"Canal-How It Works" Top 5 Page for this destination Panama Things to Do Tip by BruceDunning
Panama Things to Do: 229 reviews and 425 photos
This shows the steps in moving the ships/cargo-2 canal split-tight fit-steel doors, train and cog wheel not used now, but was in the past. The trains guide the ships so no sway side to side, and ships move on their own power. The locks at Gatun is in three parts, and it rides 87 feet total. The gates are huge at 42-87 feet high and weigh about 1.4 million lbs. The tightest fit was a 3 inch margin for US battleship New Jersey going through, but they all appear tight fits. Many new ships cannot come through the locks because the width is too much; so the new locks are the solution.
The gear drive wheels were used to maneuver the gates in the old days. That changed with electric hydraulics now moving them. At Gatun, 3 sets make up the one lock. The other town further inland account for the other half of the water rise.
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