One day after the "freedom" was over and it was right into a transcard, at all of £4.99, and just to show the southside of Glasgow was where it was all happening, just take a look at this day:
|16.07.1984 LowLand Master Transcard|
|08:54:00 Home||Glasgow C Low Level||303|
|10:02:00 Glasgow C||Johnstone||37138|
|10:50:00 Johnstone||Glasgow C||DMU|
|11:30:00 Glasgow C||Paisley||37013|
|11.xx Paisley||Glasgow Central||DMU|
|12:40:00 Glasgow C||Stevenston||37196|
|14:09:00 Kilwinning||Glasgow C||DMU|
|15:08:00 Glasgow QS low level||Coatbridge Sunnyside||303|
|15:40:00 Coatbridge Central||Cumbernauld||40150|
|16:34:00 Springburn||Glasgow QS Low Level||303|
|17:30:00 Glasgow C||Nitshill||27066|
|17.xx Nitshill||Glasgow C||DMU|
|18:15:00 Glasgow C||Johnstone||DMU|
|18:52:00 Johnstone||Glasgow C||37155|
The date is important: first saturday of the glasgow fair: the tradtional shutdown of the yards for a week or two's holiday, often taken doon-the-watter. In this case the addex's seem to be to the silvery sands of Stevenston. When we bailed there it was far from silvery in the town centre; strewn with litter and an itinerant Rottweiler shagging some poor unsuspecting mongrel.
A very big line for any diesel loco, but there were several monsters out. 37013 vo back out on the Stranrærs, and 138, seeming small beer now and not only big loco but a big line 37 196: think it was one of the few boiler isolated 37s: dunno where it was allocated at the time, but obvioulsy lurking with intent ex motherwell. We did a "shanks pony move over to Kilwinning assisted by an old double decker IIRC. Chips in between and a semi-fast Ayr DMU service to "whisk" us in for the next move: well rattle us up a little quicker than the stopping 311s down there at that time.
Then some daytime version of 1S81 or the likes drops a 40 and we go after it on a bloody transcard! That old grumpy sod with the tasch commented as such on the way from Coatbridge Central to Cumbernauld. But a line in the book was had from all be it a very lethargic 40150 when compared to her sister 155 we had bagged at Chester. A "desperate" move.
Then back into central for a strange move to Nitshill: IIRC 27066 was nb now and fairly large. To top it off, on one of the returning Stevenstons or Ardrossans 37155: very, very big ML IIRC and a nice rack of three huge syphons within three weeks: 154-156 thank you, my lords!
|21.07.1984||LowLand Master Transcard|
A week later and we ae taking motherwell NB and foreign split box syphons for granted. But this day produced at that point the biggest of them all: in it's life as the super-syphon, 37292 probably worked three passenger trains and this was one. "huge if not enormous" as Rupert put it in a post to a blogg "this bashing day in History".
292 grumbled it's way over the slack line Kilmarnock-Ayr. At Ayr it was notably "hunting" , a fault I have heard caused by choking valve seats, badly adjusted timing chains or faulty governors. Although it probably did not prioduce anywhere near 2000bhp, the benefits of the alternator made it seem to accelerate quicker relative to less thrash!
37292 was actually the prototype for the 37/4s which could well have been uprated. This uprating was the same as the CSVT uprate on the 50s: so it is unlikely it would have been a success without gear-driven-cams, new valve gear etc. II guess that autumn 292 went down to Crewe works to become the 37/4.
The then "silly ba'heid" move persisted as syphons could well drop on from carlisle. Syphons like 048 were probably itinerant from lack of work on coal, and I reckon they displaced failed type 2s off Carlisle shed. Covering this move meant that you were "bowled out" for all the later west highland moves, bar doing a combined bus move to Garelocheid maybe.
Taking for granted was just as we did: this was actually the last "big" saturday out of Glasgow Central moves, and the likes of the 37 moves seen that summer would only be repeated on the Aberysthwiths the next summer, where NB 37s were actually BOOKED and not huge drops! A week later, at the end of August, I scored my last big ML 37, 152 which worked the 11:30 stranrær. Although as you will see the 11:30 more or less became booked a 37, the later examples seemed to be boilered stratford examples which IIRC became Scottish allocations anyway.
Certainly by October I was no longer a ned really, but a syphon basher bone fide and with enough under the belt to be a "man". I knew by that October freedom that the writing was on the wall. I was getting a bit bored of bashing from time to time, and that disastourous Mystex to Chester was just the first nail in the coffin.
37192 to dundee and back marked me as a syphon devotee: They became pretty common on that route later, but until 84 they were rare for some reason: There were still enough reasonably condition 27s and 26s to cover the dundee loco hauled prior to this. It is not a bad route for 37s, with top speeds of 90mph and very little running at the dreaded 40-50 mph slack spot. 37192 became my mileage machine, although I think I topped it with 188. It put in a good run, but one of the mrk Is had a dragging brake set so I reckon we didn't get over 75mph. IIRC I did this all alone, with maybe a paltry few "men" coming on later at Perth. West country bloke with beard reported the coach IIRC too.
Also that October, 264 moved north to Inverness ( again?) and was duly taken there. Dark evenings up the Far North East!