History Main / SteamNeverDies

11th Sep '16 9:57:33 AM Jhonny
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** They also forget a couple of other important points. One, that the steam engine depended on the availability of large numbers of people willing to do dirty jobs for little money, and they aren't around any more. Two, that the thermal efficiency was appalling, and not susceptible of improvement. Innumerable devices to improve efficiency were tried, but the invariable result was that the efficiency gain was small, while the maintenance requirements increased enormously, and it just wasn't worth it; the same would still apply to any new-design locomotive. In effect, not only does Steam Never Die, but ''The Rocket'' never died - the failure of any change to that basic design meant that even the latest and most advanced steam locomotives were still recognisably just ''The Rocket'' writ large.

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** They also forget a couple of other important points. One, that the steam engine depended on the availability of large numbers of people willing to do dirty jobs for little money, and they aren't around any more. Two, that the thermal efficiency was appalling, and not susceptible of improvement. Innumerable devices to improve efficiency were tried, but the invariable result was that the efficiency gain was small, while the maintenance requirements increased enormously, and it just wasn't worth it; the same would still apply to any new-design locomotive. In effect, not only does Steam Never Die, but ''The Rocket'' never died - the failure of any change to that basic design meant that even the latest and most advanced steam locomotives were still recognisably recognizably just ''The Rocket'' writ large.large.
** There is another aspect: While coal is indeed more plentiful than liquid fuels and coal ''cannot'' be used for internal propulsion engines (Rudolf Diesel initially intended his engine for coal dust - neither he nor any of his successors could get it to work), however, Coal can be converted into liquid fuel via the [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fischer%E2%80%93Tropsch_process Fischer Tropsch process]] which has been known since the 1920s. While its energy efficiency is ''atrocious'', it is still more than made up for by the better fuel efficiency of internal combustion compared to steam. Indeed, many countries that for one reason or another had no access to oil used exactly this process, be it Apartheid South Africa, NazisWithGnarlyWeapons or EastGermany, though the latter also kept using steam engines almost until the very end.
11th Sep '16 9:51:11 AM Jhonny
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* The UK kept building new steam locomotives well into the 1960s while most of Europe was going over to diesel or electric locomotives, mostly out of economic necessity. Oil had to be expensively shipped in from overseas, and overhead electrification required a huge up-front investment that was completely off the table in the early days of UsefulNotes/NationalRail; what hadn't been wrecked by German bombs had been run ragged supporting the war effort. But what we ''did'' have was plenty of coal.

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* The UK kept building new steam locomotives well into the 1960s while most of Europe was going over to diesel or electric locomotives, mostly out of economic necessity. Oil had to be expensively shipped in from overseas, and overhead electrification required a huge up-front investment that was completely off the table in the early days of UsefulNotes/NationalRail; [[UsefulNotes/NationalRail British Rail]]; what hadn't been wrecked by German bombs had been run ragged supporting the war effort. But what we Britain ''did'' have was plenty of coal.
10th Sep '16 1:12:13 AM Morgenthaler
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* The UK kept building new steam locomotives well into the 1960s while most of Europe was going over to diesel or electric locomotives, mostly out of economic necessity. Oil had to be expensively shipped in from overseas, and overhead electrification required a huge up-front investment that was completely off the table in the early days of NationalRail; what hadn't been wrecked by German bombs had been run ragged supporting the war effort. But what we ''did'' have was plenty of coal.

to:

* The UK kept building new steam locomotives well into the 1960s while most of Europe was going over to diesel or electric locomotives, mostly out of economic necessity. Oil had to be expensively shipped in from overseas, and overhead electrification required a huge up-front investment that was completely off the table in the early days of NationalRail; UsefulNotes/NationalRail; what hadn't been wrecked by German bombs had been run ragged supporting the war effort. But what we ''did'' have was plenty of coal.
24th Aug '16 9:28:33 AM OtterOverthinker
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** During one particularly bad British winter in 2009, hundreds of passengers found themselves stranded after the weather disabled the electrics on modern trains. Enter the [[BreakOutTheMuseumPiece restored steam locomotive]] ''Tornado'' which could run quite happily without electricity.
15th Jul '16 9:57:35 AM TimberRidge
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* [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] and [[JustifiedTrope justified]] by the Woolfonts & Chickmarsh Railway in the ''Literature/VillageTales'' series. Which was cunningly begun as a heritage steam railway, community-owned, and then microfranchised into an indispensable link in the national network (although with traffic limitations so as not to disturb the villages), to the great profit of the said villages.
5th Jul '16 2:50:22 PM DanaO
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* The hard-core belief of Professor [[MeaningfulName Steamhead]] on ''ComicBook/NinjaHighSchool''. To show how hardcore he is, his rival on the MadScientist field is a man who supports ''solar energy''.

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* The hard-core belief of Professor [[MeaningfulName Steamhead]] on ''ComicBook/NinjaHighSchool''. To show how hardcore he is, his rival on the MadScientist field is a man who supports ''solar energy''. However, it's not so much Professor Steamhead acknowledges no other energy sources as that he ''does'' use and consider them - as degenerate (in the mathematical rather than moral sense) forms of steam power. Likewise he considers all fields of scientific study other than [[OmnidisciplinaryScientist "Steamology"]] to be necessary prerequisites to the serious understanding of steam.
5th Jul '16 1:05:41 PM ScrewySqrl
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*** of particular note in the USA is [[http://www.strasburgrailroad.com The Strasburg Railroad]], an actual operating short line that uses only restored and preserved steam engines.
11th May '16 10:53:01 AM Jhonny
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** German class 52, known as the ''war locomotive''. While ''[[UsefulNotes/DeutscheBahn Deutsche Bundesbahn]]'' in West Germany retired them ten years after the Second World War, these simple and durable engines seen good use well into the 1980s in East Germany's ''[[ArtifactTitle Deutsche Reichsbahn]]'' and Polish ''PKP'' (as class ''Ty2''). The latter operated them even in early 2000s. And Russian Railways still keep some of them (class TE - ''captured locomotive'') in case of war.

to:

** German class 52, known as the ''war locomotive''. While ''[[UsefulNotes/DeutscheBahn Deutsche Bundesbahn]]'' in West Germany retired them ten years after the Second World War, these simple and durable engines seen good use well into the 1980s in East Germany's ''[[ArtifactTitle Deutsche Reichsbahn]]'' and Polish ''PKP'' (as class ''Ty2'').''[=Ty2=]''). The latter operated them even in early 2000s. And Russian Railways still keep some of them (class TE - ''captured locomotive'') in case of war.
11th May '16 10:52:31 AM Jhonny
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** German class 52, known as the ''war locomotive''. While ''[[UsefulNotes/DeutscheBahn Deutsche Bundesbahn]]'' in West Germany retired them ten years after the Second World War, these simple and durable engines seen good use well into the 1980s in East Germany's ''[[ArtifactTitle|Deutsche Reichsbahn]]'' and Polish ''PKP'' (as class ''Ty2''). The latter operated them even in early 2000s. And Russian Railways still keep some of them (class TE - ''captured locomotive'') in case of war.

to:

** German class 52, known as the ''war locomotive''. While ''[[UsefulNotes/DeutscheBahn Deutsche Bundesbahn]]'' in West Germany retired them ten years after the Second World War, these simple and durable engines seen good use well into the 1980s in East Germany's ''[[ArtifactTitle|Deutsche ''[[ArtifactTitle Deutsche Reichsbahn]]'' and Polish ''PKP'' (as class ''Ty2''). The latter operated them even in early 2000s. And Russian Railways still keep some of them (class TE - ''captured locomotive'') in case of war.
11th May '16 10:52:00 AM Jhonny
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** German class 52, known as the ''war locomotive''. While ''Deutsche Bundesbahn'' in West Germany retired them ten years after the Second World War, these simple and durable engines seen good use through decades in East Germany's ''Deutsche Reichsbahn'' and Polish ''PKP'' (as class ''Ty2''). The latter operated them even in early 2000s. And Russian Railways still keep some of them (class TE - ''captured locomotive'') in case of war.

to:

** German class 52, known as the ''war locomotive''. While ''Deutsche Bundesbahn'' ''[[UsefulNotes/DeutscheBahn Deutsche Bundesbahn]]'' in West Germany retired them ten years after the Second World War, these simple and durable engines seen good use through decades well into the 1980s in East Germany's ''Deutsche Reichsbahn'' ''[[ArtifactTitle|Deutsche Reichsbahn]]'' and Polish ''PKP'' (as class ''Ty2''). The latter operated them even in early 2000s. And Russian Railways still keep some of them (class TE - ''captured locomotive'') in case of war.
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