Cog  Geared Steam Locomotives 

Geared Steam Locomotive Works


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mt_washington_tip_top-t200.jpg (7951 bytes)
mt_washington_waumbek-t200.jpg (11307 bytes)
mt_washington_gears&axle&wheels-t200.jpg (10057 bytes)
^ Wheels, drive axle, & gears

mt_washington_cog-t200.jpg (12798 bytes)
^ Cog Gear

Mt. Washington Cog Railway (builder & owner) - Mt. Washington, New Hampshire

The company currently has 7 steam powered "cog" geared locomotives in operation.  These very unique steam locomotives in conjunction with special track-work  were very specifically designed to transport passengers to the summit of Mt. Washington on a railroad with grades as steep as 37.4%.    

Quoting Paul Forbes of The Mount Washington Cog Railway site, the locomotives work as follows:

"The locomotives are coal fired and operate at approximately 150 pounds per square inch. The steam is directed to two pairs of driving cylinders that are connected to the drive axle which turns a pinion gear. The brake drum is also located on this shaft. The pinion gear turns an axle shaft on which is keyed the spur gear, cog gear, and ratchet gear. The ratio of the pinion gear to the spur gear is 5 1/3 to 1. The pawl is engaged on the trip up and prevents any backward movement should the locomotive suffer a failure of some part. The clinking metallic sound that is heard on the trip up is the pawl bouncing on the ratchet gear, a reassuring sound! The coaches also have a pawl and ratchet. There are two axles on the coaches onto which a cog gear, ratchet gear and a brake drum are keyed. The wheels on the locomotives provide support and guide it on the rails. The wheels simply turn on an axle and are not driven. All driving is accomplished by the cog gear meshing with the rack. The locomotive proceeds up the mountain tooth by tooth.

 

In the past, the railway operated several other steam driven cog geared locomotives.  They are pictured on Paul's site mentioned below and above.   The site's extensive detail of this unique railway and locomotives is beyond the scope of what can practically be accomplished here-in.     Please visit his site for more information on these.

Source:    Paul Forbes of The Mount Washington Cog Railway site - photos from same. 


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This page changed January 01, 2013 06:56:05 PM