We are informed that the New York Car and Steamboat Gas Company have applied their gas-lighting fixtures to the trains of the New Jersey Railroad with much success, and are now engaged in putting them into the cars of other roads. We have seen a oer-tificate from the Vice-President of the New Jersey Railroad, in which he speaks in the highest terms of the success of the apparatus. He says : " The light is cheerful, bright and uniform, rendering all parts of the car distinctly visible, and much superior to the gloomy light furnished by oandles and lamps. Its management is simple and easy, and free from the objections of other modes of lighting cars; and in point of economy, there is a saving of more than two-thirds the usual expense." The locomotive head-lights are also of gas. The method of applying and carrying the gas is as follows : Each car is provided with a wrought iron cylinder, of a capacity of four and a half cubic feet. The cylinder is of a strength capable of sustaining 500 pounds pressure. The heads, for greater security, are made concave. The ga"s is compressed under a pressure of twenty atmospheres (300 pounds to the square inch), 90 cubic feet of gas being forced into each cylinder. Each car is provided with a cylinder, which is placed upon a shelf under the car floor, and coupled in the usual manner, with a pipe leading to the burners within. An improTed regulating contrivance controls the delivery of the gas to the burner under all pressures, and is interposed between the cylinder and burners, so that the light is always steady. The pressure of the gas ensures the continuity of light, no matter what the concussions or roughness of the road. The method of charging the cylindeis with gas, adopted on the New Jersey road, is simple and expeditious. Near the Company's machine shop at Jersey City, a stack of the cylinders are arranged, into which the gas is forced by the rapid movements of a steam pump, to a pressure of about 450 pounds. The cylinders are connected together by small pipes, and thus form a strong and capacious reservoir. A conducting pipe leads from the stack to the large depot on the Hudson river, where all the passenger cars arrive and depart, a distance of a quarter of a mile. The conductor terminates in a horizontal pipe running beneath the depot platforms, with stopcock openings at suitable intervals. When the car cylinders are to be charged, an attendant simply couples them to the conducting pipe, and opens a stop cock. The gas then instantly rashes into the cylinders and fills them, under the pressure of the reservoir, and they are ready for use. The filling of the cylinders for a whole train occupies only a few minutes, and the work of supplying all the trains with gas is, we are told, easily performed, from beginning to end, by one man. As developed on the New Jersey Railroad, the lighting of cars by gas seems to be a highly practical and economical enterprise. We presume that other companies will not be backward in its adoption. It would also seem that gas companies, by providing proper pumps for filling the cylinders, might find an extensive use for gas in country churches and dwellings. It is said that the gas may remain confined within the cylinders for any length of time, unimpaired. A single cylinder of the dimensions before named, would supply a country family with gaslight for a week.
This article was originally published with the title "Gaslight on Cars and Boats"