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Platforms

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Platforms
Posted by RayG8 on Monday, April 16, 2018 5:40 PM

Any one know the correct height for a modern passenger platform? I come up with 15/16" but I am not positive

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Monday, April 16, 2018 5:58 PM

Whatever height puts the platform even with the doors, if you intend that kind of station.  For a more rural area, it might be lower and the passengers would be expected to climb up the stairs built into the cars.

All of these things will be affected by a lot of factors.  What scale are you modeling?  Is the track on roadbed?  What code is the track?

Most of my subway platforms are set to the height of the doors:

In this picture, you can see the steps down on the lower left because that track serves my trolley cars:

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

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Posted by gregc on Monday, April 16, 2018 8:10 PM

isn't that what the lower edge on the left side of the NMRA gauge is for?

greg - Philadelphia & Reading / Reading

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Posted by mbinsewi on Monday, April 16, 2018 8:37 PM

gregc
isn't that what the lower edge on the left side of the NMRA gauge is for?

OK, I didn't receive any instructions when I bought mine,  good to know.  So what's the F and E gauges on the right side?

Mike.

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Posted by gmpullman on Monday, April 16, 2018 9:09 PM

mbinsewi
OK, I didn't receive any instructions when I bought mine,

Save and/or print:

https://www.nmra.org/sites/default/files/standards/sandrp/pdf/rp-2_2009.02.04.pdf

...and a detailed look at RP-7.1 will give you the dimensions for E, F and G on the gauge.

https://www.nmra.org/sites/default/files/standards/sandrp/pdf/rp-7.1_tangent_track_centers_and_clearance_diagrams_july_2017.pdf

 

Good Luck, Ed

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Posted by mbinsewi on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 6:56 AM

Thanks Ed Thumbs Up

Mike.

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Posted by BigDaddy on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 10:56 AM

MisterBeasley
Whatever height puts the platform even with the doors, if you intend that kind of station. For a more rural area, it might be lower and the passengers would be expected to climb up the stairs built into the cars.

There are places where the conductor brings out a little yellow stool for the passengers to step up or down on,  Flagstaff, Ashland to name two.

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

By the Chesapeake Bay

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Posted by wjstix on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 4:45 PM

Full-height concrete platforms were / are very common in the U.K., even in fairly remote rural stations. IIRC many U.K. passenger cars didn't even have steps, since it was assumed passengers would only be mounting from platforms flush with the floor of the passenger car ("coach" as they say.)

Outside of large U.S. towns, high platforms like that are pretty rare.

Stix
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Posted by BigDaddy on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 6:14 PM

La Plata MO 

 

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

By the Chesapeake Bay

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Posted by NHTX on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 11:56 PM

     Stix, you are correct about platform height in the U.K.  Coaching stock (passenger equipment) is built without steps over there.  This includes the diesel as well as electric MUs.  When exploring lines that disappeared decades ago, you can always tell you've found an existing station by the high platforms around the building. 

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Posted by NittanyLion on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 7:54 AM

BigDaddy

 

 
MisterBeasley
Whatever height puts the platform even with the doors, if you intend that kind of station. For a more rural area, it might be lower and the passengers would be expected to climb up the stairs built into the cars.

 

There are places where the conductor brings out a little yellow stool for the passengers to step up or down on,  Flagstaff, Ashland to name two.

 

There's also places (in major cities!) with both. Washington Union Station has high level platforms for most tracks, but the Capitol Limited and the VRE commuter trains use low level platforms.

In my travels, DC, New York Penn Station, Philadelphia 30th Street, Boston South, Harrisburg, and Manassas (VA) are the high levels I've used. Pittsburgh, Alexandria (VA), Altoona, Charleston, and Savannah (plus DC) are where I've used low levels.

Looking out the window, high level are much more common on MARC, the various NYC Philadelphia and Boston commute services, and the NEC Amtrak stations. Virtually all the legacy stations along the 95 corridor south of DC and everything outside the Keystone Corridor in PA is low.

Some high level cars (like Superliners) can't service high level platforms too.

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Posted by NHTX on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 8:31 AM

   High level platforms justify the added expense in regions of high density traffic by speeding up the boarding process by allowing passengers to step directly from the vehicle and keep moving.  Placing those step stools and assisting those who need it extends station dwell times.  Today's schedules have enough padding on most lines outside of the northeast, so that dwell time is not an issue.  North of DC and east of Harrisburg is a different story due to passenger loading and traffic density, especially at through stations.

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Posted by ACY Tom on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 11:55 AM

I can't give you the exact height, but there are fairly recent US regs that dictate it must be very close to the level of entrance. This means low level platforms are supposed to be within an inch or two of the height of a Superliner threshold, and upper level platforms are supposed to be within an inch or two of a Heritage or similar threshold. In days past, the regs weren't so tight, and a lot of variation could be found. I suspect the author of those regs had no clue what kind of can of worms he was opening.  

This became a problem when a new Auto Train platform was built several years ago, and the new regs were published soon afterwards. The brand new platform had to be rebuilt at great cost for the sake of a couple inches. This was complicated by the fact that a portion of the platform was on a curve, and the gap between platform edge and threshold was wider than the regs allowed. I honestly don't know how that was resolved.

There are at least three other complicating factors: First, the track settles over time and the platform, which bears considerably less weight, does not. Just how often should the railroad be required to reballast a station track?  Second, not all equipment is designed exactly the same. If a station is used by more than one operator, their equipment might not all come from the same era or source, and might not have the same height dimensions. Third, some trains occasionally operate with both Superliner and high-vestibule cars. How does a station serve that train?

I'm happy to say that I'm retired from Amtrak and don't have to worry about such things any more, and my modeling represents mostly freight operations in an era when the regs weren't so strictly enforced and the lawyers may have had better things to do than chase ambulances (or maybe not). Maybe somebody with current experience can give better answers. 

Incidentally, the little yellow "stool" is properly called a stepbox. All Amtrak passenger cars are required to have one to facilitate boarding and detraining wherever the conditions require that extra help, or for emergency evacuation where there is no plartform.

Tom 

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Posted by gmpullman on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 5:06 PM

ACY Tom
Incidentally, the little yellow "stool" is properly called a stepbox.

Rapido Trains offers them in both yellow and orange in HO and I believe N too.

https://www.walthers.com/passenger-stepbox-ornge4

Or unpainted from Wiseman Model Services:

http://www.locopainter.com/store/product.php?id=1399

The cry in the London underground is "Mind The Gap"! Sometimes when that gap gets a little too wide and a passenger a little too thin, AND under the influence, things can go wrong:

https://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/AccidentReports/Reports/RAB0901.pdf

There is some good information here about what Tom is talking about with track shifting over time and equipment variables.

Good Luck, Ed

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Posted by dehusman on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 5:24 PM

There are high level platforms and low level platforms.  Low level platforms can be up to the top of rail on tangent track, or can be higher if they are outside the clearance envelope.  The height and distance from the rails is set by the pilot sheet on a locomotive.

Dave H. Painted side goes up.

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