Re: Numbers/percentages of important box car types

Gatwood, Elden J SAD <Elden.J.Gatwood@...>


Although I hadn't intended that this discussion go down this road, I will
make the following observations based on a lot of recent analysis of trains
and photos in my area, the PRR in other areas, and those of other roads' yard
shots, looking at roads, car types, loads, and specific cars. Obviously, the
general statement of the number of different car types is only useful in a
specific context if one were to know if one's area of interest was
representative of the national fleet, or vice versa.

.... often, the loading road did not have a choice because there
were no home road boxcars available for loading.

This appears to be true in my area of interest, too.

Car Service Rules to route loaded cars either towards their home road
were frequently ignored either by the shipper or by the originating road
(or both).

That also appears to be true, as ones sees cars that should be going back
home going the opposite direction, and cars being "diverted" based on local

... a higher percentage of newer designs would be off road than those of the
older designs. Some of this may be due to the repair of boxcars - also, more
of the older boxcars might have been kept in a home road's strategic
reserve. This is an observation of mine, and cannot be proven with any
parsing that I have done.

Tim, that is a very interesting, and important statement you made, which I
also believe to be true. My area of interest shows a greater percentage of
older cars than the overall fleet (a far greater percentage of X29s, X31As,
and older gondolas, than X50s, X51s, X55s, X58s, X59s and X60s). I suspect
that the industries represented got more than their share of older, crummy
cars, than the newer ones. I would also suspect that if one were modeling
something high value, like the auto industry, one would see a far greater
percentage of new cars, and dedicated car types and classes.

I also have a greater presence of PRR and foreign 50' box cars, due to Fisher
Body service and lumber service, respectively, than the proportion expected
for 40' boxes, for example, and higher percentages of gondolas and hoppers
than one would expect, due to the large presence of the steel and coal mining
industries. It is just part of that area specificity that one would expect.

There also seems to be an odd overabundance of certain roads' cars on the
PRR, and underabundance of others. I suspect this was due to the PRR's
relationship and connections with certain roads like the CB&Q, who is very
over represented, for example.

I would also love to see the breakdowns various folks have derived for their

Elden Gatwood

Join to automatically receive all group messages.