Re: Unloading 1928 Buicks

Guy Wilber

Tony Thompson wrote: 

"Great illustration of the wooden "hurdles" used to ship more than two autos in a car."

I have never seen the use of the term "hurdle" within automobile loading diagrams published by the MCBA or the ARA.  The first set of rules governing the loading of automobiles and light trucks within closed cars was published by the American Railroad Association in 1919.  All drawings and accompanying text within that set of rules displaying methods of tilting autos refer to the apparatus as a "horse". 

"The collapsible metal rack must have been a great advance in loading, though maybe less so in unloading."

Maneuvering vehicles in and out of auto cars equipped with Evans or NYC racks was no less intensive than from the years prior to the installations.  The systems did alleviate any need for lifting or lowering (via outside jacks, hoists, etc.).  Further, the use of racks was a much safer and less costly operation, estimated in 1947 to be around $1.00 per vehicle.  The Evans tie down assemblies and the NYC's tire chain "hold downs" also eliminated the need for nailing restraints into car floors.  Regular use of cement coated nails in order to secure such devices as well as the "horses" was common and their removal was brutal on the floor boards.   A 1924 ARA report noted that the floors of auto cars were requiring complete (or partial) repairs after a mere six loadings.

There are many facets of auto loading featured within this film that are noteworthy.  Freight Claim Division Rules required that nearly all fluids, including gasoline, be mostly drained from vehicles.  A gallon of gas was the maximum allowed which was enough to deliver cars to the loading docks and drive them away after removal from auto cars.  Radiators were often drained in colder times of year, baffles in battery caps were designed to prevent spillage, yet battery acid drips were often a source of damage claims.  Typically, drip pads were wired under the engine compartments to absorb (both) oil and battery drips, but obviously weren't used in this illustration. 

The driving of cars into and out of cars was strictly prohibited, but obviously there is at least one auto shown within the film showing an exception to the rule. 

Guy Wilber
Reno, Nevada     



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