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Re: Chalk marks

MDelvec952
 

In a message dated 2/22/2007 4:29:25 PM Eastern Standard Time,
WDarnaby@... writes:

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


Wow, lots of contribution to chalk marks. There were lots of reasons for
chalk marks, and on those rare days I cover a train service job these days I
still carry a paint stick to apply something interesting to today's tank cars.
I can add some real life to the mix that relates to the steam days:

When I started in train service I worked with an old CNJ man, Walter Switz,
and at that time we blocked our outbounds for Conrail. After pulling the daily
10-15 tank cars from the various racks for shippment, he'd walk along and
write the destination railroad (either NS or CSX) on each car, usually near
one end of the car so that he could easily see it while reaching for the cut
lever later on. A fan of the old days and old ways, I bought some sidewalk
chalk (1" diameter sticks) and continued the tradition when I was conducting.
When I got better at making up trains I found I could remember numbers and
blocks so I stopped taking the time to do it, and later on we no longer needed to
block our outbounds. But back in the steam days, a lot of conductors would
mark cars for the same reason. Another old-timer's trick for remembering
cuts on strings of cars was to put a stick or a rag, piece of ballast or
whatever debris that was handy on the running board or grab iron -- when your
make-shift-marker came back you could see your cut far enough in advance to give
the engineer a good count down to a stop for the cut.

Every car that comes into our facility gets looked at by a team of car
inspectors. Each will chalk a date on the brake reservoir, usually just a month
and day, 2/24, so that the others on his team know that someone looked at the
car. Since many of ours are a captive fleet, the regular cars come in with
dozens of dates on the reservoirs. The new dates are always brighter than any of
the older ones. I've seen lots of this on steam era freight cars. These
Union Tank Car employees use either white or yellow chalk, which fades to gray
when the car comes back usually four weeks later. Legend has it that a 19th
Century car inspector in Potomac Yard in Alexandria, Va., would chalk his name
on railcars, O.K. Dokes, supposedly the origin of the phrase "Okay."

Many railroaders chalk names or figures other markings on cars for
amusement, and some of them are quite clever. I haven't seen much of these in early
steam era photos, but in the '50s, '60s and '70s it seemed to get popular.
Drawings such as Herbie and Bozo Texino are legends among trainmen. My favorite
is Colossus of Roads. (Google them if you're curious.) Again, in pursuit of
seeing what such things were like in the old days I came up with a couple
little caracatures that I would draw on railcars. One was a Jersey Tomato with
a little phrase on it. After 9/11 I started drawing the World Trade Center
with a patriotic complement. One thing I learned with these drawings, which
explains why the old ones were as simple as they were, is that they have to be
completed quickly. These drawings were usually applied as the trains were
being made up, so while one trainman was making the hitch and the air, the other
was making his little drawing. You have to finish before the train starts
moving. Bozo and Herbie were both simple drawings, the former was actually one
continuous line. Herbie was supposedly an acronym for Helping Every
Railroader Become Injury Efficient, according to a former-PRR/Amtrak man I worked
with who collected such lore, and hand signals (he knew more hand signals from
more railroads than I thought could ever exist.) He would kid about his
crusty old coworkers -- "you could sure tell a Penn man, but you couldn't tell him
much!"

Mike Del Vecchio
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Re: Speedwitch Freight Car book

Eric Hiser <ehiser@...>
 

Caboose Hobbies still had about 6 copies on the shelf as of last Saturday
(when I bought mine).

Eric Hiser
Phoenix, AZ

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...] On Behalf Of
Richard Hendrickson
Sent: Friday, February 23, 2007 1:55 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re:Speedwitch

On Feb 23, 2007, at 11:15 AM, Dave Nelson wrote:

Ted Culotta wrote:

Finally, the
book The Postwar Freight Car Fleet is sold out at both NMRA and with
me.
Oh my... I've not acted upon this yet. Ted, do you know if there will
a
second printing?


Re: Santa Fe & Union Pacific Sample Cars

laramielarry <ostresh@...>
 

What I meant to ask was:

Maybe you can answer another question: Many of the ORER entries
say "Z bar"; if I remember correctly, I saw these for DS, SS, and
steel cars. Just what are they? Does the term apply just to cars
with Z bar eaves as you discussed above? I assume their importance is
that they affect clearance or capacity?


Re: Santa Fe & Union Pacific Sample Cars

laramielarry <ostresh@...>
 

--- In STMFC@..., "Dennis Storzek" <destorzek@...> wrote:

--- In STMFC@..., "laramielarry" <ostresh@> wrote:


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
of
these dimensions!!!
Larry,

These aren't alternate dimensions, they're multiple dimensions. This
was often done in the listings for cars with Z bar eaves, since the
category asks for the width, "At eaves or top of sides", which are
at
different places on these cars. The way it reads, the car is 8'-10"
wide at a point 12'-11" from the rail, which would be over the roof
panels attached to the upper leg of the Z, and 9'-7" wide at a point
12'-9" from the rail, which would be the actual top of the side.

The extreme width is wider still, as it is measured over the door
hardware or ladders, whichever is wider

Dennis
Thank you very much, Dennis. That clears up a big question I had as
I was digitizing the ORER, because a lot of entries had 2 (and
sometimes 3) "alternate" values.

Maybe you can answer another question: Many of the ORER entries
say "Z bar"; if I remember correctly, I saw these for DS, SS, and
steel cars. Just what are they? Does the term apply just to cars
with Z bar eaves as you discussed above? Sometimes they are listed
for Inside Height, for example. I assume their importance is that
they affect clearance or capacity?

Thanks, Larry


Re: Chalk marks

Russ Strodtz <sheridan@...>
 

Richard,

In my old and declining brain I remember the IHB's as rectangular and
only about 3"x4" or maybe slightly larger. While I saved a lot of junk
that is one thing that I never thought of saving.

Russ

----- Original Message -----
From: Richard Hendrickson
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Friday, 23 February, 2007 15:03
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Chalk marks



On Feb 22, 2007, at 8:06 PM, Jared Harper wrote:

> --- In STMFC@..., jaley <jaley@...> wrote:
> 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.
>
> Also, how big are the "bits?"

Destination cards appear in photos to have been about 4" to 6" square.

Richard Hendrickson


Mainline Modeler back issue sale

Andy Carlson
 

I have the following issues of Hundman's Mailine Modeler magazines offered for sale. More than one copy is noted with an (*), all others are limited to single copies. Priced at $2.00 each, plus $4.05 priority shipping, or $3.00 media mail. If more than one copy is desired, I will quote the shipping charge. All are in good condition. Better than good issues will be marked with a (+), while slightly less than good condition will earn a (-). Contact me at <midcentury@...> Thanks,
-Andy

1980...Sep/Oct*+
1981...Jan/Feb*+ Mar/Apr May/Jun*
1982...Jan/Feb+ April+ Aug/Sep*+- Oct-
1983...Aug
1984...Jul+ Sep+ Oct+ Dec*+-
1985...May+ Oct+ Nov+ Dec*+
1986...Jun+ Oct Nov+
1987...Jan Apr+ Oct*+
1988...Mar+
1989...Apr Jun+ Sep
1990...Jan*+ Apr+ Jun Sep+
1991...NONE
1992...Mar* Jun*+ Aug Oct+


Re: Speedwitch

bill_d_goat
 

--- In STMFC@..., "RichBeau" <RichBeau@...> wrote:

Caboose Hobbies has a few copies left.

--Rich Beaubien
Just called and ordered one. Thanks
Bill Williams


Focus on Freight Cars

ed_mines
 

I hope the first book in the series is selling well. When can we expect
the second one?

Ed


Re: Speedwitch

RichBeau <RichBeau@...>
 

Caboose Hobbies has a few copies left.

--Rich Beaubien


Re: Chalk marks - modeling

Tim O'Connor
 

Ned, I think I always use the pencil after the final flat clear coat. Are
you trying to use the pencil on a glossy surface? That may not work
as well.

-------------- Original message ----------------------
From: "Ned Carey" <nedspam@...>
Richard Hendrickson and Tim O'Connor spoke of using pencils for chalk marks. I
have tried several brands of pencils to make these and just can't get it to work
well. The pigment just doesn't stick well enough for me. But when it works it
loks the best.


Re: Chalk marks

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 22, 2007, at 8:06 PM, Jared Harper wrote:

--- In STMFC@..., jaley <jaley@...> wrote:
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.
Also, how big are the "bits?"
Destination cards appear in photos to have been about 4" to 6" square.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Speedwitch

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 23, 2007, at 11:15 AM, Dave Nelson wrote:

Ted Culotta wrote:

Finally, the
book The Postwar Freight Car Fleet is sold out at both NMRA and with
me.
Oh my... I've not acted upon this yet. Ted, do you know if there will a
second printing?
Dave, the NMRA people were told that their press run of this book was way too small, and guess what? It was. My interpretation (based, I admit on no direct evidence) is that they couldn't believe there was that much interest in old freight cars. Now that they know better, there will doubtless be a second printing, though whether it will appear during our lifetimes is another matter.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Chalk marks

Richard Hendrickson
 

On Feb 23, 2007, at 5:58 AM, Dennis Storzek wrote:

--- In STMFC@..., "Monk Alan" <Alan.Monk@...> wrote:


Though I would say, in terms of recreating the prototype, it doesn't
necessarily matter whether or not you can understand or interpret the
markings on a real car, only that you recreate on your model that
which
you see on the prototype, ne??
True, and that's really the point of most of these messages; very
little of the clutter was graffiti with recognizable names. The vast
majority was quite cryptic; dates and number codes, and unrecognizable
scribbles that meant something to someone, but are a mystery to the
rest of us. The hardest part of modeling it may be forcing oneself to
NOT write things that are understandable, like "hold" or "spot", but
simply gibberish.
Dennis is spot on, as usual. I would only add that photos provide
innumerable examples – as someone else has already observed, they're on
almost every page of Culotta and Kline's Pstwar Freight Car Fleet.
Just look at the pictures, guys, you don't have to know what the chalk
marks meant.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Santa Fe & Union Pacific Sample Cars

Dennis Storzek <destorzek@...>
 

--- In STMFC@..., "laramielarry" <ostresh@...> wrote:


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 of
these dimensions!!!
Larry,

These aren't alternate dimensions, they're multiple dimensions. This
was often done in the listings for cars with Z bar eaves, since the
category asks for the width, "At eaves or top of sides", which are at
different places on these cars. The way it reads, the car is 8'-10"
wide at a point 12'-11" from the rail, which would be over the roof
panels attached to the upper leg of the Z, and 9'-7" wide at a point
12'-9" from the rail, which would be the actual top of the side.

The extreme width is wider still, as it is measured over the door
hardware or ladders, whichever is wider

Dennis


"Z" Bar ORER Entries

Guy Wilber
 

In a message dated 2/23/2007 6:14:56 PM Central Standard Time,
ostresh@... writes:

Maybe you can answer another question: Many of the ORER entries
say "Z bar"; if I remember correctly, I saw these for DS, SS, and
steel cars. Just what are they? Does the term apply just to cars
with Z bar eaves as you discussed above? I assume their importance is
that they affect clearance or capacity?



Larry,

Clearance only, nothing to do with capacity.

The "Z" Bar notation is in reference to cars built utilizing the "Z" bar
side plate. The ARA's drawings covering the details are including within the
Editorial Section of the ORER. I don't know if these are included in the CD
version, but should be within your printed copy (post 1930).

The ARA modified the marking of such cars (effective March 1, 1930).

"On all box or house cars standing more than 12 feet from top of rail to
eaves (upper eaves) two sets of dimensional data shall be stencilled, indicating
height and width.

First: The height and width at eaves (upper eaves). If cars are equipped
with latitudinal running board the height shall be given to top edge of
latitudinal running board and the width shall be given from the outside edge of the
top of latitudinal running board to corresponding point on opposite side.

Second: The extreme width of car and the height at this extreme width.
These measurements shall be taken over attachment projecting to greatest extent
around eaves (top of side ladders, top door fixture, etc.).

Stencilling to be in 2" letters and figures on side of car, in location
shown on drawing."


ORER entries may have included these changes as early as the July 1929 issue
-- I don't know for sure. Perhaps Ian, or another member of the list, could
check.

Kind Regards,

Guy Wilber
West Bend, WI


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Re: Chalk marks - modeling

Ned Carey <nedspam@...>
 

Richard Hendrickson and Tim O'Connor spoke of using pencils for chalk marks. I have tried several brands of pencils to make these and just can't get it to work well. The pigment just doesn't stick well enough for me. But when it works it loks the best.

I think the Clover house dry transfers are the easiest. I use a combo of decals, dry transfers and pencils.

One idea to make the dry transfers or decals look better to use real chalk powders over the decals. Use either a white chalk to represent a smeared chalk mark or the body color of the car over the chalk mark to tone down the mark.

Looking at pictures of cars that have a lot of marks on them you will see a range of very fresh crisp marks to blurry fadded ones. That is something I try to capture.

Ned Carey


Re: Speedwitch

Ned Carey <nedspam@...>
 

Ted Culotta wrote:
Finally, the
book The Postwar Freight Car Fleet is sold out at both NMRA and with
me.
Dave Nelson wrote:
Oh my... I've not acted upon this yet. Ted, do you know if there will a
second printing?

I just searched on Google and the first name behind NMRA was Karen's Books. I got her last copy. I suggest anyone interested act quickly. It didn't show up on Amazon.

Ned Carey


Re: Speedwitch

Dave Nelson <muskoka@...>
 

Ted Culotta wrote:

Finally, the
book The Postwar Freight Car Fleet is sold out at both NMRA and with
me.
Oh my... I've not acted upon this yet. Ted, do you know if there will a
second printing?

Dave Nelson


Re: Santa Fe & Union Pacific Sample Cars

laramielarry <ostresh@...>
 

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

On Feb 9, 2007, at 12:47 PM, guycwilber@... wrote:

Did the ARA DS "Sample" cars built by Santa Fe and Union Pacific
operate in
revenue sevice (as built) or were they rebult with matching ends
and
hardware
before being placed into service?
Guy, both cars went into revenue service as built, with the mis-
matched
ends and other details, and continued in that form for many years.
The Santa Fe Bx-7 class car remained on the active roster until the
early 1950s (and, unlike the similar Bx-8, -9, and -10 classes that
followed it) was never rebuilt with a steel body. UP 100100 lasted
in
revenue service through WW II and into the late 1940s. It was then
either retired or renumbered (I'd have to do some more research to
determine which).

Richard Hendrickson
I think that UP 100100 was renumbered to UP 121999, probably in 1947
or 1948, and that it survived intact until at least 1953.

Here are my reasons for thinking this:

In his book "Union Pacific Freight Cars, 1936-51", Terry Metcalf
describes the single-car series 121999 as "AAR Boxcar" with a built
date of 1925 ("Appendix D, Roster by Class as of October, 1951"). UP
100100 was an ARA boxcar, not AAR, but this may be a misprint.

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 (Westerfield CD) 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 of
these dimensions!!!

The reason I think 100100 was renumbered in 1947 or 1948 is because
in the table cited above, Terry lists the car series 100000-101599 as
filled with 1,586 class B-50-40 boxcars with a built date of 1948.
These were built by Pullman-Standard (PS-1s, welded sides, 1600
delivered in 1948). Probably UP 100100 was renumbered to make room
for the PS-1s.

It would be very unlikely for the UP to scrap 100100 and then replace
it with a car of exactly the same dimensions and built date -
renumbering is much more probable.

Best wishes,
Larry Ostresh
Laramie, Wyoming


Re: Chalk marks

Dennis Storzek <destorzek@...>
 

--- In STMFC@..., "Monk Alan" <Alan.Monk@...> wrote:


Regarding the destination cards - on UK stock there is a clip holder for
these usually low down on the side or chassis of the wagon, where would
they be placed on say a box car?? Were card holders always used, were
they pinned or stapled to those small wooden boards on many carsor (as
has been described) could they just be stapled anywhere on a
wood-sheathed car??
I guess I should read the whole message before replying J

Destination cards were always used at locations where they were used,
if that makes any sense. Destination cards were just one system for
getting cars through a yard expeditiously, and where that system was
in place and cards provided, yes, they were always used. This was
normally large terminal yards where consists were reclassified
(sorted) for further movement. Other locations just relied on lists of
the car initials and numbers, or sometimes ad hock systems like
chalking track numbers on the cars.

Destination cars were stapled to those wooden tack boards; the tool of
choice was a "hammer tacker" which was actually a stapler that was
swung like a hammer, shooting a staple into whatever it hit..

Cards got tacked anyplace a staple would stick, and on a wood car,
that meant anywhere within reach. For a while in the twenties the ARA
specified black rectangles be painted on wood car sides in an attempt
to keep the damage to the siding confined to one spot. The Union
Pacific even went so far as to stencil "TACK CARDS HERE" on the
blocks, but to no avail. Evidence on the sides of cars that survive in
museums confirm that any area within reach was fair game, with the
heaviest concentration in the areas around the car number, since the
man tacking the cards was going by the car numbers.

http://memory.loc.gov/pnp/fsa/8d18000/8d18200/8d18250r.jpg

Dennis

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