The Educational Railroading Conference Leader Since 1994


Dan Hampton

Dan Hampton

Kevin Burton

Kevin Burton
Loram Maintenance of Way


Joint Grinding Operations – Application of a Gradual Preventative Strategy to Specialty Grinding Operations

The rail in switches and crossings are subjected to the same forces or greater than standard track sections ground by the production grinder, and cost multiple times as much per foot to replace, yet most programs are not grinding these rail assets with the same frequency. By working the production grinder with the specialty grinder, all rail assets are ground with the same frequency as the main line track. In addition to extending rail life cycles, the benefits of joint grinding operations have shown to: reduce track time requirements by 65% and manpower requirements by 44% to accomplish the same amount of work. In order for the specialty grinder to keep up with the production grinder within the same track authority, a change in grinding method was developed and deployed which applied the gradual preventative strategy previously only applied to production grinding, now to specialty grinding.

Figure 1. Manpower and Spacing
Figure 2. Joint Operations Manpower and Track Time Savings

Applying the gradual preventative strategy doubles the units ground per operating hour, reducing unit costs, allowing more of the network to be reached, and matching the grinding demand frequency that will extend the lifecycle and control surface conditions on the most critical rail assets. This presentation will cover the impacts to safety, productivity, and quality using data collected from nine months of piloting this program on CSX.