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Articulated bogie

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Articulated bogie

Bogies allow the wheels to more closely follow the direction of the rails when travelling around a curve in the railroad.

An articulated bogie is any one of a number of bogie designs that allow railway equipment to safely turn sharp corners, while reducing or eliminating the "screeching" normally associated with metal wheels rounding a bend in the rails. There are a number of such designs, and the term is also applied to train sets that incorporate articulation in the vehicle, as opposed to the bogies themselves.

Conventional bogie

Railway bogies, from the small models used on trams to the largest models on container cars, generally consist of four metal wheels. These are connected together using two axles to form two sets of two connected wheels. The two sets of connected wheels are then connected together in a chassis. Depending on the terminology, the entire assembly, or just the chassis, is known as a bogie.

Bogies are normally connected to the train car above using a rotating connection - although this is not universal. When rounding a bend in the rails, the pivot allows the bogie to rotate independently of the train car. This is important, because the two ends of the train car are pointed in different directions with respect to the rails. Without the rotation, rounding a bend of sufficiently small radius will cause the wheels to "ride up" onto the rails, and potentially derail the car. Even at much lower radii, the same effect causes the flanges on the wheels to rub against the rails, causing the characteristic "screeching" sound.

Articulated bogie

If one considers a single bogie "up close", it resembles a small rail car with axles at either end. The same effect that causes the bogies to rub against the rails at longer radius causes each of the pairs of wheels to rub on the rails and cause the screeching. Articulated bogies add a second pivot point between the two axles to allow them to rotate to the correct angle even in these cases.


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References

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