4014

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blackz28

Well-Known Member
#1
Dragged my
Bli 4014 out i figured im going to print a sticker
Thats chalked on the front of the smokebox
I have collected all 25 + 1 big boys in ho scale
Im gonna wow sound the non dcc decoded ones
 

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Y3a

Stuck in the 1930's
#12
Remember the N&W Y6 series was able to do 166K to 170K Tractive effort. The loco could get to speeds near 65 mph. so don't foam at the mouth at the Big Boy. In original form the BigBoys were burning crappy coal.
 

Selector

Well-Known Member
#13
The Y6a rode like a drunken sailor at speeds higher than about 45 mph according to their crews, so it was virtually never run higher than that speed. It was a drag engine, and nothing more. The higher tractive effort was only available at speeds up to the point where the booster valve had to be shut off, meaning the point at which it reverted to compound cycling of the pistons. That was at about 15 mph, often no more than 10 mph. The booster was used only to lift the train, never to get it up a hill. If the tractive effort in compound ops was deemed to be insufficient to get over the ruling grade, they added another locomotive.
 

Y3a

Stuck in the 1930's
#14
You are confusing the booster with simple & compound. The booster was manually operated when needed. The 58" drivers on the Y6's allowed them to get out to speeds of 60mph when used in conjunction with the A class locos. Being a big fan of the Y class loco's you are the first to state that they rode badly above 45 mph. I've been a member of the N&WHS for over 20 years now and our discussions have never been about poor riding of them. Where they were used dictated speed. The 68" diameter wheels on the Big Boy made them more slippery than a Y6's. They also didn't have the tight curves resistance that most east coast had to deal with.
 

Selector

Well-Known Member
#15
Yup, got my terms muddled...thanks for correcting me. The compound cylinders got direct hp steam at start-up, and the booster was manually engaged when the lp cylinders needed to be adjusted so that they produced as much power as the hp cylinders. What I had intended to convey was that the simple steam admission was cut off when using it to lift a drag before about 15 mph.

However, I have read several accounts and read posts by knowledgeable people that the Y6b was an unsettling platform at speeds much above 40 mph. It stands to reason that the N&W built and used the Class A because they wanted something with power and speed, and not what the Y Class was meant for...drags. Or, to say it differently, what was the point of the Class A in the first place? Why run two classes of locomotives when one would suffice?

Here is a quote from a forum thread elsewhere where the member 'overmod' , an expert on steam, offers a comment on the subject of the Y Class:

"
Compounds are designed so that, ideally, the torque produced by the HP engine and that produced by the LP engine are either roughly equal or proportional to the relative adhesion limits of the two engines. In practice, effects such as heat loss result in the LP engine developing substantially less than expected. The booster valve 'boosts' the power of the LP engine by adding an amount of live steam that brings the average pressure at either the receiver or the LP steam chests up to 'spec' -- or, if a bit more power is desired, beyond that... but not up to the 'full pressure' used when the conventional simpling valve is used.
As noted, the way the N&W had this set up, the power from the forward (LP) engine was higher enough that a bit of ballasting could provide a higher effective TE at the speeds where the booster was found most effective (IIRC from Rails Remembered vol 3 this was around 26mph).
Another way, in principle, that the 'boosting' can be done is to modulate steam into the LP chests more directly, so that not only the average pressure but the developed torque relative to stroke are similar between the HP and LP engines. This (in theory) allows the LP engine to be balanced accurately, and the engine to work compound to a higher speed. While it might be uneconomical to work even an 'improved' Y6b as fast as 40-45 mph (assuming you could get it that fast without bad riding), a modulated-admission locomotive -- with, perhaps, the slight additional improvements of having its forward engine hinged only in the horizontal plane, as the Alco Challengers were famously built (and, before them, the class A, although not nearly enough has been made about that point...) and being given better leading and trailing trucks (the class A's arrangement would probably do) -- could be made to run as fast as the steam mass flow from the boiler would permit. In my opinion, it would certainly have been practical to run such a locomotive at typical N&W fast-freight speeds on the flat, greatly expanding the range of the Y class (and incidentally taking advantage of the relatively high weight on drivers and short length for developed power of the 2-8-8-2 wheel arrangement.
[To an extent, of course, the external 'booster' valve would permit much of the same effect, and I personally suspect that any Ys which were actually run to high speed would have been 'improved' locomotives run by men who understood precisely how to use the improvement.]"

Again, thanks for drawing my error about the term 'booster' to my attention.



 

beiland

Well-Known Member
#16
Push-Pull, Double-Head, communication in steam era?

Had this question put to me earlier today, and I didn't have an answer, nor clue.

Much of this steam era occurred before we had modern day communications to assist us. How did steam locomotive engineers manage to coordinate the operations of their locos when double-heading, or pushing from behind??
 

bnsf971

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#17
Push-Pull, Double-Head, communication in steam era?

Had this question put to me earlier today, and I didn't have an answer, nor clue.

Much of this steam era occurred before we had modern day communications to assist us. How did steam locomotive engineers manage to coordinate the operations of their locos when double-heading, or pushing from behind??
The engine crews would use whistle signals. Short and long whistle blasts would be combined to tell the other crews to speed up, slow down, stop, etc.
 

bnsf971

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#18
N&W's modern Ys were considered high speed compounds because they could be operated at speeds up to 50mph in a time when other compounds could only be operated up to about 20-25mph. The older Ys were not so fast, topping out at around 30 or so. Still fast for a compound, but not truly fast. I think Santa Fe found out about that when several older Ys were assigned to them during WWII. The compound helpers couldn't keep up.
 

Y3a

Stuck in the 1930's
#19
The Y3's could AT BEST get out to a little over 40mph.
I have read that the limiting factor of the N&W A's top speed had to do with stoker capacity. Double headed A's going down to the coal docks would sometimes be faster than 70mph!!!! the VGN 2-6-6-6's had similar performance, getting out past 65mph.

I did a LOT of reading about the Big Boy this weekend, trying to find out what the bicycle chain arrangement attached to the front valve gear frame is for. It has a ratchet sort of thing going on. I think its either for mechanical lube or counting driver revolutions. Any idea? It was interesting reading about the earlier oil mod that didn't work out. 4014 is a spectacular loco. I heard that as far east as they will take it is Pennsylvania. I just may go see it. I was able to ride behind 611, 1218, 630, 4501, T&P 610 the Royal Hudson and C&O 614. I can't wait for WMSR to get 1309 running. May go see N&W 475 if I travel to Pennsylvania to see 4014.
 

Selector

Well-Known Member
#20
That's exactly what it is, a ratchet mechanism for the mechanical lubricators, and exposed like that seems to be counterproductive. When you see a (almost always red) two-pronged handle making a one-way ratcheting motion as the expansion link rocks, that's a hand winder for the mechanical lubricator. You may recall seeing some videos of steam locomotives being inspected at stops, and you may recall seeing the hogger reach up and give that handle two or three turns manually. He's checking for resistance and mechanical soundness, but also to prime the surfaces with fresh oil because the locomotive experiences the most resistance and lack of lube as it begins to move. (Resistance to ensure the mechanism is indeed feeding grease/oil to the wearing surfaces.

The mechanical lubricator doesn't always supply lubrication to the cylinders or to the valves; steam oil does that via the hydrostatic lubricator up on the backhead where the hogger can monitor it IF the locomotive has a hydrostatic lubricator. Otherwise, the two mechanical lubricators distribute their effect over cylinders, valves, the steam ends of the air compressors, the crossheads, the truck bearings, and the driver journal boxes.
 



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