Wednesday, April 10, 2024

soft exteriors of cars aren't sturdy in a crash

From Eric Peters at

Cars used to be able to take a hit. They weren’t as “safe,” it’s true. But the price you’re paying for that – literally – comes in the mail every six months or once a year, whenever the insurance mafia sends you the bill for it.

The bill – which has gone up by 26 percent on average over just the past 12 months – is based on the potential repair costs of fixing your late-model vehicle. Or the other guy’s. It doesn’t matter.

What does is that most of the cars on the road are soft on the outside. Their exterior panels are almost wafer thin, especially hoods. Raise yours and see. It is probably supported by a pair of small struts – because that’s all that’s needed to support a wafer-thin piece of metal you could probably bend by hand. You can imagine how much it will bend if you run into something.

“Bend” isn’t the right word, either. Bends can usually be fixed.

What will happen is the wafer-thin hood will fold up like a piece of cardboard – which might actually be preferable as hood material since cardboard is a lot cheaper to replace than a piece of wafer-thin stamped steel or aluminum.

Continue reading

Wednesday, April 3, 2024

a 1965 Porsche C356 cabriolet once owned by Janis Joplin


tunneling is complete on the L.A. Metro’s D Line extension

Two LA Metro trains (an AnsaldoBreda P2250 model and a more recent Kinki Sharyo P3010 model from the late 2010's) on the A line cross near LA Union Station. (Geoff Churchman pic))

from the L.A. Times

After five years of construction and numerous delays, crews have finished tunneling operations for the 9-mile [14.4 km] westward expansion of the Metro D Line, which will stretch from the current terminus in Koreatown to a new Westwood/VA Hospital Station.

The expansion project will add seven Metro stations and a high-speed connection from downtown Los Angeles to the Westside, according to L.A. Metro’s website. Construction of the $9.5-billion project began in 2019.

“As one of L.A.’s busiest areas, the Westside is the region’s second-largest job center,” Metro says on its website. “We are closer than ever to connecting busy areas and improving travel for everyone who lives, works and plays in L.A. County.”

Monday, April 1, 2024

new NSW D set interurban trains

 One of the new sets at the Newcastle Interchange station. (Geoff Churchman pic)

from Wikipedia:-

The NSW TrainLink D sets, also referred to as the Mariyung trains, are a class of electric multiple units (EMU) being built to replace NSW TrainLink's Intercity EMU fleet. The trains will operate on services from Sydney to Newcastle, Lithgow and Kiama, allowing the retirement of NSW TrainLink's V set fleet, and freeing the H set fleet for reallocation to Sydney suburban services.

The first trains were delivered in December 2019. After a protracted dispute between the government and the drivers' trade union over their safety, the first are scheduled to enter service in 2024.

Thursday, March 28, 2024

cyclists who watch too much 'Star Wars'

Crown Zellerbach Alco RS-3 switcher on Vancouver Island, Canada

These Bo-Bo type were made in the first half of the 1950s from May 1950 to August 1956  -- info

This photo is probably from the 1970s. Crown Zellerbach, a pulp and paper company based in San Francisco, was the subject of a hostile takeover in the mid-1980s and ceased as a distinct entity not long afterwards.

DR 41 1225-6 between Camburg and Dornburg in 1985

The East German DR was still using steam at this stage, but not very often.  See earlier posts.

Colombia railway network 1961 stamp

According to Wikipedia:-

The Colombia railway network has a total length of 3,304 kilometres (2,053 milies). There are 150 kilometres (93 miles) of 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+1⁄2 in) standard gauge connecting Cerrejón coal mines, Tren del Cerrejón, to the maritime port of Puerto Bolivar at Bahia Portete, and 3,154 kilometres (1,960 miles) of 3 ft (914 mm) narrow gauge of which 2,611 kilometres (1,622 mi) are in use.

The state-owned railway company, Ferrocarriles Nacionales de Colombia (National Railways of Colombia), was liquidated in the 1990s. Since then passenger rail service in Colombia is provided only as tourist steam trains on the Bogotá savanna railway, now called Turistren, and between Bogotá and Zipaquirá, and a general daily passenger service around Barrancabermeja, and its surroundings (Puente Sogamoso, Garcia Cadena, Puerto Berrio, and Puerto Parra), provided by Coopsercol.

Soviet L class 2-10-0 steamers at Sortavala, Russia

No less than 4,199 of them were built 1945—1955.

More info

'Sopwith Pup biplane of No. 8 Squadron. Royal Naval Air Service' art

Obviously WW1 era, by aviation artist Neil Hipkiss.

'yes it's wallpaper but I intend to replace it with real books like this one'

Somaliland stamps 2010, featuring Soviet electric locomotives

1985 Lincoln Continental Givenchy

Givenchy is a French luxury fashion and perfume house.

1947 Cushman Model 52 Scooter

More pics and info

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

ships and a steam locomotive at the Mariupol docks, pre-WW1

On the Asov Sea, part of Ukraine for much of the 20th century, now part of the Russian controlled Donbass.

1978 Lincoln Continental Sedan

NSW 46 class electric with a Newcastle Express at Epping, 1980

This would have been just after the extension of the overhead from Gosford to Newcastle was opened the year before.  For lots more, see the book Railway Electrification in Australia and New Zealand.

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Sunday, March 24, 2024