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Old 07-03-2011, 03:24 PM  
mohel
 
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Rail wars

Transportation
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Old 07-03-2011, 03:49 PM  
mohel
 
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Rail wars II

Rail wars II
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Old 07-03-2011, 04:15 PM  
mohel
 
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B&O Railroad Museum

Transportation

HTML Code:
http://historical-travels.com/2009/10/15/baltimore-and-ohio-railroad-museum/
The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Museum
901 W. Pratt Street
Baltimore, MD 21223


Quote:
Through the first quarter of the 19th century, the Appalachian Mountains formed a formidable, almost impenetrable barrier separating the settled Eastern coastal region from the western frontier. The seaport cities of Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore competed for international traffic on a relatively equal basis, as none could offer a route connecting their port to the country?s interior. This situation changed dramatically with the completion of the Erie Canal in 1825, an accomplishment that helped the port of New York to become essentially the Atlantic home port for all of the Midwest.

Rising to the challenge, the State of Maryland chartered the Baltimore and Ohio Rail Road Company in early 1827, with the task of building a railroad from the port of Baltimore, Maryland west to a suitable point on the Ohio River. Construction began in Baltimore in 1828, and Wheeling, West Virginia (then part of Virginia, in any case on the Ohio River) was finally reached on January 1, 1853. By that time, another line had been added to connect Baltimore with Washington, D.C., and another connection had been made with nearby Annapolis, MD.

By the outset of the Civil War, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad possessed 513 miles of rail road, all in states south of the Mason-Dixon Line. The B&O was instrumental in supporting the Federal government during the Civil War, as it was the main rail connection between Washington, D.C., and the northern states. As a result, 143 raids and battles during the war involved the B&O Railroad, many resulting in substantial loss.

The following decades brought expansion and intensive competition with the Pennsylvania Railroad, which finally drove the B&O to bankruptcy in 1896. Following its emergence from bankruptcy, control of the B&O was acquired by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1901.

Located among Baltimore?s historic southwest neighborhoods, at the original site of the historic Mt. Clare Shops, the B&O Railroad Museum occupies the oldest railroad manufacturing complex in the United States. A National Historic Landmark and an affiliate of the Smithsonian Museum, the B&O Railroad Museum collects, preserves and interprets artifacts related to early American railroading, particularly the Baltimore & Ohio, Chesapeake & Ohio, Western Maryland, and other mid-Atlantic railroads. Nearly 200 pieces of locomotives and rolling stock provide a continuum of railroad technology history from 1830 through the present day.

The museum campus holds four significant nineteenth-century buildings, including a car shop, a historic roundhouse, and a mile of track which is considered by some to be the most historic section of railroad track in the United States. The museum also features two model layouts and a wooden model train that children will enjoy climbing on. Here are some interesting exhibits that I found on display in the roundhouse.

The first trains on American railroads were pulled by horses. Normal transportation by a horse-pulled wagon or stagecoach averaged a top speed of five miles per hour, but one horse pulling 30 tons on rails could average speeds of nine miles per hour. The B&O?s ?Pioneer? (shown here) was one of the first railroad passenger cars produced in the United States.

Early B&O designs were unlike those used by other railroads, due to in-house design and an emphasis on pulling power. The first Grasshopper type locomotive was developed in 1832. They were called ?Grasshoppers? because the long vertical rods resembled enlarged mechanical insect legs when in motion. By 1840 these gangly locomotives were already outdated, and most were dropped from the roster. They were built to last, however, and a few survived as yard switchers into the 1890s.

For many Americans in the 1830s and 1840s, the convenience of fast travel (25-35 mph) outweighed such burdens as bumpy rides, train schedules that were far from reliable, train accidents, mechanical failures and roaming animals. Short on railroad engineering experience and time, many railroads contracted with wagon and stagecoach makers to build early rail cars. The coaches shown here carried passengers on two levels, but unlucky travelers on the upper level were subjected to burning cinders flying from the lead locomotive.

When the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad expanded its track to the Cumberland coal mines in 1842, demand for the ?black diamonds? skyrocketed in the east. The B&O?s early engines were too weak to handle the tough grades and heavy coal loads from the mountainous regions of Western Maryland. In 1848 the B&O purchased six ?0-8-0″s from outside manufacturers, one of which was the No. 57 ?Mennon?. This unique steam locomotive design had zero leading wheels, eight driving wheels and zero trailing wheels, an arrangement that allowed the powerful engines to handle sharp curves. During the Civil War, the Mennon?s regular freight service was interrupted to haul troops and supplies for the Union war effort, earning it the nickname ?Old War Horse?.

Shortly after their debut in the early 20th century, automobiles were adapted for use on railroads. Rebuilt with flanged wheels, rail-mobiles carried management officials on maintenance-of-way inspection trips. The Maryland & Pennsylvania Railroad acquired this car from a funeral home in 1942 and rebuilt it with a track sander for slippery rails, a pin-swivel truck (the steerable mechanism holding the front wheels, shown in the closeup), and a handbrake which was controlled by the steering wheel.
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Old 07-03-2011, 05:41 PM  
mohel
 
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The Next Big Thing?

Scrap the coal plants and use hydro & wind.
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Old 07-03-2011, 07:19 PM  
mohel
 
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Strange deformation in rail in New Zealand earthquake

Musings: Strange deformation in rail in New Zealand earthquake

The Canterbury Earthquake: Images of the distorted railway line

7.1 Canterbury earthquake in New Zealand. Included was this one, taken of a railway line that crossed the fault rupture at the eastern end of the fault near to Rolleston:
HTML Code:
http://blogs.agu.org/landslideblog/2010/11/02/the-canterbury-earthquake-images-of-the-distorted-railway-line/
BlogPost - New Zealand continues search for survivors after devastating earthquake (Photos and Video)

Quote:
The second image is particularly interesting. Note how the rails show high levels of deformation whilst the surrounding ground shows comparatively little. Notice also how the big kink on the left side has pushed the ballast aside and into the track side ditch This has happened on the right side too, but to a lesser extent. The right side bend nearest the camera has pushed the ballast towards the camera.

My initial hypothesis here (I am no expert on railway track deformation) in order to stimulate discussion is that the buckling may be the result of compressional deformation across a broad zone. The compression on the very strong railway line was accommodated when a weak point was found, leading to a comparatively rapid deformation to form the main buckle on the left. This then concentrated stress on both sides of the buckle, allowing the other (right side) bends to form
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Old 07-03-2011, 10:50 PM  
mohel
 
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Rail wars III

Transportation
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Old 07-03-2011, 11:44 PM  
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Rail wars IV

Transportation
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Old 07-04-2011, 12:12 AM  
mohel
 
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Rail wars V

Transportation
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Old 07-04-2011, 12:45 AM  
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I love the photo of the soljar with the cute little puppy!
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Old 07-04-2011, 12:56 PM  
mohel
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musicinabottle View Post
I love the photo of the soljar with the cute little puppy!
This is an OFFICIAL 4th of JULY pup.
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