cab vents

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at
Fri Aug 6 07:42:43 EDT 2021

More questions about ancient N&W steam surrounding what I think were ways
to help keep engine men from roasting up there next to the boiler.  Many
photos show a "hatch" in the middle of the cab roof.  I assume this lifted
from the rear and was hinged at the front creating a gap in the roof
through which hot air could escape.  Guess it might have worked kinda like
an airplane wing with the air going over the angled vent cover creating a
bit of a draft when the loco was moving at speed.  Comments/corrections?
An interesting variation I found was with a picture and drawings of the
Class I built by RMW.  They show a rather elaborate cupola structure on top
the cab (see attached).  Don't know how this worked for ventilation of the
cab but perhaps was analogous to the clerestory of passenger cars about
which I am also unclear as to the ventilating effects.  Perhaps some more
knowledgeable folks out there would share what they know.
Jim Cochran
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