Date   

Re: Chalk marks +

ljack70117@...
 

On the roads that I worked for, Bad Ordered cars were not chalked. The received a BO form on each side of the car say exactly what was wrong. This card was removed at the rip track when repairs were complete and filled with any other forms and papers for the repair. The rip track did not guess at chalk marks as to what was wrong. This was required by the rule book.
Thank you
Larry Jackman
Boca Raton FL
ljack70117@adelphia.net
I was born with nothing and
I have most of it left

On Feb 22, 2007, at 8:32 PM, A. Premo wrote:

"Car knockers" would inspect arriving cars.If they spotted any cars
needing repairs they would mark,"hold","Rip"."Reweigh"Turn"etc.They often
used a check mark to indicate that they had inspected the car.If a car had a
defect it would be removed from a train. Just one more reason for
certain chalk marks.Armand Premo
----- Original Message -----
From: "Richard Hendrickson" <rhendrickson@opendoor.com>
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Thursday, February 22, 2007 6:47 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Chalk marks +


On Feb 22, 2007, at 3:25 PM, Andy Laurent wrote:

I've often seen a typical mark on steam era cars. It is a large "+"
with numbers in 3 or 4 quadrants.

I have speculated that this might have something to do with the
dates that a car was received, spotted, overdue, picked up... but I've
never learned the real translation of that mark.
Andy, several of us have pondered the meaning of these marks in the
past but haven't come up with an explanation. As you say, they were
very common.

Richard Hendrickson





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Re: Chalk marks +

armprem
 

"Car knockers" would inspect arriving cars.If they spotted any cars needing repairs they would mark,"hold","Rip"."Reweigh"Turn"etc.They often used a check mark to indicate that they had inspected the car.If a car had a defect it would be removed from a train. Just one more reason for certain chalk marks.Armand Premo

----- Original Message -----
From: "Richard Hendrickson" <rhendrickson@opendoor.com>
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Thursday, February 22, 2007 6:47 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Chalk marks +


> On Feb 22, 2007, at 3:25 PM, Andy Laurent wrote:
>
>> I've often seen a typical mark on steam era cars. It is a large "+"
>> with numbers in 3 or 4 quadrants.
>>
>> I have speculated that this might have something to do with the
>> dates that a car was received, spotted, overdue, picked up... but I've
>> never learned the real translation of that mark.
>
> Andy, several of us have pondered the meaning of these marks in the
> past but haven't come up with an explanation. As you say, they were
> very common.
>
> Richard Hendrickson
>
>
>
>
>
> Yahoo! Groups - Join or create groups, clubs, forums &amp; communities. Links
>
>
>
>
>
>
> --
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> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
> Version: 7.5.441 / Virus Database: 268.18.2/692 - Release Date: 2/18/2007 4:35 PM
>
>


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Re: Chalk marks

rfederle@...
 

Are you sure that wasn't Herbie under the palm tree? Bozo Texino had a large brimmed hat and cigarette I do believe.

Robert Federle

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "David Powell" <daveydiesel@...> wrote:
" Texico Bandito" with a Mexican figure taking a Siesta.


That was "Bozo Texino".
Fred Mitchell, Dallas, TX


Re: Chalk marks

Fred Mitchell
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "David Powell" <daveydiesel@...> wrote:

There was also another popular name that was something along the lines
of " Texico Bandito" with a Mexican figure taking a Siesta.

Dave Powell Iowa

That was "Bozo Texino".
Fred Mitchell, Dallas, TX


Chalk & Singing Rails

John Cathcart
 

Fellow Foamers- Thought that I would add my $2.45 worth of what I
have experienced using and reading chalk marks and route cards in over
25 years on the Santa FE. This did not occur during the steam steam
era, but the 1969 to the mid 90's period. Nevertheless, I hope that it
is at least of some interest.Some of it my relate to other times,
places, railroads, etc. some of it will not. But you just never know.
I recently discovered and read 'Singing Rails' by Herbert L.Pease,
(Thomas Crowell Co., NY, 1948)and found that his description of the
organization and handling of freight on the warehouse floor in rural
1920 Illinois was exactly the way we did it on the Santa Fe in San
Diego, Ca. some sixty-odd years later! In San Diego,carding worked
like this. The Yard Clerk would verify the arriving train list/wheel
report, correcting obvious errors of initial, number or placement. The
Yard clerk would then confer with the Car Clerk to make a switchlist
and a set of destination cards.
Once the list was 'good' it was given to the yardmaster for the yard
crew to switch. At the same time the Yard Clerk would dash out into
the yard to 'card' the train with the destination cards and try to
finish without delaying the switch crew. Usually this was easy as the
card game would still be winding down in the switch shanty. Once
'carded', the train was switched, but the cards were largely ignored,
not being used until the next(day)shift. The day foreman would read
the cards, compare it to his list, and chalk his spot/sort marks on
the car while the helper bled-off the release rod. Often this was done
simultaneously, the helper 'bleeding & reading' the cards while the
foreman chalked the end of the car near the cut lever. One person
could do this, but cut levers and card placards are seldom close
together so it is much faster for two people. The day crew would then
re-switch and block the cut so that the cars were arranged for their
convenience in spotting. Sometimes they would make a new list; often,
the list went in the pocket, after all there were chalk marks on
everything now, who needs a list? Outbound emptys were not 'carded'but
were only chalked 'empty'(x) or 'b/o'(bad order or 'rip')or when
routed other than 'East'. Loads were 'carded'. Often, the crews would
chalk only the 'cut car' for a block of cars, or for 'setouts' or
'shorts'.
I can give some chalk mark samples for industries and destinations
if desired. Heck, I have even seen 'Sunshine' chalk marks that I
understand ('C-75' for example). By the way, route cards were usually
4"x4" manila cards, but could be colored. And thru yards used a lot of
them, often pre-stamped/printed. Enough for now. Ask and the diatribe
may continue. J.G.Cathcart


Re: Chalk marks

rfederle@...
 

Do you remember Kilroy? They drew his picture on every thing. Kilroy
was here it said.
Thank you
Larry Jackman
Boca Raton FL
ljack70117@adelphia.net
I was born with nothing and
I have most of it left




On Feb 22, 2007, at 5:22 PM, Dennis Storzek wrote:

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, ljack70117@... wrote:

No this story does not hold water. If the head man knows the first 21
goes to the J why does he need a mark. If he counts the first 21 to
make his mark then why not count the first 21 when he is ready to
make the set out.
A figure of my speech, Larry, for explanatory purposes. Let's try it
this way; the list shows the last car in the block for the J is
UP100100. When walking his train, not counting cars, he comes upon
UP100100 and marks it. Now he never has to look for the car number
again; he doesn't even have to remember the car number, much less
write it down. Once out on the road, he just looks for his mark. At
least, that's the way Bob Janz presented it in an article about
working train service on the C&NW in the early fifties, just a few
years after you retired from the railroad.

John Cizmar mentions his grandfather's recollection of just marking
cars for something to do, and this certainly went on. I think everyone
is familiar with "Herbie", the creation of a MoP brakeman during the
seventies. And you can't look at a dozen pictures of Soo Line cars
from the same era without running into "squirrel is nuts".

The ultimate story along these lines was just recounted in a recent
issue of "The SOO", the magazine of the Soo Line Historical &
Technical Society. There was a switchman on the Soo who marked cars
with a star in white paint stick, just to see how many he could mark.
Once he marked them they became "his" cars, much to the delight of his
grandkids when they'd spot one in a passing train. The paint stick
made very sharp marks, and his stars were quite symmetrical. When
Athearn recently released one of their exterior post boxcars in Soo
Line paint, the art dept. mistook the star on the car in the photo
they were using for a stenciled mark and, you guessed it, there is a
star between the ladder rungs of the Athearn car.

To take this back to the steam era, I guess man has always had an urge
to make his mark on the world, even if his name was J B King Esq.
And so:

Who the Hell is J B King
Who writes his name on everything?
On boxcars high and flatcars low
You see his name wherever you go
He may be poor
Or he may be rich
But he sure is a scribbling S O B

:-)

Dennis




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Re: Chalk marks +

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2007, at 3:25 PM, Andy Laurent wrote:

I've often seen a typical mark on steam era cars. It is a large "+" with numbers in 3 or 4 quadrants.

I have speculated that this might have something to do with the dates that a car was received, spotted, overdue, picked up... but I've never learned the real translation of that mark.
Andy, several of us have pondered the meaning of these marks in the past but haven't come up with an explanation. As you say, they were very common.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Chalk marks

David Powell <daveydiesel@...>
 

Don’t forget to tell everyone that J B King Esquire could be written
with out ever having to lift the chalk off of the side. In other words
it could written with just one stroke.
There was also another popular name that was something along the lines
of “ Texico Bandito” with a Mexican figure taking a Siesta.

Dave Powell Iowa

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Dennis Storzek
Sent: Thursday, February 22, 2007 4:22 PM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Chalk marks

--- In HYPERLINK "mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com"STMFC@yahoogroups.-com,
ljack70117@.-.. wrote:

No this story does not hold water. If the head man knows the first 21
goes to the J why does he need a mark. If he counts the first 21 to
make his mark then why not count the first 21 when he is ready to
make the set out.
A figure of my speech, Larry, for explanatory purposes. Let's try it
this way; the list shows the last car in the block for the J is
UP100100. When walking his train, not counting cars, he comes upon
UP100100 and marks it. Now he never has to look for the car number
again; he doesn't even have to remember the car number, much less
write it down. Once out on the road, he just looks for his mark. At
least, that's the way Bob Janz presented it in an article about
working train service on the C&NW in the early fifties, just a few
years after you retired from the railroad.

John Cizmar mentions his grandfather'-s recollection of just marking
cars for something to do, and this certainly went on. I think everyone
is familiar with "Herbie", the creation of a MoP brakeman during the
seventies. And you can't look at a dozen pictures of Soo Line cars
from the same era without running into "squirrel is nuts".

The ultimate story along these lines was just recounted in a recent
issue of "The SOO", the magazine of the Soo Line Historical &
Technical Society. There was a switchman on the Soo who marked cars
with a star in white paint stick, just to see how many he could mark.
Once he marked them they became "his" cars, much to the delight of his
grandkids when they'd spot one in a passing train. The paint stick
made very sharp marks, and his stars were quite symmetrical. When
Athearn recently released one of their exterior post boxcars in Soo
Line paint, the art dept. mistook the star on the car in the photo
they were using for a stenciled mark and, you guessed it, there is a
star between the ladder rungs of the Athearn car.

To take this back to the steam era, I guess man has always had an urge
to make his mark on the world, even if his name was J B King Esq. And
so:

Who the Hell is J B King
Who writes his name on everything?
On boxcars high and flatcars low
You see his name wherever you go
He may be poor
Or he may be rich
But he sure is a scribbling S O B

:-)

Dennis


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Checked by AVG Free Edition.
Version: 7.5.441 / Virus Database: 268.18.3/697 - Release Date:
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[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: P2K Mathers cars accuracy -- C&IM

John Hile <john66h@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Richard Hendrickson <rhendrickson@...>
wrote:

On Feb 22, 2007, at 5:51 AM, John Hile wrote:

I have one of the recent C&IM P2K Mathers still in the box. Based on
recent discussions and a quick search, it sounds like the following
changes are needed for this car...

1) Replace trucks with AAR (photos show w/spring planks)
Depends on your modeling date. Mather started to replace Andrews with
AAR trucks after WW II, but some C&IM cars still had Andrews trucks as
late as ca. 1953-'54. I have photos showing both.

2) Roof and ends repaint in mineral brown.
Yes.

3) New end lettering. End lettering on the model is yellow. Is this
correct for mineral red ends?
End lettering should be white. Champ decal set HN-92 has 4" white end
reporting marks and numbers, and Sunshine makes a car end data set from
which the data lettering can probably be pieced together (but be sure
you write down what the end data is before you paint over it!.

Richard Hendrickson
RE: the modeling date...right you are Richard, forgive the omission.
I'm in the process of narrowing it down to sometime between Jan '52
and June '53. From previous posts it seemed one would be more likely
to see a C&IM car with AAR trucks by this time. Without a period
photo of #8196 I was simply going to play the odds. Of course, since
I'm already renumbering the ends, I might as well consider renumbering
the sides. Is it convenient for you to share your car #'s, truck
info, photo dates? I have your 8/03 RMJ article which shows #8293
with AARs in 9/38, as well as #8288 with AARs but in 8/54. Martin
Lofton's 2/91 RMC article shows #8103 with Andrews in an "undated" photo.

Thank you for the decal suggestions. I was just looking at Champ
catalogs for potential leads.

John Hile
Blacksburg VA


Re: Chalk marks

ljack70117@...
 

Do you remember Kilroy? They drew his picture on every thing. Kilroy was here it said.
Thank you
Larry Jackman
Boca Raton FL
ljack70117@adelphia.net
I was born with nothing and
I have most of it left

On Feb 22, 2007, at 5:22 PM, Dennis Storzek wrote:

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, ljack70117@... wrote:

No this story does not hold water. If the head man knows the first 21
goes to the J why does he need a mark. If he counts the first 21 to
make his mark then why not count the first 21 when he is ready to
make the set out.
A figure of my speech, Larry, for explanatory purposes. Let's try it
this way; the list shows the last car in the block for the J is
UP100100. When walking his train, not counting cars, he comes upon
UP100100 and marks it. Now he never has to look for the car number
again; he doesn't even have to remember the car number, much less
write it down. Once out on the road, he just looks for his mark. At
least, that's the way Bob Janz presented it in an article about
working train service on the C&NW in the early fifties, just a few
years after you retired from the railroad.

John Cizmar mentions his grandfather's recollection of just marking
cars for something to do, and this certainly went on. I think everyone
is familiar with "Herbie", the creation of a MoP brakeman during the
seventies. And you can't look at a dozen pictures of Soo Line cars
from the same era without running into "squirrel is nuts".

The ultimate story along these lines was just recounted in a recent
issue of "The SOO", the magazine of the Soo Line Historical &
Technical Society. There was a switchman on the Soo who marked cars
with a star in white paint stick, just to see how many he could mark.
Once he marked them they became "his" cars, much to the delight of his
grandkids when they'd spot one in a passing train. The paint stick
made very sharp marks, and his stars were quite symmetrical. When
Athearn recently released one of their exterior post boxcars in Soo
Line paint, the art dept. mistook the star on the car in the photo
they were using for a stenciled mark and, you guessed it, there is a
star between the ladder rungs of the Athearn car.

To take this back to the steam era, I guess man has always had an urge
to make his mark on the world, even if his name was J B King Esq. And so:

Who the Hell is J B King
Who writes his name on everything?
On boxcars high and flatcars low
You see his name wherever you go
He may be poor
Or he may be rich
But he sure is a scribbling S O B

:-)

Dennis




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Re: Chalk marks +

Andy Laurent <arlaurent@...>
 

I've often seen a typical mark on steam era cars. It is a large "+" with numbers in 3 or 4 quadrants.

I have speculated that this might have something to do with the dates that a car was received, spotted, overdue, picked up... but I've never learned the real translation of that mark.

Any thoughts?
Andy Laurent


---------------------------------
Don't be flakey. Get Yahoo! Mail for Mobile and
always stay connected to friends.


Re: Chalk marks

Dennis Storzek
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, ljack70117@... wrote:

No this story does not hold water. If the head man knows the first 21
goes to the J why does he need a mark. If he counts the first 21 to
make his mark then why not count the first 21 when he is ready to
make the set out.
A figure of my speech, Larry, for explanatory purposes. Let's try it
this way; the list shows the last car in the block for the J is
UP100100. When walking his train, not counting cars, he comes upon
UP100100 and marks it. Now he never has to look for the car number
again; he doesn't even have to remember the car number, much less
write it down. Once out on the road, he just looks for his mark. At
least, that's the way Bob Janz presented it in an article about
working train service on the C&NW in the early fifties, just a few
years after you retired from the railroad.

John Cizmar mentions his grandfather's recollection of just marking
cars for something to do, and this certainly went on. I think everyone
is familiar with "Herbie", the creation of a MoP brakeman during the
seventies. And you can't look at a dozen pictures of Soo Line cars
from the same era without running into "squirrel is nuts".

The ultimate story along these lines was just recounted in a recent
issue of "The SOO", the magazine of the Soo Line Historical &
Technical Society. There was a switchman on the Soo who marked cars
with a star in white paint stick, just to see how many he could mark.
Once he marked them they became "his" cars, much to the delight of his
grandkids when they'd spot one in a passing train. The paint stick
made very sharp marks, and his stars were quite symmetrical. When
Athearn recently released one of their exterior post boxcars in Soo
Line paint, the art dept. mistook the star on the car in the photo
they were using for a stenciled mark and, you guessed it, there is a
star between the ladder rungs of the Athearn car.

To take this back to the steam era, I guess man has always had an urge
to make his mark on the world, even if his name was J B King Esq. And so:

Who the Hell is J B King
Who writes his name on everything?
On boxcars high and flatcars low
You see his name wherever you go
He may be poor
Or he may be rich
But he sure is a scribbling S O B

:-)

Dennis


Re: P2K Mathers cars accuracy -- C&IM

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2007, at 5:51 AM, John Hile wrote:

I have one of the recent C&IM P2K Mathers still in the box. Based on
recent discussions and a quick search, it sounds like the following
changes are needed for this car...

1) Replace trucks with AAR (photos show w/spring planks)
Depends on your modeling date. Mather started to replace Andrews with AAR trucks after WW II, but some C&IM cars still had Andrews trucks as late as ca. 1953-'54. I have photos showing both.

2) Roof and ends repaint in mineral brown.
Yes.

3) New end lettering. End lettering on the model is yellow. Is this
correct for mineral red ends?
End lettering should be white. Champ decal set HN-92 has 4" white end reporting marks and numbers, and Sunshine makes a car end data set from which the data lettering can probably be pieced together (but be sure you write down what the end data is before you paint over it!.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Barber trucks again

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2007, at 6:26 AM, leedennegar wrote:

Thanks to everybody who replied to my question about 1913 Erie Barber
trucks, but even from the detailed descriptions, I'm still unsure what
I should use on my 1925-era HO models of 40-ton boxcars.

Can anyone post (or send off-list) a picture or recommend a particular
product?
In the absence of more information or a photo of the car you're trying
to model, you might as well just ask your ouija board. A Barber truck
could have been any truck manufactured by the Standard Car Truck Co.,
or perhaps any truck made by anyone else which incorporated STC"s
Barber lateral motion devices. The Erie cars shown in the 1919 and
1922 Car Builders' Cyclopedias had T-section Andrews trucks with
Barber lateral motion bolsters, so a truck of that type would be a good
guess - but only a guess. And no such truck is currently modeled in HO
scale, though it might be possible to rework a Kadee Andrews truck into
a reasonable facsimile.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Chalk marks

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2007, at 12:29 PM, jaley wrote:

Were the destination cards out in the weather for an appreciable length of
time (such that the paper might yellow slightly)? Or were new ones
applied so often that the cards stayed "fresh"? I guess my real question
is whether we should use bright white bits of decal, or "off-white" bits
of decal to represent these cards.
Most were white, but I recall seeing some that were a manila (light tan) color. And they usually stayed on the cars only for a few days (except on the Pennsy, where a car might take a couple of weeks to get to its destination). I use white decals, but off white or very light gray would certainly work OK.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Chalk marks

Bill Darnaby
 

On one of my trips to China to chase steam I took a photo of one of the ubiquitous class C48 gons wherein the entire lower half of the car seemed covered with chalk marks. Very few, if any, of the marks were Chinese characters and were numerals and scrawls instead. Switchmen are the same all over, I guess.

Bill Darnaby

Armand, you're right that chalk marks were seldom erased (and in some
cases lasted for weeks or months before they were erased/obscured by
weather and dirt). However, prototype photos often show chalk marks
that were crossed out; apparently that was the practice whenever a
chalk mark was regarded as potentially confusing.

Richard Hendrickson





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Re: Chalk marks

ljack70117@...
 

No this story does not hold water. If the head man knows the first 21 goes to the J why does he need a mark. If he counts the first 21 to make his mark then why not count the first 21 when he is ready to make the set out. In any kind of weather all he needs is one car number written down. He does not need a full list. As far as it goes with the people I worked with, we did not use chalk marks. We did not even have chalk in the YD office in Salina when I was a clerk.
Any way it was used for what ever reason so make your mark.
PS the conductor on the roads I worked for always had two copies of his train. The one he made when he wrote it into he book and the one I gave him. One was for the head man.
Thank you
Larry Jackman
Boca Raton FL
ljack70117@adelphia.net
I was born with nothing and
I have most of it left

On Feb 22, 2007, at 2:56 PM, Dennis Storzek wrote:

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "A. Premo" <armprem@...> wrote:

Let us complicate matters even more.Chalk marks were rarely
erased and
often were placed on a car by a connecting or other foreign road ;which
leads me to ask,was there a common system or language ?It seems to
me that
this might cause some confusion for switch crews.Armand premo

Chalking track numbers did lead to confusion; that's the reason for
the printed routing cards.

The impression I get from talking to old timers is that these were
many times unique personal marks that had no meaning to anyone else.
Scrawl your initials or a doodle in a consistent way, and you have a
personal mark that you'll recognize when you see it, that isn't likely
to be confused with anything else on the car.

These were used like bookmarks, or folded page corners in a book. When
a crew reported for duty, they'd look over the consist, then walk
their train. On this particular day, the first 21 cars get set out to
the J interchange, and an additional thirty go to the B&OCT, with
everything else going through. As the head brakeman walked the train,
he'd go back 21 cars and make his mark by the cut lever; thirty more
and make his mark again. Later, out on the road, standing by the J
switch in the rain and howling wind, he didn't have to look at a list
to see what cars went to the J, he'd just let them go by until he saw
the mark he made earlier, stop them, and make the cut. Same with his
second cut later in the run.

That's the reason these marks seldom make any sense; they only had to
make sense to the man who had just made them hours before. The only
information the mark really had to convey was, "I was here before,
this is the place I make the cut".

Dennis




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Re: The DS/SS split - More results

laramielarry <ostresh@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, jaley <jaley@...> wrote:

UP LA&SL, XM, Box, 132000-132292, 40'0", 6'0", 100000, 1
Bettendorf underframe, wood supertructure. Double sheathed.

UP OWR&N, XM, Box, 301000-301113, 40'0", 6'0", 100000, 1
ditto.

UP LA&SL, XM, Box, 304800-304871, 40'0", 6'0", 100000, 2
ditto.

Good job, Jeff! Here is the updated summary table:

UP____________%___Number
DS__________2.0%_____477
SS__________0.1%_______12
Steel_______97.9%___22,870
Other_______0.0%________0
Known_____100.0%___23,359
Unknown_____0.0%_______3
Total______100.0%__ _23,362

Also, I think I know what one of the last 3 Unknowns is: It is the
rather famous UP 100100, renumbered! I'm not absolutely sure of this,
but let me give you the evidence and you can tell me whether you agree.

The car I think is 100100 is:

Road, AAR, Kind, Series, IL, Door, Capy, Qty
UP, XM, Box, 121999-121999, 40'6", 6'0", 100000, 1

In his book "Union Pacific Freight Cars, 1936-51", Terry Metcalf
describes this single-car series as "AAR Boxcar" ("Appendix D, Roster by
Class as of October, 1951"). Terry also includes a reprint of the 1946
ORER in his book - it does not list 121999, but 100100 is listed: The
ORER dimensions etc. given for 100100 in 1946 are EXACTLY the same
dimesions as given for 121999 in both the July 1950 ORER and in the NMRA
reprint of the January 1953 ORER. Interestly, in all three ORER
entries, even though the series is just a single car, "alternative"
values are listed for Outside Width at Eaves (8'10" or 9'7") and for
Outside Height to Eaves (12'11 or 12'9) - I'm not sure how a single car
can have alternative values!!!

So what do you think? Does 121999 = 100100? If so, I'll mark it as DS
and give you the credit, since it was your tenacity that made me dig
deeper.

Thanks, Jeff!

Best wishes,
Larry Ostresh
Laramie, Wyoming


Re: Chalk marks

Malcolm H. Houck
 

Further to the discussion of chalk marks, don't forget that car inspectors
chalk marked cars for either bad order or R.I.P. track placement.

As far as I know, most roads had a series of "Codes" used by wheel
inspectors, largely only numeric in form, each number for which denoted some defect;
-- such as "cracked wheel," "loose wheel," "bent" or "shelled out." I'm not
aware of any standardized numerology to any of this.

Since each railroad [may have] had specific lists and concise meanings to
the inspectors "codes" there was no mistaking any one chalked notation.
Furthermore, and since a wheel defect would've been attended before the car was
moved, the original mark would likely be crossed out or defaced by the car shop
guys after they'd finished their work.

Mal Houck


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Re: Chalk marks

John F. Cizmar
 

I remember my Grandfather talking about the initials his buddies would write on the cars as a sort of hello, WWII era. They may have signed off on inspections, journals etc., as well.
John Cizmar

Dennis Storzek <destorzek@mchsi.com> wrote:
--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "A. Premo" <armprem@...> wrote:

Let us complicate matters even more.Chalk marks were rarely
erased and
often were placed on a car by a connecting or other foreign road ;which
leads me to ask,was there a common system or language ?It seems to
me that
this might cause some confusion for switch crews.Armand premo
Chalking track numbers did lead to confusion; that's the reason for
the printed routing cards.

The impression I get from talking to old timers is that these were
many times unique personal marks that had no meaning to anyone else.
Scrawl your initials or a doodle in a consistent way, and you have a
personal mark that you'll recognize when you see it, that isn't likely
to be confused with anything else on the car.

These were used like bookmarks, or folded page corners in a book. When
a crew reported for duty, they'd look over the consist, then walk
their train. On this particular day, the first 21 cars get set out to
the J interchange, and an additional thirty go to the B&OCT, with
everything else going through. As the head brakeman walked the train,
he'd go back 21 cars and make his mark by the cut lever; thirty more
and make his mark again. Later, out on the road, standing by the J
switch in the rain and howling wind, he didn't have to look at a list
to see what cars went to the J, he'd just let them go by until he saw
the mark he made earlier, stop them, and make the cut. Same with his
second cut later in the run.

That's the reason these marks seldom make any sense; they only had to
make sense to the man who had just made them hours before. The only
information the mark really had to convey was, "I was here before,
this is the place I make the cut".

Dennis






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