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Prototype questions.

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  • bolsen187@frontier.com
    I just watched a Bill Scobie video on utube where he cuts a helper in and out of an ore train to Rico. I watched as the lead loco took on water and coal and
    Message 1 of 3 , Apr 29, 2013
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      I just watched a Bill Scobie video on utube where he cuts a helper in and out of an ore train to Rico. I watched as the lead loco took on water and coal and then the helper in the middle of the consist did the same. Did this happen in real life? It is easy to do when your model locos are speed synced and you are using DCC and you have the view of God, but how did the two engineers communicate. Was it just whistle, or was a signalman on the ground, or didn't this ever happen because it was too difficult? Now this leads to a more practical question. In watching utube videos, many, and viewing other layouts, none, I have never seen anyone use Kaydee magnetic uncouplers. Is this something I should consider not using in favor all manual operation, or will I want it in inconvenient locations, or is it not reliable and just becomes a pita?
      Blayne
    • John Stutz
      ... Blayne Yes. There are photos of 1940 s D&RGW stock trains on Marshall Pass, with one K-36/7 on the head, two in the middle, and one ahead of the caboose.
      Message 2 of 3 , Apr 29, 2013
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        On 04/29/2013 06:53 AM, bolsen187@... wrote:
        > I just watched a Bill Scobie video on utube where he cuts a helper in and out of
        > an ore train to Rico. I watched as the lead loco took on water and coal and then
        > the helper in the middle of the consist did the same. Did this happen in real
        > life?...

        Blayne

        Yes. There are photos of 1940's D&RGW stock trains on Marshall Pass, with one
        K-36/7 on the head, two in the middle, and one ahead of the caboose. I am not
        clear on how frequently they did this. Stock had to be moved quickly, and
        could not sit around while the train doubled or tripled the hill. Coal and ore,
        or empties of any sort, were probably another matter.

        There are early photos of White Pass & Yukon freight trains with 4 or 5 engines,
        spaced every 5 cars. Presumably this was with their early second hand power.
        But they continued to work freight trains with spaced out power to the end of
        steam, circa 1960. This may have been a matter of car strength, particularly in
        the draft gear. With Diesels and steel cars they put all power on the head end,
        up to 6 DL535Es, each equivalent to a Uintah Mallet. They usually got away with
        it, but occasionally pulled couplers out of older steel cars. Pulled the ends
        off of several former UTLX narrow frame tanks.

        > It is easy to do when your model locos are speed synced and you are using
        > DCC and you have the view of God, but how did the two engineers communicate. Was
        > it just whistle, or was a signalman on the ground, or didn't this ever happen
        > because it was too difficult?...

        Whistles.

        John Stutz
      • Jerry Day
        ... D&RGW operational rules permitted three engines on regular narrow gauge trains. Only stock trains were permitted to have four engines. In the 1930s and
        Message 3 of 3 , Apr 29, 2013
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          --- In HOn3@yahoogroups.com, "bolsen187@..." <bolsen187@...> wrote:
          >
          > I just watched a Bill Scobie video on utube where he cuts a helper in and out of an ore train to Rico. I watched as the lead loco took on water and coal and then the helper in the middle of the consist did the same. Did this happen in real life?

          D&RGW operational rules permitted three engines on regular narrow gauge trains. Only stock trains were permitted to have four engines. In the 1930s and earlier, the rear helper was placed behind the caboose. But as the wooden cabooses aged, the rules were changed and the helper had to be placed ahead of the caboose. I interviewed a number of D&RGW engineers who worked on the narrow gauge out of Gunnison. They told me that stopping for water on a steep 4% grade was very difficult with three or four engines. Getting the train moving again without pulling out a drawbar required deft hands on the throttles. D&RGW and other railroads had the same problem on the standard gauge lines. The D&RGW had to stop long trains with several 3600 2-8-8-2s on Tennesee Pass, the Moffat Line, Solider Summit in Utah and others. Same problem only with heavier trains and more powerful motive power. Damaged cars or cabooses were not uncommon.

          Jerry Day
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