Re: ATSF flat car

Richard Hendrickson

On Mar 24, 2009, at 9:42 PM, Tim O'Connor wrote:

This is a nice photo and I'm intrigued by the flat car seen to the
side that looks like it might be modified for aircraft fuselage --
but I didn't know there were such cars in 1951.

Unfortunately, the car number and class symbol are unreadable,
otherwise I might be able to dig up some more information on this
car. You're right that the loading fixtures look as if they may have
been intended to carry a section of aircraft fuselage. The Santa Fe
did a brisk business in the 1950s carrying Boeing aircraft components
from factories in Kansas to the main assembly plant in the Seattle
area, and in 1951 Boeing would have been busy building B-50 bombers
(the postwar souped-up version of the B-29 Superfortress) and KC-97
Supertankers. However, there's no reason why a car in that service
would have been westbound at San Bernardino. More plausible would
be the transportation of components for the giant B-36 bombers from
Convair's San Diego plant to the main assembly plant in Fort Worth,
but someone who knows more about the Convair San Diego plant's
postwar production would have to confirm that as a possibility.

Richard Hendrickson

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