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8138Re: [carfree_cities] Re: McLanes vs. Train Lanes

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  • J.H. Crawford
    Feb 28 3:24 AM
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      >> I guess what isn't clear here is that I'm proposing a blank-sheet
      >> re-start of railroading. Get rid of all the problems that have
      >> plagued the industry since its beginnings 180 years ago.
      >That was precisely what the presumptuous BART designers set out to
      >do. The end result: non-standard rail lines that cost well over $150
      >million per mile to construct, stations that cost over $75 million,
      >custom rail cars twice as expensive as off-the-shelf models (and
      >orders of magnitude less reliable), and an ATC system that has never
      >worked properly.

      The first PCC car was non-standard, too. Once they had built
      thousands of them, it WAS the standard. This would have to happen
      with Interstate Rail, too, or it couldn't be undertaken on an
      economical basis.

      >> But we have the problem that rail vehicle manufacturers have
      >> never understood the need for light weight
      >On the contrary. The high-speed rail operators think a _lot_ about
      >weight as it directly effects their energy and track maintenance
      >costs (i.e. the bottom line). Even for the commuter lines, if you
      >look at something like the DB S-Bahn, the new 423 trains are 30 tons
      >lighter than the existing 420's.

      Now, once they take another 40 or 50 tons off, they'll only be
      twice as heavy as an airliner carrying the same number of people. ;-)

      >> And I'm afraid they have never understood the need for
      >> reliability, either.
      >And on what basis do you claim European and Japanese trainsets are

      Constant equipment failures on Duct Railways, and especially on
      the new trams from Siemens and some older onces from Holec.
      I'm sure the stuff that JNR runs breaks downs about twice a

      >> Nobody in the rail business is familiar with mounting 6% grades
      >> at high speed.
      >As is the case for any business involving large vehicles, including
      >trucks and buses. There are, after all, certain engineering trade-
      >offs to be made. One could theoretically equip a TGV with extra
      >power for climbing 6% grades at 300kph, but that wouldn't
      >necessarily be economical. Nonetheless, German ICE lines do have
      >gradients as high as 4%.

      That's pretty respectable, all right. I'm thinking now in terms
      of short-term overloads on the motors and maybe, if the intial
      stuff isn't electrified, light-weight shaft-output gas turbines
      to assist on grades. I won't have trains on the system EVER being
      overtaken by cars on the road. Consider that a design spec!
      What sort of speed can they maintain at 4% ?

      >> Nobody knows about running trains around fairly sharp
      >> curves at high speed in a fully-balanced condition.

      This is not fully balanced; there is still a large side force
      (i.e., derailing force) on the bogies. The pax will be very
      comfortable as long as the thing stays on the tracks. I'm very
      uneasy about these tilt-body trains. Take care of that "95 mm
      superelevation deficiency" and then we'll really have something.


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      J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
      mailbox@... http://www.carfree.com
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