Locomotives for Matheran Railway.
Railway and Locomotive EngineeringAugust,
The Matheran Railway in India is a small line of 2 ft. gauge
constructed up the hillside of a pleasure resort in the near vicinity
of the city of Bombay. The railway has a total length of 12 miles,
and starts from Neral Station, on the Great Indian Peninsula Railway,
132 feet above the sea level, and rises to the Matheran terminus,
2,495 feet. The maximum grade is 1 in 20, and to work the trains
over this line some small tank engines have been supplied by Messrs.
Orenstein & Koppel, which are of novel construction. They
have six coupled drivers 30 ins. in diameter, which are not connected
direct to the axles in the usual way, but are mounted on hollow
cylinders or sleeves, through which the driving axles pass, the
motion being communicated through ball joints at the centre. The
larger of our line illustrations shows the complete arrangement
of one of these engines, while the other represents the details
of the driving gear and hollow or sleeve axles.
These little engines, when delivered in India, were fitted
with the "counter-pressure" retarding device. This brake
apparatus, known as the Riggenbach system, is so designed that
when the engine is running down grade with the valve gear reversed
and the blast pipe closed air is drawn into the cylinders through
the cylinder cocks and pumped into the steam pipe, and so acts
as a retarding agent. The pressure is regulated by means of a
valve in the cab under the control of the engineer, who can supply
water from the tanks to the cylinders to cool them when necessary.
This arrangement, we understand, did not work satisfactorily,
and has since been replaced by the automatic vacuum brake.
The side tanks have a capacity of 450 imperial gallons for
water, but this is not sufficient for the present system of working,
and is supplemented by a small tender. The total weight of the
engine in working order is 39,000 lbs.
A few of the principal dimensions are as follows:
CylindersDiameter, 11 and 13-16 ins.;
stroke, 13 and 13-16 ins.
BoilerLength of barrel, 7 ft. 10½ ins.;
diameter, 3 ft. 2 ins.
Heating surface, 452 sq. ft.;
grate area of fire-box, 7 sq. ft.; working pressure, 175 lbs.
per sq. in.
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