Re: Rapido USRA 40-ton Boxcar

William Hirt


These were the only CB&Q boxcars with Andrews trucks when purchased new. They did buy Andrews trucks new for their composite gondolas and used them to replace trucks on other equipment as necessary. One prominent example was the USRA style gondolas which the Q did like and built a lot of them in their own shops (over 6,000) for especially coal service. 2400 Class GS-5 cars were built in 1925 by CB&Q Galesburg shops. 400 would equipped with Archbar trucks and the remaining 2000 with Andrews trucks. They continued building similar cars at Galesburg in 1929-30 (750 cars - Class GS-7 - an improved Andrews plank truck), and from 1935-1938 with additional 2800 Class GS-8 cars built (mainly with Barber double truss plank trucks, but they did have 50 equipped with National Type B trucks, and 50 with Barber stabilized plank trucks built in 1935).

The gondolas were resheathed a number of times and then rebuilt. As January 1960, there were still almost 2700 of the GS-7 and GS-8 cars still in revenue service.

The Q did not buy any two bay steel hoppers until a 500 car buy from AC&F in 1926 that had Dalman trucks (Class HT-1). Then they started buying steel two bay steel hoppers regularly for the next 20 years or so. The biggest being the HT-5 class which had 3200 cars.

Here is a photo of one the gondolas with the Andrews trucks in 1948 in a work train at Louisiana MO:


Bill Hirt

On 6/5/2019 1:17 PM, Dennis Storzek wrote:
On Tue, Jun 4, 2019 at 06:44 AM, William Hirt wrote:
According the Burlington Route Historical Society Freight Car Data Sheet on USRA Double Sheathed Boxcars, the USRA Double Sheathed Boxcars (series 120500-120999) built in December 1918 by AC&F were the last double sheathed boxcars the CB&Q purchased (Class XM-24). They were the only CB&Q boxcars built new with Andrews cast steel trucks. Other than resheathing in the 1930s and having a grab added to the left hand side of the car, not much in the way of visible changes were made to these cars (unlike other Q double sheathed boxcars). They kept their KC brakes until retired. They were all gone by the early 1950s.
That's interesting. The Soo Line "sawtooth" boxcars built in 1913,14, and 15 were all built with Bettendorf T section trucks, but the five or six cars that remain in preservation all ride on Andrews trucks with CB&Q cast in the side frames. Obviously a bulk purchase of used trucks to replace the troublesome T section trucks, but I always wondered when it was done. A search of the preserved Soo AFE files failed to reveal any large purchases of used trucks, but it may have just been described with the generic term as car material or some such. If these were the only CB&Q cars equipped with Andrews trucks, then any large reduction in their numbers would be a good indication as to when the trucks would have been available. Anyone have a retirement timeline for the Q USRA cars?

Dennis Storzek

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