The most perfect locomotive

nw-mailing-list at nw-mailing-list at
Fri Sep 8 08:14:28 EDT 2006

One of the places where N&W engineers would "air" out their engines was a
long stretch pf straight track east of Petersburg, Va. Once as a child, I was
riding an eastbound passenger train pulled by a class J and standing in the
vestibule of one of the 500 series cars. I was there to get a better view and
to hear the engine blow for the crossings. A trainman passed through and we
chatted about various things. I pointed out to me a clue to the ride of the
car on our going very fast. He explained that when the car bounce or sway
changes from side to side to a more up and down movement, it is really going
fast. I asked him for his guess on our speed and he snapped back, "Over a
hundred, you can bank on that!" And he smiled!

Aubrey Wiley
Lynchburg, Va.
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