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Canadian Railroads > Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.


Date: 11/15/08 17:39
Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

As part of a model railroad convention, a group was given the opportunity to visit the Westshore coal terminal located at the Roberts Bank port facility. CP, CN, BNSF and UP coal trains unload export coal here into two rotary dumpers.

The large yellow machine adjacent to the train is the "sequencer" which positions cars into the rotary dumping mechanism.
Trains are unmanned during the procedure, the dumper operator moves the train into position.

Two trains are visible in this image, both CP. A UP train just left the dumper as we arrived.

There are three ship berths complete with loaders attached to this facility, one is capable of loading the largest bulk carriers.




Date: 11/15/08 18:21
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

Here is a view of an aluminum coal car inside the rotary dumper. This dumper has been adapted to handle different sizes of coal car, notably the US and Canadian aluminum cars are of different lengths




Date: 11/15/08 18:27
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

Here is an image of the operator controlling both the "sequencer" , and the dumper




Date: 11/15/08 18:34
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

Here is a "small" bulk carrier loading coal at Roberts Bank. In this case, it is a "Panamax", (maximum size to fit through the Panama Canal). The body of water is the Juan de Fuca strait between the BC mainland and Vancouver Island.




Date: 11/15/08 23:26
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: crashnational

Those are some nice pictures. It's a neat operation out there, much bigger than Neptune Terminals. I've taken a few CN coal trains into and out of the Bank, normally the train crew will spot the first 3 cars. Then the dumper crew will take over with the sequencer. After most of the train is dumped a crew comes out from Thornton to take the train east, but they have to spot the tail end 3 cars. BTW, I can't seem to remember, do they dump 1 car at a time or can they do 2? I know they can do 2 trains at a time.



Date: 11/15/08 23:33
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

Here is another angle from the other side of the dumper, I believe I see two cars under the yellow arches.




Date: 11/16/08 00:31
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: LarsenIsI

3 Dumpers...

DL



Date: 11/16/08 13:14
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

Rerailer at the approach to the dumper . It has done its job several times in the last 25 years.




Date: 11/16/08 13:24
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

Modern day tell-tail at the approach to the dumper.

Tell-tails were originally placed over the tracks to warn people standing on top of cars of an impending height restriction and are very rare today because cars no longer have roofwalks.

The tell tails at Roberts Bank are to warn the dumper operator of any railroad equipment approaching the dumper which is overheight.

It is also there to warn railroad work equipment such as cranes not to attempt to enter the dumper. At least one crane operator was alerted by the crashing of the tell-tail's chains against the boom of his machine.

The present dumpers are the second set at the site, and at 25 years old will be soon ready for replacement. They work 364 days a year.




Date: 11/16/08 22:12
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: RogersPass

Hello, I see 2 locos in the picture and was wondering if they go thought the Dumper also please??or do they take them off the train before. I look forward to any replies.. Cheers Brian..



Date: 11/17/08 00:03
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

The locomotives go through the dumper, both the head end locomotives and the remotes (DPU's). CP coal trains have operated with remotes since the late 1960's, although the location in the train has varied from mid-train to tail end.

The dumper operator has a DPU console to operate the locomotives if required during the dumping operation.

The locomotives visible in the picture are mid-train remotes. The train remains coupled throughout the process, the coal cars are equipped with rotating couplers (one per car, indicated by a red, yellow or green stripe on the aluminum cars and a white stripe on steel cars).

When dumping, the air hose and coupler remain horizontal while the car rotates around them.

When putting the train together at CP's coal train maintenance facility at Golden BC, cars must be taken to marshall cars with rotary couplers next to the locomotives which do not have rotary couplers. CP has a small fleet of coal cars with rotary couplers on both ends for special instances like mid-train remotes. In the days of operation with cabooses, a special fleet of cabooses with rotary couplers were used on coal trains.

Illustrated is the dumper operator's locotrol (DPU) console.





Date: 11/17/08 05:45
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: mukinduri

Interesting pictures and comments. Thanks.

Do you know how long it would take to unload, say, a 100 car train?



Date: 11/17/08 08:28
Re: Coal train rotary dumper at Roberts Bank B.C.
Author: eminence_grise

Most trains are 114 cars plus . I'm told the process take about two hours.



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