Re: CONOCO Proto 2000 8K Gallon Type 21 Riveted Tank Car Questions

John Barry


The main point about the list was to show the variety of non-owner controlled cars that carried feed stocks to refineries.  I have no insight to the outbound loads at that time as the list is from a detention study done by AAR at the behest of the Office of Defense Transportation for cars inbound to the refineries from the Santa Fe at Port Chicago.  I found the report in the National Archives at San Bruno back in 2012.  

It's interesting in the list that the only inbound Shell car, RPX 3502, was destined to the Associated Refinery originating in Atreco, TX, which was the home of an Atlantic Refining Company (Arco) refinery.  This illustrates the point that at least during WWII, you could see TMs and TMIs from just about any owner nearly anywhere there was a refinery.  Other files in the archives document partial lists of alcohol shipments for loading on Soviet tankers as part of the Lend-Lease program.  Cars came from distileries in Vancouver, BC; Kentucky; and other places as well as the tank storage farm at Gretna, LA to  Dorward or Lawrence in Richmond, CA.  At least a couple of the Gretna shipments looked like unit trains of 8 and 10K gallon cars.

You are correct about the Ethyl cars.  ALL of their cars for antiknock compound were TPIs of 3k or 6k gallons in 1944.  Their few larger cars were either TPIs for metallic sodium or ethyl chloride or TLs for muriatic acid.  Not a Type 21 in the bunch.  But the BLI 6k EBAX car is a great fit for any gasoline refinery.  

John Barry
ATSF North Bay Lines 
Golden Gates & Fast Freights 
Lovettsville, VA


PO Box 44736 
Washington, DC 20026-4736

On Saturday, June 27, 2020, 06:01:38 AM EDT, Garth Groff and Sally Sanford <mallardlodge1000@...> wrote:


Interesting list and interchange information. One point: automotive lead (tetraethylead) is extremely heavy. From my observation on the WP in the 1970s, which moved a lot of Ethyl tank cars, is that such cars were rather small. Most of those I photographed were in the 6,000 gallon range. I'm also thinking that these cars probably had some special lining, and a car without this lining would have been permanently contaminated. While I won't say it didn't happen in the 1940s, I would be surprised to discover this chemical was shipped in standard 8K or 10K tank cars.

For those interested, here is a link to a Wikipedia page on the Ethyl Corporation:

And here is another page on the chemical itself: .

Attached is a photo of an Ethyl tank car on the WP circa 1978 at Oroville. Note how small the car is.

Yours Aye,

Garth Groff  🦆

On Fri, Jun 26, 2020 at 11:55 PM John Barry <northbaylines@...> wrote:

While I agree that the the CONX car would not have been in California distributing finished product to local dealers, it coiled have been there transporting stock components to either Tidewater-Associated at Avon, Shell at Martinez, or Standard Oil of California at Richmond.  Just because they usually shipped retail product in their own or leased cars, does not mean they received their stock components in cars they controlled.  And during WWII, there was a much wider use of tank cars such that often neither the shipper nor receiver owned or leased the car.  Case in point, at Port Chicago, very close to your modeled location, during the last ten days of November 1944 the following cars were forwarded to the SP from the Santa Fe:


Those three EBAX cars, Tetraethyl Lead, (Motor Fuel in the commodity block on the waybill).  If you model a refinery that produced gasoline any time before the mid-70's, you need at least one EBAX car.

John Barry
ATSF North Bay Lines 
Golden Gates & Fast Freights 
Lovettsville, VA


PO Box 44736 
Washington, DC 20026-4736

On Friday, June 26, 2020, 08:39:24 PM EDT, Tony Thompson <tony@...> wrote:

Ken Adams wrote:

Shell owned the Martinez refinery in that period but I have them pretty well covered with a collection of UTLX cars.

      In your and my modeling period, Ken, UTLX was pretty substantially in bed with the "baby Standards" such as Standard of California, and to my knowledge had nothing to do with Shell.

Tony Thompson

Join to automatically receive all group messages.