Re: A Lumber Question

soolinehistory <destorzek@...>

--- In STMFC@..., Paolo Roffo <paolo.roffo@...> wrote:

I'm also curious about pulpwood - would logs have been stacked in gondolas
back then, or had bulkhead flatcars appeared by that point?


Paolo Roffo
A lot of it depends on which part of the country you're modeling. In the upper Midwest, pulpwood never moved on bulkhead flats. The standard pulpwood log here was eight feet long, and were always a gon load. A line of logs would be stood on end inside the car end and trapped by the bottom layer of logs loaded crosswise to the car; these became a makeshift bulkhead, and the logs were loaded as high as these makeshift end stakes. Lines that had a lot of pulpwood traffic always had a lot of sticks laying along the track, especially around bridge piers that would catch a log slid part way out and knock it off the car. By the sixties, the AAR required the load above the car sides be wrapped with chicken wire, not that it did much good.

Pulpwood was low value traffic, and it was hard to justify new equipment, but the Soo Line did invest in some brand new fifty foot gons with built-in bulkheads, but not until after the era of this list.

The typical steam era pulpwood car on both the Soo and NP seems to have been a extremely ratty GS gon.


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