Just curious about Steam loco question

Jerry Potter Aug 31, 2013

  1. Jerry Potter

    Jerry Potter TrainBoard Member

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    Don't know if this is the right place to ask but what is the purpose of the flat panels on the outside front of most more modern steam locomotives.
     
  2. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

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    Elephant ear style smoke lifters were most useful with low back pressure exhaust systems, which had problems with smoke tending to cling to the boiler and cab. Their usefulness on locos with high back pressure exhaust systems (most North American locomotives) was somewhat questionable.
     
  3. fitz

    fitz Staff Member

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    Bremner has it. There were other systems tried such as the skyline casing on a lot of SP's steamers, including the 4449, to keep smoke out of the cabs, and "lift" it up so as not to obscure the crew's vision. UP's 844 sports the "elephant ears" that you asked about.
     

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