Saturday, August 8, 2015



Well last night I went to bed and was reading the latest ARHS Railway History.Which usually has stuff that doesn't interest me, but you wouldn't want to miss out on something important,would you .
So the only article of NSW flavour was Central West Memories .Bit of a story and some pictures.
Well page 27 shows a 5907 in front of 4503 in August 1970 at Bathurst .
So what you might say.
Well on the observers side windows of 4503 . The leading 1 on the short hood end shows 4 bars across the window !
Never scene this before ,Never heard anything about this before.
The window in question every time is the 1 closest to the cab door on each particular side.

After having a look through my own pictures nothing .
After looking through my books with 45 class pictures i could find 2 other shots of 4503 showing the same thing.
All in the Train Hobby book on 45,s

                                 Page 10   27-9-72  4503 at Ourimbah ,Observers side 4 bars

           The only picture of the drivers side showing very clearly 3 bars is at Delec in the early 80,s

      Page 26 shows 4517 26-4-69 at Delec and the shadow of the 4 bars is visible on the window pane.

Page 27 shows 4518 at Fassifern with the same 4 bars although undated it must be around the same time with the unit having the early style exhaust  and single marker lights

So at this stage we have 4503 4517 and 4518 with this particular modification .
Which is on the original square style window pane before it was replaced by the rounded corner version to match the other end window .
Why the bars are there and what time frame they where there for  remains to be investigated .
Does anyone have any further pictures or information on this subject.
This could involve a voluntary recall of the Auscision 45 class Locos
Better get your cheque book out boys !This one will take some fixing.


  1. Its quite an interesting notice, & certainly one that would only be solved in the reasoning behind it by the department that gave permission & instructions for the bars to be fitted. But, I offer the following as being possible reasons for the bars being fitted to those specific windows.

    I had the misfortune of working on 45cl in many a winter & there was 2 distinct areas of failure with these loco's that was in many ways enhanced by their rough rigid ride characteristics, the first was with the cab doors flying open, with the standard type of door locks, primarilly that happened on the short end, owing to early wear as it was the main door used.

    The sort of fix for that was to remove that assembly & fit passenger carriage locks that had to be physically closed into a new cutout in the cab door frame, the doors did not come open after fitting but created huge problems with more drafts entering the cab as the primary door seals were cut away from the door itself & cab assembly, a bad problem enhanced by faulty after design, meaning many relagated to 2nd engine status, late in life though some further mods did resolve much of the problem. The carriage type handle is noticeable in the photos.

    The swinging open of doors also became a problem with 44cl & 421cl later in life as they aged.

    The window however was another story altogether but again design issues were a likely reason. The particular window in question was an opening one, of a drop/pull down type that was later found on 422cl side windows (which also gave problems later in the piece) the 45cl type though had a very tight & low top recess for them to be locked in place with the spring loading mechanism.

    The top frame & securing part of the window itself was rather thin aluminium construction, the spring & locking pin itself was quite small in size, & usually the pin would bend either up or outwards & break through the thin aluminium cover causing the window to drop at one end, which was a big concern with the overall freezing cab conditions at best of times.

    I had seen several attempts to lock these windows using steel & soft aluminium strips with angled ends screwed into the cab sides & pushed up under the aluminium top piece meaning they were permanently shut.

    It is possible as the 3 45cl in the photo's at the time were all allocated to Bathurst, with 10 of them being replaced by the 421cl, & eventually in 1970 by Mk2 44cl to have had the bars fitted in an attempt to hold the window shut. Bathurst at the time still had excellent mechanical branch fitters & the like so it may have been seen as a possible fix to the problem.

  2. PS

    The problem with the windows was not fully resolved untill they were replaced with new glazing with the rubber grommets around the edges & new framing fitted, the later full single & multi glazed fittings were another huge improvement especially the ones that had tinted glass in them.

    1. Thanks Colin for your first hand knowledge.
      I didn't realize that this window was op-enable .
      But i still don't think the bars would of helpt to secure the window ,being on the outside,
      I was thinking as you where of maybe a single depot modification( Bathurst ) in this case.
      As the window is next to the door ,maybe the bars where actually meant to be installed on the inside ,to protect the window from damage with bags or one posterior when entering or exiting the cab.
      But where accidentally installed on the outside ?

  3. I think the outside installation was likely meant to push into the window track to prevent it from moving. The bars were also found on the 49cl when allocated to Parkes, & I have no idea why.

    Certainly there would not have been any real need for them, even one would have sufficed for the holding of the window in place.

  4. The VR T class had bars like these. Apparently they were there to protect the windows when doing a manual staff exchange at speed, as the staff would slap around to there. Maybe these 45s had them for a similar reason. That would be the trailing window if reaching out the left side. No good if doing it right side though. Purely my speculation. Cheers.