The Semi-Retired Foamer has been a railfan since he was around 5 years old, a very young age when one really should avoid being involved with the gunzel community to any great extent.
After a few decades of train chasing, one decided to break with protocol and get married, thus leading to a severe cut in railfan activity.
Subsequent dealings with social misfits, lunatics, mental defectives and self-appointed experts lead to an even greater decrease in my hobby participation.
However things have changed thanks to our small group of trusted mate, interest has returned, and now I have become a bit more involved yet again. Having learned to laugh, with others, at all the more 'Moronic Foamers'.
.Oh the irony that lays behind that group name and the person who set it up..
We occasionally publish information on the locomotives, and rollingstock, from railways in Australia and the Philippines.
All are available for

Sunday, March 23, 2008


With what little time I have on the internet today I thought I would throw up another of those 'Where Is It' type questions with some photos from the archives.

OK: The first person to give a correct answer in the comments section below gets a years free subscription to this blogsite :-) Well, you will get the admiration of all those who couldn't answer it anyway :-)



Woonona Beach - Sandgate* - Malabar Rifle Range - Botany - Bellambi Beach

* = Closest guess thus far.


Nobbys (Near Newcastle Station)! First person to guess was Dick Holland on LocoShed Yahoogroup.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Bli Bli Pies & Randy Ducks - It Can Only Be Moreton! Part 4.


The following shots are some I took of the works trains being used to rip up the Moreton Mill system. Taken on the 2nd of September 2004 at Philbrooks Siding (Bli Bli), they saw no use all week but were fired up for track removal on the previously featured 'David Low Bridge'
In the past I had little opportunity to photograph all this stuff, so many shots and measurements were taken.
If any reader can outline where all this stuff has gone to today it would be greatly appreciated. I will add it to a 'Where Is It Now' type listing for later inclusion on the site, along with credits.

NEXT WEEK: After Easter - a look at the last train to touch ground on the other side of the David Low Bridge!

Rozelle 1993

Taking a brief break from Moreton Mill to share this track diagram of Rozelle Yard dated back in 1993.
In more recent time this once very busy yard has only seen regular usage to turn Mungo Scott trains and for the occasional usage to store wagons owned/leased by the smaller independent operators.
Last year a truck collided with the overbridge across Parramatta Road thus, "apparently", enabling to do what the railways have wished to do for years, close the line entirely.
Despite the yard being incredibly useful for the storage of wagons when not needed, it seems that only one train (South Spur/Silverton) will ever return to Rozelle, this planned to be a light engine movement to shuffle the trapped flat cars prior to their being scrapped on site. At the time of writing it was still uncertain when this was to occur.
Twas a very sad sight during a visit last week. A heavily overgrown yard with many tracks not visible through the grass, a rake of South Spur wagons awaiting scrapping, as well as a old 'Spark' shed shunter and some ballast wagons which will likely share the same fate.
All a bit of a waste really, however all will not be lost to rail with the 'Sydney Light Rail' planning to use the tracks to extend its system, which already utilizes the goods line from Darling Harbour to Rozelle (just visable in the map).

Friday, March 14, 2008

Bli Bli Pies & Randy Ducks - It Can Only Be Moreton! Part 3.


Below is a number of shots taken of the safeworking arrangements for the road/rail David Low Bridge in Bli Bli (Queensland)!
Although taken a year after closure, all was unchanged.
A couple of days after these were taken PETRIE pushed three flats across the bridge to remove the last lengths on the other side and then spent the next two days helping with removing the track across the bridge.
The selection here is a small part of what I took on the day. If anyone is interested in modelling this operation I would be happy to supply some others.


Xing sign on the east side approach to the bridge.Unusual flashing warning lights and sign on east side approach.Controls on east side of bridge. Note preserved steamer BLI BLI behind.Control on the west side of the bridge.Western approach to the bridge!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Bli Bli Pies & Randy Ducks - It Can Only Be Moreton!


Our next look at the Moreton system will be the safeworking utilized for the road/rail "David Low Bridge" in Bli Bli!

** LATER **

# Detail shots of the Maroochy River lift bridge and a shot of her shorter counterpart demolished in the 90s.

# Look at more Moreton Mill locomotives, as well as cane bins and maintenance vehicles.

# Howard Street - If Queensland sugar railways had a hackspot, then this would be it.

Bli Bli Pies & Randy Ducks - It Can Only Be Moreton! Part 2.

Arguably Moreton Mill's most well known and popular locomotive, BLI BLI was built in 1965 by E M Baldwin (6/1257.1.7.65) and spent her life hauling sugarcane from the fields back to Moreton Mill.
After closure of the mill she spent the next couple of years helping with removing the track she spent so many years on before being sent to Bingera Mill in Bundaberg. How much use she has been receiving there can hopefully be answered by one of the readers of this blog.
Having taken hundreds of shots of BLI BLI it would be to much of a task finding the best, so for now I have included shots inside and out of the cab, as well as one poassing through the Dunethin Rock picnic ground.
Its a safe bet that she will be appearing again.


Not discovered until the late 1990s, the picnic grounds situated on the banks of the Maroochy River at Dunethin Rock were always a favourite photographic location. Lunch would be grabbed prior to a chase along the line and consumed while waiting for whatever loco (usually BLI BLI) to return with the fulls.
On this day she had a rake of empties heading for the outer reaches of this branch.

Moreton staff were nearly always helpful and friendly, especially in the final years when they became more used to hordes of foamers heading to Nambour to get one or two shots for their collection.
While partaking in a crib break at River Depot I was invited to hope into BLI BLI for a look.
Such a popular loco must certainly be worthy of preservation. Hint Hint Albion Park ;-)

Bli Bli Pies & Randy Ducks - It Can Only Be Moreton! Part 1.


It is as I start to do this series on the Moreton Mill railways that I realise that this year will mark the fifth year since closure of what was my favourite railway operation.
Over the years of being a dribbly foamer I have seen many lines disappear, some that held much significance, however it was the closure of this system that has affected me most.
A little more about my early days arond the system can be found HERE in an earlier posting.
With the exception of last year I still ventured up there on a yearly basis to cover what was left and, while I know that may sound quite sad, it did allow me to concentrate more on infrastructure than had been the case when the railway was operating. Thankfully it also allowed me the historic opportunity of photographing a locomotive touching soil on the east side of the David Low Bridge (Punt line) for the very last time.
During these later visits I tried to photograph (and even measure) as much railway related buildings, bridges and safeworking equipment as I could find. Much of the results of this will appear here in future posts
Incredibly, only three years after closure I was already having trouble locating some old sections that I once spent much time along, this was particularly the case along the 'Horse Line' which branched off from River Depot. Sadly the passage of time will render even more areas like this, with many a gunzel researcher in the future having to spend much time identifying where BLI BLI and her friends once trod.
So over the next few weeks I hope you will enjoy a look at many different aspects of what was once a great railway system.
In the meantime you may be interested in checking out these two websites covering other long gone railways in the area.


Monday, March 3, 2008

Can You Identify?

Can anyone identify where these tickets are from?
Found them in the boxes to be cataloged and have absolutely not idea where I came across them.