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The One-rail System For Railways And Canals

The One-rail System For Railways And Canals image
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The knotty problem of clieap transportation, as well as the vexed question of doublé tracks in narrow places, is likely to have á practical solution, should the new ene-rail system, which is said to be working suocessfully in France, where it originated, be adopted in 'this country. The track is a line of light rails, spiked in the center with light ties, with two banis of macadam or longitudinal planks lj'd on the ground parallel with the rail. A road of this character is claimed to possess the advantage of costing SI. 000 less per mile to construct than the narrow-gauge now so popular, besides allowing trains to turn very sharp curves as easily as on a straight line, the resistance of the cars being four-ñfths of what it is on the narrow gauge track with two rails. The engines are furnished with steel cog-wheels, an improvement which is said to allow them to draw heavy loads, at small speed, in all kinds of weather, and more than a narrow-gauge engine of doublé weight They are built with or without cog-wheels, and are far superior in power to the ordinary locomotive. Their driving-wheels have rims from eight inches to one foot wide, surrounded by a band of india-rubber. The locomotives and cars have two center wheels, one in front, one behind, which are doublé flanged, and run on the center rail, guiding the train and supporting the whole weight of the cars. The side wheels, one each side, merely maintain the equilibrium and hardiy touch the macadam or wood on which the driving wheeis run. This system is indorsed by the French Government, the inventor having a right to build several hundred miles of cheap raüroads as feeders to main lines, also the concession of the transportation for fifty years on the canal de Bourogne. Here the track is laid upon the towpath, and with a small locomotive weighirjg iour tons, at three miles an hour, a boat containing '200 tons cargo can be drawn. This system is said to be preferable to the screw steamer, for there is no loss of power due'tothe "slip" oi the screw, which is about forty-nine per cent on an average. A tank locomotive of this system, weighing 8.3 tons, wül haul, at four miles an hour, 600 tons of cargo, requiring sixty horse-power, while a screw steamer would take eighty-four horse-power. If the new oue-rail system will do what the inventor claims, canal and railway transportation bids fair to be revolutionized, and a new era in railway building, opening up liitherto inaccessible places, will be


Old News
Michigan Argus