Re: Ratios of Home Road vs. Foreign Roads

Dana and Larry Kline <klinelarrydanajon@...>

<Larry Kline wrote: Photographic or other documentation is the best approach
to determining the ratio of home road and foreign road cars.?>

<And Dave Nelson replied: Beg to differ. Photos will almost always show a
small portion -usually that portion closest to the locomotive. Far better
evidence, while hard to come by, are conductors books, interchange logs, and
yard jumbos. >

The _other documentation_ mentioned in my earlier post certainly includes
conductors books, etc. I would be very happy to have them. So far the only
info of this type that I have found is from the 1970s, and I am left with
photos, videos, the Copeland Reports, ICC commodity reports and the info in
the WM Historical Society's book _Working on the WM_ as sources of
information about steam era merchandise trains on the WM Cumberland to
Connellsville line.

I agree that photos and videos tend to show only the front of the train, but
it seems to me that there are at least two other sources of sampling bias
with photos. 1) Trains run around the clock, but photos are usually taken
during the daylight hours, and 2) some photo locations are much more
accessible and/or more photogenic than others.

The WM photos and videos I have collected sometimes show all or a
substantial part of the train, especially at Helmsteader's curve where Bill
Price frequently shot slides and videos. On the other hand, Bowest Yard,
the location I am modeling, was out of the way, and seldom photographed. In
addition, panoramic photos of the yard at Bowest were possible only by
climbing a wooded hillside. As a result, I don't have any steam era photos
of the cars in the yard, only the usual engine shots.

<Dave Nelson also wrote: I don't recall ever seeing an cycle time numbers.
I think it would be
interesting. But then I'm a data head.>

My one car turn per month was off the top of my head, and low for the early
1950s. An article in the Jan 7, 1950 Railway Age gives the following numbers
for October 1949: All car types, 19.87 days, boxcars 13.94 days, gons
23.63 days and hoppers 36.89 days. The gon and hopper numbers were higher
than usual because of steel and coal strikes. For 1952 there were
approximately 36.4 million car loadings and 2.1 million cars so there were
17.3 turns per year, or 21.1 days per turn. The info in the 1989 edition of
John Armstrong's _The Railroad, What It Is, What It Does_ indicates 25.3
days per car turn.

Larry Kline

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