! waRE: [RealSTMFC] Side-door Cabooses [was Why Transfer cabooses?]

Charlie Vlk

To amplify Doug and Nelson’s comments on CB&Q Waycars…..

Without researching the issue, the application of Allied Full Cushion Trucks to CB&Q waycars was very limited (to two cars… One wood and one welded steel IRRC).

Side door cars were not unusual in any period on the CB&Q and were applied as needed and not as a class of cars.  The three classes of steel cars had conventional ride control freight car trucks.

Side door cars are different than blind cars without end platforms (sometimes called “Mulelies” on other roads).   The Class NE-5 was used both during WWI and WWII for waycars converted from boxcars as a temporary measure.   The WWI cars did get cupolas and many received end platforms, while the WWII side door cars were more like MOW cars and had the one window on each side with a small all-weatherish extension as a sort of bay window but had blind ends not intended for boarding.

I’ve not seen mention of legal authority to use the temporary cars for the CB&Q because I have not done such research but have run across Illinois Railroad and Warehouse Commission permissions to use non-standard waycars for other roads for specified time periods around 1900.

No doubt the banning of “bouncers” or four-wheel bobbers were motivated by pressure from the Brotherhoods.   The Q built a number of such cars after the turn of the century and they lasted to the 1930s…in what service I am not sure where or why.  There was an earlier class of such cars and in pre-1880 times more bobbers, side door cars, and very short eight wheel cars that show up in a stereopticon photo of the Aurora Shops that is the only record of waycars that look very different from the CB&Q “standard” 28’ and 30’ cars that we know.

The No.7 truck WAS a passenger car truck as it was used under a number of different classes of mail, baggage, cream, RPO, business, and coach cars as well as being the standard waycar truck.   It was almost a clone of the longer No. 2 truck which was a passenger car truck.   The C&NW and UP must have liked the Q design as they also used a clone; even the UP calling it the Q truck.   But many 1880 cabooses were equipped with such trucks on many roads east to west.   Wood Q waycars of 1870 design with No. 7 trucks lasted through the BN merger.   And yes, they were smooth riding at speed.

The CB&Q had only one “transfer” waycar built from a single sheathed boxcar primarily for service at the Western Avenue Yards in Chicago, probably because of the same pressures mentioned for other roads.

Charlie Vlk 


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