Lumber Loads


John <jriddell@...>
 

Appropriate coloring of lumber loads is often overlooked by modelers.
The color of model stripwood is almost white or very light in color and a far cry from the timber seen leaving a sawmill. Possibly the best article ever written about model lumber loads was by Jack Work published in the February 1957 issue of Model Railroader. Jack would know as he lived on Vancouver Island in the vicinity of numerous big sawmills.

In his excellent article Jack described applying a very thin stain of oil colors (yellow and burnt sienna) in turps to a completed load to achieve a warm yellow-orange tint. Jack went on to describe applying common blemishes and realistic marking of lumber loads.

John Riddell


Tim O'Connor
 

I use basswood or strip pine for natural wood loads. Making the colors look correct for resin loads
is a challenge. Sometimes I put some Floquil "stain" on a stiff brush and flick it over the painted or
unpainted (natural) pieces and smear the tiny random drops that landed on the work... This can
make it look like rough cut lumber that has little bits of bark or other defects.

I wish Jack's article were online...

Tim O'

----- Original Message -----
From: "John" <jriddell@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 11:04:16 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Lumber Loads



Appropriate coloring of lumber loads is often overlooked by modelers.
The color of model stripwood is almost white or very light in color and a far cry from the timber seen leaving a sawmill. Possibly the best article ever written about model lumber loads was by Jack Work published in the February 1957 issue of Model Railroader. Jack would know as he lived on Vancouver Island in the vicinity of numerous big sawmills.

In his excellent article Jack described applying a very thin stain of oil colors (yellow and burnt sienna) in turps to a completed load to achieve a warm yellow-orange tint. Jack went on to describe applying common blemishes and realistic marking of lumber loads.

John Riddell


Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

John Riddell wrote:
Appropriate coloring of lumber loads is often overlooked by modelers.
The color of model stripwood is almost white or very light in color and a far cry from the timber seen leaving a sawmill. Possibly the best article ever written about model lumber loads was by Jack Work published in the February 1957 issue of Model Railroader. Jack would know as he lived on Vancouver Island in the vicinity of numerous big sawmills.
It's true that model stripwood is usually quite pale. But both color and B&W photos of period lumber loads on flat cars show a pretty pale color of that lumber. The same is true of the studs and plywood at my neighborhood lumber store. I would agree stripwood should be more yellowish than white, but a very deep color would not be accurate either.

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@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


soolinehistory <destorzek@...>
 

--- In STMFC@..., Anthony Thompson <thompson@...> wrote:

John Riddell wrote:
Appropriate coloring of lumber loads is often overlooked by modelers.
The color of model stripwood is almost white or very light in color
and a far cry from the timber seen leaving a sawmill. Possibly the
best article ever written about model lumber loads was by Jack Work
published in the February 1957 issue of Model Railroader. Jack would
know as he lived on Vancouver Island in the vicinity of numerous big
sawmills.
It's true that model stripwood is usually quite pale. But both
color and B&W photos of period lumber loads on flat cars show a pretty
pale color of that lumber. The same is true of the studs and plywood
at my neighborhood lumber store. I would agree stripwood should be
more yellowish than white, but a very deep color would not be accurate
either.

Tony Thompson
By the time Jack Work was writing this in the fifties, most likely the only lumber that was being shipped uncovered on flats/gons would be dimensional timbers... 6x6 and larger. In those days the dominant wood species for timbers was Douglas Fir, which, indecently, only grows in the Pacific Northwest and BC. Doug Fir looks NOTHING like the imitation wood available today at the "home center", species which in those days weren't even commercially cut. Douglas Fir is considerably pinker, for want of a better description, than today's "white wood."

Conversely, timbers from the southeastern US would most likely be Southern Yellow Pine, which is quite yellow/orange in color.

Dennis


Andy Carlson
 

Out here in the Western States, the wood being marketed as "white wood" was
formerly marketed as Hem/Fir. Hem/fir was more than one species, Western Hemlock
and White Fir, both soft woods, but neither is noted for structural quality,
where Doug Fir is the acknowledged best.
-Andy Carlson
Ojai CA




By the time Jack Work was writing this in the fifties, most likely the only
lumber that was being shipped uncovered on flats/gons would be dimensional
timbers... 6x6 and larger. In those days the dominant wood species for timbers
was Douglas Fir, which, indecently, only grows in the Pacific Northwest and BC.
Doug Fir looks NOTHING like the imitation wood available today at the "home
center", species which in those days weren't even commercially cut. Douglas Fir
is considerably pinker, for want of a better description, than today's "white
wood."

Conversely, timbers from the southeastern US would most likely be Southern
Yellow Pine, which is quite yellow/orange in color.

Dennis




[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Dennis Storzek wrote:
By the time Jack Work was writing this in the fifties, most likely the only lumber that was being shipped uncovered on flats/gons would be dimensional timbers... 6x6 and larger.
Not sure where this idea came from, Dennis, but it's strongly contradicted by photos as late as the 1980s of lumber much smaller than 6 x 6, uncovered, on flat cars. In fact, in the mid to late 1950s (Work's article was published in February 1957, but I don't know when it was written) I can't recall a single photo of COVERED lumber on flat cars. Finished wood did tend to travel in double-door box cars (when available) in the 1950s. One place you can find lots of photos of western lumber loads on flat cars is in the flat car volume of my series on SP Freight Cars.

In those days the dominant wood species for timbers was Douglas Fir, which, indecently, only grows in the Pacific Northwest and BC. Doug Fir looks NOTHING like the imitation wood available today at the "home center", species which in those days weren't even commercially cut. Douglas Fir is considerably pinker, for want of a better description, than today's "white wood."
Conversely, timbers from the southeastern US would most likely be Southern Yellow Pine, which is quite yellow/orange in color.
Certainly a lot of Doug fir was being cut in the Northwest in the 1950s, but Ponderosa, Sugar and other pine was still being cut too. Maybe there is a new frontier in freight car modeling here: correct representation of lumber loads by species -- and we haven't even gotten to redwood yet <g>.

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@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


Nelson Moyer <ku0a@...>
 

While I'm not giving a commercial for MR on DVD, Jack's article is available
from that resource, as are many other of his articles and the work of many
classic and modern authors. I bought the DVD, and I've not regretted it
despite the rather awkward search features.



Nelson Moyer

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...] On Behalf Of
timboconnor@...
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 10:51 AM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Lumber Loads






I use basswood or strip pine for natural wood loads. Making the colors look
correct for resin loads
is a challenge. Sometimes I put some Floquil "stain" on a stiff brush and
flick it over the painted or
unpainted (natural) pieces and smear the tiny random drops that landed on
the work... This can
make it look like rough cut lumber that has little bits of bark or other
defects.

I wish Jack's article were online...

Tim O'

----- Original Message -----
From: "John" <jriddell@... <mailto:jriddell%40interlog.com> >
To: STMFC@... <mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 11:04:16 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Lumber Loads

Appropriate coloring of lumber loads is often overlooked by modelers.
The color of model stripwood is almost white or very light in color and a
far cry from the timber seen leaving a sawmill. Possibly the best article
ever written about model lumber loads was by Jack Work published in the
February 1957 issue of Model Railroader. Jack would know as he lived on
Vancouver Island in the vicinity of numerous big sawmills.

In his excellent article Jack described applying a very thin stain of oil
colors (yellow and burnt sienna) in turps to a completed load to achieve a
warm yellow-orange tint. Jack went on to describe applying common blemishes
and realistic marking of lumber loads.

John Riddell


Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Tim O'Connor wrote:
I wish Jack's article were online...
Before anyone becomes overwrought about this article, let me warn you that (a) it contains only black & white photos, (b) it says very little more about color than what John Riddell stated in his original post in this thread, and (c) it is almost entirely about BUILDING lumber loads (it does have clear and sound advice about how lumber shipments were structured).

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@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


soolinehistory <destorzek@...>
 

--- In STMFC@..., Anthony Thompson <thompson@...> wrote:

Dennis Storzek wrote:
By the time Jack Work was writing this in the fifties, most likely
the only lumber that was being shipped uncovered on flats/gons would
be dimensional timbers... 6x6 and larger.
Not sure where this idea came from, Dennis, but it's strongly
contradicted by photos as late as the 1980s of lumber much smaller
than 6 x 6, uncovered, on flat cars. In fact, in the mid to late 1950s
(Work's article was published in February 1957, but I don't know when
it was written) I can't recall a single photo of COVERED lumber on
flat cars. Finished wood did tend to travel in double-door box cars
(when available) in the 1950s. One place you can find lots of photos
of western lumber loads on flat cars is in the flat car volume of my
series on SP Freight Cars.
I donno, Tony, I think we are looking at a regional thing here. First off, I wasn't considering modern day wrapped loads at all; in 1960 and before those were totally nonexistent; that's a modern shipping strategy.

Your view is obviously from a west coast perspective (at least as far as the SP was concerned), close to where the loads originated. My perspective is from the Midwest, close to where the lumber was consumed, and I remember very few loads of dimensional lumber on open cars, if any. I think the Jack Delano color photos taken in the Chicago area bear this out. The only thing I've ever seen on open cars that wasn't timbers was roughsawn plank for shoring.

That may well be the answer... only lumber "in the rough" went on open cars, and many of those loads you refer to are relatively short hauls, going either to planing mills where the lumber will be kiln dried before finishing, or on to treatment plants, where it will become creosoted plank and timber. Either way, those sorts of loads didn't come as far east as Chicago.


Certainly a lot of Doug fir was being cut in the Northwest in
the 1950s, but Ponderosa, Sugar and other pine was still being cut
too. Maybe there is a new frontier in freight car modeling here:
correct representation of lumber loads by species -- and we haven't
even gotten to redwood yet <g>.
In my experience, these species were seldom used for rough framing, and would be turned into clear finished lumber or millwork. Once dried and finished, the wood had to be kept dry or blue stain (a fungus) would develop, which would sustainably decrease the value of the finished product. Again, a lot of this material may have come out of the initial mill as open loads, headed someplace else for drying and finishing.

Dennis


Greg Martin
 

Not to perpetuate this thread but I have been on the west coast and in the business from the early 70s and still in it.

Tony is right in saying that nominal (rough cut) and dimensional lumber (sized) lumber both green (greater than 19% moisture content) and dry or kiln dried lumber are still shipped on call kinds of flat cars (and boxcars) un-wrapped, however not very often for kiln dried lumber, but never say never some dealers in California even today take kiln dried lumber "rain wet" as they don't store it cover in Southern California as often.

Some West Coast species shipped nation wide are Douglas Fir (a pink-ish heart wood and white sap wood), Douglas Fir/Larch , Western Hemlock (very white-ish in color very much like Tony's loads) aka Hem Fir/Piss fir, Ponderosa Pine (white with a orange-ish heartwood), Sugar Pine (white), Redwood (all heart red to mixed sap and pink-ish red side cuts), California Incense Cedar (generally shipped "dried" either kiln dried or air dried with a pale beige), Port Orford Cedar (darker yet not brown), and Western Red Cedar (light brown to very dark brown), Inland Red Cedar (dark brown with blonde streaks) as well as Sitka Spruce (think Spruce Goose white) as well as various other "true" Firs from the inland areas. So his loads are very credible depending on what species are loaded. All of these varieties were, for our time frame, very valuable and credible and necessay loads going east or south towards Kansas City and south to the south west. Interestingly enough I found a PRR drawing specifying Hemlock for construction of a scale house, but of course ther is an eastern variety as well. As for southern yellow pine Dennis is correct in that is would have a distinct yellow cast.

Air drying and Kiln drying serves the same purpose, getting the moisture content to a specific range it makes no difference. Lumber in our era and even today ships green into specific regional areas from 2x and bigger rough or dressed. You would not normally wrap green lumber, but it can be seen with a paper cap on the top layer. As it travels it darkens just like a rail car.

Hope this helps.

Greg Martin

-----Original Message-----
From: Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
To: STMFC <STMFC@...>
Sent: Tue, Mar 13, 2012 11:46 am
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Lumber Loads




Tim O'Connor wrote:
I wish Jack's article were online...
Before anyone becomes overwrought about this article, let me
warn you that (a) it contains only black & white photos, (b) it says
very little more about color than what John Riddell stated in his
original post in this thread, and (c) it is almost entirely about
BUILDING lumber loads (it does have clear and sound advice about how
lumber shipments were structured).

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@...
Publishers of books on railroad history


Aley, Jeff A
 

Here's some data, for what it's worth:

Freight Conductor Traud, October - December 1951, Laramie WY - Rawlins WY.
Of 35 trains, containing 2,384 cars, there were 242 house cars carrying lumber products, and 0 flat cars carrying lumber products.

Freight Conductor ??, 1947-48, somewhere on the Overland Route.
Of 32 trains, containing 1731 cars, there were 195 house cars carrying lumber products, and 37 flat cars carrying lumber products.
After looking at the Traud data, I thought that Dennis' observations were nicely confirmed. After seeing the other data, I'm not as sure.

Obviously, none of this indicates what KIND of lumber was on the flat cars.

Regards,

-Jeff


From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...] On Behalf Of soolinehistory
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 12:34 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Lumber Loads



--- In STMFC@...<mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com>, Anthony Thompson <thompson@...> wrote:

Dennis Storzek wrote:
By the time Jack Work was writing this in the fifties, most likely
the only lumber that was being shipped uncovered on flats/gons would
be dimensional timbers... 6x6 and larger.
Not sure where this idea came from, Dennis, but it's strongly
contradicted by photos as late as the 1980s of lumber much smaller
than 6 x 6, uncovered, on flat cars. In fact, in the mid to late 1950s
(Work's article was published in February 1957, but I don't know when
it was written) I can't recall a single photo of COVERED lumber on
flat cars. Finished wood did tend to travel in double-door box cars
(when available) in the 1950s. One place you can find lots of photos
of western lumber loads on flat cars is in the flat car volume of my
series on SP Freight Cars.
I donno, Tony, I think we are looking at a regional thing here. First off, I wasn't considering modern day wrapped loads at all; in 1960 and before those were totally nonexistent; that's a modern shipping strategy.

Your view is obviously from a west coast perspective (at least as far as the SP was concerned), close to where the loads originated. My perspective is from the Midwest, close to where the lumber was consumed, and I remember very few loads of dimensional lumber on open cars, if any


Nelson Moyer <ku0a@...>
 

Nothing has been said yet about the roll of different trees yielding lumber
of different colors. Down south in the pine forests where I grew up, native
lumber had a decided yellowish hue, as did the pitch from the yellow pines
and slash pines from whence it came. Basswood is a lot whiter than pine, and
I would expect color variations between spruce, fir, cedar, and redwood as
well. Lumber was dried and outside in the sun in early days, not kiln dried,
and weathering as well as tree species played a roll in shipped appearance.
Since color photos aren't available before the 1940s, we probably
underappreciated the extent of variation that existed in the colors of open
lumber loads. The other factor that affects lumber color is the ring
patterns of trees, and how the logs were sawn, i.e across the grain or with
the grain. While we can't model wood grain color very well in HO scale, the
grain pattern had a pronounced affect on color perception of individual
boards. I suspect the appearance of commercial lumber at the big box stores
today is quite different than it was in the steam era. Then there's the
issue of layout lighting and individual color perception, so there is no
'right' way to color lumber loads, just lots of wrong ways.



Nelson Moyer

-----Original Message-----
From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...] On Behalf Of
Anthony Thompson
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 11:37 AM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Lumber Loads





John Riddell wrote:
Appropriate coloring of lumber loads is often overlooked by modelers.
The color of model stripwood is almost white or very light in color
and a far cry from the timber seen leaving a sawmill. Possibly the
best article ever written about model lumber loads was by Jack Work
published in the February 1957 issue of Model Railroader. Jack would
know as he lived on Vancouver Island in the vicinity of numerous big
sawmills.
It's true that model stripwood is usually quite pale. But both
color and B&W photos of period lumber loads on flat cars show a pretty
pale color of that lumber. The same is true of the studs and plywood
at my neighborhood lumber store. I would agree stripwood should be
more yellowish than white, but a very deep color would not be accurate
either.

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@...
<mailto:thompson%40signaturepress.com>
Publishers of books on railroad history


David Sieber
 

Group,

There was an excellent color photo of lumber flatcar loads in the February 1996 Trains magazine, showing the locomotive and first five cars of a Yreka Western train steaming trhough the outskirts of Yreka CA sometime in 1957. Behind the loco are four flatcars, all loaded with dimensioned lumber appearing smaller than 6x6 timbers, and in the middle is one PRR X31A (I think) single-door boxcar. The angle of the shot makes it difficult to discern road numbers of the cars.

For those who model the late transition era, this photo also shows the metal strapping that became common starting in the mid-'50s, replacing traditional wooden blocking and bracing using vertical stakes tied together at the top with horizontal lumber or wire ties. The lumber loads themselves show color variation from very pale to light yellow tan (though as discussed several times in this group, photo color shift over time, plus the vagarities of processing and printing - especially when scanned and reprinted in a magazine - make any photo's color shades to be approximations at some level). As to the regionality of these lumber loads, the YW was only 20-25 miles south of being "Pacific Northwest;" I suspect this train was enroute to the YW interchange with the Espee, with all cars destined for points east, both the loaded lumber flats and the loaded/empty PRR boxcar.

Hope this helps, Dave Sieber, Reno NV


Greg Martin
 

Dennis writes

I donno, Tony, I think we are looking at a regional thing here. First off, I wasn't considering modern day wrapped loads at all; in 1960 and before those were totally nonexistent; that's a modern shipping strategy.

Your view is obviously from a west coast perspective (at least as far as the SP was concerned), close to where the loads originated. My perspective is from the Midwest, close to where the lumber was consumed, and I remember very few loads of dimensional lumber on open cars, if any. I think the Jack Delano color photos taken in the Chicago area bear this out. The only thing I've ever seen on open cars that wasn't timbers was roughsawn plank for shoring.

That may well be the answer... only lumber "in the rough" went on open cars, and many of those loads you refer to are relatively short hauls, going either to planing mills where the lumber will be kiln dried before finishing, or on to treatment plants, where it will become creosoted plank and timber. Either way, those sorts of loads didn't come as far east as Chicago.


Certainly a lot of Doug fir was being cut in the Northwest in
the 1950s, but Ponderosa, Sugar and other pine was still being cut
too. Maybe there is a new frontier in freight car modeling here:
correct representation of lumber loads by species -- and we haven't
even gotten to redwood yet <g>.
In my experience, these species were seldom used for rough framing, and would be turned into clear finished lumber or millwork. Once dried and finished, the wood had to be kept dry or blue stain (a fungus) would develop, which would sustainably decrease the value of the finished product. Again, a lot of this material may have come out of the initial mill as open loads, headed someplace else for drying and finishing.

Dennis




Although Douglas fir green today is mostly a regional "thing" it was/is still widely used but I have to admit not as much in the Chciago area other than 4x4 and larger timber. Chicago's market has been traditionally better served from Canadian mills than western mills. Dennis is correct most, not all finished lumber did ship in boxcar and was hand unloaded but with the advent of the Grelinger larger forklifts that came along in the early 50's more and more lumber loaded on flat cars. Gerlinger was best known for their Strattle buggies but moved right into the 12k+ forklift market. Gerlinger was produced in Dallas, OR. You're correct lots of nominal lumber did ship to treaters but finished lumber did as well. Most sawmills in had both sawmills and planner mills, there were plenty of end users that did have planning facilities and think about it you could ship more finished lumber in cars, flats and boxes as well.

Pine, Ponderosa and Sugar, were used as roof sheathing and wall sheathing for years as well as other species. Pine studs were often a commodity before the earthquake seismic load changes that made there way into building codes anything was fair game as long as it was ALS approved and had a grade stamp or not. When I grew up in Southern California it was code to use Redwood studs in the garage as they were most always expose and that was the rationale. Often Ponderosa Pine was used as treated sill plate when it was cheaper that Hemlock just as was Southern Yellow Pine both broad and short leafed. But both Sugar and Ponderosa was more often found as "worked" Stock for moldings in 4/4 (often split to shook stock), 5/4 and larger in the furniture trade.

BTW the blue stain that appears in western pine species is caused by a fungus in either the log deck or from the log pond and was found in the wood prior to planning and as Dennis says it decreases the value in the finished lumber market, but for studs, plate stock, roof and wall sheathing was a non issue. If it, blue stain, was persistant at a particular mill, and it could have been, the solution was to drain the pond and allow it to thoroughly dry out. So most "blue stain pine" made its way into the framing market although it did enjoy a true home in the finish market for interior paneling and furniture for a short period in the 1950s as well as a much bigger market in the 1970s, beyond the scope of this list.

Greg Martin


Greg Martin
 

Tony writes:

It's true that model stripwood is usually quite pale. But both color and B&W photos of period lumber loads on flat cars show a pretty pale color of that lumber. The same is true of the studs and plywood at my neighborhood lumber store. I would agree stripwood should be more yellowish than white, but a very deep color would not be accurate either.

Tony Thompson


Tony,

Those loads must obviously be side cut Douglas Fir, Western Hemlock and Sitka Spruce... and thus the very white color, but once they went through the tunnels over the Willamtte Pass and then either over the Sierra Nevada's or over Tehachapi that bright color would be pretty dirty.

For those that don't understand the term "side cut" that is wood cut from the outter portion of the log and mostly sap wood. It could have a bit more wane on the edge depending on the size of the cant it came from.

Greg Martin


Donald Ford <ford.donald77@...>
 

Gentlemen and Ladies

In the May 1986 Mainline Modeler is an ad for Cascade Models of a GN flat 65000 series with a lumber load of dimensional lumber secured just the 
Tony  explained in his blog.  The stakes are lighter in color than the lumber with different colors in the lumber.  Its a B&W photo so you can't be too sure and the photo is dated 1969
Don Ford 
Kanab UT

________________________________
From: Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 11:30 AM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Lumber Loads


 
Dennis Storzek wrote:
By the time Jack Work was writing this in the fifties, most likely
the only lumber that was being shipped uncovered on flats/gons would
be dimensional timbers... 6x6 and larger.
Not sure where this idea came from, Dennis, but it's strongly
contradicted by photos as late as the 1980s of lumber much smaller
than 6 x 6, uncovered, on flat cars. In fact, in the mid to late 1950s
(Work's article was published in February 1957, but I don't know when
it was written) I can't recall a single photo of COVERED lumber on
flat cars. Finished wood did tend to travel in double-door box cars
(when available) in the 1950s. One place you can find lots of photos
of western lumber loads on flat cars is in the flat car volume of my
series on SP Freight Cars.

In those days the dominant wood species for timbers was Douglas Fir,
which, indecently, only grows in the Pacific Northwest and BC. Doug
Fir looks NOTHING like the imitation wood available today at the
"home center", species which in those days weren't even commercially
cut. Douglas Fir is considerably pinker, for want of a better
description, than today's "white wood."
Conversely, timbers from the southeastern US would most likely be
Southern Yellow Pine, which is quite yellow/orange in color.
Certainly a lot of Doug fir was being cut in the Northwest in
the 1950s, but Ponderosa, Sugar and other pine was still being cut
too. Maybe there is a new frontier in freight car modeling here:
correct representation of lumber loads by species -- and we haven't
even gotten to redwood yet <g>.

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@...
Publishers of books on railroad history




[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Mikebrock
 

Jeff Aley notes:

"Freight Conductor Traud, October - December 1951, Laramie WY - Rawlins WY.
Of 35 trains, containing 2,384 cars, there were 242 house cars carrying lumber products, and 0 flat cars carrying lumber products.

Freight Conductor ??, 1947-48, somewhere on the Overland Route.
Of 32 trains, containing 1731 cars, there were 195 house cars carrying lumber products, and 37 flat cars carrying lumber products.
After looking at the Traud data, I thought that Dennis' observations were nicely confirmed. After seeing the other data, I'm not as sure."

The October 1987 issue of the UPHS The Streamliner [ Vol 3, number 4 ] contains an article by ex UP fireman Ernie Peyton regarding his experiences in 1950 including the run from Laramie to Rawlins. He mentions that during that period a UP lumber train experienced a problem in which a lumber load on a flat car suffered a load movement with lumber striking the windows of a passenger car in a passing streamliner. UP put a 25 mph speed limit on lumber trains [ assuming flat car lumber loads ] after that...much to Peyton's annoyance when he had to fire for such a train. It took 6 hrs and 45 minutes to travel the 117 miles...Obviously UP ran at least two such trains. Peyton did not mention the color of or type of wood involved.

I'll check on my frt conductor book to see what type of cars were carrying lumber between Rawlins and Laramie in '49. My recollection is that most were house cars.

Mike Brock


Gary Ray
 

I posted a picture of a CS-30 with a lumber load that I scratch build as
part of a first-time scratch build project in our division. The plans came
from Tony Thompson's Vol. 3 Freight Car book and the load from the Jack Work
article. All wood was cut from a sheet of basswood from local ACE Hardware.
Lumber stained with thin acrylics. This was the first of 3 cars. Decks
were improved after practice. Have only made the one lumber load. Need to
add brake gear and make decals. Lead shot brings it up to weight. Thought
I'd share because of interest in Jack Work's article. Photo is waiting for
approval on group site.
Gary Ray
Magalia, CA


Pierre <pierre.oliver@...>
 

It should also be pointed out that most lumber loads shipped uncovered would be rough sawn and on it's way to either a planning mill for final dressing or to be sold as is.
Rarely would planned, dressed material be shipped in the open.
Much the same applies today. Framing material is shipped wrapped but can be stored out of doors, but all "finishing" grade material is stored covered.
Have a visit to a hardwood dealer to see the difference between rough sawn and planned material and it'll start to make sense.
And while we're here, many but not all cut pieces of lumber have a coloured end coat applied. It is not colour coding to sizes. Rather it is a sealant which prevents the timber from losing too much moisture out of the end cut and causing splits and checks. As lumber dries it loses moisture much faster through the ends of the cells than through the sides. This precaution balances things out some.
Pierre Oliver


By the time Jack Work was writing this in the fifties, most likely the only lumber that was being shipped uncovered on flats/gons would be dimensional timbers... 6x6 and larger. In those days the dominant wood species for timbers was Douglas Fir, which, indecently, only grows in the Pacific Northwest and BC. Doug Fir looks NOTHING like the imitation wood available today at the "home center", species which in those days weren't even commercially cut. Douglas Fir is considerably pinker, for want of a better description, than today's "white wood."

Conversely, timbers from the southeastern US would most likely be Southern Yellow Pine, which is quite yellow/orange in color.

Dennis


james murrie
 

The MILW made its home-built rib side box cars with a "lumber door" about 18 inches square high on the 'A' end to facilitate loading of long boards. Testimony perhaps to the prevalence of, or preference for, house cars in their lumber business from the Pacific Northwest.
Jim Murrie