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Noquay - Model Railway Inglenook Layout 4mm (OO)

Glossary of Railway & Model Railway Terms

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  • Packing - Maintaining the correct level of sleepers by adjustments in the amount of ballast beneath.
  • Panel Desk - Board on which operating switches for points and signals are mounted.
  • Panorama - A background picture that gives a wide sweeping view in all directions when seen from a central point.
  • Pantograph - A collapsible and adjustable structure mounted on the roof of an electric locomotive or powered car which comes into contact with an overhead wire for picking up and transmitting electric power to the motors.
  • Parlor Car - Luxuriously fitted railway car.
  • Passing Siding - A siding specifically for passing of trains in the same or opposite direction; may be several miles long so that neither train is required to stop.
  • Peddler - A way freight.
  • Pendular Suspension - A suspension system allowing the body of the vehicle to tilt on curves allowing greater speed.
  • Per Diem - An amount paid to railway employees for daily expenses when working away from their home base. Also an amount paid by one railway to another for the rental of freight cars owned by the other.
  • Permanent Way - Term for track bed and tracks in position.
  • Pick-Up - Electric current contact such as a roler or sliding pick up shoe.
  • Pick-Up Freight - Train which stops at intermediate points to pick up and drop off freight cars on an as required basis.
  • Pickup Shoe - A device for picking up electric current from a third rail system.
  • Pier - A support for the center section of a bridge.
  • Piggyback - A system of carrying truck trailers or similar containers on flat cars.
  • Pike - A model railway.
  • Pilot - Structure at the front of a locomotive for sweeping tracks, often called a cowcatcher; also an additional locomotive coupled to the front of the train locomotive to provide assistance over a heavy graded section of line.
  • Pilot Truck - The front or leading small trucks on a locomotive also referred to as a Pony Truck.
  • Piston - The head which moves inside the cylinders of a steam locomotive when pressured by steam.
  • Piston Rod - The rod attached to the piston which transmits the power to the connecting rods on the driving wheels.
  • Platelayer - Track maintenance man.
  • Platelayer's Hut - Small shed for use of platelayers, section house.
  • Plug - A small passenger train.
  • Point - A tapered moveable rail by which a train is directed from one line to another.
  • Poling - Moving cars on an adjoining track by using a long spar which is placed in a socket of the car end beam and a socket on the locomotive pilot beam.
  • Power Supply - In model railways this unit changes 110 volt house current into low voltage current used to run the trains and accesories. Sometimes called Transformer.
  • Power Unit - A device which converts high voltage main current into low voltage currents, often with several outputs.
  • Prototype - A full-sized locomotive or car; the original unit from which the model has been patterned.
  • Pulse Power - The locomotive is fed intermittent pulses of current to facilitate slow starts.
  • Pullman Car - Rail car providing a high standard of comfort and service for which a premium fare must be paid.