It is currently Fri Nov 24, 2017 4:32 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 63 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: The age of steam panic?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 2:39 am 

Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 3:25 am
Posts: 1025
I am reminded of the "oral tradition" among the members of a railway museum. They were running their steam engine as part of a special day for one of the local "Class-1" carriers. The steam crew found that one of the guests was the Road Foreman of Engines for the big RR, and that he had run steam in his younger days. So they invited him for a cab ride and maybe a turn at the throttle. During the run, they told of all the work it took to keep the old steamer running--replacing boiler tubes, checking a myriad of staybolts, rebuilding the tender, etc. etc. The old pro listened patiently to the "laundry list" and finally said, "Now you see why WE don't use them anymore."

_________________
Bob Davis
Southern California


Offline
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The age of steam panic?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:37 am 

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 10:10 pm
Posts: 670
Location: Iron City
The d/e locos of today are about as far removed from the 'first generation' diesels of yesterday as those first generation diesels were removed from steam. So, any of those ancient studies alleging the superiority of steam cited by so many posters surely hold even less water today than they did back in the day.

A current SD70ACe or or the GE equivalent can ( at least in theory) steer clear of the shop until the FRA mandated 184 inspection comes due. Try doing that with a steamer.


Dave

_________________
"Two wrongs don't make a right, but they make a good excuse."-Thomas Szasz


Offline
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The age of steam panic?
PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 2:04 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 5:10 pm
Posts: 951
Let's look at some numbers. On July 1, 1947, the Pennsylvania Railroad had 4,157 steam locomotives and 54 diesel units. Just over three years later, on Nov. 1, 1950, the PRR was down to 2,363 steam locomotives, about 56% of the previous steam fleet. By Aug, 1, 1957, only 443 steam locomotives were left (10% of the 1947 figure), and by Dec. 1 of that year, all PRR steam locomotives were cold but one. (That exception was B-6 No. 5244, on lease to the Union Transportation Co. in New Jersey.) By the time the Penn Central merger came around on Feb. 1, 1968, the PRR rostered 2,368 diesels, almost exactly the same number as steam locomotives just 18 years previous. These numbers are sourced from Al Stauffer's "Pennsy Power II."

I recognize these are gross numbers, and unfortunately I've not found any corresponding diesel ownership figures for 1950 and 1957. In 10 years, however, we know that the Pennsy went from less than 1 percent diesel motive power to 100% diesel. There had to have been good economic reasons for this to occur.


Offline
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 63 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


 Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Chris Salmonson, Yahoo [Bot] and 57 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to: