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A new passing siding between Bellamy and Peter’s Pond on Fred Mills IPP&W Railway (home of the Ottawa Valley GRS) was just added. The siding uses two left hand switches to allow a train to enter on the main (straight) from either end. Once in the siding, the lead switch has to be thrown to allow the train to leave. Then it has to be returned to its original mainline position to allow other trains to enter.

As this siding is at ground level, stooping or kneeling to throw our standard barrel bolt switch throws would have been hard on our creaky backs and knees. As the siding could not be raised, the switch throws were.

T bars were driven into the ground near the switches. An L shaped bracket was bolted to the top and drilled out to hold a choke cable. These cables are available at most auto part stores like PartSource here in Ottawa.

Pulling or pushing the choke cable moves an L shaped bracket attached to the throw bar which moves the switch points. Plastic tubing has been added to the exterior of the choke cables to prevent rusting and the cables can be lubricated by adding oil to the top under the handle. They may not be as pretty as those store bought cast switch throws, but they sure are easy on our creaky back and knees.
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