Questions re Top 10 Tangents in the U.S.

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Questions re Top 10 Tangents in the U.S.

  • Have a couple of questions about the list of top 10 longest tangent tracks on Page 9 of the Spring Classic Trains.  Is the ex-SAL Okeechobee - West Palm Beach line still in use?  Can't find the last map I saw of CSX's system, but as I remember it at least part of that line has been abandoned or sold.  If it is abandoned, when was it abandoned?  If still completely or partially in use, which RR is using it?

    Are the other segments on the list still in use?  I know the ex-ACL from Kinderlou (just west of Valdosta) to Waycross is still in use, and believe the ex-SAL from Wilmington to Hamlet NC is still in use.  How about the rest?

    Many thanks.

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  • Yes, Amtrak and CSX still use the SAL line to West Palm Beach (FEC would take a dim view of CSX' using their line), and the Hamlet-Wilmington line is still in use.

    Johnny

  • My son, the land surveyor, revealed to me why many of the long tangents are on 19th century 'roads in areas sparsely populated at the time.

    Imagine you've got the job, your transit (I hope that's the name for that telescope mounted in a u-shaped frame arranged to allow precise vertical motion thru 180 degrees of rotation, mounted on a tri-pod), and a couple of rodmen.... who's been told to start here, go there.

    At "here" you aim your scope at "there" and put a rodman's staff at "here."

    The other rodman walks out  and plants his stick on the way to "there."

    You walk out to the "there" staff, plant the transit, flip the scope and get a bead on the "here" rod, flip the scope over 180-degrees, and send the rodman with the "there" rod out again to plant it.

    Repeat, repeat, repeat, 'til you get to "there."

    Piece of cake! 




     


  • efftenxrfe

    My son, the land surveyor, revealed to me why many of the long tangents are on 19th century 'roads in areas sparsely populated at the time.

    Imagine you've got the job, your transit (I hope that's the name for that telescope mounted in a u-shaped frame arranged to allow precise vertical motion thru 180 degrees of rotation, mounted on a tri-pod), and a couple of rodmen.... who's been told to start here, go there.

    At "here" you aim your scope at "there" and put a rodman's staff at "here."

    The other rodman walks out  and plants his stick on the way to "there."

    You walk out to the "there" staff, plant the transit, flip the scope and get a bead on the "here" rod, flip the scope over 180-degrees, and send the rodman with the "there" rod out again to plant it.

    Repeat, repeat, repeat, 'til you get to "there."

    Piece of cake! 




     


    efftenxrfe

    My son, the land surveyor, revealed to me why many of the long tangents are on 19th century 'roads in areas sparsely populated at the time.

    Imagine you've got the job, your transit (I hope that's the name for that telescope mounted in a u-shaped frame arranged to allow precise vertical motion thru 180 degrees of rotation, mounted on a tri-pod), and a couple of rodmen.... who's been told to start here, go there.

    At "here" you aim your scope at "there" and put a rodman's staff at "here."

    The other rodman walks out  and plants his stick on the way to "there."

    You walk out to the "there" staff, plant the transit, flip the scope and get a bead on the "here" rod, flip the scope over 180-degrees, and send the rodman with the "there" rod out again to plant it.

    Repeat, repeat, repeat, 'til you get to "there."

    Piece of cake! 

    Now we know who the knuckleheads were that couldn't double-center a vernier transit and left all the kinks in the long tangents......

    Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
  • But tangents don't rely on only sparse population but also terrain and property lines.   Sometimes a landowner won't give, to the line has to curve away and around.  Also to achieve as little gradient as possible curves will keep it that way.  Rare is more than one or two miles flat or within grade specs or is it all the way clear with landowners.

    RIDEWITHMEHENRY will plan and escort railfan rides in and around the NY Metropolitan and Philadephia areas: no mode of transportation is untouched. Guaranteed railfan fun!

  • Not continuing my journalism major at San Diego State and going firing on SP's Coast Div in 1960 was a wise choice based  on my not supplying enough info in these missives.

    The era I referred to in "sparse population" was land grant time, homesteading, pre-Native American's  reservations,  eclipsed Spanish-Mexican Rights to Ranchos.

    Near my boyhood home there are gravestones dating to lives terminated in the 1600's, so I can understand, Henry 6, why property lines come to mind. Cause you're near Long Island.

    If I wrote inclusively, you might assume there were no propery owners that could stop the rail-juggernaught and straight lines could rule----my bad! (pun). Cause your near Long Island.

    In Oakland a tangent starts  less than 2 miles north of where the Raiders/A's/Warriors compete and aims south to Niles Canyon....yes, it's the route of the railroad which realistically completed the first Transcon' and it missed, so nearly three miles from Niles a curve, constant radius,  started and ended at the canyon's entrance.

    The tangent and curve are roughly 20 miles of track, though possible property owners might object,  the few might recognize the advantage of a railroad near; this was the mid 19th century. It was the first connection between Sacramento (90 miles from the Pacific) and Oakland (about 5 miles from the Golden Gate.)

    A long curve ( about 2 miles)  from Chico north  leads to a tangent to the Sacramento River crossing  south of Red Bluff. Run the Coast Starlight in starlight at 79 mph at 2:00 am. Google the route and imagine you're eyelids accepting gravity.......