Part three of our look at what’s on show at this month’s Network Rail National Track Plant Exhibition.

Hand-operated vertical tamper

Robel’s new 62.05 hand tamper is available with either a petrol or an electric motor. It is tube-shaped with a motor seated on top and a handle running around the outside. Shock absorbing, rubber-metal elements are fitted at its head-end between the vertical tube and the drive unit.

All moving parts such as the drive shaft and eccentric are hidden, as is the vibration decoupling. As a result, these parts are not exposed to potential damage or weather effects, and the user, too, is not at risk from rotating, vibrating parts.

A special gear box transfers the rotary motion of the motor to the eccentric shaft. This carries an unbalanced mass at its bottom end, right on the tamping spade. Consequently, the high frequency circular motion of the spade is produced right where it is needed to do the work. This causes the ballast layer to flow so well that, as a result of compacting the ballast under the sleeper, a small cone-shaped depression is formed at the surface of the ballast.

The tamping action is both effective and also doesn’t damage ballast or sleepers. This faster and more efficient mode of operation, compared with conventional power tampers, is coupled with low hand-arm vibration, based on patents for the vibration decoupling.

Low-profile 5-Tine grapple

Sandhurst Rail, the specialist excavator attachment rental company, has introduced the compact PTF32(LH). This is a 360o rotation low profile grapple with five contoured tines allowing a machine operator to pick up sleepers, posts and poles directly from any type of surface. The specially shaped tines are designed with a profile to enable items to be picked up from track ballast and other ground with minimum, if any, surface disturbance.

The PTF32(LH) weighing only 460kgs is suitable for excavators weighing 7.5 to 16 tonnes and features a 15o fixed angle baseplate providing the operator with valuable additional articulation, particularly beneficial when working in low headroom conditions.

In its compact configuration, this attachment stands alone as the perfect tool for working under bridges, in tunnels, on embankments, where space and headroom is restricted. It is configured with five tines (two over three) and will pick up items such as sleepers to a minimum section of 125mm (5”). Maximum jaw opening is 1820mm (approx 73”) and the attachment height with jaws open / closed is 1120mm (approx 45”) / 1000mm (approx 40”). Width is 600mm (approx 24”).

Sandhurst Rail operates a nationwide attachment rental service and offers a comprehensive range to maximise excavator productivity.

Mobile track warning systems

Schweizer Electronic is the leader in automated Track Warning Systems and Level Crossings serving rail infrastructure companies across the world. As well as its headquarters in Switzerland, the Group also has offices in Germany, the Netherlands, the UK, Spain, Italy and Austria. All operating processes are governed and certified in accordance with ISO 9001 and CENELEC EN 50 126.

Approved for use by Network Rail, Schweizer Electronic’s products include Automatic Track Warning Systems (ATWS), Lookout Operated Warning Systems (LOWS) and Signal Controlled Warning Systems (SCWS) which are designed to provide safe access to running rail, facilitating productive rail maintenance and construction techniques.

This year, Schweizer Electronic launches Minimel Lynx, an innovative Mobile Track Warning System capable of running manually or automatically using treadles to provide higher levels of safety and productivity. Ideal for patrolling and short worksites, this cableless system has improved radio reception through its use of high gain aerials and radio repeaters.Senator manned guarding snow [online]

Improve safety and sleep better!

Senator Security is in the peace-of-mind business. It takes away the worries that can keep a site manager awake at night.

When people think of rail security, the well- publicised issue of cable theft is often at the forefront of their minds. However, theft of plant and tools, vandalism and trespass on or near the project site, depot, compound or yard also have a major impact on safety, effective operation and cost.

Plant, power tools, ‘hand carry’ machinery and hand tools are a very real temptation for the petty, opportunistic and organised criminal alike. Then there are the many physical and mental threats to maintenance crews and rail engineers, from rock-throwing youths to drug dealers and suicide attempts.

Senator Security is qualified, accredited, experienced and equipped to address these challenges and provide a cost effective, professional security deterrent and protection service on the rail, within the fence line or in close support of railway operations. Senator provides a manned guarding security service with SIA licensed personnel plus PTS, IWA and COSS qualified teams.

To operate any form of security needs a Security Industry Association (SIA) licence by law – don’t take the risk, an Approved Contractor Scheme (ACS) security company is a vital and integrated part of any project and project team.

New products and innovation

Specialised Tools & Equipment Ltd (STEL) supplies tools, plant and consumables into the track maintenance and installation industry. The company distributes products for many leading brands such as Pandrol, Husqvarna, Klingspor and Bosch as well as supplying many products in its own name.

Work is ongoing on new designs for several rail products following the successful application for approval for both trolleys and ironman with London Underground. These same products are now at an advanced stage of approval with Network Rail.

Innovation is the way forward, and STEL has recently designed and developed a new lightweight Battery Rail Drill that is currently undergoing trials. A prototype Emergency Rail Clamp is also under development that is significantly different to any other designs in the market place.

The list of new projects is extensive and will see STEL add to its range of own-branded products on an on-going basis.

Innovative solutions and efficient delivery

As one of the fastest growing and leading providers of specialist plant to the rail industry, TRAC Rail has a reputation for quality, investment, reliability and customer satisfaction. Creating innovative solutions to clients’ problems is what TRAC does best, using some of the most specialist plant around. Services are customer focused and TRAC’s staff is dedicated to delivering safe and efficient projects to its clients.

In recent months, not only has TRAC made the addition of a few new items of plant to its fleet including ELANs, Rail Mover, Renault Lorry and Terex Excavator with its new drill rig, but it has also added a few new members to the TRAC Rail team.

TRAC Tractor [online]This is an exciting time for the company as it increases its profile throughout the UK, in particular its growing presence within the overhead line and electrification markets.

Improved track warning systems

ZÖLLNER supplies Autoprowa® Track Warning Systems to the United Kingdom, Germany and many other countries. ZÖLLNER UK Ltd., Leeds provides local service and training to UK customers.

The system’s modular concept offers solutions for all work sites, including long and short duration sites, static and mobile worksites. Autoprowa can be used as ATWS, Semi-Automatic TWS, LOWS or even Signal Controlled Warning System (SCWS).

The Autoprowa effect automatically adjusts the warning signal level to the ambient noise to generate a safe warning signal and avoid unnecessary high sound levels.

ZÖLLNER radio modules replace cables between units to reduce installation time.

The radio based Autoprowa ZPW can be activated by treadles or by lookout using a ZFH handswitch (LOWS). Due to its lightweight design, it can also be used in a harness for patrolling or surveys.

The reliability and safety of the Autoprowa system have allowed ZÖLLNER to become the TWS market leader.