Recent content by Pigeon

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    power controller

    You wouldn't think of not doing it now, but it was a lot more difficult before you could do it all electronically. Always raised my eyebrows a bit the way keeping the traction motors from overheating was so dependent in those days on having the driver in the feedback loop - driving on the...
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    Baffling inscription on antique item of railway equipment

    BR(W) has always meant "British Rail (Western region)" wherever I've seen it, on all sorts of kit. I think the region of origin can be considered to be known definitely. Can't really guess meaningfully about the LM bit though. I don't think it means Texas Instruments...
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    Thunderbird drag from Kings X to Neville Hill.

    Still must have been pretty sharp eyed to be able to see something facing upwards on the highest spot on the train. How do they do that? Surely you would need a scaff tower on the platform to climb up to get the sight of it. Or do they get the station pigeons to help look?
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    GWR withdraw some 800's due to cracks in yaw damper bolsters...

    That is of course something the Japanese are extremely good at, but it does depend on a whole raft of embedded assumptions about the operating environment, both physical and cultural, which mostly are not written down anywhere at all, and so it is very difficult to anticipate both what the...
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    Best passenger high speed train in UK?

    No, I don't, but "people dithering on" and "daft modern rule book cancer", while indeed being subjects about which I could rant on for ages, are characteristics of a set of people, not characteristics of a type of train, so they are of minimal relevance when it is types of train that are under...
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    Pollution on UK newest trains

    I guess they have some need for internal shunting of flask trains, at least. Safety of batteries... depends a lot whether or not you're using fancy expensive lithium batteries with their tendency to self-ignite and release clouds of hideously nasty chemicals like HF both in the combustion and...
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    Windscreen Wipers - Pneumatic v Electric

    It always seemed to me that until fairly recently train wipers had only ever been designed about once. Someone came up with these horrible cruddy pneumatic things back when the psssht-thump noises were useful for scaring dinosaurs off the station platforms while the train was waiting, and ever...
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    Best passenger high speed train in UK?

    Quite. I've never found slam doors a hassle ever since I was old enough to reach the handle, but I'm always hacked off by the alternative, because you have to stand around scratching your arse waiting for the "door open" button to start working and then waiting for the door to actually respond...
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    Pollution on UK newest trains

    Maybe I didn't find it but I didn't see anything particularly novel or impressive on that site. Lot of stuff about how fireless locomotives make a lot of sense for shunting the yards of works that necessarily have huge fixed boilers anyway; well, duh, but on the other hand how many such works...
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    London Euston travel centre (and elsewhere)

    It's not the "has" that's the worry, it's the "will". How much of it can be viewed with any confidence in its remaining free to use? (liberty, not money: the option to use it being freely available to all, with no arbitrary requirement to involve some third party service which is not freely...
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    London Euston travel centre (and elsewhere)

    How much of the rail network is outside the London area?
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    London Euston travel centre (and elsewhere)

    And something over a million people don't have one. The contention that "it's very easy" embodies the assumption that obtaining and maintaining an operational bank account is somehow easier than just handing over money in the normal way. It is not valid to assume that that third party...
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    Trivia: Quietest Signal Box Shift

    You have missed the point: that all those questions have already been answered at other locations, so the same procedures could have been adapted and adopted here. It's not a matter of solving a novel problem, it's simply a matter of recognising that you're only dealing with things that you...
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    London Euston travel centre (and elsewhere)

    It is not "easy". It requires the involvement of third party functionality which cannot be assumed to be available. Something over a million people do not have access to it and that number is likely to remain more or less constant for the foreseeable future. It is fashionable these days to treat...
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    Trivia: Quietest Signal Box Shift

    Just what I was thinking. After all it was common for boxes to be switched out when there wasn't enough weekend traffic to need the shorter sections, and also to use the "one engine in steam" method for long but barely used branches that only had a train once a week or something. You could...

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