Drops and Journal Bearings
George Gounley <gounleys@...>
1. I rode the MoP's Doniphan, MO branch in the late winter or early spring of 1974. We arrived at Doniphan with 21-23 empty gondolas for tie loading. The runaround track was out of service because of either switch or subgrade problems at the far end: I can't recall at this remove. The crew took advantage of the topography to put the engine on the siding and drop the entire train. I was greatly impressed, but it was routine for the crew. The MoP generally had superb trackwork, but they told me that the runaround had been out of service for several months.
2. I once worked with a fellow who grew up near Pottsville, PA. He told me that on a number of occasions as a teenager he 'earned' spending money during the summer by stealing journal brass from Reading hoppers stored for the off-season. Apparently he was not the only one and the railroad had learned to send carmen to inspect the cars before ordering them in from storage tracks.