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Leaving Tokyo for Shimonoseki, the longest passenger haul then. The train was first introduced around 1905 and was expanded and upgraded, but still was running at max of 95 km/h. The place is "Yurakucho." The streets and the railway track are still there. The second car after the loco is a battery car, the third one a luggage/mail car.

For copyright reasons, I do not post images here, but see the link for pictures of trains passing the Usui Pass ca 1962.

I will become a patissier, God willing.

by tuasfait on Tue Oct 25th, 2005 at 09:30:00 AM EST
Holy cow!

Wonderful photos in that link! And is that line steep! If I see it right, the pushers are rack locomotives with third-rail supply, aint' they? I've never seen such a combination!

And those three and four locomotives after each other - are they permanently coupled?

As for the above photo: what is a battery car needed for behind an electric?

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Wed Oct 26th, 2005 at 07:32:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You caught that right. Yes, it was a third rack rail using special locos for that particular pass only. They call it the "apt"(sp) style. Two locos were permanently coupled as a basic unit.

A battery car is for the non-electric area. They changed the loco to a steam engine some 200 miles from Tokyo as the rest of the rail was not yet supplied with electricity.

It was a kind of mismanagement of resources, not unusual for a developing economy back then. For instance, we were able to build Zero fighters which dominated the air from 1940 to 1941. Nevertheless, its parts factories and assembly lines were not connected by paved motorways. They used horses and cows to haul the parts.

I will become a patissier, God willing.

by tuasfait on Thu Oct 27th, 2005 at 10:39:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They call it the "apt"(sp) style.

Must be system Abt - from the photos, hard to say, maybe a double Abt. Below, from left to right: rack for the Riggenbach, Strub, Abt (triple version), and Locher systems:

What I found very strange is an electric rack railway where electricity comes from a third rail on one side of the rails, rather than overhead wire.

A battery car is for the non-electric area... It was a kind of mismanagement of resources

Until recently, in Hungary, there were passenger trains pulled by Russian-built locomotives that lacked electric train-heating/board electricity generators - thus generator cars were used.

However, if the train first came from the capital Budapest pulled by an electric locomotive, and had to continue unelectrified, the generator car was only put on the train with the diesel (just this happens on the image above). Then again, I'm speculating, maybe the battery car on your train was charged from the overhead wire during the first 300 km?

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Fri Oct 28th, 2005 at 05:20:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I found this site on the Usui Pass line, from one photo it is clear it's a triple Abt. I see this line was converted to non-rack 42 years ago, then closed when the Shinkansen was built to Nagano - what a real shame! However, I also found a Japanese site, with a single line of English text, that suggested it'll be re-built by railfans! If I ever get to Japan, might definitely be worth a visit...

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 28th, 2005 at 05:39:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I went through the Usui pass only once in 1977, and there was no Abt rack anymore, only a powerful electric engine was added to the train to pull.

That pass is also very very beautiful when you drive.  Over the pass, there is a famous resort by the name of Karuizawa, which John Lennon and Yoko Ono loved.

Peace.

I will become a patissier, God willing.

by tuasfait on Sat Oct 29th, 2005 at 09:37:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
DoDo, I may have made a mistake. The second car may be a "steam heater" car, as the electric locomotive then had no heating for passengers(whereas a steam engine definitely had enough steam to supply heating). If so, the second car was loaded with a steam generator. Sorry for the mistake, but my point of mismanagement of resources still stands... well, sort of.

I will become a patissier, God willing.
by tuasfait on Sat Oct 29th, 2005 at 09:17:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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