Monthly Archives: January 2007

Snapshots of the Convention

# Preparations are on 3 days before the Convention. Chennai gang discuss the seating and layout


# The Venue, Hotel Metro Manor:


# Receiving the one of the eary arrivals…the Pune gang



# The MACL mock up was on Clear the previous night itself


# The preparations for the photo exhibition. Poochi, Shanx, Apu and Bharat sweating it out the night before the convention


# The day unfolds and so does the banner!


# …and the Hotel board too…Hotel was full that day! Needless to say who increased occupancy to 100%.

#One of the highlights…working model of NMR built by silent IRFCAn SVR Ramprasad. It has three levels depicting Mettupalayam level, MTP-Coonoor and then Coonoor to Ooty


#Ajai Banerji nears the end of of his presentation on the Non government railways of 1964. Note that the starter signal is at Caution to signify the time limit.


# Apu sermonises on railway photography


# Coffee Break and bonhomies


#PVS Praveen has a question.


#Mr. Parimala Kumar’s presentation on POH at Perambur Works


#Superman had tea! Shashank was in his trademark suit


# Dr. Sanghi is relaxed and enjoying his snack. Next year, same time, he will be busy with CNB 2008.


#Road number king ”Koochukchuk” Krishnan with Arnab Acharya.


#The Quiz Final was in Brindavan Express livery!


# Sridhar Joshi…the man behind MAS 2007 takes the teams into another round of questioning.


# Winners Apu and Jitendra


#The runners-up Shanx and Sagar Tipnis


#The Most Popular IRFCAn in the Universe: VSP27759


# Post Convention dinner!




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The finals of Build your train Quiz saw four teams pitched against each other. They were Apurva Bahadur and Dr. Jitendra Mulky, PVS Praeen and Mohan Bhuyan, Sivaramakrishnan and Biswarup Basu and Shashank Nanda and Sagar Tipnis.

The Quiz consisted of 6 rounds.

First four rounds: Each team giving the right answer straight or passed question, get 5 coaches each.

At the end of Second Round, teh team with lowest score was eliminated. Same again at the end of round 4.

Round 5 was a written round…Teams were to earn sops from Railway Budget for their train. Both remaining teams had to write down the answers of 5 questions asked. If both got the answers right, they got 5 points. If one answered correct and the other wrong, the correct answered earned 10 points for that question and the wrong answer gets no points.

Round 6 was the loco round…time to earn locos for the train built. The questions were also based on locos.

Two questions to each team. One on Diesel and other on Electric. Electric Question had a visual! No written round this time and questions could be passed.

The end of Round 4, we had Shashank Nanda and Sagar Tipnis as one team and Apurva Bahadur and Jitendra Mulky as the other team.

Apurva and Jitendra finally won the quiz.

Here are the questions:

ROUND 1: Start Collecting Coaches S1 to S3 and 2 SLR.

#“At Jajau – I saw a BOXN rake with an unusual power combination – WDM3 in the lead with a WAG 7 trailing. Most likely the latter had failed. Next we passed a station with an unusual name – Mania, “an apt description for your fixation with trains”, my wife would have said, had she been there! Just – no doubt it’s pronounced differently in Hindi.”

Identify the author (IRFCA) of this trip report.

# History! In 1863, what section was formally inaugurated within the GIPR by Sir Bartle Frere, the then Governor of Bombay?

#Identify the Station from this picture:


# What, until recently, was common to Miraj, New Jalpaiguri and Yelahanka?

Round 2: Earn S4 – S8 Uneconomical trains shall be withdrawn .

#In 1886, W. Newman & Co published the first ________________ .  Fill the blank.

#Identify this railway bridge and the river.


#IR has classified permanent way based on Maximum Permissible Speed allowed like A, B, C and so on.  What classification was given to MG tracks with permitted speed above 75 kmph?

# Complete the sequence as of date with an Indian Company : British Steel, Penang (China), and Stela Group (Poland) and ______________

ROUND 3: Get S9-S12 and a pantry car

# In 1956, an accident at the bridge on river Marudayar led to the resignation of the then Railway Minister, Lal Bahadur Shastri. In 1987, the same bridge was blasted by TNLA activists, derailing the Rockfort Express that killed 25. Name the station nearest to this bridge.

#Connect the channels CNN IBN and Aaj Tak with New Delhi Chennai Tamil Nadu Exp and Dibrugarh Rajdhani

# Why is this small kid driving the suburban train?


 ROUND 4: Get AC Coaches AS1, AS2, AS3, A1, HA1

# What kind of rolling stock is equipped with the Scharfberg couplers?

# Which station was the border checkpoint for Pondicherry when it was under French rule?

# An electric loco pilot uses the following horn code:

Long blast – short blast – long blast 

What specific action does it signify?

ROUND 5: Write to Laluji. Earn sops for your train: CBC Rake, 26 coaches, SF status, Tatkal, Daily Schedule 
# Fill the blank: The _________ is a point to the rear of a converging junction, such that a train must be to the rear of that point in order to ensure that any train moving on the other converging line can proceed without being obstructed.

# Which is the only divisional headquarters with “Road” in its name?

# “The handsome ________ _______ _______built at a cost of Rs.17 lakh and inaugurated in 1908, has weathered the years well. Obviously, the contractor, T. Samynada Pillai, built it to last. But despite being tended well in recent years, the [building] could do with considerable improvement and that is what has just begun. But while improving facilities and modernizing the [building] , it is to be hoped that Samynada Pillai’s work will be left untouched — down to ensuring that the “###” emblazoned on the bas relief crest remains, even if the ‘I’ has been painted out in recent years.”

Identify the edifice being described in this old news article from The Hindu.

# What, in 1925 replaced the B.E.S.A ( British Engineering Standards Association) with respect to standard for designs and classification of locomotives?

# What’s so unique about this route –



# What would be the class of locos for Road Numbers beginning 11001?

# What would be the current class of loco for Road Numbers beginning 15501?

#Identify this loco class from the shot of the cab seen here.

#What is common to all these electric locomotives?



Round 1

1. Mohan Bhuyan; in the KSK Trip Report

2. Bhor Ghat section

3. Udhagamadalam or Ooty

4. They all had all the three gauges prevalant in IR: Broad , Netre and Narrow.

Round 2

1. The Newman’s Indian Bradshaw

2. Jubilee Bridge between Naihati and Bandel on the Hooghly

3.  Q Class

4. SAIL. They provided rails to IR


1. Ariyalur

2. CNN IBN’s SMS code and TN Express number are 2622 and Aaj Tak and Dibrugharh Rajdhani’s numbers are 2424.

3.  Animesh Gorai from Bihar was allowed in the motorman’s compartment as a part of the Make A Wish Foundation’s programme which helps terminally ill children.


1.  DMU and EMUs

2. Chinnababusamudram

3. Lowering the Pantograph


1.  Fouling point or fouling mark

2.  Khurda Road

3. Chennai Egmore station

4.  IRS or Indian Railways Standard

5. The South-North MG link


1. WDM7

2. WDP3A

3.  YAM 1

4. They were all named after national leaders: Babasaheb, Jagjivan Ram, Jawahar, Vallabh and Bidhan in the order L-R of the photographs.


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Post Tea-Break

Poor connectivity forced us to hold blogging the remaining porgram.

It consisted of the following:

#Documentary movie on Patiala State Mono Rail by Mr. Manas Kumar Poddar, DLW Patiala

# Quiz Finals

# Handover of Token to Dr. Dheeraj Sanghi to hold the 2008 Convention in Kanpur

# Closure of MAS 2007 and exchange of bonhomies.

Mr. Poddar made an excellent presentation, which could be easily be the highlight of the Convention. He took us through the restoration process of the PSMR (the Ewing mono rail system) and how difficult it was to find information about it even in Patiala.

100 years ago the station of Patiala was located in a jungle! Today it is a part of the patiala town with the PWD store. A few rusted remnants of the Patiala State Mono Rail were found buried in sand at the PWD store. In those days it conected the towns of Bassi and Sirhind and later Sirhind to Alampura and Patiala to Bhawanigarh.

The trains were pulled by mules maintained by the army of Patiala . Later, in 1909 Orstein and Koppel provided the four uniques steam locos that were based on the Ewing mono rail system.

The PSMR was withdrawn due to poor partonage and dwindling finances. Itfaced stiff competition from other modes of transport, especially bullock carts whose drivers were vehemently opposed to this system. It closed in 1927.

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MAS 2007 Post Quiz Prelims


Mhow – A Magical Mhystery Tour
Presentation by Mohan Bhuyan (with contributions from John Lacey, Bharat Vohra)

Map – overview
History of the Sections
Salient Features of the Section
Loco and Rolling Stock
Slideshow of the pictures and descriptions
Included some amazing aerial shots taken from a low flying aircraft


by R. Parimalakumar, Assistant Works Manager, Perambur Loco Works


Fairy Queen
100 year coach retrieved from a tea stall
POH of electric locos
~66 locos POHed every year
Testing of static equipment and fixing problems
Testing of rotating equipment and fixing problems
reneval of all rubber components
General Repairs
Pneumatic equipment
Bogie cleaning and testing
Wheel and Axle tesing
Final Testing
 Homing staff do the inspection
Feedback from homing shed
POH cycle is 25 working days
 additional 15 days if cable rewiring is done
Merits and demerits of Steam, Diesel and Electric motors

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Build your Train – Quiz – Prelims

For the 2008 Convention, Mumbai makes a bid too…but I guess it is between NDLS and CNB.

Now for the prelims Quiz

 1. What is common to these routes (list is not exhaustive)?

Chennai – Bangalore

Mumba9i – New Delhi via Bhusaval

newDelhi – Howrah?

2. The _______ Railway company was established in 1845, (later succeded by a new company which started work in 1853)?

3. Identify the train by its previous livery
4. What was the origin and destinatio nof the very first Shatabdi express introduced in 1988?
5. Name the station situated between Munabao in India and Khokrophar in Pakistan.
6. Identify the locomotive from this picture?
7. This indian state was formed only in 2000, but had a train named after it more than 20 years ago… which state?
8. The practise of using the locality name for a railsway station exists in variouslocal communicities. If Nampally is for Hyderabad, which station is in a area called Kalupur?
9. What was the earlier name of the Guru Teg Bahadur Nagar railway station?
10. Identify the train service from this modified picture?
11. Which ministry does the Commisioner of Railway Safety report to?
12. There are manu stations suffixed “Cantonment”.. But which is the only one fto be suffixed “Barracks”? NMot “Barrackpore”!
13. Where are the only WDM-6s to be found today? (Loco Shed)
14. Brevity! What is this?
15. What would a train cbe carrying if it has all wagons classified as VVN?
16. SLR coaches are being slowly phased out of productions in favour of SLR-D coaches. What does D stand for?
17. Delhi Main station holds the record for the largest RRI system, commissioned in a record 44 hours. Which company completed the changeover to the new system?
18. Which zone of the IR manages the Kolkata Metro Railway network?
19. What major decision was implemented by the then Railways Minister Nitish Kumar, effective from World Environment Day on June 4, 1999, though the statement of this intend was made in the Budget earlier that year?
20. Identify the shed from this logo/…….
21. Which is the only station in IR to have the word “Station” in its name?
22. Until recently, this train had the max. no of loco changes… It’s changes were – Diesel > Electric > Diesel > Electric > Diesel.. What is this train?
23. What does the following signal indicate?
24. Find the odd loco out from this group, in terms of specifications
25. One IRFCA Member was instrumental in getting TKD Shed to name a particular class of locomotive. Whoz the person and what was the class of that locomotive?


1. They are the routes in the respective zonal timetables tabled as No. 1.

2. Madras

3.  Vaigai/Pallavan Express


5. Zero Point

6.  The Fairy Queen

7. Chattisgarh

8. Ahmedabad

9.  Kolivada

10. Samjhauta Express

11. DGCA Ministry of Civil Aviation

12. Cavalry Barracks in Secunderbad area

13. Bardhaman

14. A Nine-Car EMU

15.  Milk!

16. Disabled

17. Siemens

18. None. Kolkata Metro Corporation manages it.

19.Ban smoking on trains and railway property

20. Mysore

21. Dr. KL Rao Station (Vijaywada-Gudivada sextion)

22. Sabari Express

23.  Guarding entry to a dockyard

24. WDM 3. Only diesel hydraulic. Rest are Diesel Electric

25. Harsh Vardhan; Pushpak.


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MAS 2007 Post Lunch

 Shanx is pitching for Delhi, 19 and 20 of january.

NRM, Metro, all round super connectivity to anywhere in India, day trips galore, Asaoti and Dadri, Agra Shatabdi, all kinds of locos, etc.

 Kanpur’s pitch by Mr. Sanghi

IIT kanpur campus itself is by the railway line…no need to travel far.

World class facilities of IIT at disposal including guest houses for delegates

RDSO Lucknow, Railway technology Cell of Kanpur can pitch in gyaan

Kanpur people want to do it in a family sway…sposes and kids included.

Convention hall has 200 seats.

Feb 2, 2008 is proposed date.


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MAS 2007 Post Lunch

We decided to have a detour here….

We have the pitches for the Next Year Convention…bids for hosting.

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