The vibration I was referring to in my post was not a vibrating stirrup but
a vibrating mirror which would reduce the vision of the engineer who was
trying to see signals passed by a trainman.
Because of the position of the engineer in the cab of an F unit he would, by
necessity, have to use the mirror to see signals in order to be able to also
reach the throttle and brake handles.
While you tiny trainmen will "do what they are damned well told", from
practical experience, I would not be happy to work off an F unit if there
was an alternative. Depending on the period modeled you could have a five
man crew available (Engineer, Fireman, Head brakeman, Rear Brakeman, and
Conductor) so switching on a local freight might not require a lot of
In a more modern era, assuming your railroad has bought F3 A units because
of a cheap price and aesthetic appearance rather than a more practical,
operational reason then you might be working with a three man crew
(Engineer, Conductor, and Brakeman) in which case a lot of riding on freight
cars or engines would be required when switching out cars to get them in the
proper order or to set out and pick up at an industry. Thus the danger
aspect of working off an F unit comes into play (climbing up into the cab of
the trailing unit to ride back to couple cars is far too time consuming and
tiring to be a practical alternative to riding the stirrup).
Anyway, you are the executive-in-charge on your miniature railroad and your
employees will do what they are told or go look for work at a railroad that
uses road switchers for local drills. The loss of your employees is offset
by your knowledge that your little train guys will most likely have to
relocate to a distant state, lose their seniority, sell their little plastic
(or laser cut company houses), take their, even tinier, children out of
school in the middle of the school year, and say good bye to all their tiny
friends... And all because you insist on using F3 A units to switch your
With the reduction in labor costs the railroad's stockholders will be
overjoyed and will, most likely, vote you a huge bonus...enough to buy more
F3A units for your expanding roster.
The Lackawanna Terminal Railway.
We replicate railroad management,
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