Chet French said:
"A "Dutch drop" is when the engine changes directions to get in the clear,
during the move. Usually the dutch drop was made where gravity would lend a
helping hand with a slight grade. Often the brakes could be released on a
car or cars, and they would roll by the engine, unassisted. We generally
would give the cars an easy kick uphill, put the engine in the clear, and
wait for the cars to stop and roll back downhill past the engine."
It occurs to me that with a steam locomotice this move would be very tricky
unless there was a gradient to help as Chet says and even more so if the
locomotive was not fitted with a lever reverser as a screw reverser or most
of the steam reversers that I have seen in use would take too long to change
from forward to reverse gear. With a lever reverser it's quick to change
direction. For this reason, most UK steam shunting (=switching) locomotives
were fitted with a lever reverse.
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