Staten Island Line to Electrify (1924)

From nycsubway.org

Electric Railway Journal · Vol. 63, No. 20 · May 17, 1924 · pp. 776-777.


The Proposed Staten Island Multiple-Unit Cars Seat 71 and Will Be Operated In Trains of Six or Seven.

Staten Island Line to Electrify. Multiple-Unit Trains Will Be Operated on 600-Volt Third Rail -- Details of the Contact Line and Cars Are Given.

Plans are well under way for the electrification of the Staten Island Rapid Transit Railway, St. George, Staten Island. This railroad now furnishes rapid transit steam railroad service over a system covering the shore lines of Staten Island, which constitutes the Borough of Richmond, New York City. The portion to be electrified at the present time comprises about 40 miles of track and includes the passenger service on the East Shore Division and the Perth Amboy Division, consisting of lines between St. George, South Beach and Tottenville.

The direct-current third rail system will be employed, at a nominal working pressure of 600 volts. The preliminary plans, which received the approval of the Public Service Commission, State of New York, May 1, call for the over-running protected type of third rail, with a special high-conductivity 150-lb. section, similar to that in use on other rapid transit lines in New York City. The location of the third rail and the arrangement of the protection are shown in one of the accompanying drawings. Standard glazed porcelain insulators with japanned malleable iron caps will be used to support the rail, which is so heavy that it does not require additional anchoring. The insulators will be held in position by japanned malleable iron centering cups, held to the ties by lag screws.

The third rail ties are 9 in. x 7 in. x 9 ft. 6 in. long and project 2 ft. 10-3/4 in. from the gage line of the track rail. The center line of the insulator will be 3 in. from the left edge of the tie, in order to leave room for the bracket supporting the protection board, the center of which will be 3-1/4 in. from the line of the insulator. This bracket will be of pressed steel and will be held to the tie with two lag screws.

Previous to the electrification the present 75-lb. and 80-lb. track rails will be replaced by 100-lb. A.R.A. standard T-rails, and the section between Prince's Bay and Pleasant Plains, which now is single track, will be double tracked and grade crossings will be eliminated.

The type of car which probably will be adopted is shown in another illustration. It is a multiple-unit car of all-steel construction, approximately 67 ft. long and 10 ft. wide over the door sills. The width at the eaves will be 9 ft. 11 in., and over the monitor deck 5 ft. 9-1/4 in. It will seat 71 passengers. There will be double doors at the center and a wide side door at either end of the car. These doors will be electro-pneumatically operated. In addition there will be doors in the ends of the cars to permit passing between the cars. Each car will be equipped with two motors. A novel feature in multiple-unit construction is the use of a form of maximum-traction truck, there being a pair of driving wheels of 34-1/2-in. diameter and a pair of trailer wheels of 31-in. diameter on each truck. The truck bolster will be offset 34 in. from the center line, as shown in the drawing. Multiple-unit control will be installed to permit operation of trains of from one to ten cars, and initially the longest trains will be of six or seven cars.

While the source of electric power has not been definitely decided on, it is probable that energy will be purchased from the Staten Island Edison Corporation. The tentative plans cover a 33,000-volt, three-phase, 60-cycle power supply, to be delivered to substations erected by the railway, where the high-tension current will be stepped down and converted to direct current at 600 volts. Several of the substations will be of the automatic or remote control type, and the proposed substation layout is designed to provide power facilities for a considerable increase over present requirements.

The change to electric operation will necessitate the installation of practically an entire new signal system, the present direct-current signals being replaced by a modern alternating-current signal system.

The electrification will result in a substantial increase in schedule speed of the trains as compared with the present steam service and will afford a high-class rapid transit service to the rapidly growing residential districts of the island.

The Staten Island Rapid Transit Railway is owned by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad and the electrification is being handled under the direction of J. H. Davis, electrical engineer of that company.


Section of Third Rail, Insulator and Protection Board for Staten Island Electrification.


Electric Railway Journal, McGraw Hill Company, Digitized by Microsoft, Americana Collection, archive.org.

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