Belconnen Depot Tour
I arrived on the 117 and got off across the road from the depot and saw 315, an Irisbus Agoraline, parked in the depot carpark with a small gathering of people outside.
I walked over and received an Open Day pack, which was a pamphlet in an old BusPack timetable folder. 315 was on display, with a bike on the rack to show how they were used.
There were not many people on the tour, and I took some interior and exterior photographs whilst we waited for the bus that would conduct the tour to arrive.
983, a Renault PR180.2 Articulated bus arrived and we all hopped aboard and were given an overview of the tour. We then set off, passing a number of buses waiting to be taken into the workshop before driving into the first workshop and then back around and into the second one, where a number of buses were having panels repaired, and a Renault PR100.3 on the hoist. We then drove past the fuel bay and through the bus wash.
We then had a look at the Tow Truck and the sheds before stopping outside the depot office. We were then taken inside where shifts and drivers’ runs were explained and we were shown the procedures for drivers starting and completing their shifts.
We were told about the driver amenities including a lunch room and gym, before a Q&A session was conducted. We then got back on the bus to do a loop around Belconnen Interchange and along the Busway before another lap of the depot. The tour was then over, save for a photo opportunity with 983.
Overall it was an enjoyable tour, although due to the amount of work occurring in the workshops we were unable to get off the bus to have a look around. A
Tuggeranong Depot Tour
After the Belconnen tour finished i made a mad dash for the bus stop to get the 313 to the Tuggeranong tour. The last time I went to a Tuggeranong open day was in 1998 so it was quite nice to go again now that I can remember everything. So we all gathered out the front and walked in and were shown a sign in sort of area much the same as Belconnen with a big table and shift supervisors etc. It is apparent that the Tuggeranong Depot building is much bigger when you’re inside than the Belconnen one and its much nicer as well. We then went outside and got on 986 which took us through the fuel bays and into the bus wash. Throughout the tour there was a very nice mechanic who explained a lot really well and was really interesting to listen to and he told us a lot of information which I found well, interesting.
From there we drove around the back of the depot and went into the workshop and parked inside, we then got off and went downstairs into the pits underneath the workshop and got to take a look under 986 and 353, he explained how everything worked down there, and the reason why there were heaps of tires hiding down the end in there. We walked around under there for a few minutes before walking back up into the workshop and over to 870 which was in the workshop and 770 which was on the hoist although it hadn’t been cleaned so we couldn’t go under it. Then we kept walking along and came to 322 which had its engine hatch open so we could have a look at it. This group seemed to ask more questions than the Belconnen one so I was happy listening to the questions and their answers. We went over to 325 which was high atop the hoist so we had a good look underneath and 2 of the panels at the back were either open or taken off so you could see all the engine parts etc.
We had a look at it for a while and the mechanic moved it up and down a bit and he told us a lot of interesting things about the Scanias whilst we were there. We then continued through into another area which is apparently where they do all their panel beating, and 863 was parked there (which has a 3/4 ripped of ad on the back and a really dodgy rear panel) but we didn’t go over to it. The second last area in the workshop was where some tires were kept and he explained how they changed them and operated the machine to change them, there was also some wheelcovers and a door and some other spare parts up in a big cage as well. Finally we went to a steam cleaning bay which had been broken for a few days but it was extremely dirty so we didn’t have a look but he explained it.
Then many more questions were asked and answered before we hopped back on 986 for a quick ride. We left the depot and went onto athllon dr, barr smith ave, coombe st, kingscote cr, barr smith ave, drakeford drive, athllon and back in the front gates of the depot where the tour was concluded.
Overall the tours at both depots were very interesting and I enjoyed them thoroughly and got lots of photos of which I’m happy about, I also got two free 1 ride bus tickets to use whenever. The day was enjoyable and the staff were very nice and were very interesting and quite informative. Despite the dismal turnout I hope ACTION holds some more of these open days in the future as it is a fun day out for all.