Friday, April 03, 2015

Seemed like a good idea at the time

I probably came across this at Ian Visits blog. This manner of moving people never caught on and I am not really sure why. The same principle is used to get trains up and down steep hills, called a cog railway or rack and pinion but in reverse as the fixed part is on the track and the moving part within the train.

The spacing of the spiral adjusts the speed of the train, so at the station the spiral would be finer than when speed was required away from the station.

It is worth reading the blurb below the clip if you want an explanation of why there are so many exotic people in the London footage. Open the clip in You Tube to do so. Astonishingly, it was so easy, even women could manage to use the train. At 1.04 you can see a bloke having a bit of a muck around.  At 1.15 on you can see the spiral in operation.


18 comments:

  1. I can't get past the elegance of most of the outfits...

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    1. EC, I thought the clothes looked later than 1925. They were very nicely dressed including those from overseas.

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  2. Fascinating to watch but not practical nowadays with the need for disability access and also I imagine its a painfully slow service in these days of speed.

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    1. Victor, I guess it would have travelled at about 25 mph away from the stations. Not too bad and far better than we can do on many of our roads.

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  3. There are so many exotic people in the London footage because London is the centre of the world... of the universe! [My children are London born and the happiest years of my adult life were living there].

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    1. Psst Hels, don't say that when you are in Paris. London is a great city.

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  4. What an elegantly exotic montage! Perhaps one of their screws was loose, and they decided a rail was better than a screw?

    I'd love to watch your face whilst walking through a transport museum, I daresay you would enjoy yourself immensely.

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    1. Jac, don't set me up to start on about screws. I can out pun the best of them. I have been in a few transport museums and by far the best one was in Tokyo. I like the history of transport and how it affected the way cities were built, its effect on modern society and its efficiency. Ok, I am a bit nerdy about it too.

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  5. Interesting concept, the Spiral. Possibly it didn't catch on because building the spiral all over the country would cost too much. Laying down regular tracks would seem the cheaper option, no need for all those concrete ditches etc.

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    1. River, perhaps ok for inner suburbs though. I doubt it would cost much more than train tracks and the electricity infrastructure.

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  6. The people are nicely dressed and seem well behaved. i did see the man have a bit of fun, he made me smile :)

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    1. Yes WA, apparently even in 1925 people skylarked a bit. The chicks had pretty clunky heels though.

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  7. You.. nerdy about train/bus travel.. never :) Enjoyed the video a lot Andrew, so interesting to see dress styles change. I like the idea of the screw system, I prefer the slower approach :)

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    1. Nice work Grace but not very French.

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  8. It makes perfect sense but of course bloody health and safety would never allow it these days. What if a super skinny child (as if they exist any more) were to slip in between the train and track. Sometimes we go backwards with ideas and technology.

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    1. Funny Craig, all kids were skinny when I was young, except for the the fat ones. I so rarely see skinny kids now.

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  9. It's brilliant but before its time, and its application is purely local. I could see it running along Swanston Street from, say, Flinders Street Station to Melbourne Central, it would take a huge load off the trams with beneficial side-effects on the tram services. It is a guaranteed regular service, as in every five seconds, and not subject to disruptions elsewhere. The question of DDA is valid but how about thinking 'outside the box'? Make the platforms move at the speed of the train - a travelator like those in shopping centres. Moving parallel to the train and at the same speed it would be easy for a wheelchair or mobility scooter to access the platform and, once there, turn 90 degrees and drive straight onto the train carriage. While both platform and train are moving, they are stationary relative to each other.
    Yeah, too simple. (But maybe not so with a modicum of thought and planning.)
    On the other hand, running this along Swanston Street could possibly (OK, would certainly) affect cross-traffic on East-West streets.
    I still reckon it's worth a 21st Century review.

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    1. Chris, I like the way you are thinking. The speed it which it travelled at the platform was pretty slow. I am sure a wheelchair bound person could get on board. Yes, dedicated route from Flinders Street to Melb Cental. Bugger the cross traffic. What are doing driving in the city anyway.

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