1970s NG steam 1 - Sumatra





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Published on Dec 8, 2012

Part 1 - Steam in Sumatra, April 1974.


In 1974 I sailed to Indonesia in an old cargo ship. After doing the Java ports we continued to Teluk Bayur (West Sumatra) and Panjang (South Sumatra). 8mm film material at the time was very expensive and had to be used with care. I managed to record a few minutes of steam operations on the 3'6" gauge in the harbour yards.

The C33 class 2-6-0 tank engines on the West Sumatra system still worked long mixed trains from Teluk Bayur to Padang and beyond, with the E10 class rack tank locos taking over for the climb through the Anai gorge to Padangpanjang. Regrettably I only saw one of the latter in the distance during an excursion, but I had a good time on the footplate of the C33s shunting the harbour station at Teluk Bayur.

The C30 I recorded at Panjang came in by surprise when I went ashore for an hour from the anchored ship. This was a big high-stepping tank engine built by Hanomag. Time was short however as I had to return quickly to catch the launch back to the ship.

This video, like the others in the series, was converted from my original 8mm film to digital video tape. The sound track was compiled afterwards using various sound sources, and synchronised as much as possible using freeware audio and video editors.


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