Red Devil (interurban)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Red Devil
19660813 05 C&LE 119 Ohio Railway Museum-3 (8682437478).jpg
C&LE #119 at the Ohio Railway Museum in 1966
In service 1929-53
Manufacturer Cincinnati Car Company
Number built 20
Operator Cincinnati and Lake Erie Railroad
Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Railway
Lehigh Valley Transit Company
Specifications
Car length 44 feet 9 inches (13.64 m)
Width 8 feet 10 inches (2.69 m)
Wheel diameter 28 inches (710 mm)
Maximum speed 90 miles per hour (140 km/h)
Weight 48,000 pounds (22,000 kg)
Traction motors 4 × 100 horsepower (75 kW)
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
Notes
[1]

The Red Devil was a high-speed interurban streetcar built by the Cincinnati Car Company for the Cincinnati and Lake Erie Railroad (C&LE) in 1929–1930. They saw service throughout Ohio in the 1930s. After the failure of the C&LE in 1939 they saw service with the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Railway (CRANDIC) and the Lehigh Valley Transit Company. Several have been preserved.

Design[edit]

The Red Devils were among the first lightweight interurban trolleys with side plates of aluminum. They had a toilet, luggage compartment, and up to 44 seats.[2][3][4] The construction had some weaknesses. The riveting of aluminum plates to a steel frame produced an electrolytic reaction that gave rise to corrosion in the side panels and the front and rear dashers. The C&LE replaced some of the aluminum plates with steel.[5]The cars featured Art deco styling and a distinctive bright red paint scheme. Half of the cars were outfitted as parlor cars with first class seating.[6]

Service[edit]

The Red Devil's commercial speed was 90 mph (145 km/h).[7] Not only was it the fastest interurban of its time, it outpaced even the fastest conventional train in commercial traffic, the 80 mph (129 km/h) Cheltenham Spa Express and was almost as fast as the German 160 km/h (99 mph) Fliegender Hamburger, which was inaugurated in 1933. (see Land speed record for rail vehicles#Scheduled trains).

In 1930, a race was organized between a Red Devil and a plane. The stunt's result was that the interurban car ran at 97 mph (156 km/h) – and won.[8][9]

Competition with a growing population of automobiles riding on state paved highways and the financial impact of the Depression led to a decline in C&LE passenger business. The freight business collapsed as the C&LE's interchange partners went out of business.[10] The C&LE ceased operations in 1939.[11][12] The innovative Red Devils were sold after abandonment: six to the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Railway (CRANDIC) and thirteen to the Lehigh Valley Transit Company.[13][14]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Keenan 2001, pp. 6-10
  2. ^ Koffmann 1980
  3. ^ Hilton & Due 1960, p. 207
  4. ^ Keenan 1974, p. 42
  5. ^ Keenan 2001, p. 7
  6. ^ Middleton 1961, pp. 67-69
  7. ^ Alex Campbell. "The Columbus Interurban Terminal". Retrieved 29 January 2011. 
  8. ^ Middleton 1961, p. 147
  9. ^ Timothy Collins. "Bring Back the Interurban". Daily Yonder. Retrieved 29 January 2011. 
  10. ^ Harwood 2000, p. 230
  11. ^ Keenan 1974, p. 238
  12. ^ Hilton & Due 1960, pp. 178-189
  13. ^ Keenan 1974, p. 205
  14. ^ Middleton 1961, p. 24

References[edit]

External links[edit]