Re: Bil Darnaby's List of 1949 Boxcar Movements from Swift's Soy Bean Processing Operation in Frankfort IN

Tim Gilbert <tgilbert@...>

Montford Switzer wrote:

Responding to Tim Gilbert:


I am unclear of what you mean as a "steady source of loads." Is this an
industry or equivalent? By "regular moves" do you mean specific cars
(e.g. ABC Boxcar #123), or the industry, or do you mean regular
shipments of goods in any suitable car available? If the answer above is

specific cars, then what kind of car - boxcar, gon, hopper, etc., and
what road name and car number?

Tim, As Bill continues to share this info I think we will continue to
see the same TYPES of cars moving from the same shipper to same
consignee transporting the same product - soy bean meal. As I plan my
operating scenario I will want to handle the same types of cars in that
service on a regular basis. I'm only modeling the portion of the moves
that were over the MONON.

We are in agreement regarding type of cars. But what is the rhyme and reason behind the variety of car owners? Bill's data provides insight into some of the rhyme or reason of behind this variety of owners of boxcars and tank cars.

Each boxcar could carry a variety of commodities while tank cars were restricted to only a few, if not just one commodity. Hence, empty boxcars could be easily reloaded while empty tank cars generally had to return to their original point of loading before they could be reloaded. This difference is reflected in boxcars' loaded car miles being about 76% of total car miles in 1948-49 vs. the tank cars' loaded car mile percentage being only 50%.

Tank Cars were generally leased from private owners or owned by industries; thus, they were not free rollers - indeed, they earned mileage paid by the carrier to the owner instead of the per diem paid to the boxcar owner.

Because boxcars were free rollers because they were capable of showing up on any road different from the owner with a load originated on still another road- in Bill's latest sheet, CB&Q #26046 was loaded on the NKP with bean meal for AK Zinn, and routed NKP-Michigan City-NYC(MC)-Battle Creek. Another example was NP #26144 which was loaded with bean mail for the EW Bailey Co. in Montpelier VT and routed NKP-Toledo-DTSL-Detroit-GTW-Port Huron-CN-St. Albans VT-CV-Montpelier. (Incidentally, this would have been a "legal" routing of a Canadian car because of the transit through Ontario and Quebec.)

The distribution of ownership of Boxcars from the Swift Processing Plant resembles somewhat the distribution percentages of boxcar owners in wheel reports that I have parsed from the SOU's Washington Division in the Fall of 1946 and the UP's Wyoming Division in the Fall of 1947. They do not correlate perfectly with each other. But for modelers not having the advantage of a wheel report, or cars pulled from Frankfort, a good starting point in selecting what the owners of foreign boxcars should be on a layout would be based on the percentage of boxcars a specific railroad owned of the national fleet.

There is nothing wrong about modeling "specific" cars which may have
appeared once or sporadically over time on the prototype's line. For
instance, if modeling a line like UP's Sherman Hill, any of the 720,000
different boxcars in the US could have appeared on that line. Most
people's budget including Mike Brock's cannot afford 720,000 different
boxcars. So a selective compression of the model boxcar fleet has to be
done whereby ABC boxcar #123 represents itself plus, at another time ABC

#456, or, perhaps, the neighboring road's DEF #789 if ABC and DEF do not

own enough boxcars in the national boxcar fleet to warrant a separate
model for each road.

Tim, Agreed. Specific cars would be a bonus. One could model a car
based on Bill's records and plop it on the layout at the right place
(interchange with NKP at Frankfort) and take it off after it empties out
and is reloaded toward it home road. Example, NKP interchanges ATSF
1234 to MONON at Frankfort for delivery to a point north toward Chicago.
When empty the car would be loaded for or forwarded empty to Chicago and
into staging. The car might be allowed to wander onto the layout at
some future time representing the entire series of car for that RR.

I like to build freight car models so I won't mind building one that is
not used all the time. Yes, it will have to represent other cars in
that same series that might should up anywhere else on the parts of the
MONON that I am modeling.

I certainly want to make sure my freight trains have all of the known
types of cars carrying the regular moves whether it be the daily
shipment of bean meal, RCA TV cabinets, coke, coal, etc. It is the
single car shipments that will be harder to deal with and may end up
getting cars at random for lack of more specific info.
I guess that you will not be modeling CIL #1 at least between June 1947 and June 1948 because it was used to originate only one load, and terminate none on the MONON. Seriously though, gauging how many and what cars were loaded with merchandise or used team tracks is the bane of a prototypical modeler. What bails you in terms of ownership of boxcars is the starting point of percentage of boxcars owned by a road of the national boxcar fleet.

Bill's data just solved another mystery as what was moving in MONON
freight trains to I can more accurately model them.
I would think that Bill's data has helped you with boxcars and tank cars carrying bean oil; the data has not shown the distribution of owners among hoppers, gons, reefers or tank cars carrying different commodities than bean meal.

Tim Gilbert

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