Track gauge question

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Track gauge question

Postby TDowling » Sat Dec 16, 2017 9:24 pm

This may be a silly question, but when the MTA/conrail took over the bankrupt railroads, including those west of hudson, did each of them have a different track width? I know the Erie used the widest gauge at 6'. Did the Fed's set a standard or did they just use different equipment to accommodate?
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby DutchRailnut » Sat Dec 16, 2017 9:47 pm

no all the railroad at that time were standard gauge.
1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby Marty Feldner » Sun Dec 17, 2017 3:16 am

The Erie converted to standard gauge (4' 8.5") in 1880, so it hasn't been an issue for well over a century.
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby ConstanceR46 » Fri Dec 22, 2017 2:34 am

All major railroads were standard by 1900. Nothing common carrier freight on either side of the Hudson was wide or narrow.
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby TDowling » Fri Dec 22, 2017 4:05 pm

OK. Thats what i thought. Historically, does anyone know if the standard gauge width was initiated by the federal govt back then?
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby DutchRailnut » Fri Dec 22, 2017 4:11 pm

not really, basically got dictated by it already being standard in Europe.
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby ExCon90 » Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:16 pm

Originally the individual railroads made their own choice of gauge, with many adopting the European standard; the Federal Government got into it when Abraham Lincoln ruled that the Overland Route (Union Pacific and Central Pacific) would be standard gauge. (Maury Klein, in his history of the UP.) At that time many railroads in the South still had ~5-foot gauge, but after that the handwriting was on the wall.
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby ebtmikado » Tue Jan 02, 2018 11:38 am

Nothing common carrier freight on either side of the Hudson was wide or narrow.


The last Maine two-footer shut down in the 1940s.

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Re: Track gauge question

Postby GirlOnTheTrain » Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:41 pm

Is that what is now the narrow gauge museum in Portland now? Went there once as a kid.
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Re: Track gauge question

Postby dieciduej » Tue Jan 02, 2018 5:14 pm

GirlOnTheTrain wrote:Is that what is now the narrow gauge museum in Portland now? Went there once as a kid.


The Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Co. & Museum in Portland is 2 Foot. Over this past summer I visited the Wiscasset, Waterville and Farmington Railway (WW&F), also a 2 Foot gauge, in Alna, ME.

WW&F_#9.jpg
WW&F Ry #9


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Re: Track gauge question

Postby DutchRailnut » Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:16 pm

think this tread has proceeded past the derail.
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