This Kershaw Ballast Regulator is a model 46-2, the John Deere 4 cylinder engine is running at 2400 rpm.
Also show you my cribbing bucket and talk about the differences between my bucket and a banana style cribbing bucket.
It's called the crib because in the UK and many other parts of the world, the ties are called sleepers not ties. Thus the sleepers lie in the crib!
Why we crib ties is because coal leaking from the bottom doors of the cars will plug up the ballast over the years. When the ballast gets plugged up then water has a hard time draining away from the track. Water laying in the track bed then will go down into the sub grade also called the roadbed.
Then as the train loads the rail over that area, more water is pushed down and as the train unloads it acts like a pump pulling mud back up into the crib and below the ties. As this happens eventually the track surface will not hold. So we dig out the old soiled contaminated ballast and fill with new, thus creating an environment where the track surface will hold under train weight. This process is called ballast rehabilitation.
We had dead track on this day (no trains were running) so we had a very productive day, I cribbed out over 180 feet of track, plus dumped ballast. The mini excavator is a Kubota 161-2, 12,500 pound machine. It has been a good machine for us.