Table of Contents; Page 1; Page 3; Index
After the development of the Trevithick locomotive, numerous experiments were tried out and many engineers were working on a new design. As a consequence, many very crude but interesting locomotives were developed. The principal objection raised against the most of them was in reference to the complicated parts of the mechanism. Having had no previous experience to direct them, they failed to see that the fewer and simpler the parts of the machine, the better. It was not until about 1828, when the Rocket, as shown in Fig. 2, was built under the supervision of Robert Stephenson, that anything of note was accomplished. The Rocket, in a competition speed test, without carrying any load, ran at the rate of 29½ miles per hour. With a car carrying thirty passengers, it attained a speed of 28 miles per hour. The construction of the Rocket was a step in the right direction, since it contained fewer and simpler parts. It had an appearance similar to the modern locomotive, having a multitubular boiler, induced draft by means of the exhaust steam, and a direct connection between the piston rod and crank pin secured to the driving wheel. The cylinder was inclined and proportions were very peculiar as compared with the modern locomotive, yet much had been gained by this advancement.