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Old 15th Jul 2019, 12:53 pm   #41
ms660
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

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Wonderful thread Lawrence, I have really enjoyed reading it and viewing Simon's excellent photographs. Thank you.

John
Thanks, the photo's are stunning, I tried once with my own camera when I worked down there, basically the humidity got it and in the end it all fell to bits so a bit of a failure, but I did take some photo's in one place with someone else's camera, I never asked for copies at the time and forgot all about it, then recently a photo appeared on the internet and to my surprise it was of the miner I was working with in the stope I took the photo's in! I'm 99.99% sure that I took those photos, I 100% remember him asking me to take a couple of photo's of him up in the stope.

He was from an engineering background and his stope was perfect, all the walls, back etc drilled and blasted text book style, I've enclosed the images below, Tony G on the jackleg machine, the drilling steel is a 2ft "starter" the photo's were taken after washing and barring down the loose slabs from the previous blast, the face of the bench is behind him and the machine, just below that you can see a dark shadow which is the rest of the stope back that will be blasted out during that particular lift, the photo is "posed" for obvious reasons (funk) the machine's start stop handle on the right is in the fully forward position for maximum rotational speed, the air being shut off back at the pipes in the stope's ladderway, pulling that lever back through 90 degrees shuts the rotary/percussion part of the machine off, pulling it back further introduces compressed air into the drilling steels water tube enabling the hole being drilled to be blown out (cleared)

The handle he's holding was also a rotatable control (like a motor bike's throttle grip) which controlled the compressed air into the jackleg, rotating it anti clockwise (as viewed in the photo) would introduce compressed air into the jackleg and force it's leg to extend, on the end of the handle was a small steel button, pressing that for a short period would reduce the force of the leg, pressing it continuously would retract the leg back into the jackleg tube.

Lawrence.
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 1:13 pm   #42
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

I don't think I will ever look at a roll of solder in quite the same way again.

David
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 2:35 pm   #43
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

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I don't think I will ever look at a roll of solder in quite the same way again.

David
I never did after that, it changed my views about lots of things.

One of the main producers of tin ore was Bolivia, the miners in those mines suffered horrendous conditions and treatment.

It was the chance of better money that attracted me to tin mining but now I often wonder if it was something subconscious from my childhood.

As a child at home up North there was a built in cupboard in a spare room, I remember opening it and a few old books fell out, one I picked up was called Coral Island, I was fascinated by the picture of a shark, another one I picked up was called Deep Down and was a book based around mining life in Cornwall, I used to thumb through those old books from time to time as I learned new words etc then I forgot about them.

Fate can be a strange thing maybe.....

Anyways the latest bunch of episodes of Poldark kicked off last night, corny in places but it's got all the classic ingredients to keep me watching.

Lawrence.
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 4:16 pm   #44
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

Thank you for posting the photo's that you took of Tony up in the stope and the explanation of working the jackleg drill. Fascinating recollections !

John
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 5:06 pm   #45
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

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Thank you for posting the photo's that you took of Tony up in the stope and the explanation of working the jackleg drill. Fascinating recollections !

John
No worries, my pleasure, for those photo's, I was describing a Holmans 303 but the machine in the photo is actually I think a Silver Three on closer inspection, same principle and a similar amount of din, another jackleg machine in use back then was the Atlas Copco Puma, a good machine but not quite the same punch as a 303.

Lawrence.
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Old 15th Jul 2019, 5:38 pm   #46
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

An excellent descriptive account of the terrible conditions endured by you and your fellow workers. How you endured all of this is beyond belief.
Previous generations of mine all worked in the mines, and a number of them had very lucky escapes when things went wrong.
I was fortunate not to follow them, but ended up in the relative peace and tranquillity of weaving sheds all over the world.
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Old Yesterday, 10:54 am   #47
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

No problem.

I eventually left the tin mine to further my mining career (basically to try and earn more cash) Long story short, I ended up down a gold mine, the old Dome Mine near to the Hollinger and the McIntyre mines up near Porcupine Lake in Canada, the section I worked down's all gone now as is the small village that grew up around it, just a great hole in the ground left, the riding shaft was No: 3 shaft, known as Old Red, anyways I arrived there basically broke and things didn't work out, the best way to sum up what happened is to listen to the chorus in the song "Sixteen Tons"

The company store...

Lawrence.
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Old Yesterday, 7:08 pm   #48
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

Well you certainly had a tough life Lawrence, I certainly wouldn’t have lasted five minutes down a mine, not tough enough
When did you get the time to do your Radio stuff?
Cheers
John
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Old Yesterday, 7:54 pm   #49
ms660
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

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Well you certainly had a tough life Lawrence, I certainly wouldn’t have lasted five minutes down a mine, not tough enough
When did you get the time to do your Radio stuff?
Cheers
John
After the shift when I worked down the tin mine.

I didn't bother with radios when I worked down the gold mine, but a while after I finished down the mine and after another misadventure, I did, by shear fate, land a job with Gendis/Sony on the West coast of Canada so I was back into consumer electronics and building regens and other bits of stuff after the shift to pick up the BBC world service and other news from near and afar.

Despite my more adventurous and misadventurous antics I was qualified in R&TV servicing to City & Guilds standard so never had any problem getting a job in that field of work.

Lawrence.
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Old Yesterday, 8:09 pm   #50
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

Thanks Lawrence. I got to know many coal miners during the time of the miners strike. Many formed bands / groups and I use to look after their amps and mics when they were on the road going to the various gigs. They had hard times so any money they could make on the road was a life saver.
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John
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Old Yesterday, 8:25 pm   #51
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Default Re: From 60/40 to Radon. A Radio & TV Engineer's recollection.

I worked with some ex coal miners, great bunch.

Lawrence.
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