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

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, October 22, 2019 9:05 PM

The actual scrap value was something in the 35,000 dollar range (with gold-standard dollars) which is nontrivial.  Point is the utter irreplaceability of the locomotive and all the history behind it ... never mind that PRR in general and Symes in particular wished a lot of it had never been...

There was probably a successful marketing career open to the Big Engine with far more return than scrap... the T1 is far less astonishing and still wicked cool to millions.  But there was not even a Jones Tours in Travelers Rest to pony up the required dollars when it mattered.

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Tuesday, October 22, 2019 7:14 PM

So the scrap value of the S1 was $14, 921?  Just how many minutes  of PRR operations would that have paid for?  And the scrap value of a T1 was probably even less.

Which is why I say saving the S1 and T1 wouldn't have affected the PRR's bottom line all that much, if at all, and not doing so was a tremendous lapse in judgment, especially for a company with so much self-pride.  

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Posted by Miningman on Tuesday, October 22, 2019 12:50 PM

Q2, T1 in front , many others ... gone gone gone ain't never coming back.

Took their 30 pieces of filthy lucre, gained in a dishonourable way then lost the Company itself! 

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, October 22, 2019 8:21 AM

Jones1945
The book value of the S1 just before scrapping was $500,000. Scrap value was $14,291.

But look at the numbers for the aggregate amount PRR paid on the S1 project from inception through the great number of apparent 'change orders' Baldwin came up with.  I think the total is well north of $3 million (!!!) which was amplified in both effect and opportunity cost substantially by the Depression.

If that money had to be 'kept on the books' while the asset was intact, it wouldn't be surprising to see the now-inevitable taking its course...

I think it's documented that Symes disliked the S1 because of its impact on regular operations, and that includes its tendency to go on the ground at the least provocation when hostling.  That perception may be a Chris Baer artifact, but I suspect he's looked at the issue more than anyone else.

Note that much of the "HSR optimization" that would have been done from the 1920s through the 1940s would still be useful today if extant... and explicitly designed for speed or 'snapping' rather than decreasing freight grade or the need for 'helping'.  That would likely be particularly true for Amtrak service from New York to 'the west' as, even by way of the Philadelphia area, there was no practical alternative other than the NYC, much longer.  Combination of the Sam Rea line with electrification would only enhance this, even given the necessity of substantially and perhaps completely rebuilding that electrification for constant-tension to be of maximum worth.

The cutoff around the Philadelphia issues is likely as significant in improving timing as a great many miles of curve reduction via tunnelling.  And for PRR this would become important with the rise of TrucTrain business even in the early Fifties...

Note the stylistic 'bullets we dodged' in not adopting the more highly 'styled' versions of the PRR duplex 4-4-4-4.  We'd see that ribbed stainless nose love patch again on the Olympian Hi's Erie-builts ... but it worked there.  (I do have to wonder whether Old Man Thunder was thinking of that other one when designing the nose of the first-generation Shin Kansen trainsets...)

Inspect that 'near' driver pair carefully, as it's an education in itself.  The absolute minimum of stroke reduction on an engine this size, even considering the reduction of main-pin thrust from the duplex principle; the carrying of side rods as close to the locomotive centerline as possible; the provision of large-diameter very thin roller bearings for lightweight rods; the use of controlled lateral motion; and, of course, Baldwin Disc: both the double-disc and folded-plate aspects of the design are clearly visible here...

 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Tuesday, October 22, 2019 4:55 AM

Flintlock76

You know boys, I look at those construction photos of the T1 and all I can think of is...

"All that design genius, all that foundry work, all that machine shop artistry, all that sweat, patience, and probably a little blood, and then wrapped up in a Raymond Lowey gift-wrap, gone for scrap, like it all meant nothing.  Nothing at all."

What a shame.  Like trashing the "Mona Lisa" because her hair and dress are out of style.   

Exactly. I wish there wasn't any serious industrial accident involved during the construction of S1 and T1s. But if there was any, I wish their names would be remembered when the 5550 will be built. Minor injuries are probably inevitable, knock knock on wood! All the effort and money spent was flushed or purged like the brown fish in the toilet...... though I can understand that many people who are not railfan or railfan who never liked the T1s never see them as "Mona Lisa" or something that they would cherish. 

Overmod

(Regrettably for Jones, and me, and a few others: you see why you would NOT do this with the S1, right? ...)

Yes. The book value of the S1 just before scrapping was $500,000. Scrap value was $14,291. I don't think there was any buyer who wants to buy an engine that couldn't run on their system, or to spend that amount of money to place it inside a department store or someone backyards. Pennsy could have donated the S1 or even the whole "Raymond Loewy steam engine collection" to colleges or museums, but there was a man in PRR who wanted to get rid of all of them so badly, the New VP of Operation, Jim Symes. He wanted the N&W Class J instead of the T1s before his promotion. He was probably right about the choice of engine type, though. I don't blame him since I have been working on helping our younger folks to bring the S1 back in 3D model form and scaled model form at an affordable price. Maybe someday there will be a S1 Trust in America or other countries, or other planets... and the Promised Land. 

Miningman

Flintlock states " Like trashing the "Mona Lisa" because her hair and dress are out of style."

Now that's worthy of some kind of David P. Morgan award!

Of course Overmod is correct if looked at in that light. How about they stick with them, make it right and never spend the enourmous capital outlay plus interest on the E8's. 

T1's on the PennCentral ... whooo boy, they wouldn't be able to keep them on the rails, maintenance would likely go to nil. The E8's looked like hell enough! 

I am still interested in calculating the total amount of money that PRR spent on purchasing mainland passenger diesel engines from 1947 to 1967, the overall maintenance and operating cost of it, and compared it to the figures if PRR kept using the T1s and Q2 until the 1960s. I do believe that some Pennsy fans have done this before but I am distracted with many other things recently. Anyway, it was just less than 16 years between the T1s all sent for scrap and the end of PRR. 

 

From: rrmuseumpa.org

 

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, October 21, 2019 8:11 PM

Flintlock76
They saved an example of darn near everything else.

Pointedly, no L5s.  Which were a whole long part of PRR history.

Or L6s either.  Even one of the completed carbodies could have been used.

Not even the R1.  And only one P5, and that only because St. Louis stepped in.  We won't go into Baldwins...

(At least we have Rivets... but why not 4801?)

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Monday, October 21, 2019 6:45 PM

Well, the Reading stopped doing it because the flue times had expired on the T1's so they just decided to call it a day, or so I've heard.  Aside from that, I like your thinkin' about the PRR adopting a UP-style steam program, certainly do-able, and with very little effort.

Why they couldn't do it with the S1 is no mystery, it was good, but too damn big!  Kind of reminds me of the old gag of the guy who builds a boat in his backyard and then can't get it out past the house!  Which actually happened in one case I know of, to a certain Major (at the time) George S. Patton!  Patton's son said his dad's profanity at the time was truly remarkable!  He said it was also one of the few times he saw his mother collapse in hysterical laughter!  

They still should have sent the S1 to Northumberland.  Pity they didn't.  Or a T1.  They saved an example of darn near everything else.

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, October 21, 2019 6:03 PM

Flintlock76
Well hey, they could have run a T1 or two in the steam-starved 60's and called it a ride, not transportation. 

If the Reading stopped doing it with theirs, what would keep the PRR in the ramblin' biz?

While we're in shouda-woulda-coulda mode, what PRR might have done is what UP actually did: take one of their special first-line engines and, instead of relegating it to the dead collection in Northumberland, kept it alive as a special project and 'show of pride'.  

Would have involved no more special equipment and planning than the T1 Trust feasibility plan already calls for.  And when Penn Central came to be, you'd have a happy market for the fire-sale shuck that would probably have happened ... without some of the risk involved with a Dick Jensen-style fall through the cracks.  Heaven knows provision of adequate spares could have been arranged for very little money!

(Regrettably for Jones, and me, and a few others: you see why you would NOT do this with the S1, right? ...)

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Posted by Miningman on Monday, October 21, 2019 5:37 PM

Flintlock states " Like trashing the "Mona Lisa" because her hair and dress are out of style."

Now that's worthy of some kind of David P. Morgan award!

Of course Overmod is correct if looked at in that light. How about they stick with them, make it right and never spend the enourmous capital outlay plus interest on the E8's. 

T1's on the PennCentral ... whooo boy, they wouldn't be able to keep them on the rails, maintenance would likely go to nil. The E8's looked like hell enough! 

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Monday, October 21, 2019 4:51 PM

Well hey, they could have run a T1 or two in the steam-starved 60's and called it a ride, not transportation.  I'll betcha that  would have gotten some "butts in seats," as the airlines say!  

But as John Lennon once said, "You can call me a dreamer, but I'm not the only one..."

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, October 21, 2019 3:51 PM

Flintlock76
"All that design genius, all that foundry work, all that machine shop artistry, all that sweat, patience, and probably a little blood, and then wrapped up in a Raymond Loewy gift-wrap, gone for scrap, like it all meant nothing.  Nothing at all."

And if you think THIS was something ... look at the outlay (in pre-Bretton Woods dollars, no less!) PRR made on the S1.  That was real money.

To an extent, though, these were the high-maintenance women of the railroad world.  And, not to put too much of a point on the metaphor, these were ladies who had to work for a living with little proper attention, an increasingly poor diet, and the wrong sort of johns entirely.  When they failed to produce, they were let go...

And, truth to tell, when you've had enough of the prima-donna or diva issues, and you've had a better offer from a sturdier or more down-to-earth gal, you might come to a point where enough's enough, and less drama for the 'hit' on your wallet might be better... when you come right down to it, PRR got much better use out of braces of E8s than they ever would out of T1s, for far longer, and well into the decline into dotage of the railroad itself.  Can you imagine trying to run T1s in the late '60s ... let alone under Penn Central?

At least the harm is being redressed, in part, by the Trust.  We'll see the effect of one again.

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Monday, October 21, 2019 3:30 PM

You know boys, I look at those construction photos of the T1 and all I can think of is...

"All that design genius, all that foundry work, all that machine shop artistry, all that sweat, patience, and probably a little blood, and then wrapped up in a Raymond Lowey gift-wrap, gone for scrap, like it all meant nothing.  Nothing at all."

What a shame.  Like trashing the "Mona Lisa" because her hair and dress are out of style.   

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, October 21, 2019 2:45 PM

Please put up the exact URL you used to get these, as it's been impossible to reach the old C&O Magazine issues Dave Stephenson used to reference for a few years.  (The 'actual' accounts of the T1 testing on C&O are also available there, which should interest and enlighten those who read them).

This is the first time I've heard that the reason for the 'booster delete' was associated with the equalization-conjugation beam.  The odd thing about that as a reason is, of course, that the beam was undesirable for further reasons, and was appropriately removed (and snubbing ties at the center of the driver wheelbase substituted) in all the production engines.  So it would have been logical to at least consider limited application of some kind of boosting to the engines, particularly as the slipping problem began to appear critical.

That is, unless the cost would be 'good money after bad' ... or the slipping were somehow important to getting rid of the locomotives quicker rather than later...

Personally, I never quite agreed that Stauffer's comment about boosters on Niagaras -- that they needed a clinkety booster about as much as a Christmas tree sticking out of the stack -- quite applies to T1s, which were poster children for auxiliary locomotives for being short-stroke engines alone, never mind all the other low-speed uses an added low-slip driving axle equivalent ... or two, now that you mention it... might furnish.

Those drawings you have are probably for the RC Franklin as applied to the L-2 Hudsons, judging by the cam profiles.  OC cams, as on most of the T1s (and I think 490 and her sisters had them on C&O) would be largely symmetrical relative to the followers.  Note that the drawings show neither nested counterwound 'snubber' springs to return the valves, or any kind of progressive winding to control debounced unporting and seat or spool breakage simultaneously.  That would indicate they're either 'oversimplified' for the press (cf. that 'Simplified for Clarity'), or purposely not drawn to show 'trade secrets' in design... that is, if we assume Franklin knew what they were doing, something that has been disproved repeatedly in the history of poppet-valve gear in America.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Monday, October 21, 2019 8:55 AM

Overmod

Yes, that's the forward-engine cambox.  See the two 'shafts' to either side, with sufficient diameter that torsion won't affect their angular precision?  Those go to the actual cams, with followers that move the valves.  On this engine there are four of them, one for each valve position (exhaust outside, inlet inside, as you see in the cylinder-block pictures) and they rock (OC) rather than rotating as you might think.

You know, I think you might actually see the corner of the 'upright' rear-engine cambox in there.  I'll have to look at the drawings when I can to confirm it would be visible from that position.

These are among the first pictures I remember seeing on the Web that show the layout of the actual cam housings and associated lubrication without the cylinder casing applied.  

I now understand a bit better why more of these locomotives didn't have boosters, even though (in my opinion) they needed that sort of assistance badly... 

I remember the prototype T1 once stuck before leaving the station and require a helper to push it, and the booster on 6111 was removed later due to the unloading problem caused by the long equalizing beam between two engines. Baldwin wanted to sell the duplex to other railroads like Atlantic Coast Line, if PRR's T1 had a very smooth operation track record, they might have found some buyers besides the PRR (And NYC/C1a). When I was looking at these pics, I feel like looking at a very successful steam engine installed with all the state of the art goodies...... the rest is history. :P

I found this recently: from C&O Historical Magazine May 2006 (Available for download for free). Somebody has enough time can make an animation base on this one.

Link: https://cf.cohs.org/repository/archives/web/cohm/cohm-2006-05.pdf

 

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, October 21, 2019 7:57 AM

Yes, that's the forward-engine cambox.  See the two 'shafts' to either side, with sufficient diameter that torsion won't affect their angular precision?  Those go to the actual cams, with followers that move the valves.  On this engine there are four of them, one for each valve position (exhaust outside, inlet inside, as you see in the cylinder-block pictures) and they rock (OC) rather than rotating as you might think.

You know, I think you might actually see the corner of the 'upright' rear-engine cambox in there.  I'll have to look at the drawings when I can to confirm it would be visible from that position.

These are among the first pictures I remember seeing on the Web that show the layout of the actual cam housings and associated lubrication without the cylinder casing applied.  

I now understand a bit better why more of these locomotives didn't have boosters, even though (in my opinion) they needed that sort of assistance badly...

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Posted by Jones1945 on Monday, October 21, 2019 7:37 AM

Some new historical photos of the construction of PRR 6110, 6111 uploaded to rrmuseumpa.org:

The poppet valve gear cambox?

All the pipes were stuffed under the streamlining side skirt. Can you see the "unaccessible cambox" in this pic? I can't... : )

PRR 6111 was the only T1 installed with a booster engine on the trailing truck.

PRR 6110 and 6111 had a longer service life than the production T1s. 

Thank you.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, October 3, 2019 7:21 PM

Some patent drawings of the proposed PRR Unit Train designed by Raymond Loewy:

Background history of the PRR Unit Train (From PRR Chronology):

Jan. 1935

PRR establishes the "Unit Train Committee" of representatives from Pullman, Loewy, GE, Westinghouse, and Gibbs & Hill to consider developing lightweight articulated streamliners for New York-Chicago (13 cars) and New York-Washington (14 cars) routes similar to those being adopted on western railroads. (possibly very late Dec. 1934) (CMP)

Mar. 4, 1935

VP C.D. Young for PRR engages exclusive railroad services of industrial designer Raymond Loewy for $20,000 per year plus expenses; Loewy is to design for no other railroad or railroad equipment manufacturers without PRR's consent and PRR is to have use of all Loewy's railroad designs; PRR not to employ another designer; Loewy's first big assignments are to streamline a K4s and work on the New York-Chicago Unit Train. (SMPE) 

June 1935

Unit Train Committee also explores possibility of converting surplus P70's into high-speed (90 MPH) MU cars to be operated in combinations of 2- or 3-unit articulated sets; eventually rejected as requiring expensive modifications; also consider high-speed MP54's for use between New York and Trenton and Baltimore and WashingtonRaymond Loewy does styling for both proposals. (CMP)

==============

Jan. 7, 1936

Unit Train Committee makes report with design of a 14-car articulated train of aluminum construction capable of operating between New York and Washington in 3 hours; estimated cost $715,000 each for 2 units; special locomotive similar to City of Denver (of Union Pacific) is replaced by GG1; plans are displayed in Philadelphia for private viewing by selected industrialists and civic leaders. (VPO)

Mar. 29, 1936

Unit Train Committee reports on alternative scheme for 14-car Congressional of modernized heavyweight equipment; cost put at $717,000 for 2 trains vs. $1.43 million for 2 unit trains; leads to Loewy commission for modernized P70s; better flexibility in high-density corridors with wildly fluctuating demand. (CMP)

Oct. 26, 1936

Unit Train Committee presents plan for new deluxe New York-Chicago coach train consisting of 6 rebuilt P70's, baggage and dining cars. (CMP)

Nov. 17, 1936

Unit Train Committee reports on proposal for a fast coach train between New York and Chicago to cost $228,800; will require rebuilding 12 coaches, 2 baggage cars and 2 diners for 2 trainsets; to be similar to Union Pacific's Challenger and operate as advance section of Golden Arrow on 17:40 schedule; to use Scheme 3 rebuilt P70's with 360 seats, with one car reserved for women and children and to carry stewardess and porter; should be placed in service as soon as possible; plan results in the Trail Blazer of 1939. (CMP)

Dec. 17, 1936

Unit Train Committee reports on 90 MPH truck tests between Fort Wayne and Valparaiso; also tests lightweight and rebuilt heavyweight cars from Milwaukee, Union Pacific, Santa Fe; tests continue into early 1938. (CMP)

==============

Mar. 27, 1937

Motive Power Dept. committee submits report on modernizing The Congressional in place of the Unit Train of 1936; calls for a 14-car train of modernized heavyweight equipment, which can be reduced to 11 cars in periods of light traffic; total cost $717,200; includes two diners and cafe-coach. (CMP)

Aug. 3, 1937

Raymond Lowey and Warren R. Elsey of PRR patent the design for the streamlined electric locomotive and observation car from the never-tobe-built Unit Train. (CMP)

Nov. 23, 1937

Memo to Chief of Motive Power F.W. Hankins notes that Raymond Loewy is developing a new exterior color scheme for both lightweight Pullmans and Budd diners; becomes distinctive two-tone red "Fleet of Modernism" scheme with Futura sans-serif lettering first used in 1938. (CMP)

==============

The "Unit Train Committee" dissolved in 1937, after the much more practical and economical new brand "Fleet of Modernism" that consisted of about 400 new and rebuilt cars was established. 

Raymond Loewy signed a contract with PRR since 1935, presuming Loewy worked with PRR until 1948 and his salary increased by 15% each year on average, PRR spent around $410,000 (equal to $7,357,537 in 2019) on Loewy, excluding expenses. Somewhat reasonable price compared to a golden handshake of multinational corporations' CEO nowadays, though Loewy kept working after he ended his business relationship with the PRR. Was money well spent? I think there was plenty of room to maximize the influence of Loewy's works. Like the "battle" between PRR, NYC, and B&O in the New York to Washington D.C., Chicago passenger trains market; besides a new livery and streamlining or the cars, Pennsy could have done more to change the overwhelming domination by New York Central. The F.O.M brand; the fleet needed more than one streamlined K4s to lead them west of Harrisburg. The fleet of GG1 was streamlined, good looking and popular, but they were not exclusively built for a named train and somewhat not as distinctive as the Dreyfuss Hudson or steam engine like the Daylight GS series. The Broadway Limited needed not only more windows on the dining car but also more gimmicks and talking points of the train's service and hardware.

The design of the patented Unit Train itself is not that impressive, to be honest, it might look great in real life, but I think Loewy could have done better than those drawings. Yes, he did a magnificent job on S1 6-4-4-6 and T1 4-4-4-4 after the Unit Train project. They were unforgettable and symbolic, but unfortunately, the S1 engine itself was a "concept car" showpiece instead of something practical and built ready for smooth daily operation. The fleet of "passenger shark" had the potential to be a perfect full stop of Loewy's business with PRR, but once again, the fleet was problematic...Coffee

 

 

https://digital.hagley.org

 

 

 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Saturday, June 29, 2019 2:56 PM

Overmod

Draft on the bottom likely related to the direct-drive turbine, with coal bunker leading.  It is interesting to me that he does not bring up the 'Triplex' layout at all here. 

Amusing how he points out the difference in 'covering up' the two things.  We could easily extrapolate this to 1947, the year we got the C&O streamlining ... and Bikini testing... 

Gotta love the svelte Gallic curve of that question mark!

Working with Loewy's team in the 1930s must be a fun thing, but even the most talented industrial designer at the time couldn't foresee things like racing swimsuits aka competitive swimwear. (at least not in the drawing posted) Though I can understand that nude beach probably was a better fit to Loewy's lifestyle (No offense intended!) and that is a wonderful, slender question mark. Cool

The draft of the direct-drive turbine looked so much better than the finalized proposal given to the Pennsy and the C&O M-1. It is interesting to see that so much effort was put by Loewy to cover up his secret weapon... I mean his "Triplex". SurpriseCoffee 

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, June 29, 2019 7:38 AM

Draft on the bottom likely related to the direct-drive turbine, with coal bunker leading.  It is interesting to me that he does not bring up the 'Triplex' layout at all here. 

Amusing how he points out the difference in 'covering up' the two things.  We could easily extrapolate this to 1947, the year we got the C&O streamlining ... and Bikini testing... 

Gotta love the svelte Gallic curve of that question mark!

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Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, June 28, 2019 9:05 PM

Some concept drawings by Raymond Loewy I found recently:

 

Click on the pic to enlarge

 

 

 

The draft on the bottom was probably the concept of "modern" 4-4-4-4 Camelback.

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, June 24, 2019 9:40 AM

M636C
The indicator was able to measure critical parameters and provided the best information available at the time (the late 1920s). And it was always true experimental data.

You will never hear me saying either that indicated data are worthless or that running a properly-calibrated indicator as an integral part of a test program shouldn't be done.

There is a bit of a fundamental issue here, in that a steam engine is less a "heat engine" than a pressure engine, but we call it that because heat energy is what makes the pressure that actually performs the work.  The difficulties start when people start making decisions about Rankine efficiency and heat balance based on pressure data, without doing the necessary thinking.  (This is part of why thermodynamics went to 'entropy', which has caused so many generations of students to tear their hair wondering "WHY???" without ever having it explained to them).

If you wonder, for example, what became of the French experiments with ether bottoming circa 1850... not all pressure represents the ability to do much work. In my opinion it becomes difficult to understand what a pressure measurement denotes when you are studying compression in an engine running at 9rps or higher, as the peak measurement (while of considerable importance!) is taken in such a short time interval that other effects may interfere.  [Yes, I think that this or something similar is related to what I consider the grossly-excessive dead space in the PRR Q2s and some other designs - so far as there is in fact a rational basis for it.]

I have a suspicion, without yet seeing the reference, that the 'steam flow indicator' is not actually related to event indicators at all; could it be part of the drifting arrangements on that locomotive?  I will check and confirm later.

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Posted by M636C on Saturday, June 22, 2019 6:16 AM

Overmod

 

M636C
An indicator is far from theoretical.

 

It does not measure mass flow, only secondary characteristics.  If steam were more like an ideal gas, this might be less significant, but it is not.

That said, I'd certainly rather have a set of cards from a well-calibrated indicator than not.

 

I am happy to agree that the indicator does not provide every parameter desirable for evaluation, but it does measure real locomotive characteristics and pressure against piston stroke is pretty useful.

The indicator diagrams of Paris Orleans 3566 show pretty clearly the effect of Chapelon's modifications when comparisons are made between the before and after diagrams. The differences in the indicator diagrams were reflected in tests of the locomotive's performance on the main line. While additional data might have shown more clearly which characteristics were influenced by which changes, The P-O were able to determine this by making changes to critical parts of the steam circuit without the costly poppet valves on other locomotives which showed less heroic performance improvements.

The indicator was able to measure critical parameters and provided the best information available at the time (the late 1920s). And it was always true experimental data.

Peter

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, June 21, 2019 6:43 AM

M636C
An indicator is far from theoretical.

It does not measure mass flow, only secondary characteristics.  If steam were more like an ideal gas, this might be less significant, but it is not.

That said, I'd certainly rather have a set of cards from a well-calibrated indicator than not.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, June 20, 2019 8:26 AM

Idea Crosby Indicator on 600 HP Snow Pipeline Compressor Engine

The indicator: 08:40 

 

Idea The Story of the Steam Engine Indicator

https://www.farmcollector.com/steam-traction/story-steam-engine-indicator

Coffee

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Posted by M636C on Wednesday, June 19, 2019 9:06 PM

Overmod

 

"Indizierte leistung" is just the German translation of ihp, the horsepower that a device called an 'indicator' calculates from characteristics of the valve gear.   (You can get a good idea what the device looks like, and how it works, from the Internet better than I could describe it)

The point here is that ihp, while a good theoretical number, is usually exaggerated over directly-measured wheelrim or dbhp.  Angus Sinclair had some amusing comments back in the day on how locomotives with perfect indicator diagrams sometimes failed to perform better than those with diagrams resembling 'a small leg of mutton'...

 

 

Exactly where did you study engineering?

An indicator is far from theoretical.

The indicators I was taught to use were small cylinders which rotated against a spring using small cables connected to the piston rod at the crosshead end. The stylus operated vertically against spring pressure measuring the pressure in the cylinder.

So the diagram was far from theoretical, being based on actual piston travel against actual pressure in the cylinder. However, there was plenty of room for errors of various kinds in producing a diagram, particularly on a moving locomotive.

But experimental error does not make a measurement theoretical. It is just harder to draw the correct conclusions from the data.

The best examples of indicator diagrams which clearly show the power output are Chapelon's diagrams showing high and low pressure for the P-O Pacifics before and after his modifications. The high pressure diagrams were similar, but the low pressure were entirely different.

The power is measured by calculating the area inside the indicator diagram, so the "thin" and "flat" diagrams represented low power.

The main difference between indicated and drawbar horsepower is the internal resistance of the engine itself and the power required to move its own weight. But it is an actual measure of engine power, just not the same as drawbar horsepower. 

Peter

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, June 19, 2019 1:10 PM

I think Reuter got his information from Arnold Haas -- probably thinking Haas was as 'expert' on PRR as he was on NYC.  The 141.2 is obviously a translation from metric (as you can quickly determine based first on the 110mph speedometer, and second on the timing precision you'd need to discriminate tenths of a mph with any stopwatch from mileposts at that speed ... one of those things that trips up a good story, like T1s with 120mph speedometers just like cars.

"Indizierte leistung" is just the German translation of ihp, the horsepower that a device called an 'indicator' calculates from characteristics of the valve gear.   (You can get a good idea what the device looks like, and how it works, from the Internet better than I could describe it)

The point here is that ihp, while a good theoretical number, is usually exaggerated over directly-measured wheelrim or dbhp.  Angus Sinclair had some amusing comments back in the day on how locomotives with perfect indicator diagrams sometimes failed to perform better than those with diagrams resembling 'a small leg of mutton'...

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, June 19, 2019 12:50 PM

Overmod
M636C
Could you indicate what aspect of the S1 you wanted information about from Reuter's book?

This was really more of a 'bump' than an actual request for something.  Anything that 'jumped out at you' as being valuable, say to Jones1945 who loves this particular locomotive, would probably be useful.

One "emergent" thing I'd like to see on 6100, although it almost certainly isn't in Rekord-Lokomotiven, is the set of acceleration curves taken with that reported 73-car freight train.  Particularly in the region above about 35mph (where the T1 was reported to 'come on the cam', as it were...)  There ought to be a 'sweet spot' in between low-speed and high-speed slipping where the engines can develop high torque with relatively little instability, and if the engine were worked strictly in this region it might have realized some of the expected potentials.

I've been showing another Trains forum member around much of New South Wales, if that is an excuse... 

I only wish I could be there too. 

I forget to mention about Reuter's book. The author says a speed record of S1 was made in March 1946 when the S1 was hauling a Trail Blazer trying to make up time. The S1 hit 141.2 mph in this run according to an ICC official's estimation. I think we heard about this story or myth too many times. Smile, Wink & Grin

I couldn't find too many "new" material about S1 in the book. Many passages are about PRR's brief history, the idea and the development of the duplex steam engine, B&O's N-1; the design, construction, operating history of S1 and its capabilities, the specification of S1, comparison of the BR 05 to S1 from a German's point of view,  T1 phototypes and Q2's brief  history...etc,.

The only interesting thing I found in this book is that the indizierte leistung of the S1 was ca.5890kW (8000 PS), which I don't know where and how the figure was obtained by the author. According to the formula used by ALCo, the power output of S1 was around 7200hp. I posted a pic before, showing how accurate the formula is. 

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, June 19, 2019 1:21 AM

Overmod

But you are forgetting the most important lesson imparted by the high-speed testing: the class J just didn't fit enough of the PRR.  Boiler was too big, for example, to run anywhere near Chicago.

Likewise you couldn't start with a Q2 boiler less one course; that was at clearance limit with only 69" ... not even 70" ... drivers.

Sorry for the late reply, what a week!  I really have forgotten the clearance restrictions in PRR's network, Mr. Overmod! Even the M1s were not allowed to operate on part of PRR's network. When Pennsy was designing the new prime steam power to rival the newly design NYCRR 100mph engine, later the S1, clearance was an important factor and Pennsy did pay a lot of attention to it. Turn out it is still exaggeratedly long and heavy.  I think we discussed before of a 4-8-4 base on the K5 and M1b, it was fun! 

 
Overmod
With the help of our forumer Reed, I have the chance to read the 7-page article about the S1 in Milepost's back issue of 1992. It seems that the wheel slip problem, probably mostly occurred at high speed, wasn't solved. There were so many wheels and drivers needed to be replaced during her short service life.

Are there answers?  Yes, and many of the ones developed for the T1 are applicable on an S1.  Even if we treat the 84" drivers in Golsdorf fashion and make no expectations of speed above the 110mph of the speed recorder, we need nothing more than proportional steam throttling off the Q2 analog-computer mechanism and lateral-acting rim brakes to solve the issue definitively.  Just that there's no point in optimizing a 140' engine that weighs as much as a Big Boy to pull just one money-losing train.

The Author, Charlie Mayer said that after the S1 racked up 161,000 miles, Pennsy "dropped at least 18 pairs of driving wheels, removed trailer wheels 8 times and engine truck wheels 4 times (within 4 years). " I suspect that the heavy loading on all axles with a bad weight distribution of the rigid frame of  S1 caused both driving wheels and tires worn out or broken within a short period of time. It is hard to believe that an engine designed by the three largest steam engine manufacturer of America made an engine that "impracticable".In hindsight, the PRR #5399 was the best answer to J. F. Deasy!

The Author also mentioned that a railfan named David A. Hill observed front engine slipping in 1944 and wrote a letter to Pennsy. His theory was that the center of gravity of S1 was higher than the drawbar line caused the engine "to rear up on its hind legs", David suggested increasing the relative weight of the front engine. Pennsy's ME replied to him patiently explaining why the problems were not easy to be solved. I wonder if this was the reason why Pennsy enlarged the sandbox on the S1 which was the only thing they could do to increase a little bit of weight on the front engine. I am looking forward to a 3D computer model of S1 which could simulate and demonstrate how slippy she was!

 
 
Overmod
          I can see the author also noted that the S1 was *probably built exclusively for the World Fair, (the whole construction progress was unnaturally kept as a secret) but he couldn't find any solid evidence to back up this point. 

The best evidence, to me, is that all the major locomotive builders conspired in the construction process.  That means the engine was intended as a kind of Four Aces on steroids, a proof of the duplex 'concept' that was over the top in the same way many show cars with over-1000-horsepower quad-turbo engines are.  It just happened that PRR wanted such an engine, and nobody else did.  So they got the demo built to their particular wishes.

I love the metaphor of Four Aces on steroids. It was so obvious that S1 was built for the global event, the 1939-40 World Fair. Oversized, overpowered, over-modded. Yes According to the Milepost magazine, one of the things Pennsy concerned a lot when designing the S1 was the clearance of the new engine which makes me believe that Pennsy and the related department of the World Fair wanted to build a steam engine which could wow the public but also could have been operating in PRR's network instead of a completely useless white-elephant. 

Overmod
The idea of the duplex, a by-product of the competition between the New York Central and PRR ...

That is almost certainly not what it came out of.  You will note that little B&O started building theirs not long after the idea was first floated, and NYC based most of theirs on PRR's second-generation design ... only to abort the whole idea before any metal was even cut or cast to make one.  

The biggest thing PRR did with duplexes, in my opinion, was how to get four rear-facing cylinders accommodated with minimal impact on the rigid wheelbase.  In a cast engine bed.  The solution on the Q2, and it was a very conscious and experienced solution, was so good that its rigid wheelbase, for almost 8000hp at high speed, is actually less than an ATSF 5011-class 2-10-4 of markedly lower capacity.  But, of course, unless you have an actual need (and commensurate bottom-line return on investment) for that kind of power, you're better off providing yourself with...

Another careless mistake of me. I should have said "the idea of S1 and T1". It would be interesting to see a chart comparing the operating cost of PRR Q2 and ATSF 5011, their TE was close but the Q2 had almost an extra 3000hp more power output than the 5011 class. In actual operation after WWII, the PRR Q2 probably seldom needed to be pushing to their limits. But I don't have the figures. 

 

Speaking of B&O's N-1, I read somewhere that one problem of it was the extra heat of the firebox affected the lubricant in the rear cylinders. I am not sure if it was the case and if the lubricant was affected, did Pennsy find the solution four years later when they were designing the Q1.

Overmod
I'd like to have seen a destreamlined version of the M-1 run, though.  That would be cool.
   Me too! It would have looked like something you can only find in Sci-Fi movie or Steampunk comic books! C&O M-1 was probably the closest thing to Nazi-Germany's Breitspurbahn. 
Overmod
I don't know if the Leader class then a-buildin' in Blighty technically counts as being in the Western Hemisphere (it would, of course, be very close even if not) but that makes an M-1 look like a gold-edged bond by comparison.  And this was FAR from the wackiest thing the little weasel inflicted on C&O, or NYC for that matter -- by the way, you have him more or less directly to blame for why there are no preserved Hudsons or Niagaras.  Just so you and Vince know.
    Good point. Hard to tell which one was the worst: the making of the Leader class in the UK or the three C&O M-1s. Equally bad I think. But at least the C&O M-1 looked cool. 
 
Overmod
What I find reprehensible is how quickly Baldwin left C&O twisting in the breeze after all the showstopping problems turned up.  But by then the diesel revolution and the free-piston extravaganza were in full swing there, and the finances going swiftly to hell.
Baldwin was really good at turning their clients or business partners into enemies than making good steam engine after WWII, I believe many railroaders or ex-railroaders at the time celebrated when Baldwin shut down. 

Overmod
Oh, there were many; they were just stillborn and then their records were lost or disposed of. 

I wish there was a book about them!
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Posted by Jones1945 on Thursday, June 13, 2019 11:32 AM

Dear Overmod and Peter, I have Reuter's book, but I can only giving short replies right now. Once everything settles down on my side, I will write a thorough reply to you guys. Thanks a lot! 

 

"I wish you would have somebody get to work designing a fast passenger engine of even greater capacity than now established.

 You will observe that the New York Central is advertising that their new engine is capable of making 100 miles per hour.

Keep me posted on the progress of the work.

J.F Deasy 

May 22, 1936 "

 

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Posted by Overmod on Thursday, June 13, 2019 6:51 AM

M636C
Could you indicate what aspect of the S1 you wanted information about from Reuter's book?

This was really more of a 'bump' than an actual request for something.  Anything that 'jumped out at you' as being valuable, say to Jones1945 who loves this particular locomotive, would probably be useful.

One "emergent" thing I'd like to see on 6100, although it almost certainly isn't in Rekord-Lokomotiven, is the set of acceleration curves taken with that reported 73-car freight train.  Particularly in the region above about 35mph (where the T1 was reported to 'come on the cam', as it were...)  There ought to be a 'sweet spot' in between low-speed and high-speed slipping where the engines can develop high torque with relatively little instability, and if the engine were worked strictly in this region it might have realized some of the expected potential.

I've been showing another Trains forum member around much of New South Wales, if that is an excuse...

I only wish I could be there too.

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