05 April 2010

Would you ride the L if you knew the CTA's diagnostic equipment was held together with duct tape?

Seriously?

"Go to Home Depot, get a laser level/measurement device ($149), duct tape ($6) it to a Roomba ($300) that's been modified to run on one set of tracks with some 2x4's and casters ($10) and then duct tape an iphone to the top of the Roomba with a GPS app and another app that sends back the distance between tracks (the gage) to a central office. Any highschool geek could whip it up for pizza money. Total cost? Probably less than $1,000."

Until it doesn't work, and the CTA shucks out billions in class-action lawsuits. People are starting to get weird.

3 Comments:

At 05 April, 2010 18:48, Blogger Noah said...

I'm fairly certain that a Roomba doesn't apply "...a 3,000-pound force downward per wheel and 3,000 pounds outward against the rails, simulating the loaded gauge of a train, to test whether the rails stay securely in place or start to spread out." But what do I know?

Imagine a CTA run by internet commenters. Frightening.

 
At 05 April, 2010 19:08, Blogger Jennifer said...

His (her?) solution for the weight test was to put the sensors on existing train cars. I suppose I should have posted the full comment:

"Go to Home Depot, get a laser level/measurement device ($149), duct tape ($6) it to a Roomba ($300) that's been modified to run on one set of tracks with some 2x4's and casters ($10) and then duct tape an iphone to the top of the Roomba with a GPS app and another app that sends back the distance between tracks (the gage) to a central office. Any highschool geek could whip it up for pizza money. Total cost? Probably less than $1,000.

"No wonder the CTA is such a mess. No imagination, no drive.

"As for the 3,000 pound load testing? Why can't they just build that into a random set of undercarriages on real CTA cars? They're certainly carrying the weight, and they pass over every inch of track many times per day. Those kinds of problems creep up gradually, not all of a sudden.

"I mean, how clueless is the CTA?"


I was most baffled about the duct tape. It's not even the best kind of tape out there!

 
At 06 April, 2010 06:56, Blogger Noah said...

OK, that makes a bit more sense, but not much more. And yea, duct tape is overrated. Plus, all of the sticky tape stuff would stay on the iPhone when you untape it.

 

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