Rubber Sleeves Arrive to set Rail in Concrete

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One day after the City of Cincinnati placed the first rail for the streetcar, construction contractor Delta Railroad unloaded a large spool of rubber sleeves at 12th and Elm Street to prepare for sealing the rail in concrete.  As part of the final steps in securing the new infrastructure, rubber sleeves are used to insulate the electrical current of the rail and protect surrounding utilities from being damaged by the high voltage.

The first piece of rail was laid around 11:30am on Tuesday, October 15.  By Wednesday afternoon, a total of five sets of the 80-foot lengths of rail had been laid along Elm Street, aligned to specifications on the rebar, and welded into place. The next step will be to outfit this rail with the rubber sleeves and pour concrete within the next week.

MPD construction contractors align a spool of rubber sleeves for the rail on Elm Street to prepare for pouring concrete.

One thought on “Rubber Sleeves Arrive to set Rail in Concrete

    Gordon Werner (@GordonWerner) said:
    October 16, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    Actually, you are incorrect with regards to the rubber sleeve / bootie.

    The rubber sleeve performs two functions. First of all, they absorb much of the vibrations that are caused by the streetcar rolling down the track. Secondly, they insulate the surrounding area from stray electrical currents. Remember, the rails on streetcar tracks are the return wire for the electrical circuit that powers them.

    Regardless of these functions as well as any others (heat expansion) … they are placed around the rails before the concrete is poured and they will remain in place until the day that the track is replaced / repaired.

    you can see in this photo where they were yet-to-be buried in the concrete:

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