At its peak, the Santa Fe system was comprised of about 11,000 miles of rail stretching from Chicago in the east to Los Angeles in the west, serving 11 states in-between. In this volume, Santa Fe rail test car veteran W. Brock Lowman chronicles the company’s efforts to develop rail detection equipment, from the early American Railway Association magnetic test cars of the 1920s to Santa Fe’s custom Chevrolet C-20 Suburban Hi-rail vehicles with ultrasonic testing used into the early 1990s. The author also takes the reader through a typical work-day testing rail. Included is an overview of typical rail faults and a primer on ultrasonic testing. Over 130 photos, plus roster of Santa Fe’s rail testing vehicles.
Part 1: A Short History of Rail Testing
Part 2: The Beginning of Ultrasonic Rail Inspection
Part 3: Late Modern Era of Santa Fe Rail Testing, 1974-1991
Part 4: The End of the Program-Final Thoughts
App. A: Figures and Photos-Rail, Steel and Defects
App. B: Ultrasonics Explained