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General discussion about railroad operations, related facilities, maps, and other resources.

Moderator: Robert Paniagua

I don't know about the "best way", but if I have a guy riding, to the hitch, I will shove against a minimum, to hold the slack action, to a minimum. Sometimes, you need a little more, but a minimum seems to be sufficient, for most guys. You can also wind on the handbrake, on the last car, or two, to obtain similar effects. Just don't get 'em sliding......... :P
We can still get on/off moving equipment here, so the one car "safety stop" doesn't come into effect, but I still don't want to "launch" somebody, unless he really deserves it.............. :-D

  by keotaman
GOLDEN-ARM wrote: ...
I will shove against a minimum, to hold the slack action, to a minimum.
That works well. I remember, when I caught the "wire train" job, I used to reduce the BP about 6 lbs, just brings the shoes up gentle to the wheels. Then it didn't shakeup the guys riding the platform car, 15 feet up in the air, gauging the wire, etc. Move, stop, move, stop, for hours!

  by slchub
Great points. I've used it since you mentioned it last time. I wonder how the guys do once you apply the independent brake to stop before your joint. Each locomotive is different and it seems a small application of the independent will apply 10 pounds on one unit and 20 or 30 on another. I guess I still need to get the finese of it's use with more experience. I know the older guys (and I had two 30+ year guys) put handbrakes on the shoves so maybe they did not get flung about as I applied the independent. I only wish they would have had us train on some locals during our training instead of all road trips. I've not had a conductor or brakeman mention my switching skills yet so I guess I am okay.

You shouldn't have to use the jimmie, if you have air on the train. Using the Jimmie, quickly, while simultaneously shutting off the power, will result in that "launch", I mentioned earlier. You should have slowed sufficiently, as you approached the hitch, to not really need the independant, except to hold the locos, once that hitch was made........ :wink:

  by UPRR engineer
slchub wrote: I only wish they would have had us train on some locals during our training instead of all road trips. I've not had a conductor or brakeman mention my switching skills yet so I guess I am okay.
That aint good.

  by slchub
Great points. I'll have to try it now.

I agree UPRR, but you how it goes, you tell CMS that you have never worked the job and you need a Pilot, and they say "Well, you are a fully qualified engineer, so no Pilot!"

  by UPRR engineer
Heres the way you know if your doing right, if theres air threw your cut, and your conductor has to ask for the pin, your doing it wrong.

Really, that is pretty scary SLCHUB. Im surprised you didnt spend any real amount of time on a job with some work on it. Having to learn it on your own, AHH NO!!! :wink:

If you worked the jobs i work, and only used the independent, you would be getting some negative feed back.

  by UPRR engineer
SnoozerZ49 wrote:
As far as power braking goes our hoggers don't really do it in the yards. We have a lot of work to do and slow hitches or "parlor car" hitches really slow us down. What is the best use of power braking that yo are talking about?
What "I" call power braking, is applying the independent while in power "HELLASTOP" when switching cars around. Ive used that method before when spotting cars at the tipple, or putting tanks right on the mark, but thats it. Makes for a rough ride, we use to have to change our own brake shoes on the motors when i was a contract switcher, that could be another reason i hate to see engineers using that method to control there speed. :-D When i do handle cars with out air, i try to build up enough speed so i can coast the full distance to the stop, if its a down hill move i try to give it enough time at a coast that the slack stretches out on its own or just give it a little brake. Slightly up hill moves same thing, i have enough speed while coasting that the grade slows the cut so theres not a big change in the slack. Hopefully you used something like that there SLCHUB, a little power, idle, throw the independent on, back to power, throw the brakes on again, that aint good.

Another thing i found that bad hogs have a problem with while shoving back with air set on the cars, at some point they go to idle with too much set, anything they do after that to fix there "$%^& up" isnt good. At some point in long big shoves i always notch off a bit just to see how good my set is working out for me. If i feel initial isnt enough at that point i'll draw off a few more (2 or 3 lbs. at a time) till i feel i have her where i want her. Giving the brakes enough time is the trick.

We have a couple jobs here also there buddy where slamum, crashum, and dragum is the name of the game. Last time we (or I) ended up shoving a loaded sand car up on to a concrete divider used as a bumping post. Most of the time a good hog can tell what they want by the tone in there voice. I must have mistaken his anger in someone pulling pins in that track as a sign to hurry up. lol

When i was a contract switcher the mine has a few car repair tracks. We used to leave about a twenty foot gap in between each hopper when spotting them up. When it came time to make a pull, we used the term "Stackum And Rackum". :-D to get them together.
Last edited by UPRR engineer on Mon Jul 24, 2006 1:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

  by slchub
Hmmmm..well, I got no complaints from the 30 year guys last week when I worked the local for a week, so I must have figured it out somewhat. Although they did mention pin a couple of times. Yeah, during the FIT phase they only put us on the road and did not allow alot of the class to get on with the locals. So here we are learning on our own. I think you may have interpreted my use of the jimmie as my only way of braking. I'd set air to the cut if we had air and use it once we needed to come to a complete stop. But I see now where the problem lies. But to have an old head jump on board and show me the ropes would have been great. I think I might have also said how do you stop your cut if aren't laced up with air? But I do appreciate the feedback!

  by SnoozerZ49
I'm just back from class and all full of "knowledge". Our instructor identified power braking as applying brakes while traveling over 20mph while still taking power. The emphasis was on using dynamics and minimizing the use of air. In my case though we don't have any dynamics on our engines. I think the point of the instructor was to make us realize the huge consumption of fuel dragging a train down a hill with the brakes applied.

The simulator I practiced on had a screen that measured buff and draft forces. It was interesting watching the simulator forecast and measure the slack throughout the train. I'm afraid I spilt my coffee and dropped my donut a few times while on the simulator :wink:

  by slchub
UPRR & Golden. I didn't mention this fact and I thought about this on the trip to Milford tonight. When I was using the jimmie, we were also in the yard where the grade is 1% and the branch line is even greater. So you really cannot let the air go else your in a world of hurt and if you grab anymore air to stop it is too much and trying to pull 20 full loads of cement from a joint with additional air is too much for the SD40's and the knuckles I'm sure. I guess that is where I was using the jimmie. See, I listen to the wise ones and think about it while training along the tracks.

  by UPRR engineer
Hows the hog training going now buddy? Ya at the point where you want to see what "you" can do with a train?
One of the two things i wanted to do, was learn how "run it in" for a cold one down Puru Hill. I was lucky enough to have a good, "thirsty" hoghead to teach me. He was pretty nervous the first time not being at the controls as we flew down the hill with a straight shot in, but he "learned me good". Alot of conductors here dont like the hill with me when were going right in, keeps them awake. Had a more then a few trains that didnt quite feel right, a little more out of control then even i like....

Any of those Salt Lake/Ogden hogs give you a good ride down Puru there SLCHUB? I know alot of those guys go down the hill the same speed they climbed Bryan, dynamic brake lovin... :-D