Scientific American—August 5, 1876

A new steam hand car has recently been designed and constructed by Mr. Jay Noble, master mechanic for M. M. Buck & Co., of St. Louis, Mo., which is excellently adapted for the use of division superintendents, road masters, and others whose duty requires them to make frequent inspection of railway lines. The machine, as shown in the engraving, resembles an ordinary hand car, except that the propelling power is steam and not muscle. The floor is about 10 inches from the ground, and is beneath instead of above the axles. The boiler, which is about 3½ feet in height with a diameter of 18 inches, is placed in the center of the car, while the cylinder, which is horizontal, is at the right hand side and near the floor. The cylinder is 3½ x 6 inches, and the boiler is intended to carry a pressure of 140 lbs. of steam. The body of the vehicle rests on rubber springs and rides very easily without lateral motion.

Seats are arranged in front and rear, of sufficient size to accommodate six persons. The water tank occupies a space under the back seat and holds about a barrel of water, which is sufficient to run the car 40 miles. On the left of the boiler, the coal pan is arranged in a space about 2 feet wide, and carries all the fuel necessary for a day's run.

On a recent trial trip, the run from St. Louis to Carondelet, a distance of seven miles, was made in fifteen minutes. The general design of the car, which is quite tasteful and at the same time well adapted to withstand severe usage, is plainly represented in our illustration. The idea developed in this miniature steam car might be adapted to other purposes than the one designated. We should think every railroad company would find such a steam car useful for various purposes.

The inventor states that under ordinary circumstances the cost of fuel will not exceed 75 cents per day. The general arrangement is excellent and reflects much credit on the designer.

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