Technical Reports

Metroliner Truck Improvement Program

  • 01
  • Sep
  • 1980
AUTHOR: Robert M. Seely
OFFICE: RPD
REPORT NUMBER: FRA/ORD-80/74
SUBJECT: Evaluation
KEYWORDS: Improved Metroliner Truck Design, Road Tests, Ride Quality, Sumiride and Firestone Air Springs
ABSTRACT: This report summarizes the results of design and ride testing procedures followed in developing a Metroliner Truck Improvement Program. The Metroliner cars had been used in high speed Corridor service for nearly ten years and upgrading the truck suspension to modern standards for improved passenger ride was considered to be very desirable. Preliminary design projections indicated this could be accomplished at comparatively modest cost and with potential savings in maintenance costs by modifications only to the primary and secondary spring systems. One carset of trucks was modified for use of all steel equalizer springs in the primary suspension and Sumiride bolster diaphragm type air springs in the secondary suspension at the Amtrak Wilmington shops. Ride tests were conducted and it was found that best ride improvement was obtained with a minimum of damping, both vertically and laterally. A second series of tests were conducted using Firestone 4-ply double convolution type air springs; however, ride improvement was not as great as with the Sumiride springs. Comparative test ride data was also collected, analyzed and evaluated by means of several ride quality criteria methods by Ensco, Inc. under contract supporting the FRA-Office of Passenger Systems. This information is covered in FRA/ORD Report 78-31, Volumes I, II and III.

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