1902 Encyclopedia > Railway, Railways (Railroad) > Passenger Carriages

Railway, Railways
(Part 35)


Passenger Carriages

The early first-class carriages weighed 3 1/4 tons, the bodies or upper parts being 15 feet long, 6 1/2 feet wide, and 4 feet 9 inches high, divided into three compartments, to hold six passengers each, or eighteen in all. They now weigh from 8 to 13 tons each, and are from 20 to 30 feet in length and from 8 to 8 1/2 feet wide. Carriages have until recent years been placed almost all on four wheels; but six wheels on three axles are now generally in use. A modern first-class carriage, 28 to 30 feet long with four compartments, gives 7 to 7 1/2 feet of total length for each compartment, as against 5 feet in the early carriages. Second and third class carriages, in length from 28 to 31 feet, are divided into five compartments, each from 5 feet 7 inches to 6 feet 2 inches long. Saloon carriages are occasionally used, so called because two or more of the ordinary compartments are merged in one. Second-class carriages originally were destitute of cushioning, hard and square, on the nearly obsolete policy of making them uncomfortable in the hope of inducing passengers to travel first class. The London, Brighton, and South Coast Railway Company in 1857-58 were the first to supply comfortably padded seats in their second-class carriages, and the receipts of that company were in 1858 materially augmented in consequence. Third-class carriages have been improved, under the simulating example of the Midland Railway Company, who abandoned their second-class carriages, and raised their third-class stock to an equality with the second-class vehicles of other lines. But there are yet lines of railway on which the third-class carriages are little better than obsolete first and second class carriages converted into third-class.

Passenger luggage brake-vans are made open (for the most part) inside for passengers' luggage. They are fitted with a dog-box or small enclosure from side to side with doors at both ends, and with projecting sides, glazed, to accommodate the guard and afford a view of the train from end to end. A pair of doors are placed in each side for luggage. In some designs a separate compartment is partitioned off for the guard, in other cases a compartment of a passenger carriage is allotted for luggage and for the guard. The luggage van is fitted with a powerful brake; it should be fitted with three pairs of wheels. Horse-boxes are constructed to carry three horses.

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