The gripman can determine the speed and control of the cable car by how much strength he or she uses to grip the cable. If it is gripped loosely, the cable will slide through the grip, meaning that the car is pulled slowly. And if the grip is tightly clamped on to the cable, the car goes at the same speed as the cable, which is 9.5 miles an hour.
"Operating the grip requires a degree of practice and a tremendous amount of strength," the museum's sign reads. "The 327-pound grip has no markings indicating the amount of grip the jaws have on the rope. Each position must be felt by the gripman."
November 16, 2010 4:00 AM PST
Photo by: Daniel Terdiman/CNET
| Caption by: Daniel Terdiman
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