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Railway Dictionary



This page is an A-Z of railway terms

(Some are my own, others are from the dictionary)


 

Commutator: The commutator is the slotted copper segments at the end of the armature on an electric motor, which transfers the current from the brushes to the coils wound on the armature (definition courtesy of Hornby)

 

Fishplates: The small pieces of metal that are use to connect one piece of track to another. They also allow power to be transferred between rails.

 

Frog: In most points this is the black triangular section of a point which is isolated to stop the power crossing to the wrong track and shorting the circuit out.

 

Gauge: Gauge is the name given to the distance between the rails. "00" gauge which this site mainly deals with (although most is compatible with HO) scale is 1:76.

 

Loading Gauge: Loading gauge designates the space required either side and above the track that needs to be clear, so that either the locomotive and its carriages can pass without hitting anything.

 

Points: Also called turnouts. These are used to allow trains to move from one track to another.

 

Tender: A wagon that runs behind a locomotive for the purpose of carrying fuel and water.

 

Transformer: In terms of model railway. An electrical device that affects the transfer of electricity from one circuit to another with a change in voltage, current, phase, or other electric characteristic.

 

Wheel base: The distance between axels or the centre of a bogie, which ever is present.

 

Locomotive Class: The two/three digit number that is unique to a particular train model. The numbers after the class number denote the production number.


 

This page is a work in progress

 

 

 

 

  

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