More Illinois Traction

Discussion in 'Traction Thoroughfare' started by hudsonelectric, Jul 17, 2004.

  1. hudsonelectric

    hudsonelectric Member

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    Thanks to Chris for opening up this topic. The period from the late 1800s to the 1920s was the great 'Interurban Era' in the United States. Although there is a definite criteria to what constituted a trolley line and what constituted an interurban line, not all interurban lines were the same, either. One aspect of the Illinois Traction that seperated it from other lines was that it was built to standard railroad specifications.
    By using heavy rail, rock ballast, block signal equipment, large electric locos, passenger cars that rivaled steam railroad equipment, and freight rolling stock, the IT became a railroad and not a trolley line. The IT's passenger service included sleeping cars for overnight trains to St. Louis such as the 'Peoria' shown in the card below. The freight capabilities were just as impressive. The IT had a series of grain elevators on-line, built class-1 railroad rolling stock, and backed up the traffic with locos built to handle the load. The two cards below give you an idea of IT freight equipment.
    Another feature of the IT was the use of block signal equipment and control including the use of phones. This was important not only because of the regularity of collisions at that time, but the reluctance of regularly traveling passengers to ride anything but the most advanced and safest railroads. The card below shows a crew checking in with the dispatcher for train orders.
    As time went on, the automobile and steam roads made interurban lines irrelevant and, many being operated on tight budgets folded either prior or during the Depression of the 30s. The heavier-built roads that branched out into freight and operated with volume commuter traffic, the Pacific Electric, the Chicago, South Shore & South Bend, the Chicago, North Shore, & Milwaukee, the Illinois Terminal, survived into the post WW2 years. Not only was the 'Interurban Era' an important and fascinating apect in American railroading, railroads 'under the wire' were just as common a sight as steam railroads and makes for an aspect of model railroading that definitely 'stands out of the crowd'.

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  2. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    Great cards Russ.
    and info :thumb:
  3. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    The thing that make the I T most atractive to me the VERY tight radius they could negotiate ;)
    I have an old video of the street trackage ,, man wht modeling challanges it makes.
    I intend to start a diaram soon depicting this .
    I have the table already made :thumb: 38inch by 18inchs. got to get fold up legs and then I will have a go.
    This is a good picture of easy freight handling :D

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  4. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    Here is the I T artic in operation.

    For a free ride on my traction line :D
    Who can tell us the reasone for three poles?
    go on have a go :D

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  5. jmarksbery

    jmarksbery Active Member

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    :wave: To reverse direction. :D :thumb:
  6. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    sorry

    Good shot Jim, but no cigar :p
    I`ll still give ya a ride though :D
    btw the middle pole can be used in both directions.
  7. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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  8. ross31r

    ross31r Member

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    two trooley poles are to ensure current pickup around tight bends - if one came off the other would still be connected?
    probably not right but its my guess!
  9. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    part of your answer is near

    Another good shot, but no cigar Ross :D
    But ya still can have a free ride :p
    Tell ya tomorrow :thumb:
  10. ross31r

    ross31r Member

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    thats ok then cause i dont smoke, or drink! and is it me or does that second picture of the artic (the orange one) make the engine look really awkward?
  11. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    overhead

    The orange one is the streamline version the last shot is one of the opendeck type.
    Jim my mistake I ment Three poles not two.
    Of course the outer two were for revers direction It was the middle one I was throwing out for debate.

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  12. jmarksbery

    jmarksbery Active Member

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    :p Ok, does that mean I can have Ross's cigar and drink? I do both!!! :oops: :rolleyes: Jim
  13. interurban

    interurban Active Member

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    Ha Ha I`ll join you :thumb:
    Answer to the dumb question is.
    The center (third pole) is used to juice up the motors when pulling heavy loads, as one pole is only good for drawing so much electric, Thats one reason Pantographs where used on a lot of heavy Electrics. they alow a heavy juice supply. :D
    Trivia but what the heck :wave:
    Now were is that cigar