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  • General discussion about locomotives, rolling stock, and equipment
General discussion about locomotives, rolling stock, and equipment

Moderator: John_Perkowski

  by asdfjkl
Hi all - a quick question about rails - I have heard them referred to as "70 lb rail" for instance. Does this mean it is 70 lbs per foot? What is typical anyways? thanks in advance

  by LCJ
That's per yard.

  by DutchRailnut
70 Lbs rail is basicly yard rail, most mainline rail now a days is betweeen 112 Lbs and 150 Lbs a yard

  by asdfjkl
thanks all

  by fglk
Last edited by fglk on Thu Aug 19, 2004 7:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by SD Shortline
South Dakota has a consideralble amount of 60lb and 65lb rail, and get this 286,000 cars can be handled on both.

  by Justin B
On UP's Tidewater Sub by my place there are still some segments of rail laid down in the 20's and 30's that are something in the neighborhood of 70-80 lbs at the most. And UP sends C60ACs and SD90's down there with unit grain trains.

Amazing that those little rails are still holding up.
  by shortlinerailroader
We are in the process of preparing a port branch to handle 268,000lb (not 286) cars loaded with pipe. These will be handled in 40-car trains with those 80' TOFC/COFC flat cars. Most of this branch is 112lb rail, but there is a 1/4 mile section in the middle with 65lb. We are replacing ties on this section because without the proper support, this rail would snap under such weight. The ties under this rail need to be changed more frequently than those under the heavier rail, what with the 112lb having a larger base and not being as prone to flex. We spiked the plates with 6 spikes per tie, which should help it last a little longer by keeping the plate more firmly attached to the tie.

Hey, Justin...are those UP ties wood or concrete? I bet that is some good looking track at any rate.
  by K4andT1lover
I was examining the rails on the old Reading Bethlehem branch line near my house recently. The mainline rails are 130 lb from around 1925. (They are marked on the rails). But I have noticed that some of the old sidings (not used for years) are either 90# or 100# (according to the dimensions, anyway). For the RDG, that would mean they should be about 10-20 years older.

Is it common to make the sidings lighter gauge? Or they really older rails that never got upgraded?