Trains...why?

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Cyril Haearn
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby Cyril Haearn » 21 Oct 2019, 12:14pm

Pacers! Not sure if I have used one
Combine the disadvantages of buses with the disadvantages of trains :?
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kwackers
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby kwackers » 21 Oct 2019, 1:00pm

Cyril Haearn wrote:Pacers! Not sure if I have used one
Combine the disadvantages of buses with the disadvantages of trains :?

Easier to get a bike onto though (the pacer, not the bus)

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bigjim
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby bigjim » 27 Oct 2019, 3:34pm

I always think those steam train drivers must have been overjoyed when they were assigned to a diesel locomotive. Nice airy cab with a heater. Out of the weather and not having to crane your neck to view the line through driving rain or sleet. I wonder what happened to all those firemen?

millimole
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby millimole » 27 Oct 2019, 3:41pm

bigjim wrote:I always think those steam train drivers must have been overjoyed when they were assigned to a diesel locomotive. Nice airy cab with a heater. Out of the weather and not having to crane your neck to view the line through driving rain or sleet. I wonder what happened to all those firemen?
Initially the unions insisted on there being two people (men) in the cab which had the effects of preserving jobs, and keeping running costs high.
There was a strike when ASLEF saw that the prototype APT only had one seat in the cab!
(I'm not sure the early diesel engines did have heaters - someone will tell me in a moment)

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kwackers
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby kwackers » 27 Oct 2019, 4:07pm

bigjim wrote:I always think those steam train drivers must have been overjoyed when they were assigned to a diesel locomotive. Nice airy cab with a heater. Out of the weather and not having to crane your neck to view the line through driving rain or sleet. I wonder what happened to all those firemen?

There's a lot of skill in driving a steam train and very little in driving a diesel.
I can't imagine they'd have been overjoyed although can't say I know for sure.

Cyril Haearn
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby Cyril Haearn » 27 Oct 2019, 4:11pm

One may try driving a steam locomotive at the Watercress Line, but one doesnae earn money, one pays several hundred pounds for the privilege
Not sure why :wink:
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millimole
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby millimole » 27 Oct 2019, 4:20pm

Cyril Haearn wrote:One may try driving a steam locomotive at the Watercress Line, but one doesnae earn money, one pays several hundred pounds for the privilege
Not sure why :wink:
Almost all heritage lines do this (some do diesel driving too) - it's a nice little earner for them!

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millimole
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby millimole » 27 Oct 2019, 4:33pm

To answer my own question - a bit of googling shows that early main line diesels, specifically class 55 'Deltics' DID have cab heaters, but they weren't universally popular with old school drivers, who would turn them off and open the cab windows!

I think the skills in driving a diesel engine are different, not less. I can't imagine how the power is controlled to prevent slippage when starting at the head of a heavy stone train, or the skills involved in slowing steadily to a halt from 125mph with the weight of a passenger train behind you.

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kwackers
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby kwackers » 27 Oct 2019, 4:40pm

millimole wrote:To answer my own question - a bit of googling shows that early main line diesels, specifically class 55 'Deltics' DID have cab heaters, but they weren't universally popular with old school drivers, who would turn them off and open the cab windows!

I think the skills in driving a diesel engine are different, not less. I can't imagine how the power is controlled to prevent slippage when starting at the head of a heavy stone train, or the skills involved in slowing steadily to a halt from 125mph with the weight of a passenger train behind you.

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Nah the skills of a steam train are much greater.
You have a huge lag between stoking the boiler and having steam - so you can't just hit an incline and think "I'll bung some more coal on", you need to plan ahead, conversely you don't want to be blowing steam off to reduce pressure because you've added too much coal.
Then there's keeping the boiler topped up, continually adjusting the injectors, adjusting the blowers, keeping pressure correct, the subtlety of the controls, not just pressure to the cylinders but controlling the valve cut off.

Keeping the engine optimum is several layers of skill that simply don't exist with diesel. With diesel you simply have a throttle, the weight, number of carriages and even speed isn't that much different between the two.

Obviously shovelling coal is the job of the fireman and if you trusted him you could offload some of the other stuff onto him as well but the driver called the shots.

Cyril Haearn
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby Cyril Haearn » 27 Oct 2019, 5:35pm

Often the fireman had passed as a driver too
Steam engines needed hours to warm up before pulling out, some lucky lads started the fire at 02:00, often the locos were kept in steam continously for some days

PS
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Mick F
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby Mick F » 27 Oct 2019, 6:16pm

Cyril Haearn wrote:PS
I have see the future and it works: 60103 Tornado!
Sorry, you're wrong.
You may have "seen the future" but it's a bad future.

Tornado has a welded steel boiler. :shock:

Cheap and nasty and won't last.
Mick F. Cornwall

Cyril Haearn
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby Cyril Haearn » 27 Oct 2019, 6:19pm

Why, what should the boiler be made of? Parts can be changed and swapped between engines, Prince on the Festiniog Railway was built in 1863, 156 years ago, still in occasional use, dunno if any parts of it are original, mind :wink:
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kwackers
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby kwackers » 1 Nov 2019, 10:57am

Massive coincidence or what?

Mrs Kwackers has bought me a (steam) train driving experience for my birthday.
Half a day as a driver, half as a fireman.

I've driven model steam before but this will be a first for full size.

Cyril Haearn
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby Cyril Haearn » 1 Nov 2019, 11:02am

kwackers wrote:Massive coincidence or what?

Mrs Kwackers has bought me a (steam) train driving experience for my birthday.
Half a day as a driver, half as a fireman.

I've driven model steam before but this will be a first for full size.

On which line, may I ask? Please to report back after!
I was at a recruitment event, train drivers for diesel and electric are needed
The working hours are very 'flexible' :?
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kwackers
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Re: Trains...why?

Postby kwackers » 1 Nov 2019, 11:12am

Cyril Haearn wrote:On which line, may I ask? Please to report back after!
I was at a recruitment event, train drivers for diesel and electric are needed
The working hours are very 'flexible' :?

East Lancs Railway - not sure which line they run on. I'll investigate later.