What's a "Red Rattler"?

 
  alstom_888m Chief Commissioner

Location:
Hi from down south.

I've heard of Sydney having "Red Rattler" trains and I was wondering what they were. Search wasn't being my friend, so I thought I'd ask.

I usually associate "Red Rattlers" with Melbourne's Tait sparks.

Thanks in advance.

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  42101 Banned

Location: Banned
Media BS term for our old single deck suburban cars is what it is.
http://www.het.org.au/
Try that.
  Fred3801 Chief Commissioner

Location: Inner West, Sydney
You deserve a slap  Idea

oh wait........

Your from Melbourne..ma bad Razz

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_rollingstock_in_New_South_Wales#1926-1960_Single_Deck_Steel_Cars

Read up to 1968 Prototype Double Deck Power Cars then you should be covered.

Peace
  Warks Minister for Railways

Location: Near H30+059
Yeah we only started calling them that when they were in the minority and mainly on the Northern and Western lines after the Sutherland line got out of them with the ESL I think.

Double deckers used to be called "silver trains".
  nadnerb_2000 Chief Commissioner

Location: between my hat and my shoe soles
No city can claim exclusive rights to the word "red rattler".

If you said "red rattler" in sydney in 1990, residents would instantly know what you were talking about.

"red rattlers" have indeed existed in Sydney, Melbourne and even in New York, and I reckon its highly likely it appeared elsewhere. In all three situations the trains were red and they rattled. In all three situations they certainly werent officially named red rattlers. It was a colloquial, descriptive name applied by the general public - whether the media caught on to the term or invented it is open to debate.

End of the day its just a nickname. I've heard some people vehemently arguing that we stole the name etc etc etc - thats like saying a person with the nickname "ted" in sydney stole that nickname from a man nicknamed "ted" in melbourne. So if I'm in Melbourne, and I hear a resident of that city talk about red rattlers, I know its highly unlikely that he/she is talking about sputniks. And I've got no qualms about that name being applied to taits.
  Raichase Captain Rant!

Location: Sydney, NSW
Hell, last time I was in Newcastle asking about the 620's, a CSA said "you want to ride on a red rattler? One due out at whateveroclock".

It's a common name, alright.
  TheLoadedDog The Ghost of George Stephenson

Double deckers used to be called "silver trains".
"Warks"


Yeah!  I'd forgotten all about that.  8)

Of course,  my mum still says "the electric platforms". Mr. Green
  edison Chief Commissioner

TLD™ -

As opposed to the steam platforms? From which you walked down the ramp to Eddy Ave to catch the Bondi tram?
  alstom_888m Chief Commissioner

Location:
Well thanks for that. I note that your 1985 Goninan cars looks quite beaten up even compared to our 1970s Hitachi stock. I guess they just looked aged because the Goninan sets seem to come from the same basic design as your 1964 Tullochs.
  TheLoadedDog The Ghost of George Stephenson

TLD™ -

As opposed to the steam platforms? From which you walked down the ramp to Eddy Ave to catch the Bondi tram?
"edison"


That's the ones.  My mum used to take me through the Electric Platforms to go shopping in town at Farmers.  My dad would take me on the pride of the Manly Steamship Company's fleet, the South Steyne.

I wish I'd been older to appreciate what I was seeing.
  TheLoadedDog The Ghost of George Stephenson

I was old enough though -or maybe not old enough, depending on the way you look at it - that I thought my mother's calling them the "Electric Platforms" was weird.

Even when we lived on the Central Coast, she'd say, "We'll get the train from Gosford to Central (U set), and then we'll catch an electric train..."

Thinks: "Uh huh.  You're weird, mum."
  hunslet1915 Chief Train Controller

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_rollingstock_in_New_South_Wales#1926-1960_Single_Deck_Steel_Cars

Read up to 1968 Prototype Double Deck Power Cars then you should be covered.


However, don't believe all that you read in Wikipedia regarding the carriages and those that are preserved!  Go directly to the SETS and HET wep-pages for more-accurate information!
  Simes_mk2 Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney
Well thanks for that. I note that your 1985 Goninan cars looks quite beaten up even compared to our 1970s Hitachi stock. I guess they just looked aged because the Goninan sets seem to come from the same basic design as your 1964 Tullochs.
"alstom_888m"


Are you talking about the K sets?
(they have air con)
Or the R/S/L sets?
(no air con)
  atefooterz Beginner

1st post newbie, yes i did click reply to old thread for a reason!
atefooterz
After being led here and much site searching, i think the history of our Sydney rolling stock has become a victim of dead links and ever evolving protocols of user fashion. So to help those in later years wandering around search engines, wiki and here...

If anyone can grab newspaper articles from the late 1960s to early 1970s you will find that the red rattler term was about the EBB/EFA cars driven by Bradfield motor cars.
These were very noisy compared with the later steel standard suburban and sputnick sets. In part from loose wire cage luggage shelves and the sloppy worn reversable seat castings.
The original ends set up of angled seats was changed to the long under window bench seats, when the PTC was upgrading stock.
The above mentioned sounds were at one with the slotted sliding internal window shades that chattered excitedly.

By the 1980s the surviving steel sets also had become rather noisy and as those who write history, many who had never travelled on a Bradfield set, dubbed any shade of single deck Tuscan or Indian red train a "Sydney red rattler".
  ivahri Train Controller

If they were referred to in 1960s articles as "red rattlers" could someone actually produce one of these articles? I don't remember seeing such a reference & rail history is often based on fiction that is repeated often enough until people too lazy to research accept it as fact.


Richard
  gordon_s1942 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Tablelands of NSW
If they were referred to in 1960s articles as "red rattlers" could someone actually produce one of these articles? I don't remember seeing such a reference & rail history is often based on fiction that is repeated often enough until people too lazy to research accept it as fact.


Richard
ivahri
How very true this is, the name 'Red Rattler' goes back into the 50's and as boy living at St Peters in Lord St opposite the station (circa 1947~54), I traveled by Train numerous times into the City.
Back then Circular Quay didnt exist so one platform took us to Wynyard/North shore and the other went to St James and terminated.
I feel the term 'Red Rattler' was coined by the media (News papers then) during one of the many times the Railways were critised for all sorts of reasons.
Remembering back then, the windows opened fully and they all had a louvre (slotted) frame which when placed in some positions did rattle somewhat.
Prior to the introduction of the all steel suburbans, most of the window/louvre frames were made of wood but these were metal and as they wore in, they began to rattle.
The ride was rougher due to the way the track was laid so that added to noises made inside the carriages, so bad at times you had to stand beside somebody and speak loudly for them to hear you.
Today with Concrete sleepers, welded rail and properly tamped road bed, I would doubt the internal noise of a now vintage 'Red Rattler' would be anywhere near what is was 60 years ago.

*********************
For some reason NSW has always favoured a reddish colour on passenger rolling stock although some looks more Brown than Red but when they introduced the electric Train service, it s much lighter and I believe it was called Tuscan Red.
I honestly dont remember it being quite as bright as the restored carriages are now  but by time I saw them after many years of service, dirt and grime had taken its toll.
This Tuscan Red is a bit like the APO's Pillar Box red, distinct to that use and not available to the public.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
In a long moment of madness...(1973/74), I lived in Kirribilli Avenue and caught trains from Milsons Point. The 'Great Man' often went by my flat in his white Mercedes but I digress...

Sydney's Bradfield cars were in abundance at that time and I remember they were referred to as red rattlers which as a Melburnian was to me a bit of a misnomer as the Bradfield cars were really brown rather than red.

Melbourne's 'Harris' red rattlers were truly red, if you got one freshly painted from Newport workshops... but again I digress as they were rarely washed and were covered in dirt and normally looked brown.

But comparing the two city's trains...the steel bodied, quieter and far less draughty Bradfield cars with double sided padded seats with footrests had it all over the Harris trains as the wooden bodied Harris cars were about 20 to 30 years older and had such Victorian era features as pressed metal ceilings, clerestory canvas covered roofs and ornate lighting. But they rattled significantly as the metal hand grips clanged together, their many windows and doors rattled and there was no sound deadening to speak of as the screw couplers rattled and clanged against each cars buffers and the generators rattled as they built up air pressure. The Harris cars rattled over points and crossovers as well and seemingly they had no suspension at all. Flat out was about 40MPH (70KPH)

My Sydney friends...though your Bradfield cars weren't truly RED, they were a far better carriage.


Mike.

PS. If you're too young to know who the Great Man is, perhaps Google PM Gough Whitlam.
  Valvegear The Ghost of George Stephenson

Location: Norda Fittazroy
Melbourne's 'Harris' red rattlers were truly red, if you got one freshly painted from Newport workshops... but again I digress as they were rarely washed and were covered in dirt and normally looked brown.
The Vinelander
Hey; turn it up, Vinelander! The Melbourne red rattlers were Taits. The Harris was the first type of steel-bodied Melbourne suburban train, and the colour scheme was VR blue and gold. These trains started appearing in the mid 1950's when I was a member of the Melbourne High School Railway Club, and we could see them pass along the line between Richmond and South Yarra.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line

Idea My bad Exclamation

You are of course...correct Embarassed

I was of course referring to the RED wooden bodied Tait cars...not the sleek royal blue Harris cars.

Mike.
  simstrain Chief Commissioner

regardless of what shade of red. A red rattler normally means an old single deck rolling stock from either sydney or melbourne that was painted in a redish hue of some sort. Sometimes they had different colours during their life but are most recognisable in their red colour.
  gordon_s1942 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Tablelands of NSW
For 3 months in 1954 I lived in Malvern and traveled by both Train and Tram into the city.
The Melbourne Trains back then were nothing like those in Sydney.
First and Second Class and no connection between each car along with that ridge that ran along the top of the Carriages reminded me of something medieval and medieval it was if you were seen by the Station Staff alighting from a First Class carriage holding a Second Class Ticket.
This was a wonderful arrangement during Peak hours with all the Second Class carriages packed in like sardines and maybe 4~6 in First Class.
The shutting of the Ticket Barrier as a Train approached and it had to be off the end of the platform before the gates opened was another  'Melbourne ' thing......

On rereading this post, I realised my remarks about the 'self opening doors' below.could be taken to mean I was talking about the trains in Melbourne but I meant the steel bodied surburban cars with the sliding doors that ran in Sydney, my apologies for that.

One feature no one has mentioned was the earliest form of self opening Doors.
This seemed to work at its best during Winter opening either one or both doors during acceleration, braking or some curves.
Although the doors were fairly noisy when opening and closing, it was always considered wise to stand clear until the Train stopped at your station.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
For 3 months in 1954 I lived in Malvern and traveled by both Train and Tram into the city.
The Melbourne Trains back then were nothing like those in Sydney.
First and Second Class and no connection between each car along with that ridge that ran along the top of the Carriages reminded me of something medieval and medieval it was if you were seen by the Station Staff alighting from a First Class carriage holding a Second Class Ticket.
gordon_s1942

Was 'that ridge' the clerestory roof of the First class cars which originally has frosted glass inserts that were impossible to clean and were eventually painted over.

Mike.
  Throughwestmail Train Controller

regardless of what shade of red. A red rattler normally means an old single deck rolling stock from either sydney or melbourne that was painted in a redish hue of some sort. Sometimes they had different colours during their life but are most recognisable in their red colour.
simstrain
Red Rattler was a derogatory term used by the Labor Minister for Transport when the big push was on to rid us of the single deck suburban carriages and replace them with the uncomfortable Tangara's. By the time they came to be withdrawn, most had had their lift-up windows, which did used to rattle, replaced by Beclawatt windows, which could not rattle under any circumstances, just the same as they let very little air in. The ones that did rattle were the 1921 Bradfield wooden bodied cars!
  Hafenbahn Station Staff

So, nothing to do with embarrassed snakes then?
  gordon_s1942 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Tablelands of NSW
When we went to Katoomba from Sydney prior to 1954, we traveled in from St Peters to the 'Electric Platforms' and using the tunnel we walked to the 'Steam Platforms' that then had NO overhead wiring for electric traction.
This was installed by 1956 when a large portion (to Katoomba) became available for electric locomotives even though they were only assisting from Valley heights to Katoomba.

Late in 1958 the first stainless steel single deck InterUrban began running and was soon followed by others as they became available.
Steam was till in use to Gosford until the line was electrified to there and then trains were either InterUrban's or 46 class class hauled with an engine change at Gosford for those going North.
The only other 'Silver Train' was that  Bud Rail motor "Camel" that serviced the South Coast.
I am not including the Silver City Comet in this.

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