Stupid Question..What is a Shay?

Discussion in 'Logging, Mining and Industrial Railroads' started by C&O Steve, Dec 31, 2006.

  1. C&O Steve

    C&O Steve New Member

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    What is the differnce beween a Shay and a regular engine? I can see they look differnt in pictures.

    What is a Climax?
  2. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

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    Named for its designer, a logger named Ephraim Shay, a Shay is powered by cylinders mounted vertically on one side of the locomotive to drive a crank shaft similar to that of an internal combustion engine which in turn rotates drive shafts the mesh with beveled gears on the drive wheels of one side. It made for a slow, powerful locomotive that could take the tight turns and bumpy trackage of lumber roads.

    A Climax is similar in that its cylinders are inboard and they power the axles much like a car's drive train. Another design has the cylinders mounted high on the boiler to flywheels that then connect to the drive under the locomotive.

    A Heisler does it with a "V-twin" arrangement with cylinders mounted at an upward angle and perpendicular to either side of the boiler.
  3. Seaboard

    Seaboard Member

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    Shay's, Climaxes, And Heislers are all considered to be gear driven locomotives that use gears and drive shafts instead of regular push rods. The funny thing is there names describe what they sound like and how they run.
  4. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    And all these geared locos have only one gear -- low.
    I think the Shay races get up to 15 or 20 mph sometimes.
  5. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

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    deleted as duplicate post
  6. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

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  7. fsm1000

    fsm1000 Member

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  8. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

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    On ereal advantage of geared locomotives is their ability to climb steep grades. The Cass Scenic Railroad in West Virginia - a preserved logger, I think - has a stretch of 11% grade. Guess what they use to work it...
  9. RobMack

    RobMack New Member

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    Shays et al

    The replies you've received very accurately cover the descriptive phase of "geared steamers".

    There is an "active" Shay in Lima, Ohio where Shays where made and in Northeast Pa. there's a working Heisler. Heislers where made there.
  10. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

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    It's a type of buggy pulled by a single draft animal - the famous one-horse shay...:D
  11. rhtastro

    rhtastro Member

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    There's a working wood fueled 2-truck Heisler for the Sumpter Valley RR in Sumpter, OR. I worked as a switchman and brakeman for the RR several times in the 1992-94 period. It's still used and is kept in very good condition. It could be the only wood fueled model still in operation, but I'm not sure. It takes a lot of wood to run it and so their oil fueled Mike is more often used these days on the weekend tourist runs. Bob