G Scale Model Train Forum banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm really tired and should wait, but I'm gonna give it a shot.

If any of you have seen Larry Imoshev's (?) new engine house build--I have rough sketches of my own shed, but I want to put a narrow gage tramway to support a shop crane and small service car, shoved around by a dinky.

I'm working in 1;20.3. I thought it would be interesting to run a pair of rails alongside the engines then out to the blacksmith shop. It'd make an interesting little sub-layout, particularly if I extended it to the power house and coal pile to sevice these buildings.

The question is, how small can I reasonably expect to get in a narrow gauge at F scale? The Gn15 guys do it, but they tend to stay around 1:24. I'm considering HO track, but I'm just not savvy enough to know the kinks, so I thought I'd gather some opinions. The rails will be handlaid in any case.

I can experiment for myself, but wondered if someone else was so demented as to consider something like this?

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Ralph,

Bingo! I knew I'd seen that done, somewhere. After all, it kinda makes common sense while servicing engines, to have a means of moving heavy parts around. You put me onto that sight probably months ago.

I've experienced--probably in my own mind--
mild demurral of sorts to the effect that a small engine shed wouldn't have a setup like that. Of course it would, if it was affordable. I once was hired to help change out a clutch & pressure plate on a 40's-vintage Cat D7, (if memory serves--this was 1970) which was sitting cocked on the side of a hill where the clutch died. In July in SE MO. i.e. hot and buggy. Everything had to be dragged up a steep hillside with a chain & hand winch, (coffin hoist, to those in the trade) then winched up to the place it could be swung over, blocked, and let slowly down, always being levered/blocked in place until the first bolt could be set, then the rest was relatively simple. I got $7.50/hr + lunch, and it took two men a week to 'get 'er done' as my son says.

I don't know what a siderod on a mediocre little 0-4-0 say, but I bet that sucker's heavy. And moving a wheel to the Bsmith shop to be re-tired.... I think the concept's justifiable.

And thanks for taking time to reply. I've known only a few men of your educational status coupled with your technical expertise and willingness to share.

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Steve,

Thanks for the link and the explanation. Ref my post to Ralph, below. I'm going to sit down tonight and begin a 'scaled' sketch of my proposed engine house, to include HO trackage.

I wanted to know if the concept fell into the 'plausible' category'. Apparently it does.

Thanks for taking time to post the link and opinion.

Les
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
733 Posts
Les,

I have a photo of "Dickie" -the works engine at Crewe in 1878. Would you like me to scan it for you?

regards

ralph
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ralph,

I'd be delighted if you would. I think you're aware of my admiration of British/English locos.

Please don't use IM, tho, because I'm sorta not too well versed it it.

I cannot think of a more appropriate spot to employ one.

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Steve,

I want to amplify my lack of knowledge re 'commercial/industrial RR'. I know nothing save what I've garned off the internet following posts like yours and others.

In 1961 my dad bought me my first (and only) car: a 1954 Dodge flathead six. I drove it around St. Louis, where streetcar tracks still existed, and cursed (the young swear easily at what they know not) everytime a front wheel slipped into a 'rail rut'. (I didn't know much about loose tirerods at age 16.) Some few 'electric buses' were still on the street and you had to get out of their way.

I knew of the MOPAC, a line of its rails ran across the corner of our farm. I've seen one steamer in motion, crossing a large concrete trestle in SE MO.

I know people who curse steam engines for being filthy. I know of Phobe Snow. (By reading, and by a kind old man who taught me radio repair). I don't know anyone who has anything good to say about diesels, save that they are more efficient in a number of ways.

I do know the demise of the steam engine threw a lot of people out of work: strikers, boiler wipers, etc, etc. because I grew up in that economic level.

One of the most trenchant questions I've posed is: "If we brought back steam, and if we factored in the reduction in unemployment caused by hiring 'uneducated' to work in engine houses, what would the economic balance be?" The only answer I've received is that "The mines would have to pay steam-powered RRs to take their coal." I'm unsatisfied with that response, though I respect the man who explained it to me.

Have a thought on that?

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,393 Posts
Posted By Les on 02/12/2009 1:10 PM
{snip...} One of the most trenchant questions I've posed is: "If we brought back steam, and if we factored in the reduction in unemployment caused by hiring 'uneducated' to work in engine houses, what would the economic balance be?" The only answer I've received is that "The mines would have to pay steam-powered RRs to take their coal." I'm unsatisfied with that response, though I respect the man who explained it to me. {snip...}
Les

Based on what you posed in the above question, namely; "if we brought back steam" and then the following statements "if we factored in the reduction in unemployment caused by hiring 'uneducated' to work in the engine houses" & "what would the economic balance be?" Tells me that you are of a mind that it would/should be brought back in its previous incarnation.

Which I don't think would be the case at all. If steam power for railroads were to regain its former popularity, it would have to first prove itself to be both "a less expensive alternative" & "more efficient" than the the current form of power utilized. Bringing back the "steam locomotives" of yesterday would loose out on any facet that you bothered to examine it from. Which in turn means that the technology required to generate and utilize the steam power would have to be developed anew. In turn that new technology would require the employment of individuals of a higher level of education, and since one of the primary benefits of advancing technology is efficiency (i.e. read as less individuals needed to do the job) so the reduction in unemployment of which you speak would be much less than expected.

However, strictly using your scenario parameters, I would say that the "economic balance" would be a sharp drop in the standard of living for a goodly portion of the population.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Posted By SteveC on 02/12/2009 2:33 PM

Posted By Les on 02/12/2009 1:10 PM
{snip...} One of the most trenchant questions I've posed is: "If we brought back steam, and if we factored in the reduction in unemployment caused by hiring 'uneducated' to work in engine houses, what would the economic balance be?" The only answer I've received is that "The mines would have to pay steam-powered RRs to take their coal." I'm unsatisfied with that response, though I respect the man who explained it to me. {snip...}
Les

Based on what you posed in the above question, namely; "if we brought back steam" and then the following statements "if we factored in the reduction in unemployment caused by hiring 'uneducated' to work in the engine houses" & "what would the economic balance be?" Tells me that you are of a mind that it would/should be brought back in its previous incarnation.

Ans: No, I am not of a mind that steam should return. What I see I've failed again to state clearly is, that there is a vast unemployed population living on the dole because they have no/don't want/can't absorb an education beyond that which fits them only for manual labor.

I know enough of thermodynamics and mechanics to understand the diesel is a more efficient power generator.

The kernel of my question is, tradeoffs: Is there an economic equilibrium point at which the jobless could find employment if the late steam technology could be brought back, because it was very labor-intensive? This includes the expensive infrastructure required by steam technology as we last knew it.

Which I don't think would be the case at all. If steam power for railroads were to regain its former popularity, it would have to first prove itself to be both "a less expensive alternative" & "more efficient" than the the current form of power utilized.

It cannot by reason of physics, as stated above. But there are huge social costs associated with unemployment that might be offset--especially if the dole laws were changed. Please take a look at the broader picture. If, for instance, we are already paying for ethanol--which is alleged to require more energy to produce than it generates--how is my proposition rendered invalid by mere numbers? Where's the social policy input factored in?

Bringing back the "steam locomotives" of yesterday would loose out on any facet that you bothered to examine it from. Which in turn means that the technology required to generate and utilize the steam power would have to be developed anew.

Ans: No, it wouldn't, necessarily, if one absents the physics. We have the old blueprints and even better metallurgy now. Developing techniques superior to the old would be a possibility, or the old standards of 'sufficiency' might attain.

In turn that new technology would require the employment of individuals of a higher level of education, and since one of the primary benefits of advancing technology is efficiency (i.e. read as less individuals needed to do the job) so the reduction in unemployment of which you speak would be much less than expected.

But here you're ignoring my premise: Are the benefits of 'advancing technology' resulting in less employment, being offset by supporting via welfare an otherwise unemployable class, and at what cost to the taxpayers? If this line is taken to an extreme (which of course would fail as all analogies do when pressed) then, with sufficient technology, no one would work. How would anyone 'earn' a living?

However, strictly using your scenario parameters, I would say that the "economic balance" would be a sharp drop in the standard of living for a goodly portion of the population.

I'd agree, except you haven't shown how a reduction in welfare taxes would not offset or equal a less-efficient technology.
Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,393 Posts
Les

I can't agree with you, as I see it in a great many instances the problems of which you're speaking, represents a mindset that has been allowed to develop and even in some cases encouraged. But this isn't the place to delve into those topics, after all this is a large scale model railroading forum.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Posted By SteveC on 02/12/2009 3:23 PM
Les

I can't agree with you, as I see it in a great many instances the problems of which you're speaking, represents a mindset that has been allowed to develop and even in some cases encouraged. But this isn't the place to delve into those topics, after all this is a large scale model railroading forum.








Steve,

I am distressed at what I comprehend to be--at the least--a request to drop the subject. I will do so, out of respect for you and your postion. Being moderator cannot be easy, and I want to be the last to add difficulties. I will even offer an apology, though I don't think it necessary. If you don't agree with me, that is of little importance in the larger scheme of things. I wasn't seeking agreement, I was looking for enlightenment. I find the 'mindset' comment to be disparaging, but a rebuttal like yours isn't the first. Not many people can or want to look at problems in a larger context than they've become accustomed to.

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,393 Posts
Les

No, don't misunderstand what I've said, I only meant that the forum wasn't the place for the discussion, not that I wasn't open to further discussion with you on that topic, or any other for that matter. If you want to continue I have no problem with further discussion, just so we do it off-line via eMail or PM (i.e. private messages) that's all.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Steve,

I apparently did misconstrue your intent. Whether the topic is suitable for this board or not rests with you, and I'm not about to argue. I come here for fun and relaxation--tension is the very last thing I want.

I doubt further dicussion, even offline, would garner me/us much. If you ever run across a manufacturing/social economist, please give him my name.


Les
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
77 Posts
Actually, this would be fair game in the general discussion forum. Les: repost your question there and let the sparks fly!

(Personally, I think the premise is flawed. I think it takes more "education" and training to run a steam engine!)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
KV,

Nah, I thought of that, but I kinda sorta got to respect Steve's take. Guys like him are hard to find, and like it or not, he pulls the plug where he thinks best, which I can abide. After all, we're not playing for money here, with a gun in a back pocket. Like I said to him, I come here for fun, and while I know it ain't possible, I want everybody here to like me. I prob'ly should've put it there, because I think there's at least some validity to it. But I ain't. You want to, you feel free. Then post me and I'll jump right in.

Les
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,393 Posts
Hey guys,

If you take a look at the various topics that get overly heated and deteriorate rapidly to name calling and personal attack, when simply discussing model train topics. Like which is the best scale, best manufacturer of large scale, best sound, best source of power and control etc. etc.

And you guys want to put up volatile topics like politics, & culture etc. etc. that won't fly for very long. Additionally you might want to go back and re-read the terms of use you agreed to when you registered as a MLS member.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Using HO code 100 track would work out to 10 or 12 pound rail. This would be too light to be useful in the real world.
We had a 1/4 mile figure 8 track in 20 pound rail, but only motor cars were tested on it. It was too light to safely run our Hy-rails.
Check out my websitefor more details on narrow gage rail and ties
http://www.geocities.com/trackworker.geo/

It will refer you to my other site with more info.
Nick
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,940 Posts
Les;

Around 1985 there was an "updated" steam locomotive was proposed called the ACE3000 (American Coal Enterprizes, 3000 horsepower). It had features like a computer for a "fireman," a tender that recondensed the steam, coal loaded in 5 ton containers, containerized ash removal, and MU cables that would allow it to lash-up with diesels, providing it was the lead locomotive. The idea was viable and very interesting, but the capital investment required to get it off the drawing board (or CAD) did not materialize.

I would have loved to at least seen a demonstrator, but my pockets are barely deep enough for large scale - prototypes are out of the question for my investing. Still, some day the conditions could become right for dusting off plans like an ACE3000.

Best wishes,
David Meashey
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,696 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Dave (& Steve)

My only interest is finding if there's a meeting point between the immense amount of coal we have, and the large pool of unemployed/unemployable. Steam technology seems to be at or near that point--if such a point even exists.

For me, this thread is dead.

Les
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top