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A Romance of Lake Wakatipu

Note 31.—The Wooden Railway

Note 31.—The Wooden Railway.

James R. Davis, C.E., in a report to the Superintendent of Southland, dated the 27th July, 1863, sums up as follows what he designates "the benefits to be anticipated from the adoption of the wooden rail instead of iron lines:" (1) The rapidity of construction where timber is convenient, and therefore not requiring any imported materials to lay the permanent-way; (2) the grip or bite given to the driving-wheels by wooden rails, rendering deep cuttings, heavy embankments, &c., less frequent, and consequently reducing the cost of construction; (3) reducing the cost of the superstructure of the rails nearly four-fifths; (4) reducing the wear-and-tear of engines and carriages about 20 per cent. by the absence of oscillation, concussion, &c., which in iron railways is so detrimental to the machinery; (5) the additional comfort to passengers by their easy transit along their journey; and (6) the diminished expense of forming the railway and working the trains, enabling the railway to carry goods and passengers at low rates.

By Authority: George Didsbury, Government Printer, Wellington.—1892.

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