly understand that the work need is not in the shop.  This isn’t meant to keep it exclusive- simply efficient, and a way of keeping the focus where the greatest crew need is.

If this goes as planned- we may well be blowing No 9’s whistle by the shoulder of Rt 218 by the end of the weekend...

Ed, feel free to reposition this post as appropriate.

Thanks Dana, and thank you crew,
Jason
« Last Edit: August 04, 2019, 10:26:15 PM by Ed Lecuyer »

John Scott

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2019, 08:06:11 AM »
I would expect that getting the track down to 218 will mark the commencement of a reasonably lengthy period of calm consolidation.

Joseph Lupinski

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2019, 08:16:48 AM »
I do plan to attend on Fri., Sat. and Sun. I will try doing spiking when I can but my hands do not seem to last long in gripping hammer after a few.  I do have experience from last year working with the gantry system and laying rail.

Dana Deering

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2019, 08:39:34 AM »
Thank you, Jason!  It's OK if you can't spike all of the time.  We set up spiking teams and you can rotate jobs within the team (nipping ties vs. spiking) or you can rotate out of spiking for a while and do some other task.  There are a lot of non spiking jobs that help keep the spiking teams moving.  Any and all help will be used and appreciated!  (We try to have fun, too.)

Graham Buxton

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2019, 09:34:48 AM »
I'll be at FWW Fri-Mon.  I have never driven spikes in the past, but over the years I have plenty of experience with the operating end of a splitting maul.  :P Having said that, in recent years,  I have mostly used a hydraulic splitter.  8)

I already expect that I will need to rotate to a pinch bar operator periodically.



Graham

James Patten

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2019, 12:03:28 PM »
I was hoping to help on the rail laying machine again this year, as I did last year.  I can do some spiking too, but I shouldn't do too much (ie, should rotate).  Friday, Saturday and Monday, and if there's a prep day during the week before I'd like to be involved with that.

Bill Baskerville

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2019, 12:32:48 PM »
My spiking days are limited, but I do plan on arriving the day before the FWW (Thursday) to help set up.  I will be there all four days.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2019, 07:48:25 AM by Bill Baskerville »
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Ken Berlo

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2019, 02:19:51 PM »
I'm planning on Fri - Mon. May be able to do Thurs also. I'd like to work on the track laying end as I did Sat of last fall; placing ties, installing and removing insta-track. I'll also do my part and bang a few spikes plus anything else that needs doing at the railhead.
Here's to seeing and hearing #9 at Rt 218 this fall!  We can do it!

Dana Deering

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2019, 02:33:11 PM »
That's great, so far, guys!   Remember that there are other tasks besides the actual hammer swinging that are part of the overall spiking process.  One that has been mentioned is the placing of ties, another is setting that inside spike on the east rail so we can get the east rail spiked down ahead of the gauging and finish spiking crews.  That is a vital task.  Moving insta-tracks, making sure we have spikes, etc.  Also, there should be more tools so that we can have a greater number of spiking crews.  I've heard a rumor that Leon Weeks is making us several new spike nippers.  More spiking crews could mean less spiking per crew and fewer worn out spikers!  If we all pull together I think we can make the goal.  Once we get the process flowing I think we can get 500 feet per day.  The big challenge will be Monday when we historically lose folks who have to travel. 

Mike Fox

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2019, 02:49:08 PM »
Get in shape now..218 is 2400 feet from the end of track...That puts you beyond the yellow saw horse I built. This amount of track laying will not be repeated for some time..
Mike
Doing way too much to list...

Joe Fox

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2019, 03:22:50 PM »
Planned estimated track length is 2014' if I remember correctly. Give or take a few feet.

I won't know my availability to the days of but hope to be right there spiking if at all possible. Last Fall went very well with an extremely well organized part from Dana who helped ensure the groups of guys spikef as efficiently as possible. This is goal is 100% achievable with everyones help.

Wayne Laepple

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2019, 04:56:41 PM »
As has been my practice over the past several years, I will remind Jason as the FWW approaches that I am "at his service" and will do whatever task he assigns.

Hunt Dowse

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2019, 05:46:01 PM »
I plan to be there for the full FWW to help out where needed.  Here’s hoping Lightning and Co. will be there to set the pace.  New folks should jump right in by asking the track boss where they can help. 

Kevin Kierstead

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #13 on: July 30, 2019, 06:17:41 PM »
Hi, All:
I'm not your spike man, but have rotated through the other spike team positions for a couple of work weekends. I'll be up Fri. - Mon., doing what I can, wherever needed. I'll try to be available to help with picking rail and other prep work, late Aug. and Sept. See you on the Narrow Gauge!
BATLRSBS: Brotherhood of Amalgamated Track Layers, Rail Spikers and Ballast Spreaders; ToM/Trout Brook Chapter

Bob Holmes

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Re: 2019 Fall Work Weekend (October 11 - 14) Track Work Planning
« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2019, 07:27:45 PM »
I will be around for two days during FWW.  I can't spike (don't even know how), but am happy to help at the rail laying end as I did last year.

Bob