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International Railroad Discussion > The Tie Breakers

Date: 04/17/17 19:25
The Tie Breakers
Author: africansteam

The Jiayang Coal Railway, more commonly known among international steam fans as the Shibanxi Railway, is a 762mm (2’-6”) line running from Huangcunjing to Shixi in China. The line is a refuge for China’s ZM 16-4 class 0-8-0’s, a later derivative of the C2 class.

Built in 1938 to haul coal, the line provided passenger service in a region with a few roads connecting local villages, and gradually became legendary among rail fans visiting China for steam. Eventually it's fame spread to the Chinese themselves and in 2010 it was designated as a National Cultural Heritage Railway.

The line traverses a variety of agricultural areas growing rice, potatoes and other crops that provide income for local residents. Supplementary forms of income generation can also be found, but perhaps none are as unique or require as much effort as salvaging reinforcing bar from damaged and broken concrete railroad ties. Shown here is a family engaged in that process.

1. A passenger train passes above some rice paddies.
2. Who says you can’t drive a spike into a concrete tie?
3. Its whats inside that counts.

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 04/18/17 17:32 by africansteam.

Date: 04/17/17 19:26
Re: The Tie Breakers
Author: africansteam

4. Starting the process.
5. A little help from one of the womenfolk.
6. Bundling the re-bar.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/17/17 19:31 by africansteam.

Date: 04/17/17 19:27
Re: The Tie Breakers
Author: africansteam

7. Ready for sale.


Date: 04/18/17 06:42
Re: The Tie Breakers
Author: GPutz

Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.  Gerry

Date: 04/18/17 08:12
Re: The Tie Breakers
Author: Valleyman

What no safety glasses! This was the United States 100 plus years ago. Everything done by hand.

i imagine concrete was easier to come by then hard wood for ties. 


Date: 04/18/17 09:49
Re: The Tie Breakers
Author: retcsxcfm

The Hatians have been doing that for years.

Uncle Joe

Date: 04/18/17 10:05
Re: The Tie Breakers
Author: nm2320

Note the home made handles on the sledge hammers.

Date: 04/20/17 09:19
Re: The Tie Breakers
Author: railstiesballast

Note these ties are not pre-stressed as is so common elsewhere.
This means more steel but much less complex casting beds.
And no, I had never imagined spikes in concrete ties....
Thanks for sharing.

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