Driving wheel

From Academic Kids

Missing image
Steam_locomotive_driving_wheel.jpg
A driving wheel on a steam locomotive.

On a steam locomotive, a driving wheel is a powered wheel which is driven by the locomotive's pistons (or turbine, in the case of a steam turbine locomotive). On a conventional, non-articulated locomotive, the driving wheels are all coupled together with side rods (also known as coupling rods); normally one pair is directly driven by the main rod (or connecting rod) which is connected to the end of the piston rod; power is transmitted to the others through the side rods.

On an articulated locomotive or a rigid-framed locomotive with divided drive, such as a Duplex locomotive, driving wheels are grouped into sets which are linked together within the set.

Driving wheels are generally larger than leading or trailing wheels. Since a conventional steam locomotive is directly driven, one of the few ways to 'gear' a locomotive for a particular performance goal is to size the driving wheels appropriately. Freight locomotives generally had driving wheels between 40 and 60 inches (1016 to 1524 mm) in diameter; dual-purpose locomotives generally between 60 and 70 inches (1524 to 1778 mm), and passenger locomotives between 70 and 100 inches (1778 to 2540 mm) or so.

In the Whyte notation, driving wheels are designated by the middle number or numbers in the set. The UIC classification system counts the number of axles rather than the number of wheels and driving wheels are designated by letters rather than numbers.

Other uses of the term driving wheel

The driving wheel or drive sprocket on tracked vehicles (such as tank or bulldozer) is a large chain wheel that moves the track and rotates it around it.

See also

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