Re: [CDN-frt-cars-n-ops] CN Fowler cars - X Braced frame doors

Frank Valoczy <destron@...>

I'm not at home right now so I can't check to verify, but I *think* the
Pacific Great Eastern's Fowler stock cars also had the X doors. I'll check
as soon as I'm able, but I would agree that TLT would do best by going
with the X-framed door.

Frank Valoczy
Vancouver, BC

Rob Kirkham wrote:

Hi Peter,
Looking through every photo of CNR stock cars I have, I find your
descriptions are correct.

Of the 5' door cars, all are of the Intercolonial and related fleets that
were essentially CPR knock off designs, with unequally angled diagonal
bracing. And all of the cars I have photos for had the X style door.
photos were all taken in later steam era/transition years.

For the 6 foot door cars I have photos of (same vintage), all had the X
style door.

I can't imagine these were distributed geographically. I think TLT would
safe using this design for their CNR style stock cars.

Rob Kirkham

From: "PBowers" <4everwaiting@...>
Sent: Monday, September 06, 2010 10:22 PM
To: <CanModelTrains@...>; <STMFC@...>
Subject: [STMFC] [CDN-frt-cars-n-ops] CN Fowler cars - X Braced frame

I have been discussing with TLT the possibility of having the 36 foot
Fowler stock cars released with the more common, especially in the
50's, "X" framed door rather than the vertical slat door the first
runs of the model had. While CN did have that type door on some cars
it was not the typically seen door on the CN 36 foot stock cars..

Doing a photo check the wood vertical slats on TLT CN cars as
modelled on the CN stock cars was rare by the fifties. It appears
the most prevalent use of the wood vertical slat doors were on the 5
foot wide cars. The six foot cars with vertical slat doors were rare
by the mid forties it appears,

Doing a quick bit of history on the CN cars we find:

CN rebuilt 5 foot door Intercolonial Ry box cars into wood slat door
equipped stock cars in 1923 that lasted up to the forties. These
cars had 4 brace ends In 1923 they also rebuilt 500 GT Fowler stock
cars These cars had 2 brace ends and wood doors. Like the other
cars they lasted into the forties at least.

CN rebuilt a further 1500 former 5' door Intercolonial Ry and 6' door
ex GT cars between 1934 and 1939 Like the previous rebuilds, these
cars carried the 4 and 2 braces on their ends.

In 1948 CN converted more ex 1913 built GT boxcars with steel roofs
Power hand brakes AB brakes and 5 braces on the car ends. These cars
were all equipped with X braces doors upon entering service. Photos
show that many were equipped with these newer doors by the mid 40's
and it appears they were appearing on cars by the early forties.

Interestingly, I have not found a five foot wide door CN car with the
X frame door although a couple photos show existing cars in 1963 and
1974. As well I have not come up with a clear picture to verify the
vertical wood slat doors on the 6 foot wide Fowler cars after the
very early forties.

With this research taking shape fairly well, I am passing it on to
the Canadian Freight Car and Operations and CNLines-CNet/Steam Mavens
list to see what else we can flush out on these cars.

As for numbers of cars there were about 876 5' foot wide door Fowler
cars on the books in 1953 and about 2100 6 foot door Fowler stock
cars comprising the CN fleet.

These cars were used extensively in the west, Ontario and Quebec as
well as the Maritimes. As well they were used system wide for
hauling MOW supplies and could be seen hauling almost anything when a
car was needed and weatherproof conditions was not a necessity and as
long as the need for moving livestock was absent.

It would be interesting to know if the 5 foot door cars were
specially assigned in any way. According to ORER records they were
equipped with a feeding trough. These were the only cars so
equipped. But why?

As the X framed door was a minor repair/upgrade, there was little or
no upgrade to the car necessary. I had discussed with a resin
producer producing an insert that would require cutting out the
vertical slats of the full height slat door such as on the ONR
version and inserting the horizontal slat-X frame module.

I know personally, there are a lot of persons who did not buy the
first CN Fowler cars because they knew the door was incorrect for
what they wanted. My bet is the X frame doors would be a big hit.

Currently the info needed by TLT at this point is as
follows: Exactly how many of these cars (the X framed door Fowler
stock cars) saw service, time frame, in what regions (so potential
popularity) and from a manufacturing perspective, what changes or
differences between 'standard cars' and the 'X' braced door (what
would we have to change at the factory)? We are just trying to get an
idea, financially how feasible this change would be and if there is
enough interest. Any help or ideas would be welcomed.

Peter Bowers
Discussion list on Canadian Freight Cars and their Operation


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