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Author Topic: How not to use a turntable  (Read 6593 times)
glennk28

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« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2009, 08:46:29 PM »

Not an uncommon occurrenbce in the days of steam.

BTW--I know of places where I can fly fish AND watch trains.   SP (ok--UP) in the Sacramento River canyon below Dunsmuir.  The river has recovered from the Cantara spill.    gj
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jward


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« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2009, 09:47:50 PM »

perhaps the following from my personal experience will enlighten you on just what the sd80mac is capable of:

the first trip up to shelocta we used the sd80macs we had 4 of them on 100 cars of coal, 2 in front and 2 as helpers on 100 carloads of coal. typical train weight was 14,400 tons and length was about 5500 feet. on the way we lost one of the 4 units startiing up barton hill. we stopped the train ascending a short but brutal 2% grade and tried to restart the dead unit without success. since the track was 10 mph speed restricted, backing down to the bottom would not help as we wouldn't be able to get a run for the hill. doubling would have meant about 5 hours before we could get back to the train as we'd have had to go all the way to shelocta before we could drop the first cut, it was about 2 hours away. we'd have outlawed before then, and the helpers were in an inaccessable spot with no way to get the crew off.

the decision was made to try to start the train where we stood. we had nothing to lose. not only did the 3 remaining macs start the train, they had it up to 10mph within a train length and we topped the hill at track speed. that's almost 5000 tons per unit, started and accelerated on a 2% grade. people can quote figures and theory all they want, i was there and witnessed it.....this is just one of the many amazing things i've seen those locomotives do in the 2 1/2 years i was priviliged to work with them.
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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
Yampa Bob

Y.V.R.R.


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« Reply #17 on: July 09, 2009, 02:33:40 AM »

According to everything I read, diesels have a higher factor of adhesion. This is one site, I have another bookmarked but it is down for repairs.

http://www.trainweb.org/girr/tips/tips4/tractive_effort_tests.html
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I know what I wrote, I don't need a quote
Rule Number One: It's Our Railroad.  Rule Number Two: Refer to Rule Number One.
pdlethbridge
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« Reply #18 on: July 09, 2009, 02:43:04 AM »

It makes sense as all the weight is on the wheels, no tenders, lead or trailing trucks
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Atlantic Central

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« Reply #19 on: July 09, 2009, 07:24:38 AM »

Jeffery,

No one is disputing the power of the SD80mac, they are great locos. I am only making fair and acurate comparisons. Even with one unit dead, you have the equal to four H8's. The C&O never to my knowledge put four H8's on any train so we have no direct comparison for your story.

In the days of the H8 hoppers where much smaller, each car only carried 50 or 70 tons. So again we have no direct comparison.

But it is my understanding a single H8 regularly handled 4,000 to 5,000 ton trains up and down a number of grades with no problem. Two H8's typically handled 140  70 ton cars (10,000 tons) up grades similar to what you discribe. That does make its perfromance similar to the SD80mac.

Also, no one is disputing the operational advantages of diesels in general, but for their time, given the conditions and technoligy of the day, the H8 was a superb machine and was no doubt one of the top 5 steam locos in terms of technoligical advancement.

And it took a long time for a single diesel to be developed that matched or exceeded the H8.

Sheldon
« Last Edit: July 09, 2009, 07:33:21 AM by Atlantic Central » Logged
jward


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« Reply #20 on: July 09, 2009, 08:46:47 AM »

i don't know what the grades were on the west end of the c&o, but the mainline east of russel had one of the easiest crossings of the mountains of any of the eastern railroads. the ruling grade up to alleghany eastbound, the way the coal flowed, was about 1/2%. when i visited there in 1981 & 1982, chessie was running 180 car coal trains with 2 b30-7s on the front and 2 sd40s on the back. westbound it was steeper, but most trains were empty hoppers. this was h8 territory that i know for a fact. the tunnels had to be enlarged to accomodate them.
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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
panniertankboy8751


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« Reply #21 on: July 11, 2009, 01:42:37 PM »

Something like this also happened on the SP lines. A GS-4's tender fell into a turntable well. It's true. I read it in Classic Trains
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RAM

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« Reply #22 on: July 11, 2009, 01:56:38 PM »

 That kind of thing happened on most railroads. 
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Stephen D. Richards

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« Reply #23 on: July 12, 2009, 02:48:57 PM »

Yeah....what they said!   Stephen
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SteamGene

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« Reply #24 on: July 12, 2009, 03:11:01 PM »

Jeffrey,
I can't dispute the reasons that railroads switched to diesels. (No pun intended.)  They were easier to maintain, they could be operated as a single unit with one crew, they were simpler to operate, and they were more flexible than a steamer.  But It was only until the 1990s that any diesel ever exceeded the power of the most powerful steam locomotives.   I believe that was the SD 80mac.  And that locomotive barely outdid the H-8, the Y6B, the Big Boy and probably the N&W A and a couple others.  The early diesels were also not very reliable,  or so I have been told.  Many trains had one or two more units than necessary to insure they had enough power at the end of the run. 
Of course I've also read that the famous N&W test between steam and diesel was rigged, and had the test been fair, the N&W steam would have won.  However, by that time, it was getting harder and harder to find appliances for steam.  Sort of like today.  Go into Sears and try to buy a typewriter.   Smiley
Gene
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Chief Brass Hat
Virginia Tidewater and Piedmont Railroad
"Only coal fired steam locomotives"
panniertankboy8751


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« Reply #25 on: December 21, 2009, 09:27:43 PM »

I was wondering, can CSX do ANYTHING right?!?! There's even a website dedicated to bashing them up. It's called csx-sucks.com
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hotrainlover

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« Reply #26 on: December 21, 2009, 11:46:55 PM »

Great to see you back on Yampa Bob!!  I missed your help  Smiley.  I also missed your quick humor!
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NWsteam


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« Reply #27 on: December 22, 2009, 12:01:31 AM »

hotrainlover- He is not back as far as I can tell. His post was from back in July. Though I miss him as well.

Steamgene- You hit the nail right on the head. It wasn't really about traction but more about maintenance and cost effectiveness. I think if steam locomotives stuck around and improved/benefited from modern technology like diesels have they would rivaled their pulling power. But just like any other business, itís all about the money.

-Brad
« Last Edit: December 23, 2009, 01:58:23 PM by NWsteam » Logged
jbsmith


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« Reply #28 on: December 23, 2009, 10:48:17 PM »

I found this picture on RailPictures.net last night: http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=289394

I guess it adds a new level of potential prototypical operation

meanwhile back at the ranch,,,

"Missed it by that much!"-----Agent 86..Maxwell Smart.
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BestSnowman


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« Reply #29 on: December 23, 2009, 11:19:42 PM »

"Missed it by that much!"-----Agent 86..Maxwell Smart.
[/quote]

Ha, perfect caption for that picture!
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-Matthew Newman
My Layout Blog
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