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JOHNNY AT THE FAIR

Power to the Skystreak

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In all the pictures of the Skystreaks you never see any wires connecting power to the cabs. You had six lifting cables and thats it, there were no contacts on the rails or power cables on the counterweight side.

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I suggest that the answer might be found by investigating the Skylon Tower at Niagara Falls. It was built in 1965, with the elevators built by Otis (the same as the NYS Pavilion, and the cars greatly resemble the NYS cars).

There has been a recent effort to rebuild the Skylon's elevator system, replacing the elevators' 'relay' control system with a more modern system.

I suspect the answer to your question might be that the NYS Pavilion's had the same kind of 'relay' system that the Skylon has had for the last 46 years.

Next step: find out what an elevator 'relay control' system is, to confirm if that's why we're not seeing an external electric cable bundle.

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Johnny, next time you're in the park maybe you can arrange to get a real close-up inspection of this 'slot' in the rails, and see what might have been hiding in there. I don't know, just guessing that it might be something relevant. Otherwise for strength it would make more sense for those rails to be solid, like a train track.

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I suggest that the answer might be found by investigating the Skylon Tower at Niagara Falls. It was built in 1965, with the elevators built by Otis (the same as the NYS Pavilion, and the cars greatly resemble the NYS cars).

Next step: find out what an elevator 'relay control' system is, to confirm if that's why we're not seeing an external electric cable bundle.

Relay control vs. solid state refers to the type of circuits in the central control system, not to how it's wired to cab. I doubt very strongly that there was a wireless connection from the cab for operation, and of course there had to be a wired connection for any in-cab lighting, ventilation fans, etc.

So, not spotting any electrical cable means either it is well hidden or it was removed at some point.

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So, not spotting any electrical cable means either it is well hidden or it was removed at some point.

there's not an electrical bundle coming out the top of the cab in '64-65 photos, which led me to believe we need to look closer at that 'slot' in the rail. There might have been a moving cable inside there... *or* one of those might have served as a 'hot' "3rd rail" like we see in an underground subway. A 3rd rail might have provided power, but might not have carried signals given 1964 technology. (Today it's not only possible to send a command signal through a hot current line, but they'd undoubtedly go wireless for the signaling. As I understand it, that's the retrofit that the Skylon elevators have been undergoing, in addition to replacing the relay circuit boards with digital.)

It did occur to me that a command signal connection might have only been provided at landings using brush connectors- so the operator could initiate a 'stop' or 'go' at one of those points but not in between. However, not only might the NY state inspectors not allow something like for safety reasons... but Charles Aybar told us he ran the elevator half way up the tower in about '69 and stopped it there, and somehow climbed down... leaving it in the position it remained until last year. If the command signals were only available at landings, he wouldn't have been able to stop the cab mid-way up.

SO.... since wireless wasn't available, there HAD to have existed both power & command signal connections that stayed hot throughout the cab's movements up and down the tower.

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In a normal elevator, the electric / control cable is hung from the top of the shaft and draped down the back wall of the shaft.

As the car rises, the cable forms a loop.

Perhaps on the Skystreak, the cable wraps around a sheave at the top of the shaft and forms it's droop loop inside the column, where it can't be seen.

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This is the plate from the air conditioning unit of the SS. We are talking serious voltage 220/440 it would seem that there would be a cable bundle here, but nothing shows even in the picture i posted from an 8mm film i took dated 6/28/64

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There are *no* cables left going over the sheave. :)

However, I don't think an electrical cable ever went over it. Electrical cables would usually have a heavy rubber insulation wouldn't they? It would make no sense to have that going over the sheave. The friction would wear through the rubber in no time.

I'm leaning toward the hot 3rd rail and/or cable-inside-the-slot-in-the-rail theory.

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If you can get an angle on the back of that control panel and see where the wires lead....

That emergency stop button tells us it was fully controllable at all times too.

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Do you have some good shots of the outside of those cabs now sitting on the ground? Any sign of an electrical shoe or any other connector that would run inside that slot (offset from the wheel bogies) ?

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Do you have some good shots of the outside of those cabs now sitting on the ground? Any sign of an electrical shoe or any other connector that would run inside that slot (offset from the wheel bogies) ?

Yes, but i have to go through a few cds

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Thanks kpsz1 !

Just what the doctor ordered:

* perfectly located to ride up and down in that slot in the rail behind the wheel bogie rail.

* hidden from cameras until they took the cabs down last year (unless we'd had an absolutely perfectly aligned photo looking down on a cab from directly above)

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I think Chas started the elevator on its way from the outside, then pulled the power from the ground to stop it.

Yes Charlie threw a switch from a panel inside the theater and parked one pod mid flight and the another was in the the pit. The reason was to keep them away from vandals

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Looking closer, that piece stiking out of the top of the cab looks like part of an emergecy brake. That second track still looks like its suppoting the frame system and is doubling as a troft for electrical wires,

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Yes Charlie threw a switch from a panel inside the theater and parked one pod mid flight and the another was in the the pit. The reason was to keep them away from vandals

This is the control panel in the basement of the theater that Chas.played with.

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