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Prototype FAQ Part 1

Also See Diesel-Electric Engine Prototype FAQ Part 2

From: Urban_Fredriksson@icl.se (Urban Fredriksson)
Subject: rec.models.railroad FAQ PROTOTYPE part 1 of 2


This started out as part of the rec.models.railroad FAQ,
but now I feel that it belongs in the misc.transport.rail.*

This part contains the following subjects:


Can anyone tell me about CN passenger cars?

	The CANADIAN NATIONAL smoothside lightweight passanger cars were
	painted CN olive green and black with a black roof and black ends.
	Sides were green from the bottom of the window up and black from the
	bottom of the window down.  Yellow stripes at the top, between green
	and black just below the window and at the bottom.  CANADIAN NATIONAL
	was in yellow and centered above the windows.  The individual car name
	was yellow centered in the black area of the car and yellow and red
	crests at all four ends centered in the black area of the car side.
	(Use CDS dry transfers)
	(Use Scalecoat CN Green #72).
	Sleeper cars are in the E series (4 sections, 8 duplex roomettes, 4
	double bedrooms).  Selected names are: Erikson, Edson, Elgin, Emerald,
	Emperor, Enterprise, Essex, Euclid, and Eldorado.
	The "Cape" series had 2 double bedrooms, 2 compartments and a lounge.
	Selected names in this series are: Cape Race, Cape Breton, Cape
	Chignecto, and Cape Porcupine.
	A good reference book is "Canadian National Railway Story" by Patrick C 
	In 1953, CN placed orders for 302 cars, including a single order with
	Pullman for 92 sleeping cars, 17 parlor cars and combination parlor and
	meal service cars, 12 combination sleeping and meal service cars and 20
	full dining cars. The remaining 161 cars were coaches ordered from
	Canadian Car and Foundry. CN then determined this was not enough and
	at the end of 1953 ordered an additional 57 coaches from Canadian Car
	and Foundry and 30 baggage cars from National Steel Car Corporation in
	Hamilton Ontario.
	The 218 coaches built by CC&F were identical, however the sleepers were
	of various designs.  Besides the 4-8-4 "E" series there were 20 "Green"
	series cars (6 roomette, 4 double bedroom, 6 open section). 15 of these
	were leased to Pullman for international service and had Pullman in
	yellow on the four top corners of the car. Individual names include:
	Greenmount, Green Point, Green Lane, Greendale, Green Harbour, and
	Another type, the "Bay" series (10 roomettes, 5 double bedrooms) also
	had some leased to Pullman. Individual names in this series are:
	Buckley Bay, Hudson Bay, Glace Bay, and Thunder Bay. There were a total
	of 6 cars in this series, of which 4 were leased to Pullman and had
	Pullman in yellow in the top 4 corners.
	All "E" series cars were operated in Canada.
	The "Cape" series also had cars leased to Pullman with Pullman in
	yellow on the four top corners of the car.
	Also, in 1950, Canadian Car and Foundry built 20 "I" series sleepers
	according to plans and specifications supplied by Pullman Standard.
	These were lightweight smoothside 24 duplex roomette cars with 6 wheel
	drop equalizer trucks. Individual names include: Indigo, Ingelow,
	Innes, Iroquois, Inverness, Iris, Isabella, and Irvine.
	All the cars (389 total) ordered in 1953 came with 4 wheel trucks.
	As for sources, "Canadian Railroad Modeller" is the only magazine
	available in Canada, and have not done any articles on CN passanger
	cars (yet) and I don't know if they will.  The book "Canadian National
	Railway Story" is where I got the above information, but it does not
	provide plans, just small pictures.
	Another book with good pictures of these cars that I remembered and
	looked at last night is "More Classic Trains" by Arthur D Dubin
	(published by Kalmbach).  Interestingly, this book also has a section
	on CP but does not show any of the smoothside lightweight passanger
	cars owned by CP.
Regarding RDG paint schemes:

	Yes, the solid green (often called "candy apple green") color is the
	scheme on the CSX ex-D&H GP39-2's. The D&H 7400-series units are the
	former Reading ones, and they were delivered in the green paint.
	They've gotten many different D&H paint jobs, and the CSX didn't BUY
	them - they RECLAIMED them! CSX was the owner of the lease, and when
	the lease came up, they were power short and just took 'em back and
	renumbered them into the 4300-series. It's pretty funny, too - the
	three units that were rebuilt by M-K Mountaintop that were repainted
	into Lightning Stripes lasted little more than a year... shame...
	The colors haven't changed much, though!

	The "Bee Line" service scheme is indeed the yellow/green scheme. The
	"Bee Line" slogan only appeared on the C630's and U30C's, if memory
	serves me correctly (any GP's get this?).

What advantage (if any) was supposed to accrue from the Co-Bo wheel

	Quite simply the Co-Bo arrangement was used to reduce the maximum axle
	load and therefore inprove the route availability. The engine is at the
	three axle end of the locomotive.

	I can only assume that the weight distribution of the Metro-vics was
	such that a Co-Co arrangement would have resulted in the wieght being
	distributed too much to one end (i.e. the axle loads at one end would
	have been much less than at the other). This is not permitted on BR
	as it can cause derailments at speed. There are many other regulations
	regarding very very basic variations like this, including the
	difference between wheel diameters on the same truck and between trucks
	under the same vehicle etc.

Can anyone tell me about CP passenger cars?

	I will limit my discussion to lightweight smoothside cars and stainless
	steel fluted cars.
	Lightweight cars:
	Roof painted black, carbody painted all tuscan red with yellow
	lettering and name.  I use Scalecoat CP Tuscan Red (# 69) and CDS dry
	transfers, however you can also use "Champ" decals if you prefer
	decals.  The sleepers were cars in the "Grove" series.  (10 roomettes,
	5 double bedrooms)
	Some individual names are Ash Grove, Beech Grove, Cedar Grove, Maple
	Grove, Oak Grove, Spruce Grove, Walnut Grove, Palm Grove, Willow Grove
	(noticing a similarity yet?).
	The name "CANADIAN PACIFIC" was centered above the windows and car
	individual name was centered below the windows.  If you get the CDS,
	there will be a small picture included showing where everything goes.
	There is a great picture in the 1993 Canadian Railway Scenes calander
	of the smoothside lightweight cars.
	The book "Canadian Pacific Railway", by Patrick C Dorin and Nicholas
	Morants', "Canadian Pacific" are great reference books.
	Stainless Steel cars:
	Obviously SS with a tuscan red stripe across the carbody above the
	windows with a yellow CANADIAN PACIFIC centered and a tuscan red plate
	with the individual car name centered below the windows.
	There was an excellent series of articles in the "Canadian Railway
	Modeller" magazine on kitbashing to make these cars:
	Sep-Oct 1991:	"Chateau" series sleepers and "Park" series
			dome/observation cars
	Nov-Dec 1991:	The dome/buffet and "Manor" series sleepers
	Feb-Mar 1992:	Articles on the "Coach" and "Dining Cars"
	May-Jun 1992:	Article on the Steam Generator car
	In the fifty's there were beaver shields on the four ends of the car.
	Selected names of "Chateau series cars (8 duplex roomettes, 3 double
	bedrooms, 4 open sections) are: Chateau Cadillac, Chateau Dollard,
	Chateau Laval, Chateau Montcalm, Chateau Viger.
	Selected names of "Manor" series cars (4 roomettes, 5 double bedrooms,
	4 open sections) are: Abbott Manor, Bell Manor, Carelton Manor, Fraser
	Manor, Mackenzie Manor, Wolfe Manor.
Is double-heading prototypical?

	Southern Pacific does it all the time.There are other railroads that
	put engines in the middle of the train (actually not right in the
	middle) but I do not know which.
	If I am not mistaken, the mid helpers are put more towards the front
	of the train. Example:
		F = Freight Car
		D = Diesel Engine
		C = Caboose (optional)
	Please do not count the Fs, but a good ratio is 40/60 if the train has
	100 cars.  Last week a friend of mine was at the Tehachapi loop
	in southern California and he said that a coal train went by with 10
	engines, with 6 midhelpers.

Here is a bit more about typical North American practices (diesel locos):

Nearly all trains run with two or more locomotives.  A mainline train with 
only one engine is very rare, and 5 or more engines are by no means uncommon.
Branchline or secondary trains nearly always have two or more 
locomotives, shortlines commonly run with one or two units. For regular 
operations, outside mountainous areas with steep grades, locomotives are 
almost always on the front of the train.  In areas where steep grades 
require more power, helper locomotives are added. Helpers may be added 
to the front of a train, somewhere in the middle of the train, or at the end.
Rear end helpers are probably the most popular, followed by mid-train 
helpers. Head end helpers are not used all that often, as they can 
provide more force than the couplers can take, leading to broken couplers.
Head end helpers are often called "snappers" becuase they tend to snap 
(break) couplers.
	The <+> SBB CFF FFS (Swiss state railways) will be doing this in the
	future at mountain lines (with the new 460 loco). Basically, they
	simply couple two freight trains together. The 460 uses the ep line
	(installed in modern cars for braking) to transmit digital signals --
	much like digital model railway.

	So you can soon see piggyback trains like this:

	<-- direction (L = loco, C = car)

	on the Gotthard line.
	The reason for mid train locomotives is to reduce drawbar pull on the 
	headend.  It is not uncommon for a coal train to approach 350,000 lbs
	of pull. Freight cars in general are only designed to take 250,000 lbs.

	Where the units are in the train is determined by tonnage and power.
	The purpose is to make the remotes pull more tonnage than pushing on
	the cars ahead of them.  On a loaded coal train there is not much
	problem, but on a mixed frieght with a lot of light top heavy cars,
	the remotes can push the cars in front of the track.
	Remotes also help equalize train brake responce time since there is a
	a air charging/discharging source in the train.

What are "dynamic" brakes

	Diesel-electric locomotives have motors attached to each axle. Normally
	power is supplied to the motors causing the wheels to pull the train.
	However, due to the magic of electromagnetics, if the wheels are turned
	by an external force (such as gravity pulling a train down a hill) the
	motors will run as dynamos, generating electricity.  Since energy is
	conserved, this electric power has to come from somewhere, which in
	this case is the kinetic energy of the engine.  In simple English,
	running the motors as dynamos will put a drag on the engine, which can
	be helpful when running a very heavy train down a long grade.
	The amount of electric power generated is substantial, and it has to
	be used up somehow to cause a drag on the wheels.  This is done by
	using a bank of resistors which convert the electricity to heat which
	is then radiated away.  On some EMD locos these resistors appear as a
	bulging grille near the center of the roof although the SD50/60/70
	series had enough hood room to put them behind the cab. CP Rail's
	SD40-2Fs are also without the bulge. Alco, GE, FM, and BLW
	locos with dynamics have extra grills somewhere on the loco, but no
	bulges like the EMD "blister".  On older Alcos (like RS3's) and on the
	Baldwin DRS/AS types, these grills were in the short hoods.
	Model shells are often offered with these external indications of
	dynamic brakes, although they of course have no function.  A given
	prototype locomotive is usually available with dynamic brakes although
	some allow both options.
Recently I got access to some European layout designs and I began noticing
some differences in design philosophy.  One thing I noticed is that the
European designs emphasized passenger/freight stations, loco facilities
and marshalling yards, but have little or no tracks going to industry 
(industrial spurs).

The question is this:  Is that a reflection of the actual railroads?
In other words, is it true that Euro railroads do NOT serve many
industries directly?  Is traffic mainly freight station to freight
station (the legs to and from the railroad filled in by trucks)?

	Industrial spurs and sidings are very much an important aspect of
	European railroads,  at least in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland.
	I think one reason layout books favor passenger operations is that
	this is the aspect of railroading that the average European can
	most readily identify with.  In central Europe, almost all cities
	of reasonable size have a substantial amount of passenger service.
	And, even in the smaller cities, you may find as many as four or 
	five different *types* of passenger trains calling each day.
	On a layout, a passenger station still provides for quite a bit
	of operation, since there are through cars that go over from
	one train to another, and some trains split or merge at junction
	points.  A stop by a long-distance train will also be timed to
	coincide with stops by one to four (or more) local trains, some 
	of which may be just as long as the long-distance train, and others
	of which may be comprised of a single self-propelled rail car.
	Unusual events, which can, of course be duplicated on a layout, can
	lead to interesting compositions.  For example due to a last-minute
	failure, a railcar may be replaced with a locomotive and a single
	coach.  Having been short of motive power at peak times in the
	last few years, Austria has even pressed into service some 
	electrics which are officially classified as museum stock.
	Also, many passenger trains -- particularly locals -- may also 
	carry express and maill cars, which can lead to some interesting
	Note that the major European structure builders (Vollmer, Faller,
	Kibri, Pola, etc.) do supply a range of industries, so these are
	not left off layouts completely.  I think it's basically a matter
	of emphasis.  In many U.S. areas you never even see a passenger
	train, so people in those areas are more likely to focus on
	freight-only operations.
	As for freight stations:  You can think of them as multiple
	industries within one site.  At a single freight station you can
	spot a wide variety of freight cars, waiting to be loaded or
	unloaded -- a wider range at least than would normally show up at
	any single industry.
	In Switzerland and Belgium, this is certainly true. Near Geneva, for
	instance, there is a recent industrial area which is directly served
	by the SBB-CFF. It makes for interesting switching at the nearby CFF
	station of "Vernier-Meyrin" (soon to become a freight only station -
	shame on them). 
Which high speed trains are in service today?

	Here I have collected the trains of the world that are faster than 200
	km/h. If possible, I have included the train composition in angle
	brackets: T = locomotive; A = first class car; B = second class car;
	C = club/dining car; D = luggage car; R = restaurant car.
	JR East/Central/West (Japan):
	 Shinkansen 100; 8.88 MW; 1277 seats; 230 km/h; 1985
	  JR Central: Tokio--Osaka (Tokaido)
	  JR West: Osaka--Hakata (Sanyo)
	 Shinkansen 200; 17.6 MW; 275 km/h; 1989
	  JR East: Omiya--Morioka (Tohoku), Omiya--Niigata (Joetsu)
	 Shinkansen 300; 12 MW; 300 km/h; 1991
	  JR Central: Tokio--Osaka (Tokaido)
	 Shinkansen 400; small profile; 240 km/h; 1992
	  JR East: Yamagata--Fukushima
	SNCF (France):
	 TGV PSE; 6.45 MW; 270 km/h; 200 m; 386 seats
	  In service between Paris and the south-eastern part of France (high
	  speed line Paris--Lyon) since 1981. Two units can be coupled together.
	  Models: Jouef H0; Lima H0.
	 TGV A; 8.8 MW; 300 km/h; 237 m; 485 seats
	  In service between Paris and the western part of France (high speed
	  line Paris--leMans/Tours) since 1989. Two units can run together.
	  The TGV Atlantique holds the world record: 515.3 km/h.
	  Models: Jouef H0, Lima H0.
	DB DR (Germany):
	 ICE (401/801--804); 9.6 MW; 250 km/h; 411 m; 759 seats
	  In service since 1991 on the three lines Hamburg/Bremen--Muenchen,
	  Hamburg--Frankfurt(M)--Muenchen, Hamburg--Frankfurt(M)--Zuerich
	  (high speed lines Hannover--Wuerzburg and Mannheim--Stuttgart).
	  Models: Fleischmann H0, Maerklin H0; Fleischmann N, Trix N.
      [Editor's Note: The top speed has been reduced to 250 km/h as Mark Brader
	informs me that the original 280 km/h is a futures number.]
	BR (Great Britain):
	 IC 225 (Class 91/Mark V); 4.7 MW; 225 km/h
	  In use at the east coast main line London--Edinburgh.
         IC125 (Class 43/Mark 3); 2x2250 hp; 201 km/h (125 mph)
          Two power cars (Bo'Bo'), one at each end of train with 7 or 8 Mark 3 
          coaches. All formations include buffet or restaurant facilities. Used 
          on Great Western main line (London Paddington to Bristol/South 
          West/South Wales) and 'cross country' services (North East to/from 
          South West) and other services.
	RENFE AVE (Spain):
	 TAV; 8.8 MW; 250 km/h; 200 m; 329 seats
	  These trains are very similar to the TGV. Since 1992 they run on the
	  new line (normal gauge) between Madrid and Sevilla.
	FS (Italy):
	 ETR 450; 250 km/h (Pendolino); 1st class only
	  From Roma to Torino, Venezia, Genova, Napoli and Bari
What paint schemes did the Northern Pacific use?

	The old scheme has grey roofs. The car body is dark green with a light
	green stripe down the windows.  Either side of the light green stripe
	has a yellow pin stripe separating it from the dark green background.
	Lettering was in yellow. The light green was rounded off near the
	front on the engine.  Atlas's FP-7's are painted in this scheme.

	In the mid 50's when airlines were beginning to draw passengers the NP
	decided it needed a new look.  They added dome cars to their trains and
	contracted Raymond Loewy to come up with a new modern look. The bottom
	1/3 of the cars (and engines) were painted a light misty kind of green,
	at the top of the light green was a white stripe about two inches wide
	(except on the front of the locomotive where it expanded to about 6").
	Above the white stripe was a very dark green (supposedly the color of
	blue moonlight on pine trees).  The dark green was the predominant
	color.  It extended from just below the windows up and including the
	roof. Lettering was in black on the light green lower part of the car.
	The "North Coast Limited" was in white over the windows on the dark
	green part.  The railroad name was also placed over the door at the
	end of the car. (i.e. "CB&Q", "NP", and "SP&S")

How are the cars in local freight trains blocked?  Suppose a train is to
service industries A and B several miles apart.  Each has its own spur
siding.  At each industry there are empty and loaded cars to be picked
up and there are empties and loads to deliver.  Additionally, there are
empty and loaded cars at A destined for B.  How are such cars
arranged in the train at the beginning of the run and where are they
placed in the train at each industry?  Are there general rules?

	The rules vary from prototype railroad to railroad, as well as how
	ambitious the yard crew is and/or how strict the yardmaster is when
	the train is originally made up.  Generally a rule book outlines how
	the train _must_ be set up (to comply with various federal and local
	safety rules, such as distributing weight, keeping hazardous material
	away from the crew) and how the train _should_ be set up (minimum
	number of switches and/or "respots" of existing cars, minimum amount
	of time blocking other trains).  Model railroaders get to invent their
	own rules and procedures (appropriate for the period and location being
	modeled).  A number of model railroad books have chapters of creating
	such rule books for your empire; "The V&O Story" and "Realistic
	Operations for Model Railroads" come to mind.  The recent series of
	articles on Saluda Grade in RMC contained extracts of the lengthy)
	rules that govern just that short stretch of railroad.

Does anyone know of any books out there on the signaling protocols of various

	The 'standard reccomendation" is for All About Signals, published
	by Kalmabch, *.5 * 11, paper, BUT they seem to have let it go out of
	print.  For a specific road, the Operating Rules of that road are the
	final authority (or, in some cases, the Employee TT).  The AAR does have
	a set of reccomended standards, but each road meets its own needs.

	V0.3 Modified to include searchlight/colorlight aspects used by NORAC.
	Does not include Position_Light, Modified_PL (I), or modified_PL (II),
	or Color_Position_light.  Quasi sorted by rule number.

	Some indications and meanings.  Derived from PennCentral practice,
	there is some, though not complete, commonality across RRs.  Transit
	systems tend to be even more individualistic.  This is DRASTICALLY
	simplified, to keep the length managable.  US Interlocking Signalling
	is generally described as "speed signalling" in that each aspect
	conveys an unambiguous speed at which the trains should operate. This
	interacts with the "block signalling, to display "zero" (STOP_AND_STAY)
	when the block signalling requires it.  Speeds FULL, LIMITED, MEDIUM,
	SLOW are defined in the Employee TT, for each stretch of track and for
	each class of train.
	The indication may involve one, two or three heads, either "high"
	or "dwarf" (low mounted, trackside).  While indications are similar
	and related, they need not be identical.  BN means aspect used by BN.
	CCOR means aspect used by Consolidated Code of Operating Rules, which
	governs many Western US railroads.  The BN or CCOR Indication/rule may
	vary slightly, but i feel the "sense" is the same.  N is NORAC rules,
	a common set covering Conrail, AMTRAK, etc.  Trying to keep this
	Rule numbers are from NORAC, 1991.

      C Three Head High Signal       C Two Head High Signal.
      C                              C
      C   C Two Head "dwarf" Signal  |   (etc....)
      |   C (Same indication/rule)   |

N   BN  CCOR   PC Aspect        Name                    Indication

X   X     X       G G              CLEAR              Proceed at maximum
                  R R                                 authorized speed (281)
                  R | G
                  | | G G

X   X     X       R R              MEDIUM CLEAR       Proceed at medium speed
                  G G                                 (usually, half maximum)
                  R | G                               (283)
                  | | R(f)

X   X     X       Y Y              APPROACH           Approach next signal
                  R R                                 prepared to stop. (285)
                  R |
                  | |

X   X     X       R R              MEDIUM APPROACH    Proceed at MEDIUM speed
                  Y Y                                 prepared to stop at
                  R | Y                               next Signal. (286)
                  | | R(f)

X                 R R              SLOW CLEAR         Proceed, not exceeding
                  R G                                 SLOW speed, usually 15
                  G | G                               MPH. (287)            
                  | | R

X                 R   R            RESTRICTING        Proceed not exceeding
                  R   Y                               SLOW speed, expecting to
                  Y R |                               find track occupied,
                  | Y |                               switch thrown against
                                                      you, etc. (290)

X   X     X      R R           STOP_AND_PROCEED       The "#" indicates the
                 R R                                  presence of a "number
                 R | #                                plate", which makes it
                 # # R #                              Stop and Proceed,
                 | | R R                              expecting to find track
                                                      occupied.  (291)

X   X    X       R R            STOP_SIGNAL           Stop_and_Stay (292)
                 R R
                 R | R
                 | | R R

    So far, so good.  The indications are fairly intuitive:  High/Medium/Low   
    speeds map to head positions.  These (mostly) govern through interlockings,
    where allowable speed varies depending on the design of the switch, which
    path, etc.

    And this was the original (ca 1900 situation).  But there arose a
    need for more indications....

N   BN    CCOR    PC Aspect            Name                Indication

Y(f)               Y Y             ADVANCE APPROACH    Proceed expecting to
R                  Y Y                                 find next signal at
R                  R |                                 APPROACH. (281D)
|                  | |

X                  Y   Y           APPROACH MEDIUM     APPROACH next signal
                   G Y G                               at MEDIUM Speed. (282)
           X       R G |
                   | | |

                   R              MEDIUM APPROACH SLOW  MEDIUM speed, APPROACH
X*                 Y                                    next signal at SLOW 
                   G                                    speed.
                   |              NORAC: MEDIUM         MEDIUM speed APPROACH 
                                  APPROACH MEDIUM (!)   next signal at MEDIUM
                                                        speed. (283A)

n/a                R               MEDIUM ADVANCE      Proceed at MEDIUM Speed
                   Y                APPROACH           next signal at APPROACH.
                   Y                                   (Following signal at
                   |                                   STOP.  I find the rule
                                                       explanations ambiguous.)

n/a                G   G 
                   Y   Y           ADVANCE APPROACH    Proceed, Approach next
                   R G |           MEDIUM              Signal at MEDIUM Speed.
                   | Y |
    (note how arcane these are getting...)

Y Y                Y               APPROACH SLOW        APPROACH next signal
Y R        X       R                                    at SLOW Speed. (284)
R G                G
| |                |
                                  SLOW APPROACH         SLOW speed, APPROACH
X                  Y                                    next signal prepared
                   R                                    stop. (288)

	These change, over time, and from RR to RR. If researching a particular
	RR, try to get their Book of Rules of the Operating Department and an
	Employee Time Table, which will discuss their practice. At any one time,
	the indications in use on one RR are unambiguous.  Mostly.

	I have omitted the "flashing" aspects (mostly) , which move the speed
	allowed up one "increment": thus "medium clear" would become "limited

"memory aids"

	"If its not all Red, its not Red at all".  That is, unless all heads
	are red, the reds become "place holders".  Concentrate on the other
	colors and their positions.

	The PC "course" most of this is lifted from, in a couple places, just
	gives up and says "this violates the memory rules, just remember it."
	In the face of such expert advice, who am I to quibble?

	I have omitted much related info, to keep this of managable length.

	A few (more) notes on switches.  Signals are located in advance of the
	switch which they "protect", to allow the crew time to get the train to
	the right speed.  Trains do not respond rapidly to control inputs.
	Thus, signal location is determined by authorized speed and grade,
	among other things.

	Switches can affect signals indications in several ways:

		If the switch is open, a train from a direction which is at
		risk must be signalled to stop.

		If a switch is set to allow an opposing train to make a
		conflicting move, other trains must be signalled to stop.

		If a switch is designed for high speed moves (longer radius of
		points, etc.) the signal should give a less restricting

	Thus, the same train, at the same point, may receive any of several
	different indications, depending on conditions ahead.  Similarly, the
	same track layout may be differently signalled, depending on switch

	Some of the signals will be under remote control from an interlocking
	"tower" or CTC (Centralized Traffic Control) board.  The operator
	typically selects "clear" or "stop".  The aspect presented in the field
	will be determined by local conditions: switch design, location of
	trains, setting of switches, etc.

What is the relation between prototype rail weight and HO rail "code"?

	Not much, really.  Rail is weighed in pounds per yard, which correlates
	with rail height in an irregular way.  Code is rail height, measured in
	1000ths of an inch, so code 100 rail is 0.1 inch high. You can
	prototype rail tables from the AREA standards or the Maintenance of
	Way Cyclopedea (look in any good engineering library and you should
	find both!)

What is the difference and which weight/code would be protypical for:
a) a heavy trunk line

	From memory, code 100 is prototypical for heavy Pennsylvania
	Railroad mainline rail from the 1930's, where I believe they used
	152 pound per yard rail.  I think that some modern mainlines use
	a thin cross-section 120 pound rail that is almost as high.

	Code 83 is closer to prototypical mainline rail for most HO
	modelling purposes.  It is a fair approximation of 120 pound per
	yard rail.

b) passing tracks on said trunk line
c) branch line tracks

	Use code 70 or code 83 rail.  Code 70 is a good approximation of
	90 to 100 pound rail.

d) industrial spurs
e) harbor and city railroading

	It depends on the commodity being hauled and the traffic level.
	Code 70 is reasonable on any heavily used spur, but code 55 and
	even code 40 are not-unprototypical for rarely used spur tracks.
	particularly if they are old or if they were originally used
	for interurban or trolley lines.

	It's worth noting that prototype railroads had already religated
	their 60 pound per yard rail to branch lines before the turn of
	the century, and most of this rail was retired from service in
	the 1890's.  I can show you a number of railroad culverts in
	eastern Iowa with dates around 1895 that are built with stone
	sills bridged with 15 foot lengths of surplus 60 pound rail.
	These bridges survived into the diesel era!

	Operationally, if you run equipment with NEM flanges (just about
	anything made in Europe), you'll have few problems on code 83 and
	code 100 rail, but code 70 and smaller will pose problems with
	the flanges hitting the spikes.

	This problem is even worse with smaller rails!  With code 40, even
	NMRA flanges are sufficiently oversized that they tend to hit the
	spikes, so you've either got to use scale wheelsets (NWSL makes
	fine scale HO wheels), glue your rail down or use solder and PCB

Does Triple Crown Services use containers?

	Yes, Triple Crown Services is using containers. The Atalanta-Alexandria
	service that I see going through Charlotte, NC is now using 45, 48, and
	53 foot containers instead of Roadrailers. I have not seen and
	TripleCrown trailers, but the 53 footers are on truck chasis, because
	they won't fit any of the container flats.  45 and 48 footers are
	carried on standard COFC flats or articulated well cars.  
	I haven't seen any doubles yet on the TCS, but I have started to see
	doubles on other trains going north of Charlotte.  I don't know if
	they've received the clearances fixed all the way to Alexandria.
	NS is also running double stacks between Charlotte and Columbia, SC.
	I have heard that the doubles are running to Charleston, but I haven't
	been down there.
Can someone tell me about those big yellow UP tenders that I see being
pulled behind the black tenders on the remaining UP steam?

	The yellow tenders were gas turbine tenders which used to hold
	'bunker C' fuel oil. (They hold water now.) At present, the only
	available  models come with scale brass gas turbine locomotives.

What can anyone tell me about the Weehawken Railroad in New Jersey?

	The Weehawken terminals were the main passenger terminal, and I think
	freight also, of the West Shore Railroad.  Whether that is the company
	that built them or whether they took over an already existing terminal,
	I do not know.  The line came into Weehawken through a tunnel under the
	Palisades, and terminated in a large yard and terminal there.   From
	Weehawken, passengers rode ferryboats into Manhattan;  freight rode on
	car floats - barges propelled by tugboats.  The West Shore circa the
	1880s extended as far as Buffalo (the company's full title was New
	York, West Shore and Buffalo), parallel to and in many places within
	sight of the New York Central line.  It attempted to compete with the
	Central, but could not make a living at it.  It was eventually bought
	up by the New York Central, but in common with most of that road's
	acquisitions maintained a semi-autonomous existence.  From Schenectady
	west, most of the line is now abandoned and has been for many years,
	though bits and pieces survive as industrial spurs, a bypass around
	Rochester, etc.  From Schenectady to New Jersey, it is Conrail's
	principal freight access to metropolitan New York.  Selkirk Yard is on
	the West Shore and Conrail's access to New England is via the Alfred
	E. Smith Bridge that leads out of Selkirk across the Hudson.
	In modern times (since 1950) the West Shore passenger service shrank
	back from Albany to Kingston (including connecting trains on the
	"Ulster and Delaware" to Oneonta) and finally to West Haverstraw,
	which until the mid fifties (?) was the terminus of an extensive
	commuter service.  The large green ferry boats and the tugs and barges
	emblazoned with the New York Central emblem were common sights on the
	Hudson River.  I believe that there always has been a freight
	connection from the West Shore Line to Jersey City, and dating I guess
	from Penn Central times (at least since Conrail), this has become the
	destination of the freight coming down the West Shore - the former
	Pennsy yards in Jersey City that is (Greenville I think, and Oak
	Island.)  Weehawken as I understand it (though I've never been there
	to see) has pretty much "dried up and blown away", railroad-wise at
	least.  There is periodic talk of re-establishing a terminal there for
	commuter trains, which would seem to make some sense, although I'm
	sure they'd get more business if they were routed into Hoboken or Penn
	Station.  Clearly there is a market for commuter service in the area
	between the New Jersey and New York (now called the Pascack Valley
	Line) and the Hudson River, and probably even as far north as Kingston.
	The New York, Ontario and Western used trackage rights on the West
	Shore from Cornwall to Weehawken, and its trains shared the Weehawken
	terminal until the O&W was abandoned in 1957.
	Recommended reading on Weehawken:   Carl Condit's two volume work,
	"The Port of New York:  A History of the Rail and Terminal Systems
	      vol. 1:  from the beginnings to Pennsylvania Station"
	 and  vol. 2:  from the Grand Central electrification to the Present"
	(University of Chicago Press).
	See the various chapters dealing with the New Jersey side of the
	river; maps of the various lines and their terminals are included.
Steam Locomotives

Were all U.S. locomotives painted black?

	Almost all engines were painted black.

	As for the few exceptions:
	Souther Pacific Daylight
	Milwakee Hiawata
	Santa Fe Blue Goose
	Southern Crescent Limited
	New York Central
	Baltimore & Ohio Cincinnatian
	Union Pacific

How do steam locomotives work?

	Steam engines came in three basic varieties: reciprocating pistons,
	geared drives, and experimental turbines.  All work by boiling water
	to make pressurized steam, and the energy in this steam is used to
	move the engine.
	While the earliest American engines burned wood for fuel, most steam
	engines initially used coal, and towards the end of the steam era, oil
	was used primarily to get around air pollution regulations.
	In Britain,  coke was the usual fuel in the early days of railways.
	This was a result of Government regulations dating at least as far back
	as 1829 that locomotives must "effectively consume their own smoke".
	Coke, being free from impurities, generated very little smoke and was
	hence the fuel of choice.
	Other fuel choices included: peat, turf, and even electricity (as in 
	electric elements heating the water to steam)
	The fuel was burned in the firebox and the hot gases were channeled
	along a series of parallel tubes to transfer the heat of the gases to
	the water, thereby generating steam.
	In a reciprocating piston design the pressurized steam is sent into
	cylinders, which were usually mounted on the outside front end of the
	frame. For those engines with externally mounted pistons, the main
	rod connects from the piston to drive wheel by means of a half-crank -
	a protuding knob on the wheel. Other wheels are connected to the drive
	wheel by side (or coupling) rods attached to a half-crank on each wheel.
	For those engines with the cylinders located internally (ie: inside the
	frame) the main rod connected to the drive wheel via a crank axle.
	The main rod and half-crank converts the linear motion of the piston to
	the circular motion of the driving wheels. There are many variations on
	this design, such as using multiple cylinders to increase the amount of
	energy extracted from the steam but they all fall into the category of
	improvements to the basic design.
	Note that once the steam has been used it is exhausted to the
	atmosphere, which is why the tender on a steam locomotive is mostly
	water and a relatively minor amount of fuel.  Note that this design
	with lots of exposed moving parts is also significantly sexier than a
	diesel electric...  [Original author's opinion]
	In Britain, a special "condensing engine" were used in the original
	underground railways. In these, the steam was led back to the water
	tanks to condense, although it could also be routed to the open air
	for above-ground work.
	A geared locomotive follow the same principles as outlined above,
	except that the main rods drive a crankshaft instead of a half-crank
	on the wheel.
How did they "balance" the effort of the multiple engines? 

To my knowledge, all articulteds had just one "Johnson Bar" in the cab which
operated all 4 (or 6) sets of valve gear in tandem.  The linkages are fairly
obvious, especially on early locomotives.  True Mallets were compound, so
the same steam was used in first the rear high pressure and then the front
low pressure cylinders, which tended to balance the work - the front engine
couldn't run away from the back without starving itself of steam.  Simple
articulated just relied on the designer to put nearly equal locomotive
weight on the front and rear engines.  In spite of this, I understand it was
difficult to get the proper load thru the front load bearing mechanism, so
that the front engines were more prone to slipping.  When they did, the
engineer had to cut back on the single throttle, reducing steam to both
engines.  per Gareth Quale

Most US articulateds were not true Mallets and used simple expansion. I believe
that they had a simple single steam control and indeed often suffered
from the front engine slipping before the rear, something most models
don't simulate(!). The Erie (and others) Triplex was of course an
exception to this. Given that many of the US true Mallets had the
ability to run simple or compound[*], presumably there were more
controls as described above. per Mark Ayliffe

My experience on NSW 60 class garratt (4-8-4+4-8-4 simple artics) suggests
Bob's right. Most of work done in design office, rest done by slipping
(usually front engine on 60 class) until in synch. Very interesting to watch
doublehead 60's on coal trains slip out and into synch... all 32 drivers, 4
engine units, 8 valve gears, 2 crews, throttles all over the place and then
come together.....woof, woof woof and stride away with load. per Derick Wuen

What was the reason for the CamelBack engine?

	The Wooten firebox on the Camelback was designed to burn culm, which is
   	a high-grade waste (or low-grade coal, take your pick) produced by the
    	anthracite "breakers" or preparation plants in the anthracite area of
   	northeast Pennsylvania. The combination of higher ignition temperature
  	required for anthracite in the first place and the clinkering produced by the
   	low-grade (high-ash) coal and rock in the culm required the larger grate
   	area of the Wooten firebox. 

	Why would the railroads want to burn this  low-grade stuff? Because it was 
	extremely cheap, and in at least some  cases free! IIRC all of the anthracite 
	roads resorted to camelbacks for smaller power around the turn of the century
	 -- Reading, New York,  Ontario & Western, Lehigh Valley, at least , as well as
	 the D&H. Similar fireboxes were used on some Great Northern and, especially, 
	Northern Pacific power, in particular the more modern articulateds, for the same
  	reason, to expand grate area to burn low-grade coal. In these cases it was
  	low-Btu high-moisture lignite from North Dakota and subbituminous coal
 	from Montana and Wyoming. None of these designs resulted in camelbacks
            though. Bruce A. Collins bacol@rof.net 

What can anyone tell me about geared steam locomotives?

	There are three basic designs for geared steam locomotives: Shay-type,
	Heisler-type and Climax-type.  Shays are named by their inventor E.
	Shay and consist of two or three vertical steam cylinders driving a
	crankshaft (just like a straight four cylinder gas engine does) that
	runs horizontally along the length of the locomotive.  This crankshaft
	is geared into the small drivers (usually around 30'' - 40'' in
	diameter) to produce forward and backward motion.  The steam cylinders
	were located on the right side of the locomotive as was the rest of
	the drive train.
	Heisler-type uses two steam cylinders in a V formation to turn a
	crankshaft that also runs horizontally along the length of the
	locomotive.  This shaft is in turn geared into the driver axles
	instead of the drivers themselves as in the Shay.  The Shay had the
	shaft, gears and universal joints exposed on the right side (when
	facing forward) of the locomotive. The Heisler had the shaft, gears
	and universal joints running down the center of the locomotive.
	Climax-type uses two steam cylinders that were sloped forward but
	parallel to the locomotive to driver the shaft which was geared into
	the driver axles (similar to Heislers).
	Although the Shay's exposed drive train might lead one to believe it
	was more susceptible to damage, it was also the engine's greatest plus.
	Almost no early logging railroads and only a few of the largest later
	ones had terminal facilities in the sense that a common-carrier
	railroad did.  Usually when the drive train broke, it was on a 6%
	incline, in a curve during an early snow in October.  The exposed
	drive train in this situation was easier to fix than the `protected'
	drive train of the other types.
	All three styles had small drivers (30''-40'' in diameter) and very low
	gearing (top speed for a geared locomotive is usually < 15 mph) to
	acheive their ability to climb mountains and turn very tight radii.
	Shay's were supposedly able to make curves that would shine their
	driving light into the back of the cab (that is a joke).  All three
	styles were very forgiving of poorly laid track and would stay on the
	rail much better than a rod engine.
What is a Heisler?

	A Heisler is a type of geared steam locomotive.  The pistons move
	diagonally (think of the arrangement of a longitudinaly mounted V8
	engine in a car, only there are only two pistons in a Heisler). These
	pistons power a drive shaft under the center of the loco, which via
	gears drives four wheel trucks at the ends.
	The Heisler has the unique property of having been designed by an
	actual diploma'ed engineer, where all the others were kludged up by
	Roaring Camp & Big Trees (near Santa Cruz, CA) has several woodburners,
	including a Shay and a Heisler.  Mt. Rainier has one.  Most logging
	locos were woodburners, for fairly obvious reasons...  
These locomotives are specially suitable for switching service where fire risks must be
absolutely eliminated. In  place of a boiler, this type is fitted with a cylindrical tank which is
charged with steam and hot water from a  stationary plant. The storage pressure usually
approximates the working pressure of a locomotive boiler; but the pressure of the steam is
considerably reduced before it enters the cylinders. As the steam is drawn from the   storage 
tank, the pressure in the latter becomes reduced. When thls occurs, however, a portion of the
stored water  evaporates, and the steam supply can thus be maintained until the storage 
pressure drops to the cylinder working  pressure. The locomotive should then be recharged. 
The cylinder proportions are such, however, that the   locomotive can move itself on very much 
less than the normal working pressure. 

Wasn't the Willamette also a type of geared locomotive?

	The Willamette was a Shay.  E. Shay had a patent on his locomotive,
	thus they were built exclusively by Lima until the patent ran out.
	Then Willamette built some on the West Coast.
	You are correct that Lima had Shay patents, and that Willamette
	later built similar locomotives. However, A Willamette is NOT a Shay.
	"Shay" is a brand-name, like Ford or Toyota. You wouldn't say that
	a Pontiac is a Chevrolet, even if they are functionally identical
	mechanically and share a lot of the same parts.
	The Lima company had a trademark on the name "Shay". No other company
	could sell a similar locomotive and call it a "Shay". "Lima" was the
	name of a company (and probably also a brand name), *and* "Shay" was
	also a brand name.
	I agree that the Willamette locomotives were visually and operationally
	(nearly) identical to Shays.

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North East Rails  Clint Chamberlin.
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