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Author The Bridge of Peril
Miles-M

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Joined: 01/03/2015
Location: North Wales

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 09/07/2017 21:13:28
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Just wanting to post up that there is a brand new bridge in Cwmorthin now officially open.

It spans B2W in the Old Vein, and is reached by going down the old A-B stairs and going left. This leads to a massive drop into 2W but now there is a bridge leading to 3W.

Construction is of the Burma Bridge type, with the deck (of reclaimed railway sleepers) suspended on heavy chains, with chain hand-rails.

It has been designed deliberately to look in-keeping, not like something naff off a high ropes course. All steel parts including the chains and shackles are bare steel, so they will rust quickly.

I don't have any pictures of the finished bridge unfortunately, but if you are in that part of the old vein it's well worth crossing as it is nice and swingy and gives great views down to D floor below, about 110 feet down.

Important points to mention, before I get chance to make up a little sign to go on it, is that there is a cowstail line which you really want to clip to, and also I wouldn't have more than 1 or 2 people on it. I've not calculated the SWL yet. The cowstail line is independent of the bridge anyway.

I'll upload a photo when I get the chance to take one.




--

I ain''t gettin on no plane. Fool.
IP: 87.224.72.55
The kwan

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 09/07/2017 22:02:13
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Sounds absolutely fascinating, must have a look Thumbs Up

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Miles-M

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 09/07/2017 23:04:52
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Thanks Mr Kwan.

I did find some relevant photos on my computer. Firstly, I have a picture I took in 2005 of the opening into B2W.

You can see the continuation level on the other side of the void, at that time totally unreachable. It has since been called EJ's Island as when we eventually forced a route across into this opening, one of the miners had written his initials in there. We covered it over with clear Perspex.

2005:



(click image to open full size image in new window)

This following photo is taken from the same position but shows the bridge under construction. Taken by Matt (1/7/17)on a camera phone so very grainy:



(click image to open full size image in new window)

At the point this picture was taken most of the deck is complete but not yet totally levelled and the handrails hang slack.


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I ain''t gettin on no plane. Fool.
IP: 87.224.72.55
pwhole

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 09/07/2017 23:45:08
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Wow - good effort, and nicely in keeping style-wise. Admirable. IP: 81.174.241.13
Margot

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 07:37:18
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It's a cool piece of work Miles! Thumb Up IP: 92.10.110.225
Tamarmole

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 08:08:31
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Impressive. Thumbs Up IP: 31.50.160.101
Miles-M

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 08:55:00
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Thanks all, glad you like it. I should point out that I didn't build it myself, the sweat/blood/tears came from a selection of megafauna.

I'm trying to get the queen to come and cut the ribbon but she keeps trying to send Charles. I'm going to do a Yougov petition to try and resolve the matter.

--

I ain''t gettin on no plane. Fool.
IP: 87.224.72.55
Peter Burgess

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Location: Merstham. Or is it Godstone ...... ?

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 09:52:12
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If one of the builders was called Simon, you could call it the Bridge of Si's IP: 109.144.246.15
Daggers

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 10:06:09
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Damn it we had planned to go to the Old Vein yesterday but after a slight diversion after visiting Croesor Rhosydd on Saturday we ending up doing an 18 mile walk in wellies and caving gear, including 6 miles of the Ffestiniog railway to get back to Tanygrisiau.

So needless to say Sunday I could not walk, Hopefully will be back in a few weeks and try and get some good shots of it.

Top work mate, the stuff you are doing in Cwmorthin is nothing short of extremely impressive, it's a very nice big play ground.

--

Steve (Daggers) Dalgliesh PDHMS, WMRG, DCC, Welsh Mines Society, Northern Mines Research Group, Nenthead Mines Society, Greenlaws Mining Project
IP: 86.187.211.235
Miles-M

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 10:19:51
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18 miles in wellies? Rather you than me, sounds like a cluster-fluck.


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I ain''t gettin on no plane. Fool.
IP: 62.133.4.6
Miles-M

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 10:30:40
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When the deck was first laid, the chains were so tight that you could touch the chamber roof in the middle of the bridge Blink

You can't now as we've lowered it a foot or so.

Whilst in the middle of the bridge I was looking at the chamber roof. There is a hole drilled into it, which will date to when the level across was intact (so 1889-1891 ish). It's not a shot hole, its a hole for a big lewis anchor to support the tripod crane which would have stood in B2W, when it had a floor.

This hole is massive, about 2" diameter and maybe 24" deep. Drilled by hand, and I can vouch the rock in that roof is very, very hard (I turned a new Hilti bit into a stump in that rock a few years ago).

That hole must have taken some effort, by god that fellas arms must have hurt afterwards.

However, the poor bloke has done it in the wrong place. When the level was in, the anchor and chain would have sat perfect face-height for people passing through (and possibly made a foul-point for blocks passing under). So he's drilled it then been told by a superior to do it again a bit higher. Sure enough, the anchor is actually sitting there rusting away a bit higher in the roof. So this original hole just remains there. Just a hole, but there will have been some cursing over that! 128 years ago.

--

I ain''t gettin on no plane. Fool.
IP: 62.133.4.6 Edited: 10/07/2017 10:36:23 by Miles-M
royfellows

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 10:47:20
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Miles, you and your team are doing some absolutely Stirling work in there which I applaud.

It has been a few years since I was last in there, but look forward to seeing it all. Alas, my time is tied up in mid Wales projects at this time as you may well imagine.

The shear effort of the old miners becomes apparent when you come to break rock yourself. A simple matter of cutting a slot to fit an RSJ took me hours with DeWalt and hand chisel. Heavier methodology was out of the equation as the beam needed to fit into the rock.

--

"How people get on with these things as a mobile device I cannot begin to imagine, but it certainly explains a lot about peoples behaviour."
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Daggers

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 11:06:35
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Miles-M wrote:

18 miles in wellies? Rather you than me, sounds like a cluster-fluck.


Just a bit, we walked down the road that comes up to Croesor thinking we could cut across the mountain to Wrysgan, by the time we got to Croesor village we knew something was wrong but did not want back track up the mountain, so decided to continue around the valley bottom.

Saying that I don't think at that point it would have mattered which way we went we had already fucked up.

Crying

--

Steve (Daggers) Dalgliesh PDHMS, WMRG, DCC, Welsh Mines Society, Northern Mines Research Group, Nenthead Mines Society, Greenlaws Mining Project
IP: 188.29.164.177 Edited: 10/07/2017 11:09:20 by Daggers
Miles-M

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 12:23:45
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royfellows wrote:

Miles, you and your team are doing some absolutely Stirling work in there which I applaud.


Thanks Roy.

Its a pleasure to work there, I'm sure the others would agree. Its one thing exploring the place but when the air is full of the sounds of engines, drilling, hammering, shouting and banter the place really just comes alive.

Sometimes you attempt to do something and you feel like the mine is really fighting against you and is reluctant to cooperate. Most of the time though, the work flows very well and you get a sense that the mine is welcome of the attention and wants to help.

As the present users, be it a short or long occupation, we're just a small chapter in a very long history. I am determined though that our time there will been judged in future years as a benefit.

I'm sure there must be many parallels with all of the above with what you do at Cym.

--

I ain''t gettin on no plane. Fool.
IP: 62.133.4.6 Edited: 10/07/2017 12:25:08 by Miles-M
mistericeman

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 12:29:31
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royfellows wrote:

Miles, you and your team are doing some absolutely Stirling work in there which I applaud.

It has been a few years since I was last in there, but look forward to seeing it all. Alas, my time is tied up in mid Wales projects at this time as you may well imagine.

The shear effort of the old miners becomes apparent when you come to break rock yourself. A simple matter of cutting a slot to fit an RSJ took me hours with DeWalt and hand chisel. Heavier methodology was out of the equation as the beam needed to fit into the rock.



Does your dewalt not lock off the rotary action so you can use a chisel bit in it Roy ??
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royfellows

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 12:31:01
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Your in good company.

In the 1980s I parked at Tanygrisiau and walked with a lady friend up to Rhosydd. from there we cut across to Croesor. Messing about at the mines time went on and we realised darkness was not that far away and lady did not fancy the mountains in the dark, so end up walking all the way down towards Rhyd and up the A496 to where we had left the car.

--

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Daggers

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 17:09:40
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royfellows wrote:

Your in good company.

In the 1980s I parked at Tanygrisiau and walked with a lady friend up to Rhosydd. from there we cut across to Croesor. Messing about at the mines time went on and we realised darkness was not that far away and lady did not fancy the mountains in the dark, so end up walking all the way down towards Rhyd and up the A496 to where we had left the car.


That is almost exactly what me and Conrad did on Saturday, but not by choice

--

Steve (Daggers) Dalgliesh PDHMS, WMRG, DCC, Welsh Mines Society, Northern Mines Research Group, Nenthead Mines Society, Greenlaws Mining Project
IP: 86.176.152.57
bob adams

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 10/07/2017 20:07:14
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Wow well done Miles and Crew I'm going to have to come and have a look at this SmileSmileSmile IP: 92.20.65.215
dwarrowdelf

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Joined: 09/02/2011
Location: Lost in Cwmorthin...and Oakeley too !!

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 11/07/2017 13:40:26
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Looking forward to seeing this Smile
and what happens once you get to the far side?

I'm always interested when a small detail such as the anchor hole you mention above seems to tell a story about the place and those who worked there.

And on to one of my favourite topics: wonder what that very hard, hard above the vein actually is geologically - an igneous hardstone of some variety I think, but other than this I don't have any further details.

On a related topic, I often wonder if the workforce actually knew that the "chert" layers were actually compacted volcanic ash (tuff) If they didn't necessarily know in the early days of Cwm/Oakeley, I wonder if this knowledge would have been eventually gained. Maybe all that was of immediate interest was that it was very hard and also brittle and potentially dangerous in the roof Crying

I read somewhere that "Whinstone" was named so, as it made a sound like "whin" when hit, as opposed to softer rocks which make a duller sound. Not sure that this will actually be quite so marked in whinstone surrounded by slate however.

I think the name was imported to Cwm/Oakeley from some other source, possibly up north: The so called Great Whin Sill happens to be made of similar material, to that composing the Cwm/Oakeley dykes: - igneous dolerite.

Anyway, the same argument applies as to weather the workers knew what the stone actually was beyond the fact it was hard, and affected the layout of the chambering when it occurred in dykes. Probably a difficult one to work out without an academic grounding in geology. Anyway perhaps the naming of the Whinstone dykes in Cwm and the Great Whin Sill was a simply a fortunate coincidence - bands and layers of hard stone intruding through other strata being refered to as Whin, and often turning out to be igneous dolerite (and quite possibly other related rocks).

a little Off Topic (maybe)

--

'I wonder how many breakfasts, and other meals we have missed inside that nasty clockless, timeless hole?' 'The Hobbit' J R R Tolkien.
IP: 46.226.49.231 Edited: 12/07/2017 13:36:17 by dwarrowdelf
Miles-M

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The Bridge of Peril
Posted: 11/07/2017 14:09:05
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dwarrowdelf wrote:

what happens once you get to the far side?


Err well, you can stand on EJ's island for a bit.

There are two ways on though if you so desire. A tyrolean cable continues over the fearsome void of B3W to gain the matching level between 3W and 4W.

-or-

There is a roped traverse leading around the wall following the line of where the floor used to be, to reach the remaining bit of floor at the face. There are some artefacts here and the quality of the slate slab here is fantastic. A ladder climb here takes you up the chamber wall to floor A.

--

I ain''t gettin on no plane. Fool.
IP: 213.205.252.60
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