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Trees and wires and old and new trams

filed on: 08.04.2004 (8th Apr 2004)

Trees and wires: Recently gardeners were at work cutting back undergrowth and pruning trees around Burgwies depot. One tree fell onto the overhead causing damage which propagated itself to the street outside. To prevent one piece of wire that was hanging down rather threateningly from causing further damage, downhill trams were required to retract pantographs and coast past this section. The damage was quickly repaired.

Bogies: Yesterday, the two ex Geneva bogies stored at Burgwies were transferred to TMZ's workshop at Depot Hard. These bogies are from a Herbrand Geneva equal bogie car which was remotorised with ex-Zürich TM11 motors in the 1930ies. Following withdrawal, this car was sold to the Klagenfurt museum and subsequently to Wehmingen. Following a prolonged period of exposure to the elements, the tram had deterioted to such a degree that Wehmingen decided to dispose of it. TMZ were able to secure the bogies and return these to Zürich. It is hoped that two of the motors are in sufficiently good condition to warrant their restoration for use on the planned replica of car 57. Probably the spoked wheels are also original Zürich.

Car 57 will represent one of the open balcony four-wheelers that were built in 1899. The trucks were imported from the Peckham Company in the USA and were originally equipped with American motors and controllers. Later these were replaced by more powerful TM11 motors. When these cars were withdrawn in the late 1920ies, the TM11 motors were sold to Geneva. The Peckham trucks were re-used for works cars, a number of which still survive (including the Cargo tram wagons). One such truck has been secured by TMZ and will form the basis for a replica car. It is hoped to use the ex-Geneva TM11 motors. The body will be made using parts from 93 (which is a developement of the same design). Other surviving representatives of this later version are 102 and LSB 2.

Cobra: Some of the advantages of modern technology were clarified by a recent incident. A side window on a Cobra had to be replaced following an incident. On an older design of tram, such an operation might take some hours. On Cobra it took two working days, not that the work itself took that long but during this period the car was out of use as the glue had to set. The glue takes one day to set, after which another component was added which also had to be glued. One wonders what affect it will have on availability when such repairs are required more frequently.

P16: (1416-1430, 771-786) VBZ are negotiating with an unnamed buyer over the sale of these trams, set to be withdrawn from 2005.

Combino: (Basel) Repaired Combinos are expected to return to service from 19th April. It is likely that the bodyshells will have to be replaced by a more robust design later. As the guarantee period has expired it is possible that BVB will have to bear part of the costs themselves. It has been suggested bus acquistions can be postponed to release the necessary money. Such a move could reprieve the trolleybus system.

This news item is from the 2004 newslog.

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