New swap Old

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Since 2011 HKT has been building the new all-metal trams, with outlines quite similar to the present wooden trams.  Following the new numbers 171, 173, 174 and 175 the subsequent newers are taking the numbers of those being withdrawn.  Up to September 2012 fourteen newers have been built.

A funny comparison showing the old 157 and new 157, same place (Western Market) and same neighbour car 171.

Remains of 157 after dismantling, whilst new 157 had been in service for three months.

Another interesting view showing two identical no.1″s”, the new-built green one is near completion whilst the old 1 being discarded.

Clarifying myths

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Owing to “Ding Ding” well-known to foreigners and tram lovers, we have to clarify and expose some myths spread by a tram club in Hong Kong.

1. Prior to enclosed top tram there were canvas roof fitted in 1913 and wooden roof, pictured, fitted in 1923. Instead, the date for enclosed top tram should be year 1925. The current wooden trams were new-built in 1987-1991.

2. Myths in company dates – “Electric Traction Co.” had once renamed “Hongkong Tramway Company Limited” prior to “Hongkong Tramways Limited”, which incorporated in 1922.

3. The current 120 dates back 1949 is ridiculous. It’s a replica new-built in 1991 preserving the heritage 1949s style.

4. In annotating the public transport’s name, KCR being wrongly edited as “Kowloon-Cantaon Railway Limited”.

5. In an exhibition of tram stuffs, comparing with the real one “Kennedy Town” we don’t understand why that one was in blue background.

In a media interview, the club chairman emphasized the danger of heritage preservation, and said he can’t accept no tram books being found in HK, in fact “Amazing Ding Ding” has published in June prior to his.
Heritage is important. Those who ignore or mislead could not last for long.
近日各界市民及教育界,對反洗腦之國民教育迴響很大,但發現有另一股之國民教育已逐漸萌芽,這就是一電車迷組織近日之舉動,似乎已向下一代灌輸錯誤資料,令下一代或對香港傳統電車未有深入了解的人被誤導。
首先,其發行之印有各式電車圖樣及年份的記事貼,將電車歷史年份錯誤地披露。
有蓋雙層電車的演變分為兩個階段,1913的帆布上蓋及1923年的木上蓋。
全密封雙層電車是1925年才正式出現。
現役的雙層電車是1987-1991年全新建造。
其次,該會出版的《香港電車百年情》“A Centenary Date with Hong Kong Tramways”錯誤內容如下。
1.電車公司名稱使用的年份
書中「1910年電車公司正式更名Hong Kong Tramways Limited」是錯誤。這個名稱在1922年才正式確立,而早期的「香港電車局」及1910年的Hongkong Tramway Company Limited該書全略。
2.懷舊電車120號自1949年保留至今是錯誤。雖然只得一部,但其實只是一部仿照1949年款式重新建造的複製品。
3.引述其他交通機構名稱中,KCR全名寫成Kowloon-canton Railway Limited,不是Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation嗎?
第三,大有廣場的電車展覽,其中一件展品是電車的顏色路線牌布,但為何堅尼地城底色是藍色,真實的不是綠色嗎?
第四,該會主席在某大傳媒受訪,強調「市民渴望保留原汁原味的電車的想法其實很危險,它畢竟是交通工具,需要跟著時代發展,盲目保留傳統電車只會影響其發展。」近日再接受另一傳媒專訪時,更言在香港沒有電車書他不能接受,荒謬至極。不知他是否存心抹殺或資料搜集不足,導致錯誤報導,並封殺另一本由天地圖書發行,比他更早出版的電車書《叮叮傳奇》。
歷史是重要一環。希望維護本港傳統價值的人及下一代,不要被洗腦!

‘Amazing Ding Ding’ – contents

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‘Amazing Ding Ding’ consists knowledge and delight. Partial contents as below.
One of the turned over accidents of tramway history, happened on 5 October 1983. Tram 113 not only being the first one got fluorescent lighting but also ever earmarked for San Francisco fleet. As 113 was in its modified body until 1991, we have amended the service date of new (current) 113 from Mike Davis’s 1987, to 1991 in the poster.
Phoneically translation is one of the typical features during colonial. Pictured middle reads 「老牌派律」was an old brand “Pirate Cigarettes” in 1920s.
In this route map you can find where the sharpest corner near Naval Terrace locates, and the period that trams reversed running into the depot.
An off-chance shot indicates the effect if trams run the red light – Driving the tram through a section break with the power on causes serious arcing, as seen here with car 105 and can damage the overhead insulator.
A very rare weekly wage sheet issued in 1968 by Hong Kong Tramways, initially published in ‘Amazing Ding Ding’. The welfares during the said period sounds better as to today’s Minimum Wage.

HK120 article

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A similar English version on heritage tram 120 which also described in the Chinese book “Amazing Ding Ding”, has published in a UK tramway magazine.

Recalling Diorama 惜景 言情

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I’m very impressed on the following Hong Kong Models in John Prentice’s Collection, admired his dedication on recurring the typical views with trams.

我十分欣賞John花了不少心血鑽研電車類模型和場景製作,尤以重現昔日的香港街景的功夫更是一絕。

This model was built in 00 scale (1:76 – 4mm to 1ft) by John Prentice, modifying a Tramalan white metal kit of a 1950s style tram with scratch built parts. It is of tram 163, the real tram being built in 1979. It is painted in the advertising livery of the Wing On department store as carried in 1981.

Built by John Prentice, this diorama in 00 scale is an impression of what Johnston Road in Hong Kong looked like around 1990. The “Wing On” car 163 and Lung Moon Chinese Restaurant, both have gone in 1991 and 2009. To the left of the scene, in the road next to the taxi, are two tram photographers who represent the model maker and a friend.

這架Tramalan的1:76白金屬電車模型經John巧妙地改裝後,變成和163號一模一樣的造型。163號於1979年建成,1981年加上永安百貨的車身廣告。

而同樣按oo比例製作的情景,勾畫出九十年代的灣仔莊士頓道。163號的永安廣告電車和龍門大酒樓,已分別在1991年和2009年消失。有趣的是,的士旁邊站著拍攝的兩人,正是John本人和他的朋友。

This model is of Hong Kong car 145. It was built to 1:16 scale (3/4in to 1ft). It is fully working (24volt DC) and was scratch built by John Prentice from wood and metal as appropriate. This class of tram was built in the 1950s. The tramcar used a Peckham P35 truck and originally was first class on the upper deck and third on the lower but were later one man operated, rear entrance – front exit, as shown on the model, being in the 1970s condition and till present.

The inner of 145 is mostly wood, the lower deck has longitudinal wooden seats, like the originals. The turnstiles are scratch built from metal and turnable. The metal doors also open correctly.

這架由John製造的1:16香港電車模型145號,以木和金屬製成並可走動,完全呈現昔日的電車風貌。這款電車建於五十年代,上層頭等,下層三等,七十年代改為一人操作後,上落車方式變成「前落後上」維持至今。

模型的內籠主要為木,下層木造的橫向坐椅、可轉動的旋轉閘和可開啟的車門等,都和真車一樣。

The smallest model on show is this plastic model of tram 38 in N gauge (1:160). It advertises Po Sum On Medicine and the model itself was produced as marketing feature for that company. They were sold by the 80M Bus Model shop in Hong Kong.

More details of tram modelling at www.tramwayinfo.com

這個1:160的N gauge情景模型,38號電車披上保心安廣告,在80M巴士模型專門店有售,相信是比例最小的了。

Most has been gone or materially changed, only photos are recalling. Yet I hope the old memories can recur one day.

無數的舊物或消失,或改變面貌,只有相片可懷緬,但我仍寄望昔日經典重現的一天…

Duties Ended, Thank You 功成身退

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The current 1987 cars have been serving for two decades, their duties will be near to the end soonest after the new features were built. The first car is #99.

現役於1987-91年全新建造的電車,不經不覺已服務二十年,隨著新電車的面世,很快亦會步入歷史。99號成為第一架。

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HKT 99: Lars F. Richter Photo (LOREN SEBO, 20-FEB-1991, Whitty Street junction)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Duties ended – goodbye, and thank you.

Trams on Ngo Geng Kiu 電車渡河

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An interesting photo in 1920s commonly find in books showing two double-deck tramcars, one with canvas roof and the other one fully enclosed passed by the “bridge”, with a pair of tracks laid underneath.

Most Hong Kongers named it “Ngo Geng Kiu 鵝頸橋” (formerly named Bowrington Bridge, In Cantonese “Ngo Geng” means “gooseneck”) guestimating for its curved outline of the canal, now become a well-known area for “beating the petty person” 打小人 today 1.

The tracks underneath has been a mysterious query on readers and historicans, some argued it’s for trams running but obviously in weak persuation, as the height is not enough for trams even a single-decker. It’s part of the Praya East Reclamation Project, the tracks are for transporting sand and soil removed from Morrison Hill to the waterfront land reclamation.

這張相片在書中頗常見,兩架分別裝有帆布帳篷和密封式上蓋的雙層電車,橫渡鵝頸橋,橋下還隱藏了兩排路軌。

它是香港人熟悉的「鵝頸橋」(前稱寶靈頓橋),”Ngo Geng”廣東話的意思是鵝頸,橋下是一條運河,它彎曲窄長形如鵝頸,故橫跨此河的橋俗稱「鵝頸橋」。今天成為了著名「打小人」的集中地。

至於橋底的鐵軌用途為何,曾經掀起學者和歷史學家辯論的熱潮,有人堅稱是行走電車,但光看橋的高度不足以讓單層電車經過,欠卻說服力。其實它是當年東區填海工程的一部分,鐵軌用作將摩理臣山一帶的砂石泥土運送到填海區。

Coincidentally, tha above view shows a track layout being laid in the same area in 1922, which was the main way to Happy Valley and the junction of the depot exit in Russell Street.

巧合地,上面的照片顯示1922年該路段的確有電車路軌,當時電車由堅拿道東,經過羅素街車廠出口,進入跑馬地。

Notes:

1 The Best of Asia 2009 entitled in Time Magazine