Showing posts from June, 2007

Monsoon Special...

Yet another monsoon...Yet another trip! The heritage remains untouched...the cycle continues!

I am leaving on a trip to Kerala today by 2618 Mangala Express from Panvel....

...will reach back on 07 July by 6346 Netravati Express.

Stay tuned right here for live updates....

A very short railfanning at Panvel

My computer began performing strangely in the morning! I was quite worried, and a quick check revealed that she is down with a viral attack! I took her to a doctor, and the doctor advised formatting of her brain (Hard Disk!). I left the CPU with the service person, and had about 3 hours with me. A railfan never requires to think twice!!! I left my car at Vashi Railway station, and took an EMU to Panvel.

I reached Panvel at around 1420. Quickly purchased a Platform ticket and rushed in. A unknown WAG5 pair pulled in from JNPT with a long Container rake. There were lots of GRP around the station, and surprisingly the number of RPF has gone down! Even at the office, I saw just one constable sitting and napping outside! I did not dare to take a pic of any loco on the yard lines!

The notice board at Panvel mentioned that 0168 Trivandrum-Dadar Holiday special was running late by about 9 hours, and 0431 Trivandrum-Nizamuddin special was late by about 5 hours! I went over to Platform 3, and not…

The "mighty" housefly...

It rained quite heavily with strong winds yesterday. The day was coupled with heavy rains, strong winds and power failures! The electricity supply went off at around 0800 in the morning, and was restored only at 1400. It went again about 5 minutes later, and was restored at 1515. The supply was disrupted again at 1800, and was restored at 1830. It went again at 1840 and was restored at around 1915. There was not enough voltage in one phase (We have a 3 phase supply). The power supply was once again disrupted at 2045, and was restored only at 2145. To add to this, the internet connection never switched on till about 0030!

Since, it rained hard - our house was attacked by an army of the mighty housefly!

The contingent was so huge, that the flies occupied each inch of the space available in the front hall! These flies, Musca domestica, is one of the most widely seen species of pests in India. They are 'experts' in spreading diseases! With the monsoon setting in, they probably lost …

Raining well....

It has been raining quite well over the past few days! The rain did take a break yesterday. Right behind my bedroom, is an open plot full of Bamboos! The leaves look beautiful after a short shower! The rain droplets on the leaves shine out!

To add to this, I have seen ants doing a balancing act on the leaves and its twigs! Overall, it is a beautiful place to be in during monsoons!

Psst! This was a post that I made due to compulsion! I've not posed during the past 4 days! Sorry, but there wasn't anything interesting to make a post on!

MEMU - An interesting counterpart of the Urban EMU

The MEMU, or Main line Electrical Multiple Unit are modified EMUs, meant to be used in Electrified Main lines. These units were introduced in around 2000 by ICF, Chennai. These coaches are narrower - 10'8" as compared to 12' of the normal EMU which is used in suburban sections.

The MEMUs run on 25 kV AC traction, and typically contain one power coach for each unit containing 3 coaches. The traction equipment (Pantographs, Traction motors, etc) are located on the coach housing the "Driving Cab" itself. These trains have two classes of accommodation viz, First class and Second Class. The First class coaches are usually located in the coach having the Driving cab, while the remaining of the rake is second class, and the rake - surprisingly- is vestibuled!

The Driving cab of a Virar-Dahanu MEMU. The coach is 1001A built by ICF in late 2001.

I got a chance to travel by an MEMU recently. The coaches are more spacious than a normal EMU. There is more space for standees, a…

Sunday @ Saphale!

A mail calling railfans in Mumbai for a short trip to Saphale sent me dreaming!!! The days following the mail were done discussing the details of the trip, and today - 17 July 2007 - was decided as the date, and the venue Saphale or Kelve Road.

I reached Andheri at about 0920 by an EMU from Dadar, and found Arzan Kotval already waiting for me at Platform 8. Anamitra was to join us at the station, while two others (Deep and Abhishek) would board the train from its origin at Bandra Terminus. Andheri was the second stop for that train. They (Deep and Abhishek) were in the second coach from the loco. The train pulled in at 0944 into Andheri. The loco in charge was WCAM1 #21836 from Valsad. Anamitra just made it on time for the train - 245 Bandra Terminus - Vapi Passenger. We boarded the coach second to the loco (A 1984 built General Sitting coach). Akshay Marathe joined us from Borivli.

The train pulled out of Andheri at around 0952, already delayed by 10 minutes. We (myself and Deep) were …

A short branch exploration....

I had to take my car to the service centre today, and the engineer there promised to deliver the car by 1730 in the evening. Going back to home, and then getting back to Thane would be tiring, and decided to utilise the day better! I had IRFCAns Ranjeet Ramaswamy, and Ravi (Also a member of another discussion forum) with me. We decided to do the Diva-Vasai Line on the 1683 Diva-Vasai DMU. This was my first experience on this branch line!!!

We met at Thane, and proceeded to Diva at around 1400. We reached Diva at 1415, and our train was already waiting for us. The scheduled departure time was 1425, and we made it to the train easily. The train was 8 coaches long, with the Locomotive attached to the centre of the rake! The loco in charge today was WDM2 #18169 of Kalyan. She was a good smoker, and the journey was simply marvellous! We left Diva at around 1428. We crossed a Long Container train hauled by a WCAM2 at Kopar Road.

The journey from Kopar road to Vasai Home was normal, without an…

Another short railfanning!

My dad had some works at a Bank near Panvel. I understood that it would be the best opportunity to spend some time near the railway tracks! After dropping my dad at the bank, I drove down to the Khanda Colony Level Cross. The gate was already closed. I crossed the tracks to the other side, and saw a twin MU-ed loco pair of Kalyan rushing towards the gate...

I took an image, and turned back to see another one...

The other was was Ernakulam WDM3A #16084R. She was in charge of the Kochuveli bound Kerala Sampark Kranti Express. The loco was a bit too fast that I couldn't adjust the exposure settings! Just after clicking, I got a call from dad and returned back to the bank! So that was a very short, but fruitful trip! Bye for now....but do stay tuned right here for more updates coming up in the next few days!

Railfanning with the new camera!

My plan was a round trip from Belapur to Belapur via Thane and Panvel. I had initially planned to take a Vashi-Thane EMU, but narrowly missed it! Then decided to take an EMU via Kurla. The sightings were normal. I spotted the Bhubhaneshwar-Mumbai Konark Express near Bhandup. This train should have reached Mumbai early in the morning!

Later, I took the Dadar-Ernakulam Holiday special, and got down at Panvel. The loco was Kalyan WDM2 #18068 (image above!). Not much to write about, but please have a look at Galleria for some images! Hoping to have another railfanning trip very soon! Bye till then!

Testing the new camera...

After spending a day full of excitement, it was now time to test if the camera meets my expectations! I set out from my home in the morning (At around 0930). I took a good number of images, but here are two selected ones:

First was a bird:

And, the second one:

The one above is my favorite! It had rained slightly in the morning, and the water droplets appeared beautiful on the banana leaf! I never expected the camera to focus even at a very close distance! Good job man!!!

Woohoo! A new Camera!!!!

My New camera! Panasonic Lumix FZ50. (Image courtesy:

Putting an end to a long wait, I just got my hands on a new camera today! The Panasonic Lumix FZ50 camera! The camera has a 10.1mp resolution with a 12X optical zoom, with complete manual control of the zoom and focus!

The days ahead would see some 'trial' images with this camera. So stay tuned right here!

Another Bengalooru Sojourn: Final Update

Finally another journey comes to an end! The last leg of the "Bengalooru Sojourn" was by 1018 Yeswantpur - Dadar Chalukya Express. The loco in charge was WDM3A #16041R of Pune in typical DCW Livery (seen in the image above).
My coach was WGACCW 88052 (A1), based at Dadar. The coach was just two years younger to me!!! The ride quality was average. The coach kept rocking most of the time, and the vibrations caused by the Air conditioning plant was heavy.
The train left Yeswantpur at 0725 (late by 5 minutes), and reached Dadar at 0740 (late by 20 minutes). The total running time was 24 hours and 15 minutes. More details of the journey will be coming up very sooooon! Stay tuned!

Another Bengalooru Sojourn: Update 2

The return journey begins just minutes later on 1018 CHalukya Express from Yesvantpur....

Killing time in Bangalore!

First: Sorry for not posting for the past few days!

Next: There was not much to post about in the past few days! The First day in Bangalore (June 02, 2007 - Saturday) was spent roaming around in Lalbaug (shopping at the Mango Festival!), and then roaming at Big Bazar at KR Puram!

Sunday was spent sitting at home till evening, and then roaming at Jayanagar market till night! Monday till today was spent sitting idle at home! No access to the internet till evening! I get to browse only after 1900, and hence spend time till about 2100 browsing!!!

Hope to post something once more before returning from Bangalore. But here goes another image from the Lalbaug Mango Festival...

The image above is the exhibition of different types/varieties of Mangoes on display by the Indian Horticulture Research Organisation...

Bye for now!

Another Bengalooru Sojourn: Update 1

Part one of the journey ended yesterday!
My Train - 1013 LTT-CBE Express - left LTT at 1035 (5 mins late), and finally reached Bangalore City at 2300 (1 hour 05 minutes late).

The locos were: WCG2 #20116 from LTT to PUNE; WDM3A #14028 of Krishnarajapuram from PUNE to SBC; and the train proceeded to CBE with WDM3D #11109 of Erode.

More updates of the journey coming very soon!