PRR Duplexes and Experimental Engines ( S1, S2, T1, Q1, V1 etc.)

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Posted by 3rd rail on Tuesday, September 4, 2018 10:32 PM

I'll admit to skimming over the many replies, but I did not see one mention of the maintainance costs for Steam/VS/ Diesel. Most Modern steam locos would have to visit the roundhouse after every run of at the most of 200 miles. Not to mention the regular boiler washouts, rod lubrication, ash pan clean outs, coaling, watering, pretty much non-stop attention. Then, the upkeep of the lineside facilities for these machines. Now, don't get me wrong.. I think steam was really neat, I love to see them run. However, I see why the RR's dumped them. Simple economics. 

 

Todd

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Posted by Jones1945 on Saturday, September 1, 2018 2:58 PM
Good looking engine. Streamlined body with elephant ear style smoke deflectors was rare in North America. She reminds me of Western Pacific class GS 64 4-8-4, but she looked much better with all the details on the body.
 
When I was a kid, I thought all steam engine run faster if it had smoke deflectors. Laugh By the way, Young valve gear used on this engine was rare too (before modification)
 
 https://thumbs.gfycat.com/PowerlessTerrificGuineapig-size_restricted.gif
 Young valve gear used on UP 2-10-2
 
Speaking of smoke deflector, this is one of many things that PRR never wanted to touch except for some special cases, even when they knew that it was impossible to not building a smoke deflector for S2 Steam Turbine #6200, the first version was built as small as they could make it. It was my favorite version of S2 though. 

 
 
http://i68.tinypic.com/zu05g8.png
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Posted by Miningman on Saturday, September 1, 2018 1:30 PM

Here is a virtually unknown streamlined Pacific that operated on the Ontario Northland Railway 

700 after modifications including streamlining and larger tender. Built with Young valve gear changed to Baker. 
200 lbs. 69" drivers. 37% t.e. (with booster 47%) CLC #1692 1921 North Bay 1940's

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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, August 31, 2018 6:17 AM
PRR probably received an order from “the top of the top”; told them "Hey, we need a new engine to represent all railroads of America in the forthcoming 1939 New York World Fair, Pennsy has been chose to build this engine since you guys running the largest railroad in the world. Just make it the largest, fastest, most powerful and beautiful engine in the world, it will be displayed in the fair for almost two years, don’t mess it up, do you understand?”
 
Note that the new Duplex engine proposed in 1937 for Pennsy was an idea of Baldwin and supposed to be finished by Baldwin, but in April 1938 “PRR ended Baldwin Locomotive Work's consultation on developing high-speed duplex passenger locomotive and assigned work to a consortium of Baldwin Locomotive WorksAmerican Locomotive Company and Lima Locomotive Works under a joint contract to develop the duplex design Class S1 (wiki)
 
 I really don’t think PRR, BLW, ALCO, LIMA didn’t know what clearance is and what a turntable is, IIRC there was a 13ft long space inside S1 smoke box……So yeah S1 was probably a glorified test bed specially built for the World Fair like a concept car,  but she did manage to serve the country for almost 6 years, not that bad compare to her duplexes sisters.  Smile, Wink & Grin
 
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Posted by 3rd rail on Thursday, August 30, 2018 9:22 PM

While I have no specific facts to back this up, I suspect that the "6-4-4-6" arrangement of the S-1 was more for show, than go.. After all, that took a lot of available weight off the driving axles. Add that to the long rigid frame, and it was not a very practical engine. Doomed before it was ever built. 

Todd 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, August 30, 2018 11:47 AM
 Control this giant or any "King size" steam locomotive wouldn’t be an easy job, from starting it up to reaching 100mph, team works, patient, prudent and confident is what the crews needed, look at these lucky gentlemen who were responsible for S1's maiden voyage! 
 
Photo source: Mike Snow from Flickr

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, August 29, 2018 11:44 PM

No computers, no phone, no radio. Operating this behemoth was not for your average bear. As strange as this comparison will seem to many it reminds me a lot of the face of an advancing drift underground. Just air, drill oil and water, operating a bouncing jackleg with strength and smarts. High skills at many levels and brawn. No computers, no phone, no radio either. Finishing work at the end of the day the Engineer, Fireman and a two man Mining crew would have a similar appearance. Not for your average bear either. 

The Espresso maker is just above the 3 same size circular gauges on the Firemans side. 

 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, August 29, 2018 11:07 PM

Overmod

http://digital.hagley.org/PRR_11454

Knew if I dug into some of the records, I'd find it.  This is the S1 backhead view.

 

Such delicate interior! S1 is like a 1925 Rolls-Royce Phantom 1 in my heart. 

CoffeeSmile, Wink & Grin

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, August 29, 2018 10:36 PM

I found the espresso maker....seats don't look so great. 

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, August 29, 2018 9:21 PM

http://digital.hagley.org/PRR_11454

Knew if I dug into some of the records, I'd find it.  This is the S1 backhead view.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Monday, August 27, 2018 1:16 PM

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Posted by Jones1945 on Monday, August 27, 2018 1:02 PM

 Estimating steam locomotive horsepower
Author: AdamPhillips (2013)


 

This is one of those things where you really have to ask the right question to the the answer you're looking for. There are many kinds of horsepower relating to locomotives. With a diesel, you're talking mechanical horsepower: 550 foot pounds per second....or Brake Horsepower...or Indicated Horsepower...or Shaft Horsepower. It doesn't work that way with a steam locomotive. 

For the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, some old guys got together and cobbled together this idea of Boiler Horsepower. Pretty much since 1876, boiler people tried to get away from Boiler Horsepower, at least as it was then defined. One Boiler Horsepower = the evaporation of 34.5 pounds of water in one hour from and at 212 degrees f. To really figure out how much Boiler Horsepower your boiler makes, you have to measure the steam output and have test equipment. 

What heating surfaces are there in a steam locomotive? It depends on what you've got. Total area of surface in contact with hot gas and below the normal water level as long as it's part of the circulation system of the boiler. Area of: firebox sheets (minus door hole, stoker, tube & flue holes, etc), arch tubes (OD), siphons, circulators, combustion chamber, tubes & flues (ID) from sheet to sheet. Superheater area is figured seperately.

You probably don't want to get into all those formulae and steam tables and stuff....and there's drawbar horsepower....aww, just use the easy way ALCo looked at it: 

Saturated Steam HP = 0.0212 X P X A 
Superheated HP = 0.0229 X P X A 

HP = Horsepower 
P = Boiler Pressure (in Pounds per Square Inch) 
A = Area of One Cylinder (in Square Inches) 

For most of the locomotives out there, you can easily find out what boiler pressure they run at and what the cylinder diameter is. Use this simple formula fore every two-cylinder steam locomotive you want to know about. You do the math on your cell phone and can make the comparison for your self. Leave all the egg head stuff to the egg heads who can then argue amongst themselves over minutiae.

 
  
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Posted by Jones1945 on Monday, August 27, 2018 12:27 AM

Overmod

Note that Elsey's design, as written, is the wrong answer to not just a couple, but several questions nobody asked.  It's not particularly hard to understand why it was not applied to the Q1 to 'save' or assist it.

Thank you, Overmod. Obviously, I have no education background of Mechanical engineering, so when I share these patents, I am not, and never think that I am the best person here to judge it would work or not. I appreciate that you willing to spend your precious time sharing your professional knowledge and thoroughly reply or answer questions here and there. Unfortunately, it seems that many forum members here are not engineering expert like you, without engineering knowledge or experience, it is not easy to understand everything you wrote, not to mention asking meaningful questions. Just my two cents, this one is free though:


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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, August 26, 2018 9:47 PM

Note that Elsey's design, as written, is the wrong answer to not just a couple, but several questions nobody asked.  It's not particularly hard to understand why it was not applied to the Q1 to 'save' or assist it.

I suspect it would be difficult to find someone other than a French mecanicien (as on de Glehn- du Bousquet engines) who would voluntarily choose a system requiring manipulation of four separate controls, without conjugation or indicators of any kind, to synchronize or 'trim' power between two separate cylinder groups.  What is needed is a differential arrangement for each control, preferably one which can 'store' the offset needed for slip control, actuate it when needed, and then go back to normal sync or to "best" balance of power between units easily.

If you are familiar with the Eames locomotive, the wacky nature of the throttle arrangement in this patent, as drawn, will be appallingly clear.  At high mass flow the steam is NOT going to go neatly between the piping branches; it is also amusing to consider what the flow of combustion gas in the upper flues does to get around the considerable obstruction of the second throttle and interconnections.  Elsey appears not to know anything about Wagner throttles or the design of modern multiple front-end (poppet) throttles; there is no room for two of these on a T1 at any point in the available space for steam tracting, and even if there were, it would be better to use air actuators on both and control them from a single grapevine with a fast-acting differential control of some kind appended.  We have already discussed practical methods of detecting and indicating the pair of wheels slipping on a duplex -- a pair of simple wheelslip lights representing one of the better ways -- and it is not difficult to design a small motor-activated 'riding cutoff' arrangement (probably applied only to the 'slipperier' engine in practice) that would act in servo to extinguish the lights autonomically. 

I do agree with Porta that a better way to eliminate the slip on a duplex is to use four Wagner throttles (Porta couldn't spell very well and called them "Waggoner") which use fluidic amplification for very quick, very close control of fine throttle opening across the full range of actuation.  These go immediately upstream of the sets of ports and would be fed by branch manifolds similar to those used on Franklin poppet valves; they allow trim of one engine when the (single) main throttle is fully open and the engine is being driven on cutoff, and don't involve the weight and complexity of a complete separate power reverse arrangement.

The Wagner throttle arrangement is also a more correct way to implement, physically, the differential control as used on the Q2s, as it permits continuous control of the amount of steam admission rather than 'bang-bang' controlling the flow on and off with butterfly valves that require gland seals exposed to nearly full superheat.  To my knowledge there was no problem with the actual analog-computer setup used, which remains a highly interesting application of technology to steam power.

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Posted by 3rd rail on Saturday, August 25, 2018 10:13 PM

Well, that was the problem. 

Miningman

Baloney! The development of the Diesel engine was true enough but it was 2 and half times costlier to purchase up front. Very expensive. Sizable fleets of Centipedes, Passenger Sharks Bp20's, FM opposed piston entries, Alco PA1's, RF-16 Sharks, even FA1's were a total waste of money and were junk in short order and that after sizeable maintenance headaches, costs, breakdowns and delays. 

Roundhouse backstops could rebuild, fix and repair steam locomotives quickly and efficiently. Pennsy and NYC would have done better to do exactly what you state the N&W did...hold out until bullitproof proven Diesel locomotives became available, even longer. 

They succumbed to pressure from a societal direction that was eager for a new world of massive consumerism and easy credit was waved in front of their faces especially by EMD. It was image, style over substance. It did nothing to save them at all, not a thing. 

 

The So-Called "Standard-Railroad" Failed to standardize on their Diesel purchases. They bought a little bit of everything. Baldwin, Lima, Alco, Fairbanks, EMD, GE, I'm probably missing a few others.... 

When you have a motive power fleet that diverse, how can you effectively shop the units for regular maintainance cycles without causing "Havoc" in the "Then-New" Diesel shops?  Most of the employees were used to working on steam. Now they have to learn about all these various new critters?  Disaster! Well, after about 10-15 years, PRR, along with the rest of them figured out that sticking with one manufacturer (usually EMD ), would simplify life. 

Of course you can't forget the Immense savings from eliminating all the coaling/watering facilities, the reduced shop force, etc, etc, etc.. 

Now, don't get the idea that I hate steam locomotives. I don't. I Love to see the restored ones in operation. But, I will say, if it weren't for the Diesel Locomotive, we would most likely NOT have any railroads left. The modern Semi-Truck  would have long ago, stolen ALL the traffic. 

Todd 

 

 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Saturday, August 25, 2018 5:59 AM

This is another drawing from google patent. According to the description, this is a device designed by Warren R Elsey from PRR  for Q1 to control the front and rear set of cylinders separately, in theory it could decrease fuel consumption and operating cost, it would be the best device to help relieve the problem of wheel slip at different speed, but for unknown reason, no such device was made and installed on the Q1 or other duplex engine like the production T1 and Q2.

The original design of Q1 was a 4-6-4-6 but by the time plans were finalized and approved it had evolved into a 4-6-4-4, poppet valve gear was deleted as well. (Source: Black Gold - Black Diamonds: The Pennsylvania Railroad & Dieselization Vol 1) There is some sources stated that the streamlined shrouding of Q1 was designed by Raymond Lowey.
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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, August 24, 2018 12:40 PM
Overmod
That's not the Centipedes; what you're looking at is the far more significant Essl modular locomotive (which used 408-engined gensets. each with its own little piece of carbody for the radiators, that could relatively easily be swapped out if they failed a la RDC engines, or fired up as needed for instantaneous HP vs. fuel efficiency).  That was the first practical 6000hp single-unit diesel locomotive design, the only real problem being that each 750hp unit was arranged to drive on the single adjacent driver axle, giving both control and slipping issues in that era. 
 
Thanks for catching that, Overmod, I should have said “the conceptional design of Centipedes” or other more actuate words to describe that engine in the drawing since I do remember the production Centipedes had “only” two 1500hp engines, even BLW was unable to install 8 but 4 engines on the demonstrator unit according to their original plan.
 
After reading your informative respond, now I understand why they had such an ambitious or some people may say a “greedy” design. A 3 units, 210ft+ long EMD E7 or E8 A+B+A set which could provide 6000hp was so much longer than the “original Centipedes design” (Essl modular locomotive) which was 91ft long providing 6000hp. That’s why Mr. Essl or Baldwin wanted to put so many engines inside one single engine unit to meet the 6000hp power output goal.
 
The Chassis of both conceptual and production Centipedes looked like GG1 with one more axle in both engine truck, I guess Baldwin wanted to build a mainline express diesel engine as powerful as GG1 with similar wheel arrangement. But turn out it didn’t work.
 
 
If thing went according the plan, a 91ft long single unit which can provide 6000hp power output was definitely very competitive to EMD's product and attractive to all railroads, but it was too bad that it didn’t went according to plan…… Bad luck for both comany. I heard that PRR's Centipedes were prefered engines for the Broadway Limtied, I think Its time for me to buy the Volume II of "Black Gold - Black Diamonds: The Pennsylvania Railroad & Dieselization" to see the ending of the story. (or any other books deserve a recommendation?) 
 
 
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Posted by Overmod on Friday, August 24, 2018 10:38 AM

M636C
"Mar. 2, 1948 VP James M. Symes rejects Charles D. Young’s suggestion for a highpressure water-tube boiler for the S2 turbine locomotive, as the only way to increase turbine efficiency is to use a forced draft, and no fan can stand up to the damage from fly ash and other abrasives. (VPO)"

We should pause here for a moment.  There are two kinds of draft in boiler design, forced draft and induced draft, which have specific technical meaning.  Very often in railroad practice you see the former term mistakenly used for the latter implementation, as with what Symes is doing here.  Induced draft is upstream of the boiler, and the primary air is pulled through the fire, the radiant section, and the convective passes before being exhausted (either through a draft fan or via nozzle ejection as in a traditional front end).  Forced draft involves a sealed firebox, and fan arrangements acting as compressors to provide a positive overpressure (and hence greater mass of available oxygen) in the combustion space.  Of course, every little hole or seam in the firebox spews gas and soot all the time, which is why forced draft has been a dubious proposition since the early years of steam-locomotive design when it was first tried.

Now you may notice that the B&W high-pressure watertube boiler proposals that culminated in the locomotive design used in the N&W TE-1) will work nicely with induced draft.  But not with the draft induced from the S2-style mechanical turbine, with its relatively high slip at low speed, perhaps not even from the V1's two turbines and Bowes drives.

Symes is likely thinking of some of the experimentation with fan drafting, notably MacFarland's.  Fans with enough performance to duplicate the effect of conventional front ends that would 'package' in the room available would either have to turn quickly or be very large, in either case exacerbating the impingement wear of exhaust ash and soot on the blading.  (It is illustrative to note the ways the South Africans dealt with this through changes in construction and location, a few years later)

An example of railroad use of forced draft is the Velox boiler (described by Duffy in a rather good Newcomen Society paper) which used a gas-turbine compressor to produce (iirc) about 30psi pressure in the combustion air.  You can dramatically reduce the size and weight of plant needed for producing a large mass flow of high-pressure steam.  But one has to argue that using an expensive, fragile, high-maintenance turbine as a prerequisite for a relatively low-efficiency Rankine cycle plant is a dubious proposition economically -- and I think the Swiss experience thoroughly bore this out.

The US Navy used forced draft in the Destroyer Escorts from DE 1037 Bronstein onward, up through the Knox class until these became known as Frigates and the next class, the FFG-7 went to gas turbine propulsion. My understanding is that these [Navy boilers] were pressurised boilers, with high pressure air being pumped into the combustion space by blowers well downstream of the combustion.

I believe you mean 'upstream' in this context, e.g. pressurized ahead of the air preheaters, with something like Racer pressure burners themselves fed primary compressed primary air. 

Of course, these were all oil fired, but coal firing of a pressurised boiler, possibly using pulverised coal injected into the blower stream should be practical.

I'm not sure that's the word I would use for any mobile pulverized-coal plant as by definition you're pressurizing the entire feed apparatus to get it to work reliably, and any failure is likely to result sooner or later in nice coal-dust explosions (which can propagate at about 0.93c, an effect likely to be implicated in the sinkings of the Lusitania and Britannic) and fires where you do not ever want them.  Feeding PC with compressed primary air in the burner is one thing; positive overpressure in the firebox something decidedly different.

Now, I have had quite a bit of fun designing locomotives that use a combination of forced and induced draft; the arrangements at the primary end involving a cellular windbox and active dampers to allow fitting a proper combustion-air preheat arrangement and some 'trim' over the fired areas on a grate, but no more than a couple of psi peak overpressure.  Even that is probably overkill for most practical road locomotive applications...

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, August 24, 2018 10:11 AM

Jones1945
Looking at the patent drawing of the Baldwin Centipedes, I really can’t understand how they could approve such “vanguard” design;

That's not the Centipedes; what you're looking at is the far more significant Essl modular locomotive (which used 408-engined gensets. each with its own little piece of carbody for the radiators, that could relatively easily be swapped out if they failed a la RDC engines, or fired up as needed for instantaneous HP vs. fuel efficiency).  That was the first practical 6000hp single-unit diesel locomotive design, the only real problem being that each 750hp unit was arranged to drive on the single adjacent driver axle, giving both control and slipping issues in that era. 

There have been a couple of articles in Trains with good information on this; the principal problem was that it was even more expensive than the equivalent hp's worth of building-block EMDs ... and that proved more important than the length reduction (this design offering considerably more than a 4-unit FT hp in only about 58' length; see Kiefer's 1947 report for the packaging advantages).

PRR's Centipedes were built with those DeLaVergne tugboat derived engines, taking four of them in two units to match Essl's prospective output.  This was considered (by Baldwin and PRR) to be a better capital and maintenance prospect, the engines peaking at only 625rpm with everything overbuilt.  (If you argue, consider how R.J. Russell, who ran BP-20s on the Bay Head trains, got normal high acceleration -- he said the ammeter would go into the red and peg, and only come floating down after a minute or so, stop after stop.  And PRR only retired those units when it consolidated the number of types of locomotive power after 1963...

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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, August 24, 2018 6:25 AM
M636C
……My understanding is that these were pressurised boilers, with high pressure air being pumped into the combustion space by blowers well downstream of the combustion. Of course, these were all oil fired, but coal firing of a pressurised boiler, possibly using pulverised coal injected into the blower stream should be practical. At least there were no turbine blades to erode, just the water tubes......
 
Thank you for the detailed and informative respond, Peter.
As you may have noticed that there weren’t any successful example of steam or steam turbine engine using high pressure water tube boiler from all over the world, like LNER 10000 from UK, N&W Jawn Henry. It seems that the direct-drive steam turbine locomotive was a dead-end project……
 
I read some post from different forums that comment was made suggesting using of a steam booster engine on the trailing truck on S2, but I think PRR wanted a locomotive 100% power by steam turbine. If there is a gear allow the reverse turbine (1500hp) changed to forward turbine like an automobile, I wonder if it would solve the starting problem of S2 or made it even worse……   

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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, August 24, 2018 6:01 AM

Backshop

Since nothing happens in a vacuum, what else is happening in the railroad world at this time... Other railroads have dieselized and laid off thousands of employees and closed multiple heavy maintenance facilities.  They have also stopped their dependence on the whims of the most powerful labor union of the time (UMW).  Even if the PRR gets the duplexes sorted out, so what?  Most are for passenger trains, which although they are prestigious, don't make any money.  What are you going to do to replace those thousands of H,K,I,M,and L classes worn out from the war.  The only reason the Pennsy wasn't swamped by the war was all the steamers not needed by the new electrification.  Now, they are antiques.

It depends which year you are talking about. Passenger trains like the Trail Blazer and the General made tons of money for PRR prewar, not to mention the money earned because of the war traffic, even the ridership of Broadway Limited increased 210% after it dropped the extra fair. But of course PRR's freight business earned so much more.
 
By the way, when the problem of duplexes was sorted out, it was 1947, decline of PRR's passenger service was just started. At that moment, no one would have foreseen what would happen in the next decade, including heads of NYCRR, who purchased 720 new light weight passenger cars from various manufacturers for their “Great Steel Fleet”.  The rest is history.
 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, August 24, 2018 5:25 AM
rcdrye
A key to the diesel transition was the MU building block principal.  Once labor agreements allowed MU operation it became possible to build a 6000 HP diesel that could still operate if one of the units went off line.  If your 9000 HP turbine drops out, you're in real trouble.  PRR's side trip with the Baldwin Centipedes shows how deeply the "Big Engine" mentatlity was embedded in both builders and carriers.  Santa Fe's largely unnoticed, but nonetheless groundbreaking decision to order all of its FT units with couplers instead of drawbars hastened the end of steam as much as anything.
 
Thank you for the response, rcdrye.
In hindsight, I think it was a consensus that the maintenance cost, operation cost and flexibility of diesel engine is superior to conventional reciprocating steam locomotive. Many railroads from all over the world tried so many different new technologies but turn out there is only two options, electric locomotive or diesel-electric, were proved economic and practical.
 
 
Speaking of Baldwin Centipedes, I agree that PRR or even Baldwin really addicted to massive engine design since 40s. Looking at the patent drawing of the Baldwin Centipedes, I really can’t understand how they could approve such “vanguard” design; There was no space for daily inspection or maintenance between the diesel engines and it wasn’t hard to imagine the noise, heat and vibration from the engine room which housing 8 diesel engines. Many things PRR and Baldwin have done just proved Murphy's Law is not wrong. (But they did look cool thoughStick out tongue)
 
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Posted by M636C on Thursday, August 23, 2018 11:41 PM

Feb 24, 1948 Charles D. Young writes to James M. Symes calling attention to an article on turbine locomotives in the Feb. 14 issue of Railway Age and suggests inviting Westinghouse Electric Corporation and Babcock & Wilcox to collaborate on a design for a high-pressure water-tube boiler for the Class S2 6-8-6 chassis. (VPO)

"
Mar. 2, 1948 VP James M. Symes rejects Charles D. Young’s suggestion for a highpressure water-tube boiler for the S2 turbine locomotive, as the only way to increase turbine efficiency is to use a forced draft, and no fan can stand up to the damage from fly ash and other abrasives. (VPO)"

The US Navy used forced draft in the Destroyer Escorts from DE 1037 Bronstein onward, up through the Knox class until these became known as Frigates and the next class, the FFG-7 went to gas turbine propulsion.

My understanding is that these were pressurised boilers, with high pressure air being pumped into the combustion space by blowers well downstream of the combustion. Of course, these were all oil fired, but coal firing of a pressurised boiler, possibly using pulverised coal injected into the blower stream should be practical. At least there were no turbine blades to erode, just the water tubes...

These installations were very compact for their power, 600psi and 22000 shp in the Bronstein and 1200psi and 35000 shp in the Knox.

Of course the 40000 shp in the FFG-7 from two GE LM2500s was even more compact and not that much less fuel efficient, since you could run on one turbine and extract waste heat for dometic purposes. You could also run on one boiler in the steam ships, of course, but they had only one steam turbine which was a single point of failure.

These ships are about ten to fifteen years later than the rail steam turbines being discussed, but the US Navy is rarely at the forefront of technology (nuclear power excepted).

Peter

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Posted by Backshop on Thursday, August 23, 2018 2:48 PM

Since nothing happens in a vacuum, what else is happening in the railroad world at this time... Other railroads have dieselized and laid off thousands of employees and closed multiple heavy maintenance facilities.  They have also stopped their dependence on the whims of the most powerful labor union of the time (UMW).  Even if the PRR gets the duplexes sorted out, so what?  Most are for passenger trains, which although they are prestigious, don't make any money.  What are you going to do to replace those thousands of H,K,I,M,and L classes worn out from the war.  The only reason the Pennsy wasn't swamped by the war was all the steamers not needed by the new electrification.  Now, they are antiques.

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Posted by rcdrye on Thursday, August 23, 2018 8:52 AM

A key to the diesel transition was the MU building block principal.  Once labor agreements allowed MU operation it became possible to build a 6000 HP diesel that could still operate if one of the units went off line.  If your 9000 HP turbine drops out, you're in real trouble.  PRR's side trip with the Baldwin Centipedes shows how deeply the "Big Engine" mentatlity was embedded in both builders and carriers.  Santa Fe's largely unnoticed, but nonetheless groundbreaking decision to order all of its FT units with couplers instead of drawbars hastened the end of steam as much as anything.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, August 23, 2018 5:50 AM

Some patent drawings of the PRR V1 project (9000hp Direct-Drive Steam Turbine Locomotive) from 1946 (source: Google Patents): 

V1

 

Steam Turbine Electric Locomotive Vs Direct-Drive Steam Turbine Locomotive 

Steam Turbine Electric Locomotive like C&O M-1 and N&W TE1 were proved unsuccessful, but Direct-Drive Steam Turbine Locomotive in such structural design like the PRR V1 never had a chance to get built. Did we miss something great or would it be just another expensive failure?Hmm
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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, August 23, 2018 1:21 AM
Overmod
……You can consider whether simple evolutionary improvements, such as better-cast valves, or more complex ones like piston-valve conversions, would have made the engines embarrassingly better just as the economics for any highly-sophisticated steam passenger power were declining radically, and find evidence for politics accordingly……
 
They also abandoned any further development of S2 around that time, suggestion like this was ignored for obvious reason:
 
 
Feb 24, 1948 Charles D. Young writes to James M. Symes calling attention to an article on turbine locomotives in the Feb. 14 issue of Railway Age and suggests inviting Westinghouse Electric Corporation and Babcock & Wilcox to collaborate on a design for a high-pressure water-tube boiler for the Class S2 6-8-6 chassis. (VPO)

"
Mar. 2, 1948 VP James M. Symes rejects Charles D. Young’s suggestion for a highpressure water-tube boiler for the S2 turbine locomotive, as the only way to increase turbine efficiency is to use a forced draft, and no fan can stand up to the damage from fly ash and other abrasives. (VPO)"
 
James M. Symes witnessed the whole development progress of the duplexes and direct-drive turbine steam locomotive as a VP since 1942, I don’t know if he tried to save the project or not, but the story of S2 and T1 ended in 1949 and 52 respectively.
 
Pennsy style front end Yeah Good looking Yeah Fast and powerful Yeah Loved by the public Yeah 
 
Overmod
As you all probably know, I think practical luxury-bus service was nipped in the bud far too early, essentially starting when Missouri proactively reduced its highway size and axle-load limits.  Look at the late Pickwick Nite Coaches, and the later Santa Fe articulateds, to see what interesting rubber-tired alternatives could have been for all those REA city pairs that were becoming uneconomical to serve even with one-man motor trains.
 
Coincidentally I was reading about the Pickwick Nite Coaches from a issue of Electricity Railway Journal! The flexibility of Coaches had so much potential that it could offer a lot of things traditional railroad can’t offer. In hindsight, I believe if PRR established a branch of Coach Company like Greyhound, using coaches to assist or even replace some of the train service could increase the competitiveness of PRR, or at least let the business keep running. But Would ICC approve such plan? Imagine passenger could buy a ticket package from Pittsburgh to Chicago and then jump on a PRR bus to Milwaukee or took the train to St. Louis and then travel to Omaha or a bunch of smaller towns...... so many possibilities and business opportunities.
 
O wait, I forgot PRR was long gone…… and the Greyhound bus doesn't smell so good nowadays. Stick out tongue
 
 
  • Member since
    September 2013
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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, August 22, 2018 7:13 PM

There is nothing wrong with Jeri Ryan...she da bomb!

There was a show where one of her Borg thingies was expiring and would lead to her demise and it appeared she was to be a goner.

She said "adjusting to my abscene will be difficult" ...well heck yeah!

I want that on my headstone. 

Rode a lot of trolleys in my day in Hamilton. Was better when it was streetcars. They were stoic and characterless. Drivers hated 'em cause the twin contact was always coming off the overhead and out the door he would go cursing. 

Departing from a Diesel bus and reaching the end of the bus just as it pulls away and getting that heat blast followed by all the smelly atmospherics is not something correct for the human condition. ...and of course Murphys Law states the bus won't leave until you are in the correct spot every time. 

  • Member since
    December 2017
  • From: I've been everywhere, man
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Posted by SD70Dude on Wednesday, August 22, 2018 6:49 PM

Miningman

Good grief, I'd rather discuss Seven of Nine than buses. Buses suck...and stink. 

Trolleys don't.

And what's wrong with Voyager?  I thought Jeri Ryan did a fine job on that show!

Greetings from Alberta

-an Articulate Malcontent

  • Member since
    September 2013
  • 5,501 posts
Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, August 22, 2018 6:25 PM

Good grief, I'd rather discuss Seven of Nine than buses. Buses suck...and stink. 

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