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Santa Fe Trailway's Victory Liner

 
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frankie



Age: 71
Joined: 01 Feb 2011
Posts: 699
Location: St. Peters, Mo.

PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 6:00 pm    Post subject: Santa Fe Trailway's Victory Liner Reply with quote

I've always been fascinated with the Victory Liner built and operated by Santa Fe Trailways during the war years to transport wartime workers in and about Wichita. The tractor-trailer unit, made of wood, was unique for the fact that it lack vertical articulation with very little space between the tractor unit and the bottom of the trailer.

Photos courtesy of the Motor Bus Society for educational purposes only.




I never could find documentation on how the bus negotiated up and down movement where road conditions allowed for dipping or lifting. With both the tractor and trailer units completely rigid between each other, I often wondered if the front axles lifted off the ground when dipping and if the middle axle lifted off the ground when lifting.

After pondering with some theories, I put together the following diagrams to what I think may be the intent with Santa Fe's P&D department.

The following diagram was my original thought of what actually happened during dipping:



If you notice in the top photo, the position of the middle axle wheels are directly under where the trailer meets the tractor. My theory is that both units are hinged at this point perhaps as a fifth wheel allowing the tractor unit to pivot downward to negotiate dips.



As for lifting motion, again I originally thought the rigid vertical connection would raise the middle axle off the ground.



So, how would this bus compensate for this? The answer could possibly be with the middle axle again. It's very possible that the axle can lower and raise with the surface condition with the pivot point somewhere between the front and middle axles.



Of course, this is all theory, but likely the most logical way to allow for vertical motion.

I not sure if this was ever addressed on this forum, if so, I missed it. If anyone has more concrete answers, I would love to know and hopefully satisfy my curiosity.

Frankie
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JimmiB



Age: 75
Joined: 19 Apr 2011
Posts: 516
Location: Lebanon, PA

PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 11:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting theory. Since the 2nd axle is obviously the drive wheels, it wouldn't take much of a dip to lose traction unless it was some type of "floating" axle. Hope someone has the answer.
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HwyHaulier




Joined: 16 Dec 2007
Posts: 932
Location: Harford County, MD

PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 6:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

frankie - JimmiB -

On the one hand, A T S F RR notable for its good engineering. On the other, the coach evidently a "one off" and not repeated.
So: "It seemed like a good idea at the time"?

Note the first (steer) axle. Are the photos reporting it may have had some vertical range of movement built into it? The design
tricks may be lost to the ages. We're quite late in possibly locating witnesses in Wichita...

......................Vern.....................
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JimmiB



Age: 75
Joined: 19 Apr 2011
Posts: 516
Location: Lebanon, PA

PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tried researching this on line last night. Seems no one is sure about any of the engineering. In fact almost all sites that mention it show the same photos and refer to the Hemmings Blog, which doesn't tell much, and comments from some guy named Linsky. LOL.
I did find an old newspaper announcement of the start of service for the Victory bus. That does mention that the driver sits on the tractor portion, but is within the passenger compartment. One clue on the articulation that was mentioned was that a different 5th wheel design was engineered for this unit.
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traildriver




Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Posts: 1129
Location: Queens, NY

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Santa Fe Trailways did seem to like to experiment with 'oddball' experimental buses. I believe during the war, they also operated a one-off articulated bus built by Kaiser Industries, IIRC. And shortly after the war, they operated the one-off ACF "Continental" deck-and-a-half design evolved from the standard IC-41. I actually got a chance to test-drive that unit around Wichita in the mid-seventies when it was up for sale by a private owner.
Oh, I almost forgot those weird Pickwick Duplex Night Coaches they ran before the war.... Smile
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HwyHaulier




Joined: 16 Dec 2007
Posts: 932
Location: Harford County, MD

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

traildriver -

The COACHBUILT site just gets better! Excellent coverage of PICKWICK, see:
http://www.coachbuilt.com/bui/p/pickwick/pickwick.htm
http://www.coachbuilt.com/bui/p/pickwick/pickwick2.htm


The PICKWICK relationship led to a merger with GREYHOUND (Northland). Yet, and in Part 2 link (above) explanation
of an early 1930s set of events which led to PICKWICK built equipment on SANTA FE...

You also noted the later, ...the one-off ACF "Continental" deck-and-a-half design evolved from the standard IC-41....
Something of the "what might have been" standard for CONTINENTAL. For whatever reasons, this "trial" vehicle did
not lead to an anticipated, huge order from the line...

.......................Vern.....................
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traildriver




Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Posts: 1129
Location: Queens, NY

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for those links......great detailed drawings of the interior arrangement that is not readily apparent from the outside photo's...
I especially like that shot of the berth made up for night time. Looks as comfortable as a Pullman section, although perhaps a bit narrower...
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HwyHaulier




Joined: 16 Dec 2007
Posts: 932
Location: Harford County, MD

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

traildriver -

PICKWICK dimensions? Yes, the comparison to rail would be so. The rail cars, IIRC, working with a ten (10) ft. W. dim.;
highway at the time at eight (8) ft.

Upon reading the PICKWICK accounts, there is a minor point. Yes, and there are photos on 'Net to back it up: The
"DUPLEX COACH" (all day coach config.) operated by PENNA GREYHOUND on NYC - Washington, and a (presumably)
CENTRAL GREYHOUND routing Detroit - Chicago. And, yes, with PENNA it makes the point the PICKWICK design could
run the Tunnel to/from Manhattan!

Some other value in the PICKWICK accounts (linked)? Writer commenting on a later, short lived, COLUMBIA PACIFIC.
And, just to show how PSC types can be testy? That the MISSOURI COMMISSION shut down the within State
operations of the Coaches, as the design declared over dimension! (The State was long fairly churlish with these kinds
of things! Someone didn't get a campaign contribution?)

Trifling, Info Overload factoid? The PENNA G L "Service Route" NYC - WDC over USH-1 all the way. So, at one time in the
travels, the PICKWICK Coaches would take a turn, at an intersection just a couple hundred yards down the street from
my residence. I wasn't there to see it! <G>

..........................Vern.....................
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traildriver




Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Posts: 1129
Location: Queens, NY

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is a link to a site with a photo of the bus I referred to
http://www.angelfire.com/al4/eagle382/

Hmmm. For some reason, the photo doesn't show in the link I pasted...
Don't know why....
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HwyHaulier




Joined: 16 Dec 2007
Posts: 932
Location: Harford County, MD

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 3:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

traildriver -

Assume you refer to photo, ID as B17? The "deck and a half" ACF-Brill, dated 1949, in Washington?

Yes, your troubles getting anything out of "Angelfire" is a widely known headache.

..................Vern.................
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traildriver




Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Posts: 1129
Location: Queens, NY

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2012 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, that's it. I have seen various shots of it around the 'net, but I haven't been successful cutting and pasting, for whatever reason. Some of the photo's show it in later days, looking the worse for wear.
As I mentioned, I got a chance to drive it around a bit. It had an unexpectedly nice ride from those long double 'velvet ride' leaf springs...better than the GMC PD4103's that Trailways personnel refered to as "Spring Jimmies" around the mid-sixties, after they were long supplanted by the 'air-ride' 4104's. It had the big Hall-Scott underfloor gasoline engine. It also featured a restroom on the right side, rearmost on the lower level. This was a rare luxury on a bus when it was built.
I almost bought it, but a mechanic at our Denver garage talked me out of it, saying it would be a maintenance nightmare.
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HwyHaulier




Joined: 16 Dec 2007
Posts: 932
Location: Harford County, MD

PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

traildriver -

Light Hearted, Side Bar here: Why do I think you are in search of some old friends you knew from sometime back?
Recalls Lucille in Laramie, and all?

The ACF-Brill DEMO would have been very expensive to keep! Yeah, some ex-wives like that, too! First thing one
would have to do is get a CAT or CUMMINS into that old beast. The bus, that is.

BTW. Can we all get to nag the WASHINGTON STATE MUSEUM to get its old KENWORTH KHO roadworthy? A new
CAT motor would help.

.........................Vern.........................
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traildriver




Joined: 26 Mar 2011
Posts: 1129
Location: Queens, NY

PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 7:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HwyHaulier
Speaking of old friends, a while back I perused that Trailways Memorial Page on the web. I was amazed and saddened to recognize so many drivers names that I knew from years ago....
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