This week I am working on flat cars
for my clinic on curating your C&O freight car fleet
at the upcoming C&O Modelers Weekend in Logan WV.
The focus of my presentation is 1952. At this time, the
C&O didn't have much of a flat car fleet with only
544 cars (not counting former PM cars).
The car I am currently wondering
about is the 81000-81249 series that were built by
Greenville Steel Car Co in 1952. These were 70 ton,
53'6" cars with 15 side pockets. The P2K 50 ton AAR flat
looks very close to my eye. The car diagrams from the
80625-80724 AAR 50 ton flats from 1944 also look nearly
identical to the ones for the 81000 series.
What would the visible differences
be between the the 50 ton AAR and these 70 ton cars?
getting too much into the weeds, the short answer is that
Greenville Steel Co. (GSC) built four series of 70-ton flat
cars in 1951-1953 including C&O 81000-81249 built to the
same basic geometry as the 50-ton AAR flat cars but with three
GSC 70-ton flat cars came with 4 crossbearers of unequal
spacing vs. three crossbearers of equal spacing for 50-ton AAR
flat cars. Both designs have 21’-5 1/2” spacing to outermost
crossbearers. Whereas the innermost pair of crossbearers for
these GSC cars had a spacing of 7’-6 1/2” (3’-9 1/4” towards
both ends from the car’s longitudinal center line).
2. Due to
the additional crossbearer, the GSC cars had one less crosstie
(7) vs. eight crossties for the 50-ton AAR flat cars. This
changed the respective locations of the crossties primarily
between the 4 crossbearers but also minor spacing differences
between the bolsters and outermost crossbearers.
sizes and thickness of many built-up structural components
comprised of rolled steel angles, webs, and cover plates as
applicable to the center sills, side sills, crossbearers, and
crossties. Whereas the bolsters were comparatively much the
same as were the end sills.
are the 4 Greenville Steel Co. Office Orders (O.O.).
2601-2640, GSC O.O. 562, 40 cars built 7-51 (railroad class
3100-3249, GSC O.O. 567, 150 cars built 8-51
81000-81249, GSC O.O. 579, 250 cars built 3-52
2641-2710, GSC O.O. 584, 70 cars built 2-53 (railroad class
the NKP Brewster shops built 100 cars 3250-3349 in 4-57 to
the same specs.
wood decking for these Greenville 70-ton cars were the same
as 50-ton AAR flat cars with continuous wood from end sill
to end sill. The C&O & NKP cars used 2 3/8” x 7 3/4”
x 10’-6” deck boards vs. 2 3/4” x 7 3/4” x 10’-6” for the WM
differences of these four Greenville orders are various
customer options/choices to include the shape of the stake
pockets, push-pole pockets (NKP 3100-3249 lacked push-pole
pockets), locations of roping staples, and specialties from
suppliers for the hand brakes, defect card holders, and
dimensional difference is of course 70-ton trucks with 5’-8”
axle centers vs. 5’-6” for the 50-ton AAR flat cars.
is this helps to answer your question. If you want to delve
more into the weeds, please contact me off list at hawk0621@....