Sunday, January 28, 2018

NZR A class steamer on a train from Greymouth to Ross at Kumara, 1960

It looks like a mixed.  This part of the branch south from Greymouth to Ross still exists as far as Hokitika, but the station and facilities have gone.  For lots more, see our books. (Trev Terry pic)

Japanese manga anime commuter train and girl art

Available commercially as a print.

NZ man among 103 killed by 'allahu-akbarists' in Kabul, Afghanistan

Things have been active there recently as rival Muslim terrorist groups the Taliban and ISIS try to outdo each other in the atrocity count. This time it was the Taliban who filled two ambulances with explosives to win the pleasure of their god.

The NZ man is reported to be Doctor Hashem Slaimankhel.


1978 Oldsmobile Cutlass

Saturday, January 27, 2018

1930s Rover ad

don't go driving on ice that may be thinner than you think

Western Pacific GP-40's in the Feather River Canyon, California

With a UP unit the fourth in the lash-up, hauling a single-stack container train. No date.

NSB El 14 electric locomotive

A total 31 units of this class (numbered 14 2164 to 14 2190 and 14 2197 to 14 2200) were built between 1968 and 1973 by Thunes Mekaniske Værksted A/S. With a Co-Co axle arrangement, based on the Swiss Ae 6/6, the El 14 introduced three-axle bogies (trucks) in Norway with output power of 5,097 kW (6,835 hp) and a modest weight of 105 tonnes; 

The El 14 remained more powerful than successors El 16 and El 17. until the delivery of the more powerful El 18 in 1996-97, when the El 14s were transferred to freight service alone, and the maximum speed reduced from 120 to 100 km/h (75 to 62 mph). Only one has been removed from service when it hit a large pile of rocks from a landslide near Evanger, Hordaland, in December 2005 and was scrapped. (wikipedia)

Volkswagen poster for France, early 1970s

"There aren't many vehicles as economic, solid and reliable as the VW Beetle".  For more, see the book 50 Years of Volkswagens in New Zealand.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

1966 Pontiac Bonneville

an outing in the 'Naki for Rm 31

As those who have our books know, Rm 31 was one of the 6 NZR 'Standard' railcars from 1938, and is preserved operational in the fleet of the Pahiatua Railcar Society.

Here it is seen in Taranaki countryside not far from New Plymouth last weekend, and the New Plymouth to Wellington run was what it actually did as a regular service for many years until December 1972 when the three Blue Streak railcars became surplus and the Standards were withdrawn.

This pic is from the Pahiatua Railcar Sociey's Facebook page.

For interest, below is a colorized interior view from the 1950s, via

another movie set on a train: 'The Commuter'

We went to see to see this yesterday, simply for that reason.  Leaving aside the implausible plot, as a movie it's actually quite good with plenty of action which for a fair while is psychological, until it deteriorates into the 'wham bam' sort near the end.

You can read about it on the Time website here.

What about the trains?  Even for railfans, commuter trains aren't the most exciting, unless they comprise vintage equipment.  But there are still the aspects that appeal; getting somewhere on vehicles that travel on steel rails and cross-ties, technical features, car layouts, vestibules, etc.  You get plenty of all this.

Stations, exterior views and aerials?  Not much. A train from NYC Grand Central along the Hudson (in reality Metro North, here Hudson North) doesn't make many stops in areas covered by the subway, so that's one thing you notice as being wrong, and there are a few other things.

Nevertheless it does intrigue, and none of it would apply to a bus.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

1954 MG

A few MG replicas are featured in the book Alternative Drivestyles, so here is a genuine one.

Rio Grande Southern 3ft gauge 2-8-0

Rio Grande Southern Railroad #74 (Brooks Locomotive & Machine Works) with an excursion train on a trestle at Ophir, Colorado.  Date not stated.

misty morning steam train, Canada, art

By Fraser Hine, info

NAC Fokker Friendship F.27-100

Built in 1961, now preserved.  See the book The Aircraft of Air New Zealand and Affiliates since 1940

Utah Railway Alcos

No location or date but probably 1970s.  See earlier post.

take note of our new e-mail address

Vodafone in NZ closed its e-mail servers at the end of last November and promised that mail sent to the old address would be automatically forwarded.

But that hasn't been happening: probably only about 1 in 6 has been, so if you haven't had a reply from us in this time, that will be the reason.  We know we are not alone in that.

The present e-mail link is on our main homepage here:

Sunday, January 21, 2018

a classic Aussie station -- Ormeau, Queensland, 1964

On the original Gold Coast line a little south-east of Beenleigh.  A new line for high speed trains was built in the mid-1990s and the Ormeau station now is rather different to this.  From the I Love Ormeau Facebook page

1954 Plymouth

The Plymouth logo hood ornament is missing and some original chrome is painted black, among other things.

cars on the Maryhill Ferry, Columbia River, 1955

Viewed from the Oregon side of the river, the Washington side is in the background.  The ferry was replaced by the 2,567 ft (783-metre) long Sam Hill Memorial bridge in 1962, info

A 1955 Plymouth Savoy and a Cadillac of the same year are in the front. 

An F at Matamau

A little station on the Hawke's Bay line north of Dannevirke which still exists thanks to preservationists. This shows saddle tank F43 at the station with a (mixed?) train. The photo possibly was taken between 1884 and 1890.

Lots more here