--- In STMFC@..., "Bruce F. Smith" wrote:
156# was a slip on my part in the intial thread that I later corrected to 155#
From: STMFC@... [STMFC@...] on behalf of moonmuln [jack.f.mullen@...]
Sent: Friday, February 08, 2013 11:58 PM
Subject: [STMFC] The wheels on the bus go round and round, was Re: Revell Flatcar
I'm puzzled by the references to 156# rail. PRR's 152# and 155# sections are documented in (prototype) engineering literature and vendor's catalogs, but I'm unaware of 156#. Is this just a typo that's been perpetuated in this thread, or was there a third heavy rail section on the Pennsy? My recollection is that the 152# rail was designed in the late '20s, and the 155# was an improved design dating from sometime in the '40s. Overall dimensions remained the same: 8" h., 6 3/4" base, 3" head width. The 155# section had a deeper, redesigned head and improved fillet between head and web.
Both sections were introduced many years after the the I1s type and other heavy power was placed in service. Obviously I1s could and did operate safely on lighter rail. The purpose of moving to heavier rail sections was to attain an improvement in service life that would more than offset the cost of the added metal. Locomotive characteristics, axle loads, gross tonnage, operating speeds, grades and curvature are factors that come into play.
--- In STMFC@..., SUVCWORR@ wrote:
I don't know about 156# rail but I have track charts of the Connemaugh
Div (1940), Pittsburgh Div (1951 and 1958) and Cresson Branch (1951 and
1956) all with 152# rail for the mainline and the primary track of the
Getting off the STMFC topic a little, but I did locate at 1943 report titled "The Life of Rail" at the PA state archives last May. It was to inform various wartime regulators of the need to support higher rail replacement rates than was being allocated based on war-time material restrictions.
It includes the following for PRR mainline track:
Total miles of mainline: 15,787
Miles of 152 lb rail: 628
Miles of 131 lb rail: 2,155
Miles of 130 lb rail: 6,336
Miles of 112 lb and lighter: 6,668
So it appears that most of the heavy rail must have been laid post-war, since the PRR was expecting to get only about 50% of the new rail they felt was necessary in 1944 to maintain overall rail conditions.