Freight car distribution


Charles Hladik
 

Garth,
Is that egg packer also the owner of "chicken kits" or are the hens
off line?
Chuck Hladik
Rutland Railroad
Virginia Division

In a message dated 5/28/2009 2:32:04 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
ggg9y@virginia.edu writes:





Armand,

I'm not sure there is an easy answer to your question. It depends on the
what industries you choose to model, era, road, and even what section of
the road. On the latter, for example, the C&O was a much different road
in Virginia than in Indiana. And in Virginia, the Mountain Division
carried somewhat different traffic than the roughly parallel James River
Division.

So here's my general plan. My semi-fictional Sacramento Northern
Pennington Branch serves six industries, an independent fuel dealer, a
gravel pit, an egg packer, a farm supply company, a feed mill/grain
elevator, and one yet to be determined (possibly a juice plant). All are
industries which were found at one time or another on the Upper Valley
end of the SN. My choice of cars is partly regulated by my 1958 date,
and what was in use then on the parent Western Pacific. Obviously I can
use boxcars (SN, WP and lots of off-line) for most of these industries.
The gravel pit uses WP short hoppers. Tanks for the fuel dealer,
probably UTLX. PFE reefers will serve the seasonal juice plant, though I
might work in some early WP RBLs. I have several times gassed about my
four PFE RR-40-6 reefers, which will serve the egg plant. I can work in
an occasional flat car. Not much use for gondolas, WP covered hoppers
were assigned elsewhere, stock traffic was dead. Thanks to the tight
curve in the middle of this L-shaped layout, I can't run cars above 50',
and even those will look pretty absurd. Since this is a stub-end branch,
I can't use the excuse of through cars. All this means that I have a lot
of rolling stock that I love (like redetailed covered hoppers and my PRR
65' gon) than have no logical use on my layout.

The layout is also planned to be operated at times as the Virginia
Midland, a purely fictional Virginia shortline with a different mix of
industries (change some of the signs). I've been collecting the obvious
boxcars, plus pulpwood cars, FGE reefers, some coal hoppers for local
delivery, and a few covered hoppers for crushed soapstone. Most of this
equipment is Southern or C&O, my line's two connections here in
Charlottesville.

Kind regards,

Garth G. Groff

armprem1 wrote:
Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car
distribution. Now here Now here's a topic that should generate a little
discussion.Freight car distribution.<WBR>.........<WBR>..not in the Now here's
a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car
distribution.<WBR>.........<WBR>..not in the usual sense.Wha Now here's a topic that
should generate a




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Armand Premo
 

Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo


Steve SANDIFER
 

Location, Location, Location.
1950, % of fleet

Type ATSF GN B&O DM&IR SR
Stock 7 5 1 1 1
Refrigerator 15 - - 1 -
Box 47 54 32 2 43
Flat 4 6 1 1 2
Gondola 11 8 15 3 18
Hopper 7 25 48 89 19
Cov. Hopper 5 2 2 1 4
Tank 3 - - - -
Rack 1 - 1 2 13


So your fleet depends on your area and your industry. If you are in coal country, you need a lot of hoppers. If you are in cattle country, you need a lot of stock cars. Of course the above chart is of railroad owned cars only. Most tank cars were privately owned as were many reefers.

----------------------------------------------------------------
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mailto:steve.sandifer@sbcglobal.net
Home: 12027 Mulholland Dr., Meadows Place, TX 77477, 281-568-9918
Office: Southwest Central Church of Christ, 4011 W. Bellfort, Houston, TX
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Church: http://www.swcentral.org

----- Original Message -----
From: armprem1
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2009 12:44 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Freight car distribution





Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo


Garth G. Groff <ggg9y@...>
 

Armand,

I'm not sure there is an easy answer to your question. It depends on the what industries you choose to model, era, road, and even what section of the road. On the latter, for example, the C&O was a much different road in Virginia than in Indiana. And in Virginia, the Mountain Division carried somewhat different traffic than the roughly parallel James River Division.

So here's my general plan. My semi-fictional Sacramento Northern Pennington Branch serves six industries, an independent fuel dealer, a gravel pit, an egg packer, a farm supply company, a feed mill/grain elevator, and one yet to be determined (possibly a juice plant). All are industries which were found at one time or another on the Upper Valley end of the SN. My choice of cars is partly regulated by my 1958 date, and what was in use then on the parent Western Pacific. Obviously I can use boxcars (SN, WP and lots of off-line) for most of these industries. The gravel pit uses WP short hoppers. Tanks for the fuel dealer, probably UTLX. PFE reefers will serve the seasonal juice plant, though I might work in some early WP RBLs. I have several times gassed about my four PFE RR-40-6 reefers, which will serve the egg plant. I can work in an occasional flat car. Not much use for gondolas, WP covered hoppers were assigned elsewhere, stock traffic was dead. Thanks to the tight curve in the middle of this L-shaped layout, I can't run cars above 50', and even those will look pretty absurd. Since this is a stub-end branch, I can't use the excuse of through cars. All this means that I have a lot of rolling stock that I love (like redetailed covered hoppers and my PRR 65' gon) than have no logical use on my layout.

The layout is also planned to be operated at times as the Virginia Midland, a purely fictional Virginia shortline with a different mix of industries (change some of the signs). I've been collecting the obvious boxcars, plus pulpwood cars, FGE reefers, some coal hoppers for local delivery, and a few covered hoppers for crushed soapstone. Most of this equipment is Southern or C&O, my line's two connections here in Charlottesville.

Kind regards,


Garth G. Groff

armprem1 wrote:

Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo


Bruce Smith
 

On May 28, 2009, at 12:44 PM, armprem1 wrote:

Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo
Armand,

This is entirely dependent on the railroad that you model and could vary wildly between different railroads, branches, and even time of day on a specific location. In looking at a specific railroad, it might be helpful to follow a logical approach:

Assuming you have a specific era and prototype location in mind,
1) What were the trains that operated during that era? For example, how many general merchandise, mineral drags, specialized freights (say like reefer blocks) each day. Keep in mind that on some RR's like the PRR, the "arranged freight schedule" only gives an approximation, and does not represent certain types of trains at all. Tower sheets may be the best resource for this (if you can find them).
2) How did train composition affect length? (were all trains the same length, or were there differences based on cargos)?
3) Was there seasonality (ie are you modeling the grain rush on a granger RR or the stock rush, or ...)
4) What types of cars do you need to serve the needs of your online industries?
5) What types of cars do you need to represent "bridge traffic" (if you have it)?
6) Are there special trains or cars that run only on certain days? For example, on the part of the PRR I model, the high and wide train ran on Sunday. So, H&W loads are very rare 6 days a week, but comprise a solid train on day 7 (or, once every 14 ops sessions, based on 12 hour sessions).

So, for example, for my "layout in planning" based on the PRR at Columbia PA, I have the following "rough" parameters that are guiding my acquisitions:
-one "unit" tank car train per 12 hours in each direction (need 2 full trains, 30 cars each) to represent the "pipeline on rails" of 1944.
-additional tank cars for other trains (10 cars)
-one eastbound reefer train per 24 hours (25 cars)
-additional reefers for locals, other through trains, westbound loads, blocks (+10-20 cars)
-one eastbound stock train per 24 hours (25 cars)
-additional stock cars for other trains (+10 cars)
-3 westbound TRS (Tank, reefer, stock) trains (25-30 cars each, made up of cars from the eastbounds)
- six general merchandise trains in each direction per 12 hours (25 cars each, roughly 50% box cars, 40% gons, 10% flats). A small proportion of these cars will appear on locals.
- 2 mineral trains in each direction per 12 hours (25 cars each, solid hoppers)
- 1 local mineral train (10 cars, 50 ton 2 bay)
- one H&W train, used sparingly, 10-15 specialized cars.

Sum it up, and I need:
tank cars - 70
reefers - 35-45
stock cars - 35
boxcars - 150
gondolas - 120
flats - 30
hoppers - 110

And that's my roughly 500 car fleet.

Regards
Bruce

Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL
http://www.vetmed.auburn.edu/index.pl/bruce_f._smith2

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
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Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Garth Groff wrote (in small part):
Tanks for the fuel dealer, probably UTLX.
For your 1958 date, Garth, this may not be a bad choice, but prior to roughly 1953, UTLX almost exclusively leased to the Standard family, then gradually branched out. So UTLX is fine, of course, if your fuel dealer is Chevron, but for any other oil company, I'd say UTLX is distinctly less likely.
On the other points, I agree entirely that it's all about the industries you model. Like the prototype, our model railroads serve their customers. There cannot be any prototypical "average" fleet of car types, unless maybe you attempt to model the entire U.S., as Bruce Chubb's previous layout purported to do. Even if you have a layout modeling entirely bridge traffic, it still represents the customers at both ends of the bridge. I wondered in reading Armand's post if we are misunderstanding him.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, thompson@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


Allen Rueter
 

Beyond location, location, location, I would look at an annual report, and take a stab
at what cars haul various commodities, and adjust percentages from there.

With out looking it up,
Wabash in 1950
Ag 19%
Mines 32%
Manufactured goods 40%
... 19%
Bridge traffic ~60%

I need more foreign cars.
--
Allen Rueter
StLouis MO




________________________________
From: armprem1 <armprem2@surfglobal.net>
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2009 12:44:22 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Freight car distribution





Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution. ......... ..not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet....... ..By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again, I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo


Brian Chapman <cornbeltroute@...>
 

Armand, this is entirely dependent on the railroad that you model and could vary wildly between different railroads, branches, and even time of day on a specific location. In looking at a specific railroad, it might be helpful to follow a logical approach (Bruce S.) <
I take Bruce's and Steve's point fully to heart and believe in its truth. And yet, Armand's question has relevance for my situation: I am a member of the newly "minted" TT Scale Society, a tiny group of never-say-die TT scale (1:120) modelers who have gathered together update the scale any which way we can. We wish to encourage, aid and abet, promote, and perhaps commission.

In TT scale, North American prototypes are in short supply. So, considering the ever-popular transition era, where does our group begin? We need everything. We need to pick some "basic" car types (prototypically accurate, though, as in HO) when, really, there are no basic car types when road, region, industries, period are considered.

I am working on an ARR standard 50-ton, 53-6 riveted flat car that I understand is good from the 1940s to the 1980s. I guess our group will just have to make the choices that we think best and jump in.

Or, perhaps, given Tony's comment, our group might work specifically by industry, defining a number of the most common/plentiful industries of the transition era (meat packing, for example) and select the most numerous cars used in each industry?

Any thoughts?

Tank cars - 70
Reefers - 35-45
Stock cars - 35
Boxcars - 150
Gondolas - 120
Flats - 30
Hoppers - 110 <

Bruce, this list is for 1944, iirc a passage correctly in one of your recent posts. You know, I understand the WWII era is hugely successful in popular fiction publishing circles. Yet, I hear little about the period when it comes to scale model railroading. Is my impression wrong and there are a number of WWII-era railroad modelers out there?

(BTW, are you an Auburn football fan? If so, thank you, thank you, thank you for hiring Gene Chizik away from we Iowa State University fans. We're much happier where we're at today compared to one year ago. Auburn made that possible. Thank you!)

Thanks much,

Brian Chapman
Evansdale, Iowa


Bruce Smith
 

On May 29, 2009, at 12:37 PM, Brian Chapman wrote:
In TT scale, North American prototypes are in short supply. So, considering the ever-popular transition era, where does our group begin? We need everything. We need to pick some "basic" car types (prototypically accurate, though, as in HO) when, really, there are no basic car types when road, region, industries, period are considered.

I am working on an ARR standard 50-ton, 53-6 riveted flat car that I understand is good from the 1940s to the 1980s. I guess our group will just have to make the choices that we think best and jump in.

Or, perhaps, given Tony's comment, our group might work specifically by industry, defining a number of the most common/ plentiful industries of the transition era (meat packing, for example) and select the most numerous cars used in each industry?

Any thoughts?
Brian,

Think about standard designs and large fleets.

Replicate the huge fleets first (PRR X29, NYC "USRA" steel, etc), and the standards - 1932 AAR, 1937 ARA etc...

What railroads do TT modelers want to model? Focus on those for RR specific cars like PRR for the H21 hopper. The standard and alternate std. offset 2 bay might be a starting place for a hopper...

Regards
Bruce

Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL
http://www.vetmed.auburn.edu/index.pl/bruce_f._smith2

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
__
/ &#92;
__<+--+>________________&#92;__/___ ________________________________
|- ______/ O O &#92;_______ -| | __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ |
| / 4999 PENNSYLVANIA 4999 &#92; | ||__||__||__||__||__||__||__||__||
|/_____________________________&#92;|_|________________________________|
| O--O &#92;0 0 0 0/ O--O | 0-0-0 0-0-0


destron@...
 


Think about standard designs and large fleets.

Replicate the huge fleets first (PRR X29, NYC "USRA" steel, etc), and
the standards - 1932 AAR, 1937 ARA etc...
And don't forget the Dominion/Fowler cars, which are to Canadian-proto
modelling probably more important than PRR is to US-proto modelling (I do
*not* mean that as an anti-Pennsy thing!! *g*) - and lots of them and
their clones were around on various US roads, too.


What railroads do TT modelers want to model? Focus on those for RR
specific cars like PRR for the H21 hopper. The standard and
alternate std. offset 2 bay might be a starting place for a hopper...
The way TT is right now, it would be in a good position to jump into
niches that aren't (or aren't well) served by the mainstream scales, but I
think TT modellers are too dispersed geographically and by interest to
make it be something like "the Pennsy scale" or "the NYC scale" or "the
Canadian scale" in which everything for that given field is available. I
think about the only constant (or near-constant) amongst TTers is that
almost all are interested in the STMFC era.

Frank Valoczy
Vancouver, BC


rashputin1 <rashputin@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...> wrote:

We've been down this road too -- most people take photos of
stuff they happen to like, or that catches their interest.
Almost no one took photos (and expended film) in order to
document "typical" stuff. Ergo: photos are not admissible
as evidence of anything other than what is depicted in them.

By the way, being an GN and NP fan, I've seen many photos
on each railroad where virtually no home road cars can be
seen. Including the infamous NP Montana branch line train
with a bunch of PRR empties headed to a grain elevator...

Tim O'

It doesn't take a long time looking at photos, for example, of Northern Pacific or Great Northern freight trains and yards to see that at least on the days the pictures were taken, home road equipment often dominated, but the stats say otherwise. Go figure. Glad you are having fun with all this, Mike.

John Stokes
Bellevue, WA

Seems to me that yards are somewhat of an anomoly compared to the trains themselves. Yards are intended to capture home road cars, possibly for forwarding to a central location, possibly for a seasonal rush, etc. Wouldn't yards, by their very nature, deviate from what was in trains with the occasional train with a large number of home road cars being periodic rather than random?

Regards,

Robert Hume


Steve Lucas <stevelucas3@...>
 

Robert--

Very respectfully, to say that yards are intended to capture home road cars is a simplification of what yards are used for. They have been abused to store and hoard cars. Which is why so many Railboxes were built in the 1970's, as roads hoarded cars for their use rather than supplying their own. The PRR was a de facto supplier of cars to the US rail system in the era of STMFC. If the Pennsy's fleet of 191,639 STMFC's were stored in PRR yards in January, 1953, it's likely that next to nothing would have moved on that road, as that railroad would have had almost every yard full of cars.

Steve Lucas.

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "rashputin1" <rashputin@...> wrote:

Seems to me that yards are somewhat of an anomoly compared to the trains themselves. Yards are intended to capture home road cars, possibly for forwarding to a central location, possibly for a seasonal rush, etc. Wouldn't yards, by their very nature, deviate from what was in trains with the occasional train with a large number of home road cars being periodic rather than random?

Regards,

Robert Hume


Tim O'Connor
 

Railroads often stored bad order cars in yards in this era. Many
roads had about a 5% bad order rate but some (e.g. PRR) had much
higher rates because of a surplus of cars, so there was no hurry
to repair everything... And of course, a photographer would more
likely shoot the storage tracks rather than the classification
tracks, as storage tracks tend to be more accessible.

Tim O'Connor

Seems to me that yards are somewhat of an anomoly compared to the trains themselves. Yards are intended to capture home road cars, possibly for forwarding to a central location, possibly for a seasonal rush, etc. Wouldn't yards, by their very nature, deviate from what was in trains with the occasional train with a large number of home road cars being periodic rather than random?

Regards,
Robert Hume