Journal of the Institution of Locomotive
Volume 48 (1958)
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Journal No. 261
Development of electric traction in Sweden and its influence on rolling stock. The Sir Seymour Biscoe Tritton Lecture. 20-43.
Meeting held at Instiution of Mechanical Engineers, London on 26 February 1958 at 17.30: E.S. Cox in Chair.
Electric traction gives high power, low weight per continuous horse-oawer, still lower weight per maximum horse-power of short duration, great acceleration, high maximum speed on the level, greatest relative gains in speed in upgrades, reduced i travel. time, heavier trains, better utilisation af rolling stock, less staff, greater comfort, no. smoke, less dirt, better heating, better lighting, better ventilation, better elasticity in operation, more trains, less need af double track, and higher earning capacity. But electric traction also. means higher total initial costs, including costs far track, rolling stack and tele-communications. There will also. be additivnal costs in the future for changes: "yau will have a yard in the air too." Nor should one overlook the electric accidents which will take their annual toll amang people with an insufficient knawledge af the dangers af high tension.
Rise in productivity was especially spectacular during the 1930's when there was a combined effect af large-scale electrification and certain tariff and freight reductions made possible thereby. During WW2 Sweden's non-electrified railways had to. rely again largely on fire-wood and peat and ather bulky, inefficient and costly fuels. The savings in fuel costs from electric tractian during the War has been evaluated at about £60 millions, or double the total cost af railway electrification executed at that time. The Swedish Railways (and those in Norway) used high volate ac (16,000V maximum) at 162/3 cycles with motor generators to convert to dc. Coupling rod drive was still being used on some new locomotives.
S.B. Warder (42-3) as Seconder to the Vote of Thanks called Öfverholm the Churchawrd of Swedish railway electrification.
McClean, H.G. (Paper No. 582)
American experience as a guide to main-line diesel locomotive applications overseas. 45-92. Disc.: 92-138.
Author was Export Manager of the Electro-Motive Division of General Motors. The rapid change from steam to diesel-electric haulage on American railroads: engineering and economics. The paper was presented by A.W. Manser on behalf of the Author and he introduced the discussion (92-3). This was followed by Julian S. Tritton (93-4) where he refered back to his own paper The challenge to steam. He also made specific reference to engine ratings.
K.J. Cook (Past President: 98-9) in dealing with the price of fuel the Author referred to coal at £2 per ton and diesel fuel for the same years at 9.7d./gal. It was of benefit to compare costs of fuel on the same basis, and 9.7d./gal. worked out at about £1- per ton (presumably £10+) per ton. That was an interesting figure, giving a ratio of slightly over 5/1, weight for weight, for the price of oil against the price of coal, and it was of interest to note that that ratio applied not only in the USA but in nearly every country in Europe. This probably had some bearing on the American desire to utilise a lower-grade fuel; and in fact if it were possible to do so the Americans would, he believed, like to use coal. In spite of this being the Diesel Age, they had put a great deal of effort in recent years into developing a coal-fired gas turbine. That, however, did not detract from the value of the Paper or of the American development of the diesel-electric locomotive, which had undoubtedly swept the field.
From the interesting paragraph lettered C on p. 68, it could be deduced that American practice had gone round in a circle in connection with the formation of locomotive units. Initially, it was stated, the biggest trains were usually involved, using four-unit locomotives, but the train size and locomotive size had tended to become smaller, and three units and two units were being used. That had given rise to a difficulty. With four units, two A and two B, the A units had a driving compartment at one end, the other end being occupied by the heating boiler, while the B units had no driving compartment. Because of the changes made in the number of units, the American railways had not been able to dispense with turntables. Frequently when making a turn-round the driving compartment was at the wrong end, and the locomotive had had to be turned. That emphasised the value of the design being developed by British Railways, with a driving cab at each end. It might have its counterpart in the development of the general purpose locomotive on the American railways, which presumably could be driven in both directions. It did not have a cab at each end, but the body was probably narrower, to give a lookout in both directions; but, with certain developments in view, that was not so convenient or efficient as a cab at each end.
The cost figures which the Author had produced, and in particular the incidence of the seven-year cycle, were extremely interesting, but there was one point on whjch Mr. Cook would venture to take the Author slightly to task. In comparing the cost of the steam locomotive with the diesel, the Author took 1950 as a typical year for comparison. When Mr. Cook and others had had the pleasure of meeting the Author in Chicago in the autumn of that year, they had been unable to get out of him any costs for a steam locomotive; he had said: The cost is the same as the diesel, but if you want one you cannot have one, and there is no such price.
M.S. Hatchell (128) pointed out the very high degree of standardisation adopted in diesel locomotive design in U.S.A. and cornparcd it with the variety of types being introduced in this country. He was also of the opinion that the very high average mileages performed by diesel locomotives were due to the very long hauls involved and the practice of utilising unoccupied freight locomotives for hauling commuters trains.
Journal No. 262
Loach, J.C. (Paper No. 583)
A new method of assessing the riding of vehicles and some results obtained. 183-208. Disc.: 208-40.
General Meeting of the Institution was held at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, , London, S.W.l, on 23 January 1958 at 5.30 p.m. . E.S. Cox, (President) was in the Chair.
. The President said that it gave him great pleasure to introduce Mr. J. C. Loach, M.Sc. (Member), who was a member of the Research Department of British Railways. For many years it had been Mr. Loachs job to concern himself with problems related to the riding of vehicles on the track. He had been closely associated with developments on the Continent of Europe in this connection, and particularly with the O.R.E. developments. It was therefore from a particularly rich background that he had been able to gather the material for the Paper which he was to present.
For a basic test it is most desirable to record relevant particulars about the track, whether straight or curved, the amount of superelevation, the gauge and irregularities of top and line; all these can be obtained very conveniently with a track-recording coach. It is also desirable for the vehicle under test to be the last in the train and the screw coupling between it and the vehicle in front of it to be loose so that there is no contact between the buffers while running. In this way the vehicle under test has the maximum possible freedom of movement, an essential factor in an investigation of inherent riding qualities. Disturbances arise from:
features of the track,
components of the vehicle.
In a bogie coach electrical accelerometers are normally placed on the floor of the vehicle, a minimum number being:
two measuring vertical accelerations, one over each bogie centre pin,
two measuring lateral accelerations, also one over each bogie centre pin.
Other places where accelerometers are often useful are:
one measuring vertical accelerations in the middle of the coach, and,
one measuring longitudinal accelerations in the middle of the coach.
Discussion: Manser (210-11) considered:
to be the key issues.
Burrows, M.G. and Wallace, A.L. (Paper No.
Experience with the steel fireboxes of the Southern Region Pacific locomotives. 242-80. Disc. : 281-305. illus., 15 diagrs. Bibliog.
General Meeting of the Institution was held at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, 1 Birdcage Walk, London, S.W.l, on Wednesday 12th February 1958 at 5.30 p.m. Mr. E. S. Cox, (President) was in the Chair. The Minutes of the previous meeting, held on 23rd January. The President said that in their pre-occupation with new forms of motive power they were apt to forget that there were any steam locomotives, but there were still quite a number in Great Britain, and would be for some time to come, to say nothing of those on overseas railways. It was therefore right and proper that the Institution should include in the present Session a Paper on steam locomotives, and it had been fortunate enough to obtain a Paper by Mr. M. G. Burrows, who had been assisted in writing it by Mr. A. L. Wallace. Mr. Burrows would be well known to many members of the Institution. He had served on four Regions of British Railways, so that he had spread his net very wide in obtaining experience. Mr. Wallace had been a technical assistant in the C.M. and E.E.s Department of the Southern Region, and had contributed greatly to the Paper.
It will be appreciated that some apprehension existed in certain quarters as to the performance which would be obtained from the steel fireboxes of the Merchant Navy and West Country class boilers, in view of the previous limited experience in this country of steel as a firebox material. However, a number of factors have contributed both to the successful results which are now being obtained and to the confidence in the boilers of all those concerned with their maintenance and handling:
1. The original design for both classes of locomotive has required no modification, with the exception of the substitution of monel metal for some of the steel stays in the breaking zone and, in the case of the first ten Merchant Navy boilers, the insertion of syphon diaphragm plates in the throat plate.
The sound methods of training of welders and the high standard of control maintained over the welding. The former is, in particular, the basis of all successful welding applications and however sound may be the procedure which is laid down, it is useless to expect consistently good results unless the welders are masters of their technique.
The care and attention which those in charge of construction and maintenance have given to their work.
The very close attention which the boiler inspectors have at all times given to the condition of these boilers
A general description was followed by the development of welding techniques and assembly methods; a consideration of stays including defects, and radiographic examination to detect them, thermic syphons, tube beadings, foundation rings on the West Country class. Washing out. Training of welders. Water treatment was vital. On the early boilers fitted to the Merchant Navy class corrosion was experienced prior to the introduction of TIA water treatment.
Discussion: Stanier (281-2) who opened the discussion, said they would all feel that the Institution was to be congratulated on obtaining such a valuable Paper, which recorded what had happened. The experiment of using steel fireboxes had been going on for a number of years. He recalled that after the First World War the Great Western Railway had acquired a number of R.O.D. engines with steel fireboxes. These were, of course, of the narrow type, and when the locomotives arrived at Swindon the insides of the fireboxes were found to be plastered with welding. Welding at that time had been known, and quite rightly, as the putting on tool, and he expected that most of it had been applied on the outside and had not been Ved out.
Mr. Bulleid had very wisely decided to use steel fireboxes on his Merchant Navy Class locomotives, which had a wide firebox. It was quite true, Sir William thought, that the wide firebox was much better suited to the use of welded seams and tubes. He wondered whether the Authors had found that the thermic syphons used on these boilers, which undoubtedly had been a source of considerable work in maintenance and repairs, had improved the efficiency of the boiler to an extent which justified their application, or whether, perhaps, a design of firebox giving a little more heating surface woulcl have been better from the maintenance point of view and would have given just as good steaming.
Mr. Burrows had stated in presenting the Paper that the size of the stays given in the advance copy of the Paper was not correct: they were in fact 5/8 in. in the body but 7/8 in. screwing stays. That was very interesting, because in putting in steel stays in boilers with which Sir William had been associated they had always made a practice, when they got to 7/8 in., of cupping the point of the stay on the fire side, so that when riveting it down the amount of work required was not sufficient to disturb the threads. He wondered whether the fracture shown in Fig. 17 might have been due to the excessive amount of work required to put a solid-ended stay down to the plate.
He would also like to know whether the steel stays had been made of ordinary mild steel bar or whether a special steel such as Longstrand had been used. Longstrand steel was made from what the steelmaker called a dirty steel, i.e. an ingot full of slag inclusions, which when rolled out gave strings of slag in the longitudinal section of the stay, so that it looked like wrought iron, and if the stay cracked, instead of going square across as a mild steel stay did, the crack crept up the body of the stay and would be found before anything serious happened. When the Southern Railway started building steel fireboxes they had been in the fortunate position that radiographic examination had reached a stage when it could be applied to the seams of boilers. In 1934, when in the U.S.A., Sir William had seen the Babcock & Wilcox works welding boiler drums and examining every 18 in. of the seam radiographically, and recording it, to ensure that the weld was absolutely sound. It was, however, only since the war, he supposed, that radiographic examination had been introduced to any great extent. Mr. Bulleid had been very wise to make use of this new technique to ensure that the welding was sound.
Sir William remembered being concerned with a welded boiler before the First World War. It was a small boiler, built for 150 lb./sq. in. pressure, and every seam had been welded, including the seams on the dome. It looked all right and had been tested hydraulically to about five times its working pressure, but he did not think that it had ever been steamed. No one had known what the condition of the welding was inside. X-ray examination now enabled that to be known.
He had already said that the Institution was fortunate in having a Paper which showed what had been done, and he would like to conclude by expressing his personal pleasure at having the opportunity to read the Paper.
R.C. Bond (282-3) noted the importance of water quality and treatment. The 25 WD 2-10-0s in Scotland had arch tubes and had given very satisfactory service, but the Class 5 4-6-0s fitted with steel fireboxes had not been entirely satisafctory. T. Henry Turner (283-6) noted that Scottish waters could be corrosive, that Hargreaves (the metallurgist at Eastleigh was a first rate man and comments on early corrosion. Control of water treatment is essential. in his own words:"British Railways still used X-rays and had a mobile X-ray set which was used in training welders, but Mr. Bulleid and his team had been the first to use X-rays in such a systematic way in testing their welds and training their welders for the routine production of welded steel fireboxes. There was nothing abnormal about the steels which they used: the chemical composition was a customary one, but it was abnormal to use steel for inner firebox plates in this country except for export business. There would never be long lasting and economic success, irrespective of the composition of the steel used, unless there was effective treatment of the water in the boiler. That had been very well brought out by the Authors when they said It can truly be said that the introduction of comprehensive water treatment proved to be the turning point in the history of steel fireboxes on the Southern Region. There were, however, other things which could be put to the credit of these locomotives. The 56-day period between cold washout meant that they made less smoke near the sheds, which was a great advantage. Much of the unwanted cooling down and thermal straining of the steel was avoided. Many of the early cracks in the fireboxes had been due to the cold washout, which was not necessary with fully controlled water treatment when it was possible to go for 56 days between washouts. He thought it had been about five days between washouts when he had had to deal with it first. That was a very beneficial change in locomotive practice, and gave a lead in regard to what could be done with copper fireboxed locomotives. He believed that some of the lessons in the Paper were applicable to copper fireboxes". J.E. Roberts (286-7). B.R. Byrne (287-90) discussed the training of welders and the development of techniques. E.S. Cox (290) showed the conservatism of his approach: there was very lttle to choose between copper and steel fireboxes. P.C. Dewhurst (290-1) written communication. Meeting in Glasgow on 19 February 1958: W. Thomson (297-8) recorded that the steel fireboxes fitted to the WD 2-10-0s were remarkably free from trouble and that the firebox stays lasted for fifteen years.The class 5s fitted with steel fireboxes experienced more problems and stay life was only nine years. Meeting in Darlington 17 March 1958 pp. 301-5.. ..
Journal No. 263
Gill, H.A. and Smith, J.M. (Paper No. 585)
Fuels and injection equipment for traction diesel engines. 312-55.
Eighth Ordinary General Meeting of the 1957-58 Session was held at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, on Wednesday 19 March 1958, immediately following the Annual General Meeting. R. Arbuthnott, (Vice-President) was in the chair. Speakers were on the Technical Staff of English Electric Company,.
Dearden, J. and Roberts, J.E. (Paper No. 586)
Steel for railway purposes. 357-419. Bibliog.
General Meeting of the Institution was held at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, London S.W.l, on Wednesday 16 April 1958 at 5.30 p.m.E.S. Cox, . (President) was in the Chair.
The President then introduced the Authors of the Paper, who, he said, were well known to members of the Institution. Mr. J. Dearden was Assistant Superintendent, Metallurgy Division, British Railways Research Department, Derby, and Mr. J. E. Roberts was a member of the Research Department of Messrs. Colvilles
Dearden was Superintendent of Metallurgy Dept., British Railways; Roberts worked for Colville's of Motherwell. Railways as steel makers: notably Crewe, and Horwich and Swindon. T. Henry Turner (389-92). Page 419: in response to question from Burley the 2% steel boiler plates used on the Southern Region Merchant Navy class boilers caused considerable trouble in welding with cracking in the heat affected zones. The use of this steel had been largely discontinued.
Journal No. 264
Excursions and notices of works visited [Institution of Locomotive Engineers'
summer meeting in Ireland]. 424-36 .
There was a visit to inspect the turf burning locomotive (428-33) when E.S. Cox and Robert Arbuthnott met Bulleid, and there was a visit to the Guiness Brewery where the narrow gauge locomotives were inspected (433-6)
The Presidential address. 441-74.
Spoke partly about the essential nature of training, but mainly a highly important historical paper in which the work of Nasmyth was discussed and illustrated (Figure 12 gives an excellent view of the steam carriage which ran on Edinburgh streets in 1827. Nasmyth was typical of the many "born" engineers of that time or were they actually very few but very prominent in a world only just ripe for industrial development? Be that as it may, his colourful life as recorded by Smiles and others reads almost like a fairy-tale, although his prize was not a fairy princess, but rather I fortune which enabled him through his own inventive genius and practical engineering ability, to retire at the age of 48 after little more than 20 years of business life to pursue his hobbies in active leisure. The favourite of these was perhaps astronomy, but it is typical of the man that anyway in the early days he used to cast and polish his own specula to his own perfected method.
He was not only a great inventor, an artist and a man of wide vision, but also a great industrialist, and, like many of his contemporaries, embodied very many of the qualities which are now so greatly in demand amongst engineers everywhere. He was an early advocate of flow production and of quantity production of items for stock. He advised on the layout and equipping of works, arsenals and dockyards in many countries.
His Scheme Book * in which he used to record first thoughts on some of the many mechanical contrivances which he devised and incidentally in which he frequently doodled (though in a purposeful way) is in itself an interesting study. In it are recorded, amongst many other things, his early sketches of the steam hammer and it was from a copy of these very sketches that the first steam hammer was built, incidentally without Nasmyths knowledge, by Messrs. Schneider of Creusot, whose manager, M. Bourdon, was shown them during a short visit to the Bridgewater foundry in J.N.s absence.
Nasmyth and his hammer is not the subject of this address, but I feel that I must make note of a very early reference to the latter. This was in a letter dated 27th November, 1839, written by him to Mr. W. Morgan of Acramans Morgan & Company of Bristol, which firm was concerned in the construction of the Great Western Railway.He writes , . . I have been cogitating much upon the subject of great hammers and I have in course of consideration hit upon an idea which appears to me to be somewhat original and I think the very thing wanted . . . there have been patents taken out for worse things than this. What say you? The letter goes on to describe the working of his proposed hammer and includes a freehand sketch. You will note that the period from this early sketch to the delivery of the last hammer was just 100 years! His company and its successors built nearly 1,400 steam hammers, the first, of 30 cwt. capacity, built in 1842 or 1843 for the Bridgewater foundry (it was at work in February, 1843), finishing its life breaking stone at a bleach works at Newton-le-Willows, the last hammer incidentally a pneumatic one-going to one of H.M. dockyards in 1939. The last steam hammer, one of 5 cwt. capacity, was delivered to Messrs. Fraser & Chalmers in the same year. Some extracts from an almost complete list which I compiled before the War, of hammers ordered between 1843 and 1938 may be of general interest :-
And now, but by no means least, I must mention Nasmyths locomotives.
In 1827, at the age of 19, he designed and constructed a successful steam passenger carriage to carry 10 prsons, which ran successfully on the roads in Edinburgh, and although his mind was frequently occupied with thoughts of steam locomotives it was not until 1838 that he actually ordered the material for his first locomotive, Bridgewater. This had 12½ in. by 16 in. cylinders and a 2-2-2 wheel arrangement, with one pair of 5 ft. 6 in. and two pairs of 3 ft. 6 in. dia. wheels.
FIG. 12 A number of lists of Nasmyth locomotives have been published in the past, but there have been many inaccuracies in these and extracts from one which I compiled before the war from the actual books of the Company may therefore be of interest to some members. The list is too long to include and I only show a few of the earliest ones.
No. 1 locomotive Bridgewater was built for stock. It was tried on the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, when it frequently hauled goods trains of upwards of 100 tons at an average speed of more than 20 miles per hour with the greatest ease. The first official order as recorded in No. 1 Order Book (makers numbers 2, 3 and 4) was as follows:-
11 Aug. 1838
London & Southampton Raalway Co.
per Thos. Cooke Esq., George Street, Manchester. 3 Locomotive Engines as per Tender, Letter Book p. 392, viz. of 4-wheeled construction as per drawings and specification to be furnished by E. Bury including tender, £1,380. £4,140.
Delivered at Patricroft.
Payment 1/3 when called for
1/3 on delivery
1/3 in 3 months after.
They were delivered in July/August 1839 but without tenders, which were svpplied by Bury.
Trade seems to have been brisk as three days later there is recorded an order for three locomotives for the Manchester and Leeds Railway (makers numbers 5, 6 and 7).
|Date of Order||No.||Rly. Name or No||Railway||type||cyls||Remarks|
|25 May 1838||1||(Bridgewater)||Stock, sold later to (Mr. J. Waring Railway
Contractor to M & B Rly
|2-2-2||12½ x 16||Tried on M & L Rly|
|11 Aug. 1838|| 2
|London & Southampton Rly||2-2-0||12 x 18 .||E. Burys design|
|Manchester & Leeds Rly||0-4-2||14 x 18||Stephensons design|
|4 Aug. 1840||8||Wolf||Midland Counties Rly||2-2-2||14 x 18||Stephensons design
with Nasmyths Improvements
|Stock, sold later to H. & E. Hilton||2-2-2||14 x 18||Stephensons design
with Nasmyths Improvements
|19 Feb. 1839||11
|Midland Counties Rly||2-2-0||12 x 18||E. Burys design|
|25 May 1840||Defford 19 .||Birmingham & Gloucester Rly||4-2-0||l8 x 20||Norris design|
|Manchester & Leeds Rly||2-2-2||14 x 18|
|19 Aug. 1840||22
|Birmingham & Gloucester Rly||4-2-0||l1 x 20||Norris design|
|l Sept 1840||25||Achilles 65||Great Western Rly||2-2-2||15 x 18||Cyls 16 x 20 later|
Achilles was the first of twenty 2-2-2 ty-pe locomotives with 15 in. by 18 in. cylinders ordered by the GWR and for which a testimonial and cash bonus was received. The design was modified in certain respects as the order proceeded-not an unknown happening even today!-and the last four became Goods engines of the 0-6-0 type, with 16 in. by 22 in. cylinders and 5 ft. 0 in. dia. wheels. Quite a modification!
Swarup, K. (Paper No. 587)
The design and manufacture of light-weight coaches. 477-505. Disc.: 505-9.
Annual General Meeting of the Indian Centre held in Bombay on 27 March 1958:. E.W. Isaacs in the Chair.
The oustanding features of the Perambur bogie were:
(1) Total weight of bogie reduced by 26.5% against the I.R.S. bogies.
(2) The unsprung weight has been reduced by 18.5% as compared to the conventional I.R.S. bogies, resulting in much lesser wear and tear of the track and coaching stock.
(3) The wear and tear of the axle box guides has been completely eliminated.
(4) The movements of the axle box helical springs are controlled by built-in shock absorbers.
(5) The centre pivot is completely released of any additional reaction stresses from the brake gear.
(6) The conventional rubbing blocks for the bogie bolsters have been replaced by the anchor link arrangements which eliminates the jerky movements of the bolster.
Meeting in Erith and Charlton, 31 October 1958.
Broad history of works visited and description of visit
Fraser and Chalmers Engineering Works of the General Electric Company, Erith. 516-20
Founded at Erith in 1891 to manufacture mining machinery which until then had been made in USA. Employed about 3000 on 34 acre site
Charlton Works of J. Stone and Company (Charlton) Limited. 520-6
Detailed account of firm's history and activities
Journal No. 265
Ell, S.O. (Paper No. 588).
The mechanics of the train in the service of railway operation. 528-61. Disc.: 561-90 + 5 plates. 25 diagrs., 6 tables.
General Meeting held at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers on Wednesday 15 October 1958, at 5.30 p.m.: R. Arbuthnott (President) in the Chair.
A railway is basically an enterprise of transport in which the economic and engineering factors are inseparable. The dependence between these factors rests on the Mechanics of the Train, which deals with the basic laws of motion of a train along the permanent way. Because of all forms of transport, railways have the least freedom of movement, traffic control is the most important of its three technical elements, of which the others are the permanent way and the rolling stock. And the time-table, which is the medium through which traffic control is exercised, cannot be efficiently constructed except with the help of the mechanics of the train.
From long familiarity with the time-table even the railway engineer is apt to lose sight of its true nature and miss its real significance, until, perhaps, he is confronted with a specimen in graphical form, Fig. 1. Each line is the space-time relation of a train. The whole complex network shows the services provided to meet public needs within the limitations of the technical equipment. It reveals the traffic control. It signifies the veins and arteries of the enterprise.
Yet each line can be precisely determined by the mechanics of the train. Formerly, whilst the traffic pattern remained uneventful in character and the technical equipment stable by nature, many of the functions of the mechanics of the train could be performed empirically and more or less passably. But when any novelty is about to be introduced, especially if on a large scale, forward planning is impossible without the help of the mechanics of the train. It is absolutely essential in Operating Research, which is the only efficient way of obtaining maximum productivity of the enterprise at lowest cost and of specifying technical equipment of the right type and the right power. Because it is concerned with the very life streams of the enterprise, there is no more vital field for research than this. Because of the magnitude of the capital expenditure involved and its irretrievable nature, there is none more fruitful. We engineers are apt to regard a railway as an aggregate of engineering constructions so that the dictum of a distinguished American engineer1 of days gone by has a sobering effect when we remember it:
It would be well if engineering were less generally thought of, and even defined, as the art of constructing. In a certain important sense it is rather the art of not constructing; or to define it rudely but not inaptly, it is the art of doing that well with one dollar which any bungler can do with two after a fashion.
All this and much more has been said before by Wellington and Lomonossoff and others. But the urgent need of adopting more scientific methods than had been in use hitherto did not arise until the modernisation scheme was launched with wide-scale introduction of new forms of motive power and other technical equipment. This Paper describes in outline the methods developed on the Western Region and applied extensively in directions immediately useful. Beyond the present applications, however, there remains a potential which may be more extensively applied to economic matters on the lines envisaged, for instance, by Lomonossoff2. But this must await the time when essential statistics become available and costing systems can be brought to a mathematical dependence on the technical elements.
The mechanics of the train is now one of the most exact branches of applied mechanics, but its products are exact, in the practical sense, only insofar as the quantities fed into it are valid. The first part of this Paper is therefore devoted to the principal experimental quantities.
In itself the application of Newtons second law of motion to the determination of the spaceltime relations for given conditions is very simple. Mechanical or electronic computers can produce them quickly, and it is fashionable to use them. But even without these aids they can be, and are being, produced just as quickly and with comparable accuracy by exploiting the basic traction relations. This Paper is not concerned with this particular problem, but with the more important (and difficult) one of making it possible for all engaged in timetable construction or operating Research (usually non-engineering personnel) to apply the mechanics of the train to all their problems and projects with complete freedom. By the nature and objects of Operating Research it must be possible freely to consider hypothetical locomotive types in relation to the traffic pattern, and these must be capable of being translated readily into essential specifications for actual locomotives. With the declared policy of higher speeds, existing power-load combinations are swept aside by the fact that power varies in the order of the square of the speed. Important economic and traffic capacity issues are thereby raised and it is essential that their dependence on the mechanics of the train should be apparent and precise. The cost of energy to British Railways last year was £65m. Though in terms of coal, it gives some idea of the order of this item with any form of traction. By the mechanics of the train, increased speed inevitably results in higher consumption per trailing ton-mile, so that the issues involved are so important as to justify abandoning the traditional cost/mile criterion which can give a contrary indication to that of the cost per trailing ton-mile (and by implication to the cost of the net ton-mile). Cost of energy of all projects must be as readily available as the power-load-time combinations. In timetable constructions the optimum allowances for contingencies must be made, and fuelling points in rostered turns must be determinable, with all the technical elements in their make-up taken care of. This is the nature of the the third part of this Paper. There are connections with civil engineering and signalling, since the dependence between all engineering elements rests on the mechanics of the train. A brief reference to this feature is made in the third part ofi the Paper. Relatively little attention is given to steam.
In the discussion Stanier (562) observed that he had ridden in the Gooch dynamometer car. It had eventually been fitted by G.H. Pearson with a spring with separate leaves and rollers between, and that spring, Sir William believed, was in the dynamometer car used on the Western Region today. Another interesting thing which Mr. Pearson had done had been to produce what was called a dead man, a box full of oil with a ball in it supported on weak springs, and a mechanism which recorded the movement fore and aft, crossways and up and down, of the riding of the vehicle. The Author had carried that work very much further by what he had done on the dynamometer car and by the various testing appliances which he had used.
H. Holcroft (Communication 570-) wrote: The Mechanics of the Train was a subject which had greatly interested him ever since Prof. W. E. Dalby read a Paper on it before the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in 1912. His characteristic dynamical diagram for the motion of a train had four axes with a common origin, giving accelerating force in relation to speed, time-speed, time-distance and speed-distance in the form of curves, one being derived from the other by a process of graphical integration. It was ,an elegant academic exercise, but difficult to apply to practical problems because it was the speeddistance curve that was needed to take account of changes in gradient on the section of railway traversed. The intermediate stages of creating, firstly, a time-speed curve, then from this a time-distance curve with the final conversion to speed-distance, necessitated a lot of work and led to the multiplication of any small errors in using successive graphical processes.
Midlands Centre, Birmingham, 22nd October 1958 (page 575).
North Eastern Centre, Leeds, 27th October 1958 (page 580).
Newcastle-on-Tyne Centre, Newcastle-on-Tyne, 12th November 1958 (page 582).
Scottish Centre, Glasgow, 19 November 1958 (page 583).
Discussion M. S. Hatchell (584) said he had a very great interest in the relative type classification of diesel and steam locomotives. The diesel range has been divided into two types presumably to correspond to the steam locomotive types of the same numeral value, the latter being classified by years of practical experiment which we cannot apply to diesels, which are tools, and very expensive tools, provided to enable a railway to serve the public efficiently. It is, therefore, most important to use these tools to the greatest advantage and to run them as economically as possible..
Rich, F. (Paper No. 589).
Some details of steam-locomotive design affecting the footplate man. 590-613. Disc.: 613-22. 17 illus., diagrs.
General Meeting of the Midlands Centre was held at the Midland Hotel, Derby, on 9th December, 1958, at 7.0 p.m., the Chair being taken by Mr. J. W. Caldwell, A.M.I.C.E., M.1.Loco.E.
The work which led to this paper is described in Steam Wld, 2005, (218) 36-43: this includes the assistance he received from Carling. Topics covered include ashpans; atomizer control; cylinder cock control; cab conditions; damper controls; drop grates; firehole deflector plates; firedoors (Southern Region and GNR considered superior; the Bulleid Ajax type had shortcomings). As R.H.N. Hardy has often indicated the standard LMS injector was an obsolete design, and vastly inferior to the excellent Swindon and Davis & Metcalfe Monitor designs. The best injector controls were those applied to the BR standard class 4 2-6-4Ts. Rich also considered cab lighting; the position of the manifold and associated valves; obstructions to looking out; reversers; cut-off indicators; sanding gear; fire iron stowage; coal trimming on tenders and in bunkers and window wipers. One of the very few papers on the ergonomic aspects of steam locomotive design.
Two other requirements of a cab, not always fulfilled, are that it should be draught-free and weather proof. In this respect an unforeseen shortcoming of serious proportions arises in the case of BR Standard Class 4, 2-6-4T when running bunker-first. In this direction of running, the driver is protected by the glazed screen behind his seat, but the fireman is completely exposed to the elements (Fig. 2); and in a downpour of rain or sleet, especially if a cross-wind is blowing, matters can become so intolerable as to compel the fireman to leave his position and seek shelter in the centre of the cab. On the somewhat similar ex-LMS 4P, 2-6-4T, these effects are largely mitigated by the presence of an angle plate behind the firemans seat (Fig. 3).
Discussion A.H. Edleston (613-14);
Anwell, B.W. (Paper No. 590)
Developments in the detail design of diesel locomotives. 658-80. Disc.: 681-722.
General Meeting of the Institution was held at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers on Wednesday, 12 November, 1958, at 5.30 p.m. . R. Arbuthnott (Pvesident) was in the Chair.
The President, in introducing the Author of the Paper, said that the speaker was very well known to many of those present, particularly those connected with the locomotive building industry, although perhaps not quite so well known, anyway, in recent times, to British Transport Commission members. In his capacity as Engineer to the Crown Agents he had very considerable experience in his subject, as many of the diesel locomotive designs submitted to the Crown Agents had come under his personal scrutiny and therefore he could watch, and at least to some extent control, the design details.
This Paper is primarily based on experience gained during the past ten years or so in handling contracts for the supply of diesel locomotives to overseas railways and will therefore deal with features connected with the initial design and arising from the more serious troubles which have occurred subsequently in service. Whilst the Paper will refer principally to locomotives, many of the matters dealt with also apply to diesel railcars and train units and it is hoped that the discussion will fill some of the omissions with regard to these vehicles.
The major components of diesel locomotives, such as engines and transmission systems, have been dealt with fairly comprehensively in previous papers and it is therefore intended to pay particular attention to some of the auxiliary equipment. It is not an uncommon experience, when developing a new design, to find that once the major components have been decided upon, these often require little further consideration, but the details of the auxiliary equipment can be the subject of considerable controversy and may vary appreciably between otherwise similar designs.
It has not, of course, been possible to deal with all the auxiliaries, but a selection of some of the more interesting has been made, and it is hoped that others will be dealt with in the course of the discussion.
Cock, C.M. (Paper No. 591)
The Deltic locomotive. 723-47. Disc.: 747-57. illus., 10 diagrs. (including side elevation and plan)
Joint Meeting of the Institution of Electrical Engineers and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers was held at the Institution of Electrical Engineers, Savoy Place, London, W.C.2, on 11 December 1958. Mr. R. C. Bond (Past-President) was in the Chair.
After discussing the reasons for the production of low weight/ power ratio locomotives and the influence of high-speed lightweight diesel engines on this ratio, the Paper describes a 3,300 h.p. diesel-electric locomotive with a service weight of 106 tons, and records the experience gained in the first 200,000 miles of service.