Re: Cable Reel Loads

Mont Switzer



This isn’t the answer you are looking for but it might start you in the correct direction.  Steel cable reels were alive and well in the 1970’s when I hauled them.  What I saw ranged from 6,000 to 15,000 lbs. with wire on them.


It seems like anything less than 5,000 lbs. was prime for wooden reels.


Steel reels were always returned empty.  The wooden ones not so much, but some really good ones were returned.




Montford L. Switzer


Switzer Tank Lines, Inc.

Fall Creek Leasing, LLC.


(765) 836-2914


From: <> On Behalf Of Bruce Smith
Sent: Friday, May 29, 2020 9:29 AM
Subject: [RealSTMFC] Cable Reel Loads




I have some questions about Cable Reels as loads for steam era freight cars. 


I have a Sunshine PRR G27 gondola kit that was packaged with a kit for 18 steel cable reels. I model 1944. When did steel cable reels come into use?


This kit has a nice set of decals for cable reel labels, but when I search GOOGLE, all the steel reels seem to have very little labeling. Indeed, it looks like it might be tough to apply the decals to these reels anyway, since they have ribs on the outside and the only photo photo I have seen with a label (Okonite), has it on a placard attached to the ribs. Were steel cable reels commonly labeled in the steam era? Photos? 


If the decals don't work for the steel reels, I'll repurpose them for the wood reels I have. The decal set included is pretty comprehensive and amazing. Are there other decal sets to label cable reels?




Bruce Smith

Auburn, AL

Join to automatically receive all group messages.