Rail joint bridges

Rail joint bridges are installed on floating joints on a track that is carried on wooden sleepers. Should a joint bridge additionally be fitted, two foot clamps, one wedge plate and four long coupling screws with double spring washers are necessary.

The foot clamps surround the rail foot and the wedge plate. They are fastened by the coupling screws. 
In the centre of the wedge plate there is a long hole under the rail joint gap. The hole is located in a way that the rain water can run off and the formation of rust can be contained. 
The coupling screws between the rail foot and wedge plate are square which prevents the screws from loosening. The coupling screws are fitted in different ways, i.e. the screws are put in alternately from the left and the right (see pictures).
When installing these bridges, it is very important to tighten the fish plates from the inside to the outside so that no stress can occur within the connection.

Photos of the rail joint bridge

Here in the installed condition:

Thorsten Schaeffer

© Thorsten Schaeffer

You can find suitable specialist literature to the topic here:

The Basic Principles of Mechanised Track Maintenance

The Basic Principles of Mechanised Track Maintenance

This book is dedicated to the many people involved in the day to day planning and performance of track maintenance activities. Providing a practical approach to everyday challenges in mechanised track maintenance, it is not just intended as a theoretical approach to the track system. 
Railways aim at transporting people and freight safely, rapidly, regularly, comfortably and on time from one place to another. This book is directed to track infrastructure departments contributing to the above objective by ensuring the track infrastructure’s reliability, availability, maintainability and safety – denoted by the acronym RAMS. Regular, effective and affordable track maintenance enable RAMS to be achieved.