Air Car

Discussion in 'Traction Thoroughfare' started by bill937ca, Jan 28, 2007.

  1. bill937ca

    bill937ca Member

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    Air electric PCCs were built before WWII. PTC 2501-2580 were built in 1942 and some ran until January 1983.

    http://www.phillytrolley.org/2501-2580.html

    Below are photos of 2582 on the last day of Route 13 service on Chestnut Street before Route 13 moved into the trolley subway, 2520 at 16th and Erie in August 1966 and my IHP Air Car painted as PTC 2534.

    Some day I plan to get a TTC air car.

    Attached Files:

  2. bill937ca

    bill937ca Member

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  3. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

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    Those are sharp looking streetcars! :thumb:

    But why are they called AIR car? :oops::confused:

    Ron
  4. trainman4

    trainman4 Member

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    So what's the answer? I've heard them called PCC Cars
  5. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    Here you go.


    Pittsburgh Railways took "delivery of # 100, which was by most all accounts, the first delivered PCC car in the world"[1]. Production continued in North America until the early 1950s, with 4978 units built; thousands more PCCs and direct descendants were produced in Europe through the 20th century. The cars were very sturdy and many have lasted a long time. A handful still remain in service alongside modern vehicles, though most of the PCC cars functional today are operated by museums and heritage railways.

    The early pre-World War II versions of these vehicles were known as air cars and used a belt-driven air compressor to open the doors and operate brakes. Later models were entirely electric, replacing the noisy compressor and air brakes with electrically activated brakes on the motor shafts. Both pre-war and post-war cars use dynamic brakes to provide most of the stopping power. The air or electric brakes bring the car to a complete stop.

    Here are a few links .

    http://transit.toronto.on.ca/streetcar/4704.shtml

    http://www.phillytrolley.org/tracks1.html#aircars

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCC_streetcar:thumb: :thumb: :wave: :D
  6. bill937ca

    bill937ca Member

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    There were two types of PCC cars. Generally the cars built before WWII had air operated brakes and doors. Cars built after WWII generally were all electric. All electric cars were developed about 1940 as the PCC was refined, but I think there really was only one or two all electric orders deliveried before WWII. Some places like Boston preferred air-electric cars and continued to order them.

    Very few "air cars" have survived. All the remaining PCCs left in San Franscisco are post war all-electric cars.
  7. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

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    Chris and Bill,

    thank you for the explanation! :thumb:

    That's great about The Gauge: You always get answers! :):):)

    Ron
  8. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    To the best of my knowledge, the only TTC air car preserved is 4000 at Rockwood. The rest of the usuable ones were sold to Egypt and Mexico.
    I didn't learn to distinguish cars until the first load of TTC air cars were gone; 4199 is the lowest number that I know I actually rode.
    I think the air operated more than doors and brakes -- I think the gong, sanders and wipers were also air.
  9. bill937ca

    bill937ca Member

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    That's right. 4000 is the only one of 317 TTC air cars (including the 27 ex-Cincinnati air cars purchased second hand).

    Pennsylvania Trolley Museum has 1138, 1467 and 1799 (ex-1613) out of 565 Pittsburgh air cars.

    NCTM has Washington 1101, 1430 and 1540 out of 488 Washington air cars.

    Of 240 Philadelphia air cars, only two hulks are preserved.