Re: Steam Era Spray trains

mofwcaboose <MOFWCABOOSE@...>

There was a comprehensive book in two volumes about weed spray cars:.  Volume one was   titled "Railroad Weed Spray Contractors and Their Equipment". Volume two was "Railroad Owned and Operated Weed Spray Cars". The author was J. J. Pitts (now deceased). I do not believe many copies were printed (copyright date 2008). nor do I think any are still for sale. I own a copy mainly because I contributed so many photos to it.

Let's face it. Books of this sort are rare and do not sell because there is very little interest in such a specialized subject. Most such books are very much a "labor of love".

John C. La Rue, Jr.
Bonita Springs, FL

-----Original Message-----
From: Ben Sullivan <ben.sullivan75@...>
Sent: Wed, Jul 22, 2020 8:40 am
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Steam Era Spray trains

I've been somewhat casually fascinated with weed spraying equipment for the last several years, as I have a couple photos showing part of a weed spraying train on the railroad I model (B&O Georgetown Branch, ca 1945-55) and have wanted to model it ever since. It's a back-burner project, but I've uncovered some interesting things along the way. R.H. Bogle was a company based in Alexandria, VA that operated for many years providing contracted services to various railroads of the region and beyond. Essentially they provided the specialized equipment and chemicals and the railroad provided the power. Photos of their equipment on various lines around the country can be found online in the usual places. They continued on into the 80s and 90s (I believe). Eventually renown for pension fraud, unfortunately. They developed their own chemicals too. Look up "Bo-Rid." 

Someone chased the Bogle weed spraying train(s?) on the W&OD in the late 1950s (I think). Photos pop up frequently on FB and elsewhere:

RHBX 301 Louisville, KY 1950
RHBX 301 Weed Control Car Etowah, TN in July 1978
RHBX 305 on the EL at Voris Street in Akron, Ohio in early 1972
More RHBX equipment:

NALX 110 C&EI, Glover, Illinois, 1959 J. Parker Lamb

NALX 118

At the 5:16 mark in this video you can see one in action at Griffith Crossing near Chicago.

The GNHS produced two related resin kits at their 2008 and 2009 conventions. You can see info here:

Here is a link to an assembly DIY of the GN Historic Society X-1853 weed sprayer resin kit, with some add'l info

A post here about NALCO weed sprayer & cars

I know that some of the material herein is not within the "steam era," however much of the specialized equipment was used for many years afterwards making it somewhat appropriate. Hoping this gives a bit more insight. I have wondered if there were any comprehensive books or articles written over the years on weed spraying trains, as I find it to be a really interesting aspect of the industry. 

Ben Sullivan
Brookeville, MD

Join to automatically receive all group messages.