Railway Track-laying cranes
Rails and ties do not grow out of the ground by themselves – they are laid by professionals using special equipment.
So, track laying machines can be either split or sectional. Split track laying machines carry rails, sleepers and fasteners separately to the site and install the railbed on site. The sectional ones also stack pre-assembled pieces of railbed with a length of 12.5 or 25 meters. These, in turn, come in two types - rail or tractor-mounted.
The Track-laying cranes is a train consisting of a locomotive, a laying crane, and railroad platforms with rollers to move the sections along the train. The crane in this case is a self-propelled machine with a horizontal cantilever jib under which the ready track sections are laid on the platform
There are two winches on the boom - a load-lifting winch and a pulling winch. The trolleys with traverses pick up the top section of the package with the traction winch, the hoisting winch lifts it, the section is carried forward and placed on the ground or ballast prism. The section is docked with the previous section, the crane is transported on it and the process repeats. The laying of one section takes 1-2 minutes.
The tractor layer is designed differently. The layer’s boom is supported at the front by a tractor and at the rear by a gantry on two caterpillar trucks. Under the gantry there are platforms with sections that are captured by a winch, the layer moves forward and installs the section. The productivity of such equipment is approximately 1-2 km per shift
The advantage of tractor layers is that they can lay trucks from scratch ahead of bridges or overpasses under construction, which reduces construction time.
In fact, the description of rail-tie laying machines goes far beyond an article or a social media post and comes close to a term paper in terms of volume. However, our aim is simply to introduce you to the different types of lifting equipment