• Wheel Inspection

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

Moderator: Robert Paniagua

  by ButchInAlaska
I have just started my apprenticeship in Fairbanks,Alaska for a Carman. I am working on my lessons and I have a confusing question. I am wondering if "Wheel Skid" and "Wheel Sliding" are the same thing or if there is a difference. If anyone could help me or point me in the direction to find the answer I would appreciate it. Thanks.

  by Aji-tater
Butch, the term "wheel sliding" I'm familiar with - failing to release a handbrake, a retainer left up, or air brakes which are not acting right, can cause wheels to slide causing flat spots. "Wheel skid" **could** be used to describe that condition or it could be something different (a skate, maybe?) - it's a new one on me.

You will find different parts of the country use different terms for things so maybe someone else has used that term. Try asking your instructor or some old timers there. When you get an answer, please post here so we can learn too. Good luck with your new job.

I was wondering if "skid", was the term used for the lateral motion of the tread, as it moves "sideways" across the railhead, in a curve? I don't have my books here, in the motel, but the trucks do many things, besides holding the wheels. They torsion, flex, twist and will also skew. These are extreme, in extreme curvature. The wheels don't run straight, in a curve, if they did, they would climb over the outside rail. Those wheels, while rolling, are also constantly shifting to the inside of the rail, as the wheel climbs up, off the tread, and onto the radius of the flange. I am wondering, if this constant movement, back onto the tread, is a skid? Easily seen, at very low speed, on a tight curve, it actually produces loud "popping" sounds, as it slides from the radius, back onto the tread. The other thought, was a wheel, that slowly slides, while still moving. A car moving at 20 mph, might have a dragging brake, that "skids" the wheel, at perhaps ony 8-10 mph, really a series of mini slides, and the result is built up material, on the tread, from the metal melting, being moved up, onto the tread, then cooled again. A sliding wheel, is just that. A wheel NOT rolling, and sliding along, usually burning a flat spot, with lost material being deposited on the railhead, not the wheel. Been many years, since I worked as a car knocker, and thankfully, I have forgotten most of the stuff, I learned. Probably created more questions for you, than answers, but I tried............ :P

"Old-Timers"? I thought you WAS an old-timer, Aji................... :P

  by Aji-tater
Some days it sure FEELS like it, LOL. I'm generally in great health but sometimes I ache in places I didn't know I had 20 years ago. :-)
  by ButchInAlaska
I appeciate your guys help. This is all new to me. The question in my lesson pertained to "improper use of a hand brake". I guess maybe the term "skid" was just another way of saying the wheel was sliding. I'll go and ask some of the guys at work to make sure. I really do appreciate the input. Maybe someday when I'm an Oldtimer I can do the same for someone else. I'll let you know what they say.