CAD work commences on Car 26

There aren't many plans available for an Auckland A Class Dinghy, and the one that survives depicting the coach work doesn't actually match the chassis of Car 26 at all. This being the case, in preparation for the writing of the Heritage, Preservation and Restoration/Re-Construction plan for car 26, we have surveyed, measured and documented the Tram's chassis. The result being a 3D CAD model.       

Interestingly enough, despite all our research and wading through archives, microfilms and hundreds of documents and drawings, the chassis of 26 didn't actually fit on the truck we re-engineered. The truck was an inch too wide! By sheer luck we found that a few frames of the microfilm hadn't been scanned, and there it was, hiding at the start of the reel, drawing Z4 'Axle for Single Truck'. We substituted the new axle drawing in the design, and miraculously everything lined up.  

AETCL develops its very first product

Rebuilding tram cars back into working condition isn't the easiest thing to do. Parts don't exist and if they do, they require major rebuilding.

Faced with challenges like this, The AETCL contracted the not at all infamous Leyton Chan to assist in the reconstruction of GE style resistance grids. Full drawings of grid frames, taps and the various ratings of grids have been produced ready for the pattern maker and foundry.

The first reconstructions will be in production by June 2017. Once we are happy with the performance of the grid components, they will be made available to the tramway community to facilitate other rebuild projects. 

Development starts on Brush A Class 'Dinghy' designs

1902 Brush brake staff

When converting a garden shed back into a tram there are a few unusual  challenges. One major one is, if you want the tram to move, you need running gear. Unfortunately Auckland did very well at scrapping all but three of its trams, and the entire Brush A Class cars were all scrapped in 1931. In fact, no examples of the running equipment required to rebuild a dinghy has survived anywhere in the world.

There is only one solution, find the original AET drawings and reconstruct the missing components from scratch. Hunting around in archives has afforded a wealth of component drawings from the Auckland system, the only problem is knowing how they go together.     

1902 Brush Type A truck CAD model with GE 247 motors

1902 Brush Type A truck CAD model with GE 247 motors

Tram Body Jacks

Tram Jacks arrive at the workshop

Finding a set of tram jacks capable of lifting a tram body off of its trucks is truly rare. Finding two sets however, really is a jackpot! The four body jacks were initially offered to MOTAT, however the museum already had several sets and didn't require them.

luckily the owners then contacted the AETCL and the jacks are now an important part of our workshop equipment. 

COTMA Membership

The AETCL is now a member of the Council of Tramways Museums Australasia (COTMA). 

COTMA's goal is to promote heritage tramways and foster excellence in Museum practice and presentations. COTMA is a non-profit organisation, assisting individual museums to achieve their objectives.

Brush truck remnants

In 2012 excavations at the former Mount Roskill Bus Depot circa 1951 for a new Shopping centre uncovered over a dozen Brush D side frames along with a single Brush improved sideframe and remnants of Brush 1200 and Brush 1400 Motor cases.

The side frames are now in MOTAT's possession for research and future Auckland tram restorations with the motor remnants being cared for by the AETCL for possible replication for various projects. It is believed to be the only Brush 1200 and 1400 motors to have survived in New Zealand if not the world.

Original source