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A busy weekend – a fan trip and a parade

This past weekend (February 10/11th, 2023) saw our 1996 coach, #9753, take part in two outings. On Saturday, driver Chris Cassidy took it on a “Back to Vancouver” fan-trip.

The points of interest included Memorial South Park, former Oakridge Transit Centre, Canada Lands Company – Regional Office former RCMP office, Queen Elizabeth Park, Hayes-Anderson Factory Stanley Park, Chilco loop and former Joyce trolley loop.

The tour was designed by Ewan Streit.  It was Ewan’s first attempt at routing a fan-trip, and we’re told that the 21 passengers thoroughly enjoyed it. Thanks to Milan, we made a small profit, which allowed us to offset the costs associated with 9753’s next day out on the following day.

A group of people standing in front of a building

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(Matthew Walker)

A bus on the street

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A bus in a tunnel

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A bus parked on the side of a road

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(Photos: Ewan Streit)

The inclement weather couldn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the crowds ling the parade route of the 50th anniversary of the Spring Festival Parade. Nor could it dampen the enthusiasm of our volunteers accompanying 9753 as it travelled the parade route along Pender, Gore & Keefer Sts.

A bus parked on the street

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A person and person in a bus

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A bus on the street

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A group of people on a bus

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A group of people walking in the rain

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A crowd of people walking on a street

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A bus with a sign on the side

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A group of people standing in a street

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A group of people in a street

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It was a horrible wet day

We all got soaked

There were a few times when the rain slowed.

Most of the time very wet and cold, but it was all worth it! We enjoyed the parade!

(Sue Walker)

The Parade Driver was Anthony Sherst. The hosts: Hubert Leong, Steve Goodman, Ewan Streit, Rian Fatemi, Rob Chew, Francis He, Oscar Kapsa, Ophelia Lo, Leland Babic, Isaac Tam, Martin Wu, Nathen Sheng, Aden Wong, Jacquie Sherst, Matthew Walker, Sue Walker and Lawrence Walker. 

Parade photos: Martin Wu and Lawrence Walker) Gung Hay Fat Choy. (新年好)

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Training Technology

A picture is worth a thousand words… or so the saying goes. That’s especially true when trying to train someone. Concepts and procedures are much easier to grasp if the pupil can see the object. Since the 1960s, the electronic display of training materials became increasing common: first, via low-cost videotape, to today, where the simplest laptop or tablet can show videos from YouTube and the like.

But what happened before there was video available? Companies with large training budgets could utilize 16mm movies, but for less ambitious needs, there was the “lantern slide” projected onto a training room screen.

General Electric, manufacturer of the motor and controller for BC Electric’s Brill trolleycoaches issued training materials reproduced on transparent film. Unlike the 35mm transparencies we may still see today, these slides were mounted inside two small pieces of glass, about 8cm square. They were extremely fragile, and so were provided in protective boxes to prevent damage. The boxes also contained partitions to avoid the problem of slides getting out of sequence.

While going through some of our donated materials, we came across a box of thirty-five slides to be used in training personnel in electrical repairs. The physical slides have been archived, but we felt that members may be interested in the content depicted. Their large size (compared to 35mm slides) prevented using our slide scanner to digitize them. But an online search offered a ‘quick-and-dirty’ solution: a white screen was displayed on a cellphone to provide illumination. (A scanner does not provide the illumination necessary for the scanner to recognize the image. The white screen however lights the slide from behind.) The slide was placed on top of the phone screen, and a photo taken with a second cellphone.

A black box with gold lettering

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A rectangular device with a rectangular screen in a box Description automatically generated The resultant images are not as sharp as direct scanning and appear to have slightly higher contrast than the original image. In addition, because it is almost impossible to keep the cell phone taking the photo perfectly parallel, there are some parallax issues evident. But despite these imperfections, we get to see what those electricians many years ago would have seen as they received instruction on how to maintain the new vehicles.

A instruction manual for a fan-end bearing

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This is an Agfa slide projector, broadly like the type used to show the slides (Wikipedia)

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Our first fan-trip of 2024

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We’ll be having our first fan-trip of 2024 on February 10th. It’s the “BACK TO VANCOUVER FAN-TRIP” aboard 9753, our 1996 N.F.I. D40LF (ex-BC Transit 7183).

Points of interest include: Memorial South Park, former Oakridge Transit Centre, Canada Lands Company – Regional Office former RCMP office, Queen Elizabeth Park, Hayes-Anderson Factory Stanley Park, Chilco loop and former Joyce trolley loop

The round trip will take approximately four hours, including a stop for lunch. It will depart from Patterson SkyTrain Station, Bay #3 at 10:00am.

You can make reservations at

https://tours.transitmuseumsociety.org

The tour has been programmed by Ewan Streit (with help from brother Milan.) Fare is $35, TMS members receive a $5 discount.

(Please note: In the event of a labour disruption at Coast Mountain Bus Co., this trip WILL NOT OPERATE. Therefore until the situation becomes clearer, we are not accepting pre-payment of reservations. Thank You!)

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…and we’re back!

Happy New Year to everyone, members and non-members. 2024 will be an exciting year for the Transit Museum Society. We will be starting our new “Mobile Museum” project aboard our 1982 GM “Fishbowl” 4107.

Jason Sharpe applied our URL to 9753. You’ll notice that it’s in the same font and style as the old URL “www.bctransit.com.” All logos were taken off the coach before it was donated.

This week we’ve published our newsletter, The Transfer. You may know BC Electric as the predecessor of BC Transit/Metro Transit/BC Hydro Transit, but did youy know the in addition to operating buses and streetcars, the BCE also owned the Yellow Taxi franchise in Vancouver? We also explore the political life of Effie Jones. After WW2 she became “the number one foe” of the BC Electric, campaigning to have the private company taken over by government.

Angus shows us two photographs of our other “Fishbowl”, 4612: It was restored by BC Transit, but in the wrong livery! And we garner some more information about the oldest bus in BC. No, not our 1937 Hayes. Our President, Bryan Larrabee celebrates his 30th edition of “Shop Rags”, his review of the happenings at our facility in Langley, (but it started with Roseberry.)

Onward!

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Garage Sale

On Sunday December 10th, we held our second Garage Sale.

Waiting outside! Sue Walker with a few “non-transit” items. Matthew Walker shows a rear deck number display he’s modified for battery operation.

Organizers Sue & Lawrence Walk are to be congratulated for a sucessful event, as are our volunteers who helped. We raised over $3200 for our Society operations. Well done, everybody!

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Surrey Santa Parade & Presentation to Mayor Sim

Santa returned to Surrey in the 16th Annual “Surrey Santa Parade of Lights” in Cloverdale. Our 1982 GM ‘Fishbowl’ T6H5307N made its last public appearance before we begin its conversion to our 2nd mobile museum. That explains the lack of seats! One person that had a seat was driver Trevor Batstone! So too did assistants Jen Norton and Ewen Streit.

(Room for lots inside! 4107 in the staging area. Photos by Ewen Streit)

Recently, Vancouver Mayor Ken Sim expressed a keen interest in a Grant Money-Meter farebox. So Matthew and Sue Walker restored one of our surplus machines. On Tuesday December 4th, Matthew and Lawrence Walker presented it to the Mayor at a small ceremony at Vancouver Transit Centre. In the photo above, Matthew explains how to remove the safe. Ken Sim has said that any “fares” collected in the the farebox from visitors to the Mayor’s office will be donated to TMS. (Photo: Lawrence Walker)

At the presentation, Bryan Larrabee (TMS President), Mayor Ken Sim, and TMS Members, Matthew Walker, Lawrence Walker and Rhonda Larrabee.

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