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Pet hate idioms used by railway enthusiasts


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34 minutes ago, Reorte said:

 she thought it was a bin lorry at first.

I must admit they look a little like the back of a bin lorry, but that would be impossible - bin lorries don't reverse !

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10 hours ago, AndyID said:

If A is 20% greater than B why isn't B 20% smaller than A? 

:huh:

Tell you what.  I'll add 20% to your hundred pounds today if you give me back 20% of the money you'll then have tomorrow. Kerching!!!

The difference is because you're starting from a diifferent base. 20% of £100 is £20 but 20% of £120 is £24, and no I'm not going to work out your next VAT return for you.  :paint:

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15 minutes ago, Pacific231G said:

Tell you what.  I'll add 20% to your hundred pounds today if you give me back 20% of the money you'll then have tomorrow. Kerching!!!

The difference is because you're starting from a diifferent base. 20% of £100 is £20 but 20% of £120 is £24, and no I'm not going to work out your next VAT return for you.  :paint:

Yes - you could get back to the starting point by saying "I'll add 20% of £100 to what you've currently got, then take 20% of £100 (rather than the £120 you've got now) from that total.

 

Percentages superficially look like straightforward scaling factors (e.g. multiply £100 by 1.2 to get £120, then divide that by 1.2 to get back to £100) but aren't.

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One of the words that seems to annoy people as being a modeller's idiom is frog, with the "correct" term given as common crossing. I've always understood the word frog (named for its resemblance to that part of a horse's hoof) to have been an Americanism However, I've just been reading a fascinating War Office book from 1940 titled "Notes on Miitary Railway Engineering, part II Engineering".

Everything in it, including PW, signalling, interlocking, and the use of FPLs and traps, seems to follow normal British practice, albeit adapted or rationalised where necessary for use "on active service". Rationalisations included using FB rather than BH rail, ballasting with whatever material was locally available and generally simplifyng and reducing the range of components required to be stocked and therefore transported. Turnouts were standardised on no.6, used only for congested areas like docks with small shunting locos, no 8, for general yard and station work, and no 12 but only in places where high speeds were expected. Turnouts also used straight swirches and frogs that could be either left or right hand. 

The book does though go into the theory of simple turnouts of all sorts since, as well as those they built themselves, military railway engineers were very likely to have to modify or add to existing civilian railways. The interesting thing is that the section on turnout theory starts with this sentence. 

"A turnout consists of a pair of switches connected to a frog or crossing by straight and curved rails." After that, though "frog or crossing" occasionally appears, the word frog  is used almost universally. 

 

I'm curious about this. My 1990 OED (which by the way doesn't include turnout in its railway context but only points) does include have a definiton of frog as "a grooved piece of iron at a place in a railway where tracks cross (19th C.: orig. unkn)" so it seems that the word must have been in English usage for quite some time. If so, when was it dropped (in Britain not the US) in favour of crossing and was it still widely used in places like India and other parts of the British Empire where British military railway engineers were likely to have been active? 

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1 minute ago, Pacific231G said:

One of the words that seems to annoy people as being a modeller's idiom is frog, with the "correct" term given as common crossing.

 

Before we're driven hopping mad here, I'd encourage folk to leap over and have a read of the informed discussion in this current topic:

 

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1 hour ago, Reorte said:

Yes - you could get back to the starting point by saying "I'll add 20% of £100 to what you've currently got, then take 20% of £100 (rather than the £120 you've got now) from that total.

 

Percentages superficially look like straightforward scaling factors (e.g. multiply £100 by 1.2 to get £120, then divide that by 1.2 to get back to £100) but aren't.

 

Yes. Lies, damned lies, and percentages.

 

For those who have not guessed it was a rhetorical question but it's not difficult for unscrupulous people to use percentages to manipulate others.

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8 hours ago, SamThomas said:

As the thread has set off onto an automotive tangent the term "wing mirrors".

 

Mirrors have not been fitted to the wings of cars for many decades.


I would like to still have real wing mirrors. They made it easier to check down the driver’s side of the car than with door mirrors - no need for head movement and very little change in length of focus. I presume they were considered a danger to pedestrians, in the same way as hood ornaments.

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8 hours ago, rodent279 said:

And while we're on the subject of cars-owners who call their cars "she", "her", or in some other way try to ascribe gender, feelings and personalities to their cars.

 

No.

 

No, no and no again.

 

Cars (and trains, aircraft, boats etc) are inanimate objects. They do not have feelings, thoughts or personalities, and are gender neutral. They are pieces of metal etc, joined together to perform a function. They may exhibit quirks, nuances and differences, and no two may be exactly alike-but no two stones on a beach are alike either, and we don't try to give then personalities.

 

Once again, no.

 

Edited by Sabato
Delete, wrong key pressed too soon.
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"-but no two stones on a beach are alike either, and we don't try to give then personalities."  Rodent279

 

So you never had a pet rock  (when they were fashionable?) 

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12 hours ago, Pacific231G said:

Tell you what.  I'll add 20% to your hundred pounds today if you give me back 20% of the money you'll then have tomorrow. Kerching!!!

The difference is because you're starting from a diifferent base. 20% of £100 is £20 but 20% of £120 is £24, and no I'm not going to work out your next VAT return for you.  :paint:

The difference between mark-up and margin.

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Another expression that keeps cropping up - and I know we're well into generalisation territory rather than 'railway enthusiasts'  -  "as soon as possible" meaning NOW ! " .............. whatever it is, there's probably an army of people beavering away trying to bring it to you as quickly as they can !

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Calling  the manufacturers manufactures. 

 

Lesson for today...

Manufacturers (plural noun) - a person or company that makes goods for sale.

Manufactures (plural noun) - the making of articles on a large scale using machinery.

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On 16/06/2021 at 12:06, rodent279 said:

And while we're on the subject of cars-owners who call their cars "she", "her", or in some other way try to ascribe gender, feelings and personalities to their cars.

 

No.

 

No, no and no again.

 

Cars (and trains, aircraft, boats etc) are inanimate objects. They do not have feelings, thoughts or personalities, and are gender neutral. They are pieces of metal etc, joined together to perform a function. They may exhibit quirks, nuances and differences, and no two may be exactly alike-but no two stones on a beach are alike either, and we don't try to give then personalities.

 

Once again, no.

 

Ever owned an old Italian car....? :biggrin_mini2:

 

I'm now wondering what it would be like to own an old Italian diesel locomotive.......

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23 hours ago, Artless Bodger said:

Just for interest regarding 'turnout', attached drawing AX207 from c. 1921 (construction of Reed's Aylesford Paper Mill) 'Diagram of Turnouts From 75 lbs FB BS Rail.' 1 in 6 and 1 in 4 types. 

  Railway Track 01.pdf 2.41 MB · 6 downloads

Interesting. These would presumably have been used only by short wheelbase shunters. Do the drawings say who the contractor was? 

The smaller turnout is, according to the drawing, 1 in 4 5/8, which I think is about the same as the 12 degree crossing/frog angle that Peco use for small and medium Streamline points but the Reed's turnout has a radius equivalent to 27.6 inches for 16.5mm gauge.  The crossover gives a correct 6ft way (It's given as 6ft 5.2 inches but that's between running faces)  but  I make the radius through the 1 in 6 turnout equivalent to 46 inches for 16.5mm gauge track. The overall crossover length is only about 17 inches at 1:87 scale (the scaling between 1435mm and 16.5mm track) which is about the same as one made from two Peco medium turnouts with a more acute crossing. However the wider "6ft" needed for the overscale 50mm centre to centre separation (typically used for RTL 00 and H0 track)  lengthens the crossover and I believe that Peco also have a degree of transition rather than using a circular curve between the switch heel and the nose of the crossing.  

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1 hour ago, Rugd1022 said:

 

Ever owned an old Italian car....? :biggrin_mini2:

 

I'm now wondering what it would be like to own an old Italian diesel locomotive.......

Not as much fun as an old Italian three-phase electric locomotive and they used plenty of water!

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23 hours ago, Wickham Green too said:

Another expression that keeps cropping up - and I know we're well into generalisation territory rather than 'railway enthusiasts'  -  "as soon as possible" meaning NOW ! " .............. whatever it is, there's probably an army of people beavering away trying to bring it to you as quickly as they can !

Though generally more logically accurate as they don't mean the same. "We're doing it now" could mean that someone, not presumably the person on the phone or writing the email is actually working on it (unlikely) but, "we will do it now" is logically impossible  while "we will do it as soon as possible" is not.

In that area my pet hate though  is "at this moment in time" which means exactly the same as "now" and is typical management gibberish. At least they don't use "at this point  in time and space" to mean here and now.  

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On 17/06/2021 at 07:22, Oldddudders said:

I believe Cornwall has a sainted version. 

 

It does indeed. Saint Petroc, along with Saint Piran and Saint Michael is one of the patron saints of Cornwal.

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My pet hate is folks referring to a singular train working (e.g 1M23 10.00 Station A - Station B) as a ‘diagram’.

 

A diagram is everything a Loco or Multiple Unit, rolling stock or member of train crew will do from start of day through to end of day. Here’s an example of a traction diagram for a GWR Class 802 5 car from 2018:

 

IW 954 is the diagram. 1A76 Plymouth - Paddington is not a diagram, it’s just one working within IW 954.

 

6A1BE83C-3A61-422A-BB87-F30497618489.jpeg.b7d940b456c341dddbd2e4938a16596d.jpeg

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