Re: Question re: upcoming Rapido USRA DS box


Regarding the film of the PGE wreck:

First:  what fantastic quality--color looks near perfect, and picture quality is great

There are two GN cars in the film:  24804 (the one the crane was trying to right) and what could be 2XXX2.

Note that the wreck was being worked from both ends.  Early on, you can see a steam loco with a car equipped with a BIG winch.  They're working the CP car.

For the crane, I don't necessarily think the crane was too small for the job.  It did tip, after all, not "break".  I suspect the crane wasn't blocked adequately.  The ground looked pretty wet.  And squishy.  It appears the car might have been loaded.  There appears to be white material around the car door.  They COULD have emptied the car to make it lighter.  That would have taken a good bit of time, of course.  Judgement call.

The loaded car would have weighed about 120,000 pounds.  60 tons.  They had placed blocking under the car's drawbar, at the end farthest from the crane.  They would then appear to have been planning to lift the near end (to the crane) and swing it towards the track.  The lift would have been about 30 tons.  What's got me puzzled is that there's a cable that attaches to the blocked-up drawbar, travels up the end of the car and over to the crane boom.  I just don't get that.  NOT the crane operator's proudest moment!

Note also that the crane was righted using block and tackle.  Since I don't see a cable going over to the equipment behind the tipped crane, I do wonder if the winch at the other end of the wreck is supplying power.  Or perhaps they had a boat that could pull the cable.  It surely wasn't the four guys who had been pumping the hydraulic jack.


Edward Sutorik

On Mon, Apr 13, 2020 at 07:53 AM, Bruce Smith wrote:
Correct. Indeed, I see no footage of the GN car being righted, but that wimpy little derrick was clearly not up to the task of lifting the car and remaining upright. It also looks like they may have been dealing with 2 different GN cars, or that they dragged the GN car clear of the cut and then rolled the derrick trying to get it back onto the rails.
Note that the PGE and its successor, BCRail, always had serious avalanche/rock fall problems on many of their lines.
Bruce Smith
Auburn, AL

From: <> on behalf of Claus Schlund &#92;(HGM&#92;) <claus@...>
Sent: Monday, April 13, 2020 8:57 AM
To: <>
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Question re: upcoming Rapido USRA DS box
Hi List Members,
Colin wrote: “A video from the Pacific Great Eastern of a GN USRA being righted after a wreck.  From the mid-fifties.”
Thanks Colin for the video link, it was fascinating to watch some of the process involved in fixing things up when a mess like that occurs.
It looked to me like at some point the wreck crane itself tipped over, and they had to right it again, am I interpreting this correctly?
Claus Schlund
From: Kemal Mumcu via
Sent: Monday, April 13, 2020 9:01 AM
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Question re: upcoming Rapido USRA DS box
One thing about these Rapido cars that could be corrected is the incorrect ride height.  They ride high on the trucks.  This was the same problem with the NP cars.  I had to make a jig and sand down the excess bolster material to bring down the car to ride at the right height. 

A possible solution:  Make the cars with the correct bolster ride height and add a fitted washer to deliver the cars.  The toy train types will be happy and more discerning modelers can remove the washer to bring down the car to the right height. 

Colin Meikle

A video from the Pacific Great Eastern of a GN USRA being righted after a wreck.  From the mid-fifties.

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