Track gauge question

Discussion relating to the operations of MTA MetroNorth Railroad including west of Hudson operations and discussion of CtDOT sponsored rail operations such as Shore Line East and the Springfield to New Haven Hartford Line

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, nomis, FL9AC, Jeff Smith

TDowling
Posts: 529
Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2008 4:36 pm
Location: West Point, NY

Track gauge question

Post by TDowling »

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?

DutchRailnut
Posts: 22426
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 8:02 pm
Location: released from Stalag 13

Re: Track gauge question

Post by DutchRailnut »

no all the railroad at that time were standard gauge.
1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

Retired Triebfahrzeugführer. I am not a moderator.

Marty Feldner
Posts: 385
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 7:50 pm
Location: Warwick New York

Re: Track gauge question

Post by Marty Feldner »

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

User avatar
ConstanceR46
Posts: 463
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 10:57 pm

Re: Track gauge question

Post by ConstanceR46 »

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

TDowling
Posts: 529
Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2008 4:36 pm
Location: West Point, NY

Re: Track gauge question

Post by TDowling »

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

DutchRailnut
Posts: 22426
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 8:02 pm
Location: released from Stalag 13

Re: Track gauge question

Post by DutchRailnut »

not really, basically got dictated by it already being standard in Europe.
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

Retired Triebfahrzeugführer. I am not a moderator.

ExCon90
Posts: 4615
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2008 1:22 pm

Re: Track gauge question

Post by ExCon90 »

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.

ebtmikado
Posts: 558
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 11:55 am
Location: Madison, CT

Re: Track gauge question

Post by ebtmikado »

Nothing common carrier freight on either side of the Hudson was wide or narrow.
The last Maine two-footer shut down in the 1940s.

Lee

User avatar
GirlOnTheTrain
Posts: 600
Joined: Mon May 25, 2015 7:19 pm

Re: Track gauge question

Post by GirlOnTheTrain »

Is that what is now the narrow gauge museum in Portland now? Went there once as a kid.
"I am no longer just a girl on the train, going back and forth without point or purpose."

Moderator: Amtrak, MTA Metro-North, MTA New York City Subway/PATH/NYC Area Light Rail

dieciduej
Posts: 622
Joined: Tue May 09, 2006 9:37 am

Re: Track gauge question

Post by dieciduej »

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
JoeD
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
JoeD

Member of IEEE, BSRA, ERA, BERA, SPH&TS, SFRH&MS, RGM&HS, UPHS, NHRHTA, NE PRRT&HS and PRRT&HS

This message was sent from a DEC VT100!

DutchRailnut
Posts: 22426
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 8:02 pm
Location: released from Stalag 13

Re: Track gauge question

Post by DutchRailnut »

think this tread has proceeded past the derail.
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

Retired Triebfahrzeugführer. I am not a moderator.

Return to “MTA Metro-North Railroad and CtDOT Passenger Rail”