Re: Best gauge


Michael J
 

--- In LRRSA@yahoogroups.com.au, Frank Stamford <frank.stamford@...>
wrote:

it is 1435 mm.

No doubt about that in my mind, every deviation from it was an economic
disaster!
Hmmm, well not sure about that. Some narrow gauge railways did make
profits, and many standard gauge lines didnt. At the end of the day
the narrower the gauge the more route miles for your buck, and the
broader the gauge the faster you could go and the bigger load you
could carry.

But all those economic disasters produced some wonderful fascinating
material for organisations like the LRRSA to write about, and for
numerous
societies around the world to preserve.
No doubt about that.

George W. Hilton's book "American Narrow Gauge Railways" (Stanford
University Press, 1990) covers this subject very well In the early
sections of that book he covers the world-wide development of different
gauges, and goes into the economics of it very thoroughly.
I don't think economics was ever the end all. Today, especially here
in Australia, we are prepared to accept cross subsidies, government
support and some cobbled together systems to try and get
telecommunications to all. A hundred years ago it was rail transport.
If you couldn't afford a standard gauge line, you made do with a
narrow gauge line, and someone paid the ongoing costs.

Cheers,

Michael

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