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Thread: Freeware routes and rolling stock

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by lateagain View Post
    What you should look at if you're unfamiliar with UK Railway operations is the CD Ordering link (left hand side of the Front Page). Many of the routes available here not only contain the route, but also a stock pack and activities which will familiarise you with the sort of traffic you'd find on UK Railways.

    ...Sadly 26% of our population, I'm not part of that, don't regard themselves as European either! ....but as for our steam locomotives being bizarre?!?! HOW VERY DARE YOU SIR!!!! Agreed they are not like many North American designs but then our rail traffic has always been different. We had no need of "Big Boy's" to haul mile long trains and we did have a lot of high speed passenger traffic. Mallard still holds the World Speed record for a steam train ....and unlike some Rail World Records this was on a real service train. What we did have is four major Railways serving different areas of the country and with different brilliant locomotive designers and very different sources of coal to power them. ....but how so bizarre
    I don't know Geoff I think I should feel insulted by his comments I shall go make a cup of tea and think on it.

  2. #12
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    I've always noted differences between North American and European -- particularly British -- engineering and mechanical design. Just different choices, really, based on use and purpose. But it's always seemed to me that British steam locomotive designs in particular are heavily rooted in a direct lineage from the Industrial Revolution, and rightly so!

    "Better" is a matter of personal taste. I prefer the "right tool for the job" approach. My fellow Americans often think I'm crazy for preferring Land Rovers to Jeeps for serious off-roading. I've owned both, both are good, but I'd take my old Disco 1 over anything else for thrashing about far from civilized roads. (Modern Jeep is using a derivative of the original Range Rover/Disco/Defender solid axle+coil-spring suspension; their first attempts were... OK, but not up to snuff without some additional work, compared to Rovers.)


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  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by MsSheare View Post
    I don't know Geoff I think I should feel insulted by his comments I shall go make a cup of tea and think on it.
    I don't think we should be too insulted Michelle? My comment was very tongue in cheek and based on Catherine Tate's wonderful (perhaps too adult for this forum?) character Derek, who never failed to have my wife and I in fits of laughter. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKHq-mAEQlU

    ...and Eric you hit the nail on the head with "Right Tool for the Job" as many British "Kettles" were designed specifically for the traffic they were intended for and to fire best on the coal that was readily available to them. Anyone who loves steam can have no "fan boy favourites" but just celebrate them all for what they were?
    Geoff
    Dorset - near The Swanage Railway.
    UK

  4. #14
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    Available coal resources drove some notable interesting variations in American steam locomotives, too. Jersey Central ran their "Camelback" types due to the anthracite waste "culm" they had to burn. The Wootten firebox that was designed to have enough grate area to burn it effectively was so wide there was no choice but to use a center-cab design in an era when locomotive designs still placed all the weight over the driving wheels, before trailing truck suspensions were developed to handle wide fireboxes.

    The Pennsylvania Railroad bucked conventional American trends and built their own fleet with the European Belpaire firebox. After much engineering study, they found the design worked significantly better for the coal and water conditions on their lines, and was overall more economical for extracting the most power out of their designs for the mountainous conditions they ran through. For the PRR, maximum power and efficiency was vital; they didn't have the luxury of running a flatter terrain like competitor New York Central's northerly "Water-Level Route".

    In general, though, the Americans tended to develop and follow some fairly universal designs regardless of unique running conditions. Part of it was due to the government attempt at nationalization railroads -- the USRA -- around the First World War. The USRA declared standardized designs which were sound, general-purpose designs from an engineering standpoint. Even after the USRA was dismantled, USRA locomotive designs tended to be the common jumping-off point for further refinements and tended to leave a lasting imprint on American steam designs.

    That and the rapid development of mechanical stokers, booster engines, and other innovations in technological solutions to overcome limitations of boiler and firing characteristics tended to foster an evolution where "bigger, with more (standardized) technological appliances" became the norm for fairly homogeneous US designs. In reality, locomotives were still custom-engineered for each railroad's needs, but they were built with a lot of off-the-shelf components and systems that made them all look rather similar within any particular service category. And most came from one of three major builders - ALCO, Lima, or Baldwin -- each with their own common "look" and preferred equipment suppliers.

    The interesting exceptions were the railroads that built entire locomotives in their own shops, like the PRR or the Norfolk and Western. The home-built designs were developed entirely for local conditions; like their European counterparts, they often have more interesting "character."


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  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by lateagain View Post
    I don't think we should be too insulted Michelle? My comment was very tongue in cheek and based on Catherine Tate's wonderful (perhaps too adult for this forum?) character Derek, who never failed to have my wife and I in fits of laughter. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKHq-mAEQlU

    ...and Eric you hit the nail on the head with "Right Tool for the Job" as many British "Kettles" were designed specifically for the traffic they were intended for and to fire best on the coal that was readily available to them. Anyone who loves steam can have no "fan boy favourites" but just celebrate them all for what they were?
    lol my reply was ment as a joke hope it did not offend anyone. But you are correct many British locomotives are designed for one certain job and designed to be the most effective at doing it. I actually love all the quirky locomotives we have running around. You can never ever say we have dull rail roads.

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