South Downs Railway

Modern Image, Computer Controlled

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Reliability for computer control

Rolling Stock Reliability

Computerised control demands reliable operation. The rolling stock has a major part to play!

  1. Locomotives need reliable pick-ups. Headlight flickering is a plausible way to check for pickup issues; the light should stay solidly lit all the time.
  2. All wheels need to be checked on a "back to back" gauge. Simply insert the gauge and adjust till the wheels are set correctly. it is surprising just how far out they can be.
  3. Bogies need to be able to turn freely. If they foul the body - for example because of "flash" on the body or bogie - then it may stick and derail at a corner.
  4. Couplings must not dip into the well between the rails. There are obstructions there on points etc.
  5. The rolling stock must not be so closely coupled that the buffers "bind" on tight radius bends. I have bends down around 11 inches (270mm) and a buffer-buffer distance of 3.5mm is an absolute minimum.

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