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Re: [HOn3] Re: turntable ideas

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  • Hart Corbett
    John: Thanks for the personal note which you fortunately also cc ed to the HOn3 Group List. Your photos are really wonderful! Made the hair on the back of my
    Message 1 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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      John:

      Thanks for the personal note which you fortunately also cc'ed to the HOn3 Group List.

      Your photos are really wonderful! Made the hair on the back of my neck stand up! I wish I could have been there. You are a very good photographer!

      You not only captured the 315 in all its glory on the Durango TT but you also captured the air valve control, the hose with a gladhand on the TT so as to use engine air when needed, and the housing for the air motor down at ring rail level ! The night photo also shows the air motor drive wheel on the ring rail !

      In all 3 photos, notice the little projecting platform off the far end of the TT deck. In one of your photos, a crewman is half sitting on the railing around the projection. He's the TT operator. He does not have his hand on the control because he already has the TT in motion and there is no need to hold the control in place. At the proper time, when the TT gets close to the track lead he wants, then he'll reach down and ease the control lever up, lessening the flow of the air to the motor and slowing the TT. When the rails are aligned, he'll pull the lever straight up to stop the TT. If he needs to reverse the TT, he'll pull the lever the other way to reverse the air motor.

      In your next photo, where the 315 is almost off the TT, the hose with the gladhand can be clearly seen, hanging down on the left side of the the TT deck projection. Follow the pipe from the upper end of that hose for about 3 inches where it ends in a 90� elbow and then is attached to a device that is too small to see in detail. That's the control lever, IIRC. Further along the pipe a very short distance is a vertical cylindrical device that hangs down from he pipe. That's a moisture trap, I believe, periodically drained. No different that a moisture trap on the hose of an air brush. Compressed air always traps water in he air, which doesn't compress.

      Looking at your photo and seeing the air pipe going into the TT bridge beam (or alongside it in shadow too dark to see anything), I would guess that there is a compressed air storage tank somewhere on that TT which is filled by an engine's air system periodically. As a further guess, the tank might even be at the other end of the TT somewhere, in order to counter the weight of the the extra hardware on the end which we have been discussing.

      As I said before, I haven't been as close to this TT as you were since either 1974 or possibly 1981.

      So people can see what we're talking about, would you please do everyone, including me, a favor and post the photos in an Album in the Photos section of the HOn3 Group Website? Yahoo! strips off all attachments from List postings so no one on the List has seen these photos -- yet!

      Again, thanks very much indeed!

      With best regards, Hart
      _____________________________________________________________________

      On Jun 3, 2010, at 5:57 PM, John McKenzie wrote:

      > Hello Hart,
      >
      > I appreciate your personal experience, over the years since my trips started (1981) until now I've had many an unkind greeting from railroad employees and with the fences always around Durango from my second visit 1984 I started buying the "back stage tour". With this advantage and assistance from one of their own, it was always easy to see everything and even custom make your tour as some of these were only 3 or 4 of us and they would take us pretty much where ever we wanted to go and talk about anything to do with the Railroad. I make a point to do that each time I'm in Durango to catch up with local news on the coming and going of the railroad.
      >
      > To the reason I wrote you, in one these tours I found myself in Durango the day they were ready to pull the 315 out onto the railroad and run it up to Rockwood for it's first test, mind you they had tried it already about a week earlier but one axle bearing on the tender failed (got to hot before leaving town and they turn back) having borrowed a tender truck from the 223 in Ogden they were ready again to proceed. Because I was on the Round House tour, the 5 of us were joined by many of the people that had helped put her back together and got into position to see her come out of the round house and get turned on the TT, while taking pictures and watching I did notice the same "air engine" you spoke of and in two of my pictures got a close up, enough to see it, even one shot where the round house crew member is operating the TT. See if you can tell if it's the same? I did not notice how the air is getting to the TT, I did not see any air lines connected to the pilot or tender end of the #315?
      > See Photos attached. They were taken on Sept. 13th, 2007.
      >
      > John McKenzie
      >
      > From: Hart Corbett <hwcorbett@...>
      > To: HOn3 Group <HOn3@yahoogroups.com>
      > Sent: Thu, June 3, 2010 5:04:52 PM
      > Subject: [HOn3] Re: turntable ideas
      >
      > The Durango TT was air powered, at least up until about when Chas. Bradford acquired the line [1981?]. It could use air from an engine on the TT but must have had a connection to the shop air compressor, which wasn't very far away, when the TT needed to be turned and no engine was on it. Don't know how they got the air from the compressor to the TT, though.
      >
      > The air motor had a very unique sound, nothing like any other sort of motor. I recorded it on a monaural cassette tape recorder (not a very good one) 30 or 40 years or more ago. Don't know where the tape is now. A rough approximation of the sound might be Blackstone's "Fireman Fred' using the grease gun but for many minutes on a continuing basis. The double action valve controlling the air motor was on or adjacent to the TT railing near one end of the TT. It resembled the double action valve which auto repair garages use to raise and lower vehicles on their air powered high lifts. There was no housing for it; it was in the open air and the operator just rode the TT regardless of the weather. If you look closely at old photos of the TT, you might just be able to make out the valve. The air motor, which was mounted down near the ring rail, could rotate the TT either way.
      >
      > One of the K-28s was being turned at the time I did that recording. Visitors were free to roam the yards in those days; no walls or fences. A visitor from Germany was standing beside me, watching the show and commenting on the sound of the air motor.
      >
      > I have no idea how the TT is powered now, since I haven't been near it since the walls went up. Almost everything in that yard that was there back in 1960 is gone, except the TT seems to be the same even after the very destructive February 1989 roundhouse fire.
      >
      > With best regards, Hart
      > _______________________________________________________
      >
      > <<< Re: turntable ideas
      > Posted by: "ebt18" rbnorrisjr@... ebt18
      > Date: Wed Jun 2, 2010 2:54 am ((PDT))
      >
      > The 65 footer at the EBT's Rockhill shops has a compressed air drive attached to the bridge, but as far as anyone knows it was never used. The TT is powered by an "Armstrong" drive like most of the other NG tables. Mine will follow suit, simplifying the construction and making it more like the original. I did the same with almost all my turnouts, which are operated by hand operated ground throws rather than by Tortoise machines. The only exception is in relatively inaccessible places where I really didn't have a choice.
      >
      > Russ >>>
      >
      >
      >

      ----------

      >



      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • ebt18
      Hart, I believe that the EBT turntable was an exact copy of the one at Durango -- a 65 foot bridge that they bought from, I think, the New York Central. The
      Message 2 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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        Hart, I believe that the EBT turntable was an exact copy of the one at Durango -- a 65 foot bridge that they bought from, I think, the New York Central. The air motor is located in exactly the same place, although I haven't seen the controller, but then I wasn't looking for it at the time!

        Russ

        --- In HOn3@yahoogroups.com, Hart Corbett <hwcorbett@...> wrote:
        >
        > The Durango TT was air powered, at least up until about when Chas. Bradford acquired the line [1981?]. It could use air from an engine on the TT but must have had a connection to the shop air compressor, which wasn't very far away, when the TT needed to be turned and no engine was on it. Don't know how they got the air from the compressor to the TT, though.
        >
        ......
        >

        The double action valve controlling the air motor was on or adjacent to the TT railing near one end of the TT. It resembled the double action valve which auto repair garages use to raise and lower vehicles on their air powered high lifts. There was no housing for it; it was in the open air and the operator just rode the TT regardless of the weather. If you look closely at old photos of the TT, you might just be able to make out the valve. The air motor, which was mounted down near the ring rail, could rotate the TT either way.
        >
      • Glenn
        While you are on Carl s website check out: www.carendt.com Small Layout Articles FAQS/How to Make a Small Turntable from a Drain Cap and Grate
        Message 3 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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          While you are on Carl's website check out:

          www.carendt.com >> Small Layout Articles >> FAQS/How to Make a Small
          Turntable from a Drain Cap and Grate

          http://www.carendt.com/articles/FAQs/draincapTT.html

          Glenn

          Subject: [HOn3] Re: turntable ideas

          Ed and All,
          Have a look at this article on using a CD case to costruct a small
          turntable........

          <http://www.carendt.com/articles/FAQs/CDtable.html>

          Cheers,
          Chas from Oz
        • josef-wagner
          hallo john, a very interesting statement, here in austria all std gauge turntables are winch driven by electric motors, but air motors there are rising three
          Message 4 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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            hallo john,
            a very interesting statement,
            here in austria all std gauge turntables are winch driven by electric
            motors,
            but air motors there are rising three questions with me:
            1) what type / style and which speed?
            2) what happenes with the drain valve and line in winter?
            3) how can you control motor speed with different demand for torque
            (slippery tracks?)


            Mit freundlichen Grüssen aus Wien

            Ing. Josef WAGNER

            A 1140 Wien / Vienna,

            Österreich / Austria

            Tel +43 (0) 1-9140288

            mobil +43 (0) 664 2821121



            _____

            Von: HOn3@yahoogroups.com [mailto:HOn3@yahoogroups.com] Im Auftrag von John
            Stutz
            Gesendet: Freitag, 4. Juni 2010 20:05
            An: HOn3@yahoogroups.com
            Betreff: Re: [HOn3] Re: turntable ideas




            John McKenzie wrote:
            RE: Durango turntable
            >
            > ... I did notice the same "air engine" you
            > spoke of and in two of my pictures got a close up, enough to see it,
            > even one shot where the round house crew member is operating the TT.
            > See if you can tell if it's the same? I did not notice how the air is
            > getting to the TT, I did not see any air lines
            > connected to the pilot or tender end of the #315?

            As others have mentioned, the standard way of powering turntable air
            motors is with air from the locomotive being turned, via a standard
            train line coupling on a few yards of air hose. You still need to be
            able to turn the table without a locomotive on board, and that is
            where the air tank comes in. But an air tank is probably not good for
            much more than a couple revolutions. So you also want an air pipe
            from the shop supply, running to somewhere close to where the table is
            usually stopped, to provide air when no locomotives are available.

            The table's driven end needs excess weight on the drive wheels to
            assure traction. This often requires that the locomotive's pilot go
            to the driven end, even if the tender is filled to help balance the load.

            Piping: An air hose with coupling and check valve, preferably at each
            end, feeding through an air brake dust collector to a locomotive size
            air tank. The tank needs a water drain valve, same as on locomotives,
            and is preferably located outboard of the girders for access. An air
            line from the tank's other end to a two-way control valve, located at
            one end where the operator can see to align the rails. Two pipes from
            the control valve to the air motor, one for each direction. The
            controls may be doubled, for operation from either end. Alternately,
            if the motor direction is controlled by its valve gear, a throttle
            valve for speed control and a mechanical linkage to the valve gear.
            All long pipes to drain toward the air tank.

            Air motors on turntables were largely limited to shops with an assured
            air supply, since they were much more difficult to turn by hand than
            the same table without the motor. The usual justification for
            powering turntables was the number of locomotives being turned, and
            the cost of diverting workmen from from their normal duties to turn
            out and turn locomotives. There were plenty of branch line terminus
            turntables that were never powered. Was the Chama turntable ever powered?

            John Stutz





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • John Stutz
            John McKenzie wrote: RE: Durango turntable ... As others have mentioned, the standard way of powering turntable air motors is with air from the locomotive
            Message 5 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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              John McKenzie wrote:
              RE: Durango turntable
              >
              > ... I did notice the same "air engine" you
              > spoke of and in two of my pictures got a close up, enough to see it,
              > even one shot where the round house crew member is operating the TT.
              > See if you can tell if it's the same? I did not notice how the air is
              > getting to the TT, I did not see any air lines
              > connected to the pilot or tender end of the #315?

              As others have mentioned, the standard way of powering turntable air
              motors is with air from the locomotive being turned, via a standard
              train line coupling on a few yards of air hose. You still need to be
              able to turn the table without a locomotive on board, and that is
              where the air tank comes in. But an air tank is probably not good for
              much more than a couple revolutions. So you also want an air pipe
              from the shop supply, running to somewhere close to where the table is
              usually stopped, to provide air when no locomotives are available.

              The table's driven end needs excess weight on the drive wheels to
              assure traction. This often requires that the locomotive's pilot go
              to the driven end, even if the tender is filled to help balance the load.

              Piping: An air hose with coupling and check valve, preferably at each
              end, feeding through an air brake dust collector to a locomotive size
              air tank. The tank needs a water drain valve, same as on locomotives,
              and is preferably located outboard of the girders for access. An air
              line from the tank's other end to a two-way control valve, located at
              one end where the operator can see to align the rails. Two pipes from
              the control valve to the air motor, one for each direction. The
              controls may be doubled, for operation from either end. Alternately,
              if the motor direction is controlled by its valve gear, a throttle
              valve for speed control and a mechanical linkage to the valve gear.
              All long pipes to drain toward the air tank.

              Air motors on turntables were largely limited to shops with an assured
              air supply, since they were much more difficult to turn by hand than
              the same table without the motor. The usual justification for
              powering turntables was the number of locomotives being turned, and
              the cost of diverting workmen from from their normal duties to turn
              out and turn locomotives. There were plenty of branch line terminus
              turntables that were never powered. Was the Chama turntable ever powered?

              John Stutz
            • Glenn
              I have seen photos of turntables with steam/air lines to the loco or tender. This method was probably used in remote areas without shop power. There is also a
              Message 6 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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                I have seen photos of turntables with steam/air lines to the loco or tender.
                This method was probably used in remote areas without shop power.

                There is also a ratchet method of moving a turntable. A ram repeatedly
                pushes against a series of stops. It probably relied on the operator to
                apply power at the right time. This motion is not jerky, as once moving the
                table coasts between power applications, but it is agonizingly slow.

                It is highly efficient in the use of steam since a short burst of steam goes
                a long way. The ram is returned by a spring.

                Glenn

                Air motors on turntables were largely limited to shops with an assured
                air supply, since they were much more difficult to turn by hand than
                the same table without the motor. ------ There were plenty of branch line
                terminus turntables that were never powered.

                John Stutz
              • Kjb80401@aol.com
                If y all ever have the opportunity to visit the Colorado RailRoad Museum in Golden, Colorado,,,,,pay particular attention to the turntable. And how it s used.
                Message 7 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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                  If y'all ever have the opportunity to visit the Colorado RailRoad Museum in
                  Golden, Colorado,,,,,pay particular attention to the turntable. And how
                  it's used.

                  It's an 'armstrong turntable', so well balanced that a breeze alone will
                  turn it empty unless it's locked in place. I watched that happen at its
                  dedication ceremony a few years back.

                  One person alone can rotate the turntable if the load is properly
                  located/balanced.

                  That ain't everywhere, but it is here.

                  Keevan


                  In a message dated 6/4/2010 12:55:16 P.M. Mountain Daylight Time,
                  ghazel@... writes:

                  I have seen photos of turntables with steam/air lines to the loco or
                  tender.
                  This method was probably used in remote areas without shop power.



                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • John Stutz
                  ... An interesting contrast. North American installations typically used a traction wheel driven by electric, air or steam power. This could be separate
                  Message 8 of 24 , Jun 4, 2010
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                    josef-wagner wrote:

                    > hallo john,
                    > a very interesting statement,
                    > here in austria all std gauge turntables are winch driven by electric
                    > motors, but air motors there are rising three questions with me:

                    An interesting contrast. North American installations typically used
                    a traction wheel driven by electric, air or steam power. This could
                    be separate wheel or the turntable carriage wheels. Glen describes
                    an alternate pusher system.

                    > 1) what type / style and which speed?

                    See John Mckenzie's recently posted photos of the Durango
                    installation. I have seen a couple others. One at Prince George BC
                    looked like a two cylinder vertical steam engine, very like a duplex
                    pump but with a crankshaft geared to a weighted traction wheel.

                    > 2) what happenes with the drain valve and line in winter?

                    Slope pipes to the tank so any water collects there to drain. If it
                    freezes, put pressure on the tank and steam it until it drains. But
                    in winter most of the water in the air supply will have condensed in
                    the locomotive's cooling coils, and be caught in the locomotives air
                    tank, before it gets to the turntable.

                    > 3) how can you control motor speed with different demand for torque
                    > (slippery tracks?)

                    Throttle the control valve. With electric motors the motor is carried
                    by the traction wheel and helps weight it.

                    Keeven notes, regarding the CRM table at Golden:

                    > It's an 'armstrong turntable', so well balanced that a breeze alone
                    > will turn it empty unless it's locked in place. I watched that
                    > happen at its dedication ceremony a few years back. One person
                    > alone can rotate the turntable if the load is properly
                    > located/balanced.

                    This is why powered turntables were really only needed for sites with
                    heavy use, or where locomotive sizes precluded balancing the load.
                    For balancing, the table needs to be 10-20% longer than the locomotive
                    wheelbase, and even then tender usually needs to be filled. This
                    because their joint center of gravity is in the forward half of their
                    overall wheelbase, and well forward with an empty tender.

                    John Stutz
                  • Hart Corbett
                    John: On behalf of others and me, thanks very much! Now List members can see what we were talking about! Both modelers and historians should find John s
                    Message 9 of 24 , Jun 5, 2010
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                      John:

                      On behalf of others and me, thanks very much! Now List members can see what we were talking about!

                      Both modelers and historians should find John's photos of the TT quite useful. The direct link to John's three photos is:

                      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/HOn3/photos/album/114353247/pic/list

                      Note how the handrails slant very much outward from the TT deck. It was this way when I first saw the TT in 1960 and goes all the way back to when the D&RGW started running the K class locos. Instead of widening the deck, the railroad slanted the handrails outwards enough to avoid the increased widths of the various K classes. Those K-37s are BIG !

                      While many List members may think in terms of just the Silverton Branch with regards to this TT, Durango once was the end of the D&RGW ng San Juan Extension from Alamosa and Antonito. When I wandered those yards in 1960, K-36s and K-37s were being turned on this TT, serviced , and then would return as doubleheaders to Chama, Cumbres, and Alamosa. We followed one K-37 (492) south out of Durango, with train headed to Farmington, as far as Aztec. The loco had been turned on this TT. K-36s and K-37's were too big for the clearances and loading limitations of the Silverton Branch back then. That didn't change until Charles Bradford took over in 1981.

                      BTW, I clocked the 492 at 35mph with a car's speedometer approaching a highway crossing south of Carbon Jct.

                      With best regards, Hart
                      _______________________________________________

                      <<< Re: turntable ideas
                      Posted by: "John McKenzie" captmckenzie@... captmckenzie@...
                      Date: Fri Jun 4, 2010 8:12 am ((PDT))

                      Thank you Hart, I've uploaded the three photos I sent to you. They're in an album entitled "Turntable Durango".

                      John McKenzie >>>
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