Re: any guesses?

Gene <bierglaeser@...>

--- In STMFC@..., Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...> wrote:

owner, series, builder?

Tim O'Connor
A friend has been working on a box car database for at least 20 years. Briefly described he was interested in the development of steel underframes so his database basically begins in 1910 and runs to 1944 plus any box cars before or after that he found interesting. His information is car by car including renumberings, rebuilding, sale to other railroads whether through brokers such as Hyman-Michaels or directly up to retirement. He has tried to identify running boards, roofs, hand brakes, ends, sides, doors, underframes, trucks, air brake systems and so on. I don't know how close to complete his work is but I do know that when ever I inquired about a box car or box car series his information about the subject of my inquiry was quite complete.

About a year ago his computer went down and, I just learned a few minutes ago, is still down. That suggests to me that he has lost interest in the project but, of course, I don't actually know. He has had some personal issues the past few years that would have certainly demanded a great deal of his time, attention, fortune and energy.

His has been consistently adamant that he does not want to have his name connected with this work nor does he care to field questions from the general public. Al Westerfield knows of whom I write as do possibly others in this group but so far any and all who know of this project have remained mum about his identity.

This long preamble is merely to describe as best as possible the source of the following which he provided upon my recent inquiry about the mystery box car. Perhaps this information will be useful to someone for some purpose. If not, the delete key is typically located on the right side of the keyboard.

"This looks like a "Fowler" patent box car to me. About 100,000 at 36' were built primarily for Canadian roads CNR and predecessors and CP but also ERIE, GTW, GTR, NYS&W, NC&StL. '40 versions were also built in more modest numbers for CN&W, D&RGW, CRI&P and others. Nearly all the 36' cars were built with 5' side doors. All the 40' cars had 6' doors. (This is from memory, my database is still down). The first of the links below gives a pretty good historical review though focused on CP. As this article notes, cars of this design are also called "Dominion" box cars.

"The car in your photo has obviously been upgraded to AB brakes and AAR trucks (all were built with K brakes and arch bar trucks) but appears to still have a wood roof (most common when built) though a Murphy-type roof could have been removed to reveal the underlying boards. The car appears not to conform to Canadian practice - there is no drop step for the end ladder as shown in the following link:

"So it might be a US road car. My guess from length to height proportions would be that it is a 36' car with '5 door, but it can be devilish though to make the distinction between '36 with 5' door and 40' with 6' door from an angled photo. If the door is 5' and all the panels are about that width then it is a '36' car. If the door is 6' and all the panels are about that width then it is a 40' car. Look at the AC photos for 36' cars with 6' doors and you can see how distinctive they look.

"Do you know where was the photo was taken?

"Cheers, and I hope this is helpful,"

Gene Green

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