Re: Freight car distribution

Dave Nelson

-----Original Message-----

1) If a freight agent in LA has 2 shippers requesting 40' XM MT's, one
load destined for Syracuse, and the other for Harrisburg, and he has a
bunch of empty 40 foot XM's - including one PRR, and one NYC, would he
just flip a coin? I've got to believe he would send cars towards their
home roads, national pool or not, even during WWII.

-----End Original Message-----

Wasn't there a magazine ad about a brand new PS-1 boxcar that travelled for
over 5 years before returning to home rails? Anybody recall that? Seems
cars scattered like marbles out of a dropped, busted bag and once in motion
they tended to continue to bounce around.

Anyway, WRT to my earlier summation of the various hypothesis... I forgot
something: when the word boxcar is read one should think XM cars and for
flatcars, FM cars. These will be more evenly distributed than special cars
(e.g., XAP) which were usually tied to service in particular locations.

That said, specialty cars exist... And are problematic: should they be
included or excluded from the sample of road names? Consider how the data
from Sherman Hill might be wholly indifferent to the appearance of such
cars, given overall traffic volumes, as compared to, say, the Western
Pacific which saw both considerably fewer bocars and was a terminating road
at an auto assembly plant. Consider how the PM boxcar fleet was mostly
specialty cars.

My point in bring this up is to show some of the complexity and to remind
people the while hypothesis is strong, it is still a generally speaking
hypothesis, and as such should not be seen as an iron clad rule but just
something suitable as a guideline in the absence of alternative factual

Dave Nelson

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