#365daysofbiking Spring has sprung:
September 13th – Spotted in a customer’s bike shed, and improvised, clever repair to a brake calliper with a broken return spring.
The return spring – present in some form in nearly every type of brake – forces the brake off once the lever is released.
Since the brake cable pulls the yoke awards the cable end stop to engage the disc brake fitted here, forcing the two apart will duplicate the effect of releasing the brake as performed normally by a return spring. The spring has clearly broken and instead of replacing the whole calliper, the owner has released the cable, threaded on a very stiff spring and re-assembled the cable. The cable retains the spring and the brake operates as normal.
Clever. I’m impressed.
#365daysofbiking I dream of wires:
September 10th – Two things I thought I’d never see in my lifetime are the Chase Line Electrification and the creation of the pedestrian bridge to cross the tracks at Moors Gorse instead of the level crossing, but here I am, taking pictures of one from the other.
Interesting to see how far advanced the electrification of this busy passenger railway from Walsall to Rugeley now is – the catenaries are in, strainers all fitted and it seems here very close to functional.
I note the blue earth bonds to prevent the overheads going live while being worked on, and the curious block communing point on the track not yet connected to anything, but with the coil of bonding cable nearby ready. Wonder what that’s actually for? It looks like there’s some kind of sensor built into it.
Never seen those before and I’m curious.
#365daysofbiking Making a deposit
August 29th – I travelled home through Aldridge early in the afternoon after visiting the bank, and I had stuff to wait in for. On the way past the brickworks at Stubbers Green, just where the marlpit fence runs near the towpath, I noticed this curious instrument.
It’s a temporary placement, for gathering data about but deposition from the quarry and brickworks. It’s called – I kid you not – A frisbee deposition gauge, and it collects dust from the air and rain, which it collects in the vessel at the bottom of the tripod. There’s thin crosswires to stop birds landing on it, and a course foam pad to stop large debris like litter and leaves clogging it up.
Several of these instruments appear to be positioned around the site, presumably to test compliance with relevant pollution law.
It’s a fascinating area of environmental science and engineering and interesting to see it in use locally.
April 15th I cut over Clayhanger Common to the takeaway, and noted that the waters here had almost totally receded now. The lower meadow here is designed to flood, defending the village, and works well. The problem is the path has sunk over the years and is now submerged in times of the meadow doing it’s job.
Thing is now, you’d not really know what had happened.
This really is a curious, well engineered landscape.
April 7th – Ogley Junction Footbridge is mystifying me a little. The bridge itself and deck were restored beautifully, to much local praise. The remainder of the work – the spit and polish, if you like, hats been patchy.
The pathway off the bridge was originally remade badly, and now has been dug out and corrected, which is good to see. But the bit baffling me is the masonry.
The brickwork on the wing walls has been vary sparingly pointed, here and there. To me, it looks like it all could have done with doing, and bits still seem to be in a parlous state. I’m prepared to accept the work might be ongoing and not finished yet, but if it is a work in progress, there’s no logical pattern to completion whatsoever.
A bit of a conundrum.