Re: Tri-Sorb snubbers on reefers
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Paul, the cars in the article were Hormel Meat reefers. In the 30s, Hormel had one plant at Austin MN, served by the MILW and the CGW. That would account for the large number of miles on those two roads. Most of the other roads on the list are eastern roads, many with connections in Chicago. In the 30’s meat was slaughtered in the mid-west and consumed in the east. So Hormel cars were moved east via Chicago then passed on to eastern roads via Indiana Harbor Belt. NKP, NYC, ERIE were all known for moving meat, fast. I am surprised by the number of miles of the PPR as it was a road avoided by most meat packers until final destination. It appears the NP was Hormel’s choice for moving meat west. And the Southern and C&O were used for moving meat to the SE.
Meat reefers were in leased captive service, and returned quickly. Cars leased to Hormel would all be returned to Austin. It’s possible they went through North American’s repair facility on their return, but they did not sit idle. Figure one day for cleaning inspection. If done on site, then icing and loading could also occur that same day, or the next day as the cars had to cool down after cleaning. Cooling took about 4 hours. Once loaded meat reefers were switched and moved. Typical departure from Austin late afternoon or early evening with arrival at IHB Chicago at 1:30pm the next day, switched reiced and interchanged with eastern road by evening. Overnight to icing station in Ohio or further east, then on to New York City, Boston or Philadelphia markets. Unloading the 4th or 5th morning after being loaded. Then begins the return trips, no need to stop for icing, but perhaps a stop at North American for inspection and repairs. A 10 or 12 day turn around is not out of the question. But a load every 20 days was typical for meat reefers.
Yes the cars could sit idle somewhere. But meat packers did not want those cars sitting idle, so they had agents across the country who keep those cars moving. It was best to see your leased reefer sitting at your own storage yard next to your plant.
From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io [mailto:main@RealSTMFC.groups.io] On Behalf Of Paul Woods