Minimum curves for 85' streamline cars

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#61
FWIW, when I test my curved track for problems, one of my favorite trials is to run a shoving move of passenger equipment through curves, switches and crossovers. I also test new passenger cars in a similar manner. If the train makes it both ways pulling and shoving, everything is good.
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
#62
Santa Fe 85 footers on 31", 28.5". & 24" Radius

Got my Walthers Santa Fe passenger cars out of my storage trailer to see if there were differences from those PRR classics.

On 31" radius curves
No problems negotiating. Require a minimum of 1" from the CL of the track at the ends of the cars (outer clearance), and at the middle of the cars (inner clearance).

(Those pencil lines outboard of each track are at 1" from the CL of the track itself)
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beiland

Well-Known Member
#63
Santa Fe 85 footers on 31", 28.5". & 24" Radius

On 28.5" radius curves
Appears to require just about the same clearances as those for the 31" radius curves above,...1" on either side of CL

DSCF2069, ps800.jpg

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(this photo would make it appear that the cars require more than the 1" outer clearance, but be aware that it is the angle at which I shot the photo, and prior to my placing those upright angular brackets,.....only 1" minimum required)
 
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beiland

Well-Known Member
#64
Santa Fe 85' footers on 24" radius

Granted it does NOT look very good to run these cars on 24" curves,....but it can occur on many of our 'small layouts', and in a number of spot areas on larger layouts,....staging access lines, freight yards, sidings. etc

Basically it appears as though we need an additional 1/8" on either side,....so 1+1/8" on either side.

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beiland

Well-Known Member
#66
Since this subject thread is titled '85' streamline cars', I think perhaps I need to start a new thread for the other long cars and steam locos I measured out??
 
#67
Thanks for doing all the mock ups on this. Makes me feel much better about the radius I chose.
Something to remember when planning curves in yards and engine terminals. The prototype's curves were much tighter in yards, than on high speed main lines. So is the overhang greater. Imagine switching the car shop at Penn Coach Yard, in Philadelphia on Amtrak. All cars - Amfleet or Metroliner Cab cars are 85' long. On the main line one hardly notices any overhang. Yet pulling and shoving the same cars over yard switches, curves and "S" curves results in quite a display of exaggerated overhang, like what one would find with a Rivarossi 85' car on an 18" radius curve.

First criteria on a model railroad is does it work, or is it plausible? Second question, will it clear another train on an adjacent track? Third: Will it clear my scenery, tunnels and other infrastructure. If the answer to all three questions is yes, you're good to go. Esthetics, such as overhang are subjective. If you only have room for 26" radius curves but want to run full length passenger cars or long freight cars, you compromise. The late, Andy Sperandeo, of Model Railroader used to recommend building your benchwork, so that your trains were eye level. This way, the visual effect of the overhang was mitigated.

Boris
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#69
Long time since I commented on this thread and I had to do a quick re-read to see if I had made this comment about Walthers 85' passenger cars. Walthers estimate of 24" radius only applies to a single car being pushed around that radius, nothing else. But there can be another difficult thing to detect. The stirrups and where they are in relation to a particular car's trucks. I have one which is a postal coach. It has long stirrups, lengthwise, that are right alongside one of the trucks and they are longer 4 wheel trucks as well. Even on quite gentle curves, the truck not only hits the stirrups, it actually locks into it, causing it to derail, but others have also caused derails too.
 

trailrider

Well-Known Member
#70
It would be wonderful if all of us had the luxury of running such large radius curves. Unfortunately, we don't. As there are not that many options for shorter passenger cars, we are forced to run at least some of the 85-footers on tighter radius curves. I have been quite successful in operating passenger trains on curves as tight as 18 inches! Yes, it means leaving some gaps between the diaphragms, making sure the trucks clear any steps, etc., in some cases filing the tops a bit, (but at lower track levels it isn't that easy to see such modifications). In some cases, where I have had access to them, running shorter cars between two 85 footers helps.
 

tootnkumin

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#71
It would be wonderful if all of us had the luxury of running such large radius curves. Unfortunately, we don't. As there are not that many options for shorter passenger cars, we are forced to run at least some of the 85-footers on tighter radius curves. I have been quite successful in operating passenger trains on curves as tight as 18 inches! Yes, it means leaving some gaps between the diaphragms, making sure the trucks clear any steps, etc., in some cases filing the tops a bit, (but at lower track levels it isn't that easy to see such modifications). In some cases, where I have had access to them, running shorter cars between two 85 footers helps.
Modification/adapting is the only way sometimes, if you can accept the compromise. The recent release Walthers Mainline coaches all come with truck mounted couplers on extended arms, minimal detailing, but they do have stirrups
 

beiland

Well-Known Member
#72
Turns out it was in a 20 year old issue of Model Railroader Planning, 1998. I think I have given the source proper acknowledgement. it would be a shame not to share this good but older article.that might be lost in time otherwise. (please excuse my notes and hi=lites)





 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
#73
Yeah to run on 24” radii usually requires some surgery on the Wally underframe. Passenger trains take up a lot of real estate. If you don’t have the space for the large radius curves there is some nice 60 foot stuff on the market. “Pike sized passenger trains” is a good subject! As Toot said, watch the S curves, and make sure you can back the train reliably. Your track work needs to be up to snuff.
 

Aerojet

Active Member
#74
I'm one of the guys who runs the 85 foot cars on anything. Here is how you do it. Replace the couplers with Kadee 451 Extended swing gear box and whisker couplers. This will allow the swing for 18 inch curves to be taken by long cars. It might look a bit goofy, but in the end, what really matters is the train runs.

The Aerojet
 

montanan

Whiskey Merchant
#75
One thing that just came toi mind is a problem we have at out model railroad club. There is one curve that I am guessing that is aboiut a 24 inch radius. There are no problems with long cars such as auto racks, but passenger cars do have a problem. One of the members has a complete Walthers Empire builder and was having derailment problems and it ended up that the diaphragms were causing the derailments. My Walthers cars were having problems there and I found out that the owner of the Empire Builder had to put extended length couplers on all of the cars which took care of the problem.
 



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