Easter Party – The Blanca

One With Vino


I’m following up on last weeks post, where I paired the Easter gathering appetizers with a splendid red.

This week it’s the conclusion of the party with the main course, and of course a white wine (or in this case a blanca) that would hopefully go over well.


If you guessed I brought a Spanish white, then you would win the door prize, if I only  had a prize to give.  However, per a few of the guests in attendance the Palma Real Rueda from my pals at Total Wine, was a hit and a de facto winner.  I only say that because the party included lots of beer, liquors, and other various adult beverages.   My bottles seemed to be a sentimental hit with a select few.  That just means more for us.


With such a substantial and abundant meal pictured above, the vino has got to be light…

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Question on New Haven wreck cranes?

The big New Haven Railroad cranes were built by Industrial Brownhoist. They were actually locomotive cranes (ie self-propelled). They were all black; cabs, and the “car” the cabs were mounted on. The 3 cranes were D-100: located at  New Haven, D-101: located at Providence, D-102: located at Oak Point.

Any movement of the 230-ton crane under its own power would generally be for the immediate area only.  When towed to and from wherever, its maximum speed was 25 m.p.h.

Keep in mind that these big cranes had numerous restrictions on where they could not operate.

Extracted from Time Table No. 6, effective 2.01 A.M., Sunday, October 26, 1958:

Maximum Speed for Particular Equipment
All derricks – 25 M.P.H.
Additional restrictions for Derricks D100, D101 and D102 are as follows:

  • When in transit, smokestack and auxiliary cab light must be removed.
  • One car to be placed between derrick and engine handling train.
  • Oak Point – Must not be operated beyond shore line at float bridges.
  • South Mt. Vernon – Must not be operated through third rail shoe rake-off blocks 940 feet west of S.S. 20.  If required to go beyond this point, rake-off blocks must be removed temporarily.
  • New Rochelle Yard – Must not operate on yard lead track across Cedar Street Bridge No. 5.05, 1970 feet east of New Rochelle station.
  • Port Chester – Must not exceed 10 M.P.H. at Bridge 13.75, King Street, first underpass east of passenger station.
  • Stamford – Must not exceed 10 M.P.H. at Bridge 20.86, Greenwich Avenue, first underpass entering Stamford from the west.
  • Bridgeport – Must not exceed 10 M.P.H. between Burr Road, S.S. 55, and East Bridgeport, S.S. 63.  Must not operate on Old Botsford Main north of Congress St., Bridge No. 0.26 first underpass north of passenger station.
  • Branchville and Ridgefield – Must not be operated.
  • Must not be operated between (Dike St.) Olneyville and Pascoag; East Providence and Bristol; River Point and Arkwright (Woonsocket – Winter St. yard and Slatersville and Hamlet Branch); Groton Old Main; Norwich C.V. connection.  Must not exceed 10 M.P.H. between Norwood Central and Valley Falls, and over Shaws Cove drawbridge.
  • Must not be operated between:
  •     Boston and Back Bay
  •     Boston Terminal and South Bay Jct.
  •     South Bay Jct. and Braintree
  •     Neponset and Milton
  •     Braintree and West Quincy
  •     Matfield and West Bridgewater
  •     Westdale and East Bridgewater
  •     Forest Hills and West Roxbury
  •     Readville and Dedham
  •     Weir Jct. and Dean Street
  •     New Bedford and Watuppa
  •     Franklin Jct. and Milford
  •     Medway and Woodside
  •     Lancaster Branch
  •     Framingham – Prison Branch
  • Must not exceed 10 M.P.H. between Canton Jct. and Canton, Buzzards Bay and Woods Hole, Braintree Highlands and Randolph.

Cranes D-100 to D 102 weighed more than an I-5 4-6-4 Hudson —  In working order with coal and water they weighed 379,000 lbs. vs 365,300 lbs for an I-5 in working order without a tender.  The weight on each I-5 driver was 64,300 lbs.only slightly more than the 63,400 lbs on each axle of the front crane truck.  Is there any wonder there were restrictions.

Readers might be interested to know that the New Haven used the terms Derrick and Crane interchangeably.  For example, in the Mechanical Department diagrams D-100 to D-102 are called 230 Ton Capacity Steam Locomotive Cranes while the 150 Ton Capacity D-3 to D-6 diesel powered units are called Wrecking Derricks even though all have similar booms and operated similarly (D-3 was not self-propelled).  There was also the H series (H-47 to H-57) which stoood for Hoist (built by American Hoist and Derrick Co.) which were labeled Loco Cranes.  Webster’s dictionary isn’t much help in identifying the difference between Derrick and Crane but Webster says Derrick originated with the name of an 18th century English hangman — derrick is an obsolete term for hangman or gallows.

And a Crane is a wading bird with long legs.”
 – So does that mean a “Loco Crane” is one that has mental health issues?

Chicago South Hyperloop (No. 002) Hyperloop History Begins

Spectators in the Nevada desert have witnessed the first public test of a Hyperloop test vehicle as it accelerated from zero to over 100 miles per hour in a few seconds before running out of track.

The vehicle, built by Hyperloop One (formerly Hyperloop Technologies), is intended to show off that the technology publicized by SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk, is viable. The firm wants to build a system that could make the trip from San Francisco to Los Angeles in around 30 minutes.

The plan for “Hyperloop” involves using a variant of maglev technology to power the passenger and cargo capsules, but the entire system is enclosed in a steel tube that has been pumped out to produce a near vacuum. The reduced air pressure allows the vehicles to move at nearly the speed of sound while using very little propulsive power.

Today’s test didn’t use vacuum tubes, and instead was an open-air test to show the speed and propulsion system’s viability. The next stage will be to build a fully enclosed test track to iron out the engineering challenges in getting a full Hyperloop up and running.

All of the technology needed to make Hyperloop transport a reality exists, but it’s putting it all together in a working system that’s the tricky part. At today’s demonstration Hyperloop One said it had secured VC development funding and partnerships with firms including engineering conglomerate AECOM to investigate using the system for cargo transportation in Los Angeles and Long Beach ports.

“AECOMs partnership with Hyperloop One has the potential to transform the movement of both people and freight,” said Mike Burke, AECOM’s chairman and CEO. “Our expertise working with cities, building port infrastructure and delivering highly challenging transit projects provides the depth of knowledge essential for safely and effectively developing and maximizing a new mode of transportation.”

Shifting cargo is going to be the first stage of Hyperloop One’s plans, but the firm also plans to start moving people on the system once the final details are worked out. It has entered into a feasibility study with FS Links for a pilot scheme linking cities in Sweden and Finland.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Hyperloop One to create entirely new possibilities for living and working on a Hyperloop-connected corridor,” said Mårten Fröjdö, CEO of FS Links. “The sheer speed of Hyperloop will provide the Nordic region and Scandinavia with a huge economic and employment boost.”

The elephant in the room among all the hype is, however, cost. Building a Hyperloop system is going to be very expensive – Musk’s estimate for the Los Angeles to San Francisco route comes in at $6bn, a little beyond VC funds and most private companies, making government help seem sensible.

The US is currently considering putting billions into high-speed rail links across the country, but rail is an old – if proven – technology. What Hyperlink One and its competitors want is a slice of that government money and it’s testing like this that could get it for them.

But beware the hype in Hyperloop. Over the coming months companies will be spouting lines about how soon this technology is coming, but there are still significant hurdles to be overcome before a viable business can be built.


Iain Thomson



Rail Product News – Focus on Rail IOT

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Rail Product News

Protran: Protracker Train and Personal Alert Devices
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Siemens: Ruggedcom virtual machine environment Siemens has launched the Ruggedcom VPE1400 (Virtual Processing Engine), a virtual machine environment for its Ruggedcom RX1400 router. This software enables customers to run their own Linux operating system and applications on the RX1400 at the network edge. Data gathered during energy or network traffic monitoring operations, for example, can be pre-processed in the VPE1400 before being transmitted by the RX1400 to a data center. This can help reduce the volume of transmitted data and increase the stability, efficiency and performance of the network, Siemens said. This virtual machine can be used in numerous industries, especially those requiring reliable communications in harsh environments like rail READ »

Lat–Lon: Compact tracking unit
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Duos Technologies: Centraco 3.0 enterprise level software management platform
Information Systems Associates Inc.’s wholly owned subsidiary Duos Technologies, a provider of intelligent security analytical technology solutions, announces the release of centraco 3.0, an enterprise level software management platform that incorporates the traditional Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) functionality with a comprehensive Enterprise Information System (EIS) software suite. READ »