« PreviousContinue »
narrow way. However, there are some disadvantages in wide doors, as they produce an increase in shrinkage of ice when the ice is being moved.
In laying out an ice house, where harvesting is done, care should be taken to properly grade the ground and place the building at sufficient distance from the source of supply to provide an easy incline and thus avoid the necessity of using knuckle wheels or any other unnecessary machinery, arranging it so that the doors do not face the water, and so that the house is not too deep, preferably with long, narrow rooms.
To prevent rise of temperature from the heat passing through the ground, it is desirable to have some of the storage space below the grade line, if possible about twelve inches below the frost line, governing the depth by drainage conditions.
If additional capacity is required, it is more desirable to build the house higher than to spread it out. Some consider a height of fifty feet better than to stop at thirty-four or thirty-five feet.
The filling of ice houses, where natural ice is harvested, is done by means of portable slides. These are placed on the ground, made up in sections, and lined with half oval iron strips to reduce friction. These lead to the foot of a gig elevator or list which may be operated by various means, preferably motor driven. Where a storage house is built with more than one compartment, it may be equipped with one or more gigs and lowering machines, depending on conditions. Ice can also be delivered to the house, where the natural conditions do not suffice, by means of a platform at car floor height, 3'6" above the rail. This platform is used, not only in storing ice, but also in case ice is desired to be shipped away.
One point which must be considered in an icing station is to avoid back travel of ice from one destination to another, or duplicate handling. Also, it is well to avoid the use of underground tunnels which mean expensive construction and maintenance.
An icing station of simple construction is usually a one-room storage with a gig elevator at one end which runs in a vertical direction through the ante-room annex to the storage room. The floor is usually 16'6" above the top of the rail. Below the ante-room is an unloading platform 3' 6" above rail. This is not enclosed. Directly above the aute-room is the crusher room to which block ice is delivered. The gig may be reached at any one of the three elevations or at any elevatior from the storage side. The opening to the storage side may be enclosed with hinged doors or boarded up and insulated as the house is filled, removing them as the ice is removed. The floor of the ante-room should be pitched, with a trough or gutter at one side. The flooring should be of 2" matched material, made as water-tight as possible. Where a mechanical crusher is not installed, breaker bars of iron or wood are set in between the joists of the crusher room floor, using spouts for dropping ice to the cart below. The ante-room is used mainly as a storage space for block ice and carts for handling crushed ice, which facilitates the quick icing of a train. Platforms are usually 12' wide x 200 or more in length and
16' 6" high, running parallel to ice house and directly connected with anteroom of same.
These ice houses are usually of frame construction, the storage houses 32' high with a gabled roof 1 x6 D. & M. Bds., and asphalt shingles, and a straw or hay loft constructed between the collar beams and rafters of the roof construction. The straw or hay is thrown over the ice as the house is filled, for insulating purposes; and as the house is emptied, this material is reclaimed into the bin by means of a gig, buckets or forks.
A wall construction that has been successful in this type of house is constructed of 2 x 12 studs, placed 24-inch centers, covered on either side with 1 x 6 D. & M., diagonally, and over this a good, water-proof paper. On the interior, an additional layer of 1 x6 is laid; on the exterior, drop siding. The space between the studs is filled with dry, hand-made, white pine shavings or similar material which will not pack. To prevent the passage of moisture to the insulation above, due to capillary action, it is preferable to fill the lower seven to ten feet of wall with granulated cork.
On the interior surface of the building it is desirable to use a good, water-proof paint, or spar varnish. The underside of the roof rafters should be ceiled up, leaving space at the ends of about two feet, forming a channel parallel with the rafters, allowing a circulating space for the warm air to ascend to ridge of the building. There should be an open monitor on the ridge of the roof. This need not be very highjust enough so that the rain will not beat in, and allow enough space for the warm air to pass out. One of the essential points in wall construction is that careful consideration be given to the sill plate that there be no air leaks. This can be effected by the use of offset joint well coated with car glue or other water-proofing material.
Due to the difference in temperature between the exterior and interior, walls exposed to the sun for a large portion of the day, especially south walls, are liable to warp. To overcome this, an additional air space formed of 2 x 6 studs and one layer of drop siding is built on the exterior face of the building after the storage wall is finished. There should be an open space left at the bottom and top for circulation, allowing hot air to pass out at the top.
Where a wall thickness of 16" of insulation is desired, the construction, which has some merit of economy, is as follows: Studs are erected using 2 x 6 stuff, set opposite and 4” apart, lacing the two by means of 2 x 4 girts 16" long. This also makes filling easier, as fill will flow longitudinally
At the lower portion of buildings which do not have concrete foundation, it is well to tie transversely with rods to avoid spreading; these should be below the floor to avoid obstruction. In the storage portion of an ice house, it is considered best to eliminate the use of interior supporting members, as there is objection to interior posts.
The foors of some refrigerated houses are constructed of cinders 12" thick and in some cases over this a two-inch plank floor on sleepers has given good results. The floors should pitch slightly toward the center so that when the house is filled the ice forms an arch and does not throw any stress on the outside walls.
A 2" plank floor on sleepers, on a 36" cinder fill has been very effective and is a fairly cheap form of ice house floor.
In floor construction, water has to be contended with, due to poor drainage, and also where there is a great amount of shrinkage of ice on account of the heat transmitted from the ground. No definite construction will hold good in all locations.
Regarding platform construction: Some build doubledeck platforms; the lower one for handling cake ice to bunker and the upper for crushed ice from buggies to bunker, moved by means of portable spouts. Other railroads use platforms of one height, this being generally, 16'6" above the rail, and, unless there is a great amount of crushed ice being handled, it has been found fairly advantageous. However, this requires a wider platform than where double deck is used.
There seems to be a difference in opinion as to the width of platforms. Some roads build platforms 12 wide; these being constructed of wood posts, joists and 2" plank floor, with guide strips for ice of oval iron let down Aush with the floor, with slots between for dripping.
On the far side from the track, platforms have a guard railing, usually 3' high with electric light poles with an overhanging arm. These poles are generally placed 32' on centers. The arm projects out to the opposite side of the platform so as to get a maximum amount of light at the desired point at side of car. Some roads use island platforms between tracks. This has some advantage, as it allows two trains to be iced at one time.
Conditions often make it necessary to handle ice by power where it is necessary to save time, and for this purpose endless chain platform conveyors and inclines may be used.
The oval track heretofore referred to is only used in gravity operated plants and leads out from ante-room where house contains one, close to and parallel to the outer edge, on opposite side from icing track for entire length of platform. In this way ice can be handled to any point desired. However, this is not satisfactory where ice has to be handled around sharp curves, or for great distances by conveyors. In these cases, gravity slides should be of solid sheet steel, and sides of guides reinforced with iron at change of direction. In case of long conveyor, maple studding strips give best results.
Salt boxes are installed in connection with platforms. These are spaced about forty feet apart and hung below the floor boards of the platform. The salt is handled by means of a shovel from car to storage box. In some cases, elevators are used to carry salt, receiving supply from cars delivered to an overhead bin, using overhead trolley buckets or wheelbarrows to transfer to boxes under platform or other location.
Where crushed ice is handled, it is done by means of wheeled carts which are filled up in the house and stored there until a train is brought in alongside the platform. (Crushed ice carts are similar to a two-wheel truck, with handles like a wheelbarrow, of reinforced oak, and lined with galvanized iron, and are of sturdy, light construction, usually of 1,000 pounds capacity. Load should be balanced on axle.) They are then rolled out alongside the cars at the points where icing is to be done, and ice transferred by means of spouts or troughs into the bunkers. This requirement of an ice house affects the design, as, in some cases, where a great amount of crushed ice is to be handled, it is desired to use the double-deck platform. In many cases the crushers are placed above and discharge directly into carts in ante-room. Crushed ice is also handled by dumping it into cars from carts by use of a folding chute, mounted on a truck, traveling on a track about six feet bęlow upper platform.
TYPICAL LAYOUT FOR ARTIFICIAL ICE
The arrangement of some of the largest Western and Southwestern plants is along the following lines :
First, the boiler house, next the engine and compressor room, then the tank room, next an ante-room and, finally, a storage of either one no two rooms, all of these being in a line parallel with the railroad track. The ice is dumped directly into the ante-room for the tank room, and about January 1st all excess ice is placed in storage. This allows the plant to run full capacity for about ten months in the year. By the time the heavy icing season starts, all storage is filled, so that not only can the entire tank capacity be used directly for icing, but any excess demand can be met by drawing from the storage. We might state that manufactured ice only is used at these plants and, further, because of the seeming unreliability of Northern winters, plants of this description will probably soon take the place of most of the natural icing stations in the States.
Storage rooms are filled by gig elevators, and in taking out the ice, two single cake automatic lowering machines, side by side, or incline conveyors, are used. The lowering machines are probably the best type which can be used, because of the simplicity of the repairs. In houses of large storage, flexible incline conveyors have been found very successful.
Steel runs are used to handle by gravity the ice in storage to and from the gigs and when lowering; because of the use of single cake gigs and safety bars, has been found possible to do away with the man stationed at the machines.
The ante-room acts as a gathering place for sufficient ice to take care of the daily needs, icing trains, carload ice and a small amount of retail ice, also storage for unused ice left after icing a train.
The icing equipment has changed in character within the last few years, because of the fact that the railroads demand that the icing platforms be isolated from the building, which permits them to pull in a train on one side, uncouple, back in on the other side, and thus ice the 'full train at one time with no switching. These stations are usually located at a terminal point so that by the time a fresh engine is ready to pull out, the icing is done without delay.
To conform with this arrangement of platform, the ice is elevated up and over or down and under the near track, then lowered or raised, as the case may be, to the icing platform level 14' 6" or 16'6" above the rail. We have found it best to go over the track. The type of machine to handle these conditions most satisfactorily seems to be the single double roller chain located centrally in the ante-room and extending the full length which allows loading from all points with very short hauls at a rate of about 10 to 12 cakes per minute. This chain runs in steel guides its entire length and as it approaches the track side of the building it is held in position as these guides curve up, continue at an angle, curve back to the horizontal and continue to a point central of the conveyor below, or by use of retarding device. The icing platform is usually 1,000 feet long, 15 feet wide, with chains located nearly central. The equipment consists of two single chain conveyors offset one from the other 6”, the driving machinery being located 500 feet distant from each end of the platform. One motor, two clutches with the necessary gears and driving shafts make up the drive which is so designed that for a distance of 10 or 12 feet the chains run side by side, which allows the transfer of ice from one to the other in either direction without labor, assuming, of course, that the conveyors have been synchronized when started. This arrangement allows either one or both chains to be operated as requirements demand. Both chains always run in the same direction and are reversible, this being necessary in order to redistribute the ice to points where there is a shortage.
Icing a train really starts about 12 to 34 of an hour before it arrives, at which time the chains are started, delivering ice to all points on the platform where it is kicked off, until the platform is full. Only one ice slide is required to deliver ice to the far bunker of one car, the ice for the near bunker of the other car being pushed direct from the platform.
A carloading platform is usually installed between the near track and the plant, this platform being parallel to the track and approximately 600 feet long. A chain is used for transferring the ice from the anteroom to the cars, which are loaded and shipped to nearby points, either for retail business or for ice cars wherever there may be a shortage. However, it serves a second purpose, which is to receive carload ice from the cars and deliver it into the ante-room. This oftentimes happens when the icing business reaches unusual proportions; thus using up the entire amount in storage, leaving only the daily capacity of the tanks, which is insufficient.
Attached hereto is a description of three different types of icing problems and facilities designed to meet requirements at each point.