Ethyl Corporation tank cars


Tony Thompson
 

      I am speaking only from memory, but were not the great majority of the Ethyl cars rather small, in fact many less than 6000 gallons? I know of two photos of 4000-gallon cars. Wish I still had Richard's photos in my garage!

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, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history





Jon Miller <atsfus@...>
 

On 6/22/2015 4:59 PM, Tony Thompson tony@... [STMFC] wrote:

      I am speaking only from memory, but were not the great majority of the Ethyl cars rather small, in fact many less than 6000 gallons? I know of two photos of 4000-gallon cars. Wish I still had Richard's photos in my garage!

    I was about to comment on this.  Tetraethyl lead compound was very heavy (lead) and I think 4K may have been the larger car for it.  Someplace there is a mag article for (I think) kit bashing one.  I believe they were is the 20/30 foot range.

-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS


Dave Parker
 

Tim,Tony:

According to my ORERs, Ethyl had 6 cars in 1930, 48 in 1935, and 132 in 1940 that were dedicated to the transport of tetraethyl lead.  Clearly adding lead to gasoline rose significantly during the 1930s!

In this period, they were a mix of 3000 and 6000 gallon cars, rated at 20 and 40 tons, respectively (TEL is pretty dense).  I did not count exactly, but eyeballing it there were more 3000s than 6000s.  I did not see any evidence of 4000 gallon cars through 1940.

It is an interesting commodity from an operations standpoint.  I would assume one carload of TEL would go a long way at a small or mid-size refinery (I guess I could calculate how far but have not).  Thus, an appearance on most roads would be a relatively infrequent occurrence, consistent with the modest number of cars at least through the 1930s, unless one was specifically modeling traffic near a large refinery.  I model New England in 1934-5, and wonder if the demand for TEL could not have been met via transportation in drums; we had an extremely modest refining capacity.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA




Richard Townsend
 

Not an article, but there is this on the Steam Era Freight Cars site: http://steamerafreightcars.com/modeling/models/millera/ebax3064main.html
 
Richard Townsend
Lincoln City, Oregon
 
 

-----Original Message-----
From: Jon Miller atsfus@... [STMFC]
To: STMFC
Sent: Mon, Jun 22, 2015 5:09 pm
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Ethyl Corporation tank cars

 
  Someplace there is a mag article for (I think) kit bashing one.  I believe they were is the 20/30 foot range.

--
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS


Tony Thompson
 

Dave Parker wrote:

 
In this period, they were a mix of 3000 and 6000 gallon cars, rated at 20 and 40 tons, respectively (TEL is pretty dense).  I did not count exactly, but eyeballing it there were more 3000s than 6000s.  I did not see any evidence of 4000 gallon cars through 1940.

    You are right, memory did not serve me correctly about the 4000-gallon size. But the ratings are 40 and 50 tons in the ORER listings I have.

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, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history





Dave Parker
 

Tony:

I think we are both correct.  In the 1940 ORER, which is as far (really beyond) where my interests lie), the 3000 and 6000 gallon cars were indeed rated at 20 and 40 tons respectively.  But I also have the 1945 ORER and, as you say, the same cars were then rated at 40 and 50 tons.  Why the change?  Who knows, maybe the formulation of the "ethyl fluid" (the TEL plus some carrier solvents) changed making it "heavier"?  ;-)

Best regards,

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


Tim O'Connor
 

Ethyl peak production was around 200,000 tons annually, or about 5,000 car loads.
That would be an average of about 20 car loads to each of 250 refineries -- but no
doubt some refineries were much larger than others, and not all of them produced
gasoline for automobiles. Given a typical round trip time of at least 15 days
(probably closer to 20) there were probably 200 to 300 cars in this service at its
peak.

One of my scans is from the 1955 Illinois Central annual report. It shows the Ethyl
refinery being switched by the IC. There are 13 Ethyl tank cars in the shot, and only
3 of them are the smaller 3k-4k cars.

Tim O'Connor

Tim,Tony:

According to my ORERs, Ethyl had 6 cars in 1930, 48 in 1935, and 132 in 1940 that were dedicated to the transport of tetraethyl lead. Clearly adding lead to gasoline rose significantly during the 1930s!

In this period, they were a mix of 3000 and 6000 gallon cars, rated at 20 and 40 tons, respectively (TEL is pretty dense). I did not count exactly, but eyeballing it there were more 3000s than 6000s. I did not see any evidence of 4000 gallon cars through 1940.

It is an interesting commodity from an operations standpoint. I would assume one carload of TEL would go a long way at a small or mid-size refinery (I guess I could calculate how far but have not). Thus, an appearance on most roads would be a relatively infrequent occurrence, consistent with the modest number of cars at least through the 1930s, unless one was specifically modeling traffic near a large refinery. I model New England in 1934-5, and wonder if the demand for TEL could not have been met via transportation in drums; we had an extremely modest refining capacity.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


Tim O'Connor
 


This is the later 1960's era paint scheme


Not an article, but there is this on the Steam Era Freight Cars site: http://steamerafreightcars.com/modeling/models/millera/ebax3064main.html
 
Richard Townsend
Lincoln City, Oregon


Garth Groff <sarahsan@...>
 

Dave,

When I was shooting WP trains in the Feather River Canyon during the 1970s, both Ethyl and DuPont cars were common in what I assume were through trains. I shot several examples. I very likely these cars were moving to and from the San Francisco Bay area where there are/were many refineries. Strangely, none that I know of were on the WP.

For operation on a model railroad with through traffic, a couple in a fleet would probably be reasonable.

Yours Aye,


Garth Groff

On 6/22/15 8:19 PM, Dave Parker spottab@... [STMFC] wrote:

 
Tim,Tony:

According to my ORERs, Ethyl had 6 cars in 1930, 48 in 1935, and 132 in 1940 that were dedicated to the transport of tetraethyl lead.  Clearly adding lead to gasoline rose significantly during the 1930s!

In this period, they were a mix of 3000 and 6000 gallon cars, rated at 20 and 40 tons, respectively (TEL is pretty dense).  I did not count exactly, but eyeballing it there were more 3000s than 6000s.  I did not see any evidence of 4000 gallon cars through 1940.

It is an interesting commodity from an operations standpoint.  I would assume one carload of TEL would go a long way at a small or mid-size refinery (I guess I could calculate how far but have not).  Thus, an appearance on most roads would be a relatively infrequent occurrence, consistent with the modest number of cars at least through the 1930s, unless one was specifically modeling traffic near a large refinery.  I model New England in 1934-5, and wonder if the demand for TEL could not have been met via transportation in drums; we had an extremely modest refining capacity.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA





Eric Hansmann
 

Dave,


Could this change be attributed to an upgrade in the trucks? We know it's the truck journals that typically restrict a car rating. 


Eric Hansmann

El Paso, TX


On June 22, 2015 at 9:27 PM "Dave Parker spottab@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...> wrote:


Tony:

I think we are both correct.  In the 1940 ORER, which is as far (really beyond) where my interests lie), the 3000 and 6000 gallon cars were indeed rated at 20 and 40 tons respectively.  But I also have the 1945 ORER and, as you say, the same cars were then rated at 40 and 50 tons.  Why the change?  Who knows, maybe the formulation of the "ethyl fluid" (the TEL plus some carrier solvents) changed making it "heavier"?  ;-)

Best regards,

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


Dave Parker
 

Eric, Garth, Tim:

Yes, I would agree that a truck upgrade could well explain the change in capacity ratings for the Ethyl cars.

I did a quick back-of-the envelope calculation last night.  One 6000 gallon load of TEL (actually the "ethyl fluid") would have been enough to produce about 580 carloads (8000 gallons each) of finished product.  Of course the refineries would have shipped out other products made from the heavier (and lighter?) fractions of the crude, so you would probably need to double that:  1000+ cars leaving the refinery for every Ethyl (or Dow, DuPont) car coming in.  With 3000 gallon cars, the ratio would be halved.

I agree with Garth that the bay area had a particularly high density of refineries, so sightings of the Ethyl cars would likely have been more frequent than elsewhere.  But still infrequent relative to the number of "conventional" tank cars.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA



On Tuesday, June 23, 2015 4:50 AM, "Eric Hansmann eric@... [STMFC]" wrote:


 
Dave,

Could this change be attributed to an upgrade in the trucks? We know it's the truck journals that typically restrict a car rating. 

Eric Hansmann
El Paso, TX

On June 22, 2015 at 9:27 PM "Dave Parker spottab@... [STMFC]" wrote:


Tony:

I think we are both correct.  In the 1940 ORER, which is as far (really beyond) where my interests lie), the 3000 and 6000 gallon cars were indeed rated at 20 and 40 tons respectively.  But I also have the 1945 ORER and, as you say, the same cars were then rated at 40 and 50 tons.  Why the change?  Who knows, maybe the formulation of the "ethyl fluid" (the TEL plus some carrier solvents) changed making it "heavier"?  ;-)

Best regards,

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA




Tim O'Connor
 

Dave, relatively little refinery product such as gasoline travels by rail,
so your estimate of 1 to 580 carloads is wildly overestimated. Gasoline
moved by pipeline, barges or coastal tankers, except for local deliveries,
by the 1950's for sure.

Tim O'Connor

Yes, I would agree that a truck upgrade could well explain the change in capacity ratings for the Ethyl cars.

I did a quick back-of-the envelope calculation last night. One 6000 gallon load of TEL (actually the "ethyl fluid") would have been enough to produce about 580 carloads (8000 gallons each) of finished product. Of course the refineries would have shipped out other products made from the heavier (and lighter?) fractions of the crude, so you would probably need to double that: 1000+ cars leaving the refinery for every Ethyl (or Dow, DuPont) car coming in. With 3000 gallon cars, the ratio would be halved.

I agree with Garth that the bay area had a particularly high density of refineries, so sightings of the Ethyl cars would likely have been more frequent than elsewhere. But still infrequent relative to the number of "conventional" tank cars.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


Aley, Jeff A
 

Where did TEL come from (i.e. where did those loads originate)?

 

T(h)anks,

 

-Jeff

 

 

From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...]
Sent: Tuesday, June 23, 2015 9:42 AM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Ethyl Corporation tank cars

 

 


Dave, relatively little refinery product such as gasoline travels by rail,
so your estimate of 1 to 580 carloads is wildly overestimated. Gasoline
moved by pipeline, barges or coastal tankers, except for local deliveries,
by the 1950's for sure.

Tim O'Connor

>Yes, I would agree that a truck upgrade could well explain the change in capacity ratings for the Ethyl cars.
>
>I did a quick back-of-the envelope calculation last night. One 6000 gallon load of TEL (actually the "ethyl fluid") would have been enough to produce about 580 carloads (8000 gallons each) of finished product. Of course the refineries would have shipped out other products made from the heavier (and lighter?) fractions of the crude, so you would probably need to double that: 1000+ cars leaving the refinery for every Ethyl (or Dow, DuPont) car coming in. With 3000 gallon cars, the ratio would be halved.
>
>I agree with Garth that the bay area had a particularly high density of refineries, so sightings of the Ethyl cars would likely have been more frequent than elsewhere. But still infrequent relative to the number of "conventional" tank cars.
>
>Dave Parker
>Riverside, CA


Dave Parker
 

Tim:

You make a good point, but I think it depends a bit on region and era, and how you define "local".  I model New England in the  mid-1930s.  Petroleum products arrived by both rail and boat, with the latter coming into just a handful of ports.  Some was of course used locally, including bunker-fuel facilities in the harbors proper, but a great deal went out to the inland areas by rail (we had no pipelines yet AFIK).  And of course there was a major curtailment in boat transport during the war, with a corresponding surge in rail traffic.

Or look at it this way:  in the 1945 ORER I can easily get to 100,000 tank cars in service just by counting the obvious players, all companies.primarily in involved petroleum products (as opposed to chemicals).  As I recall, you came up with something in the 200-300 range for cars dedicated to TEL transport.  So maybe 400:1?

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


Brad Smith
 

I also model New England, (New Haven and B&M) but in the 50's and the situation hasn't changed much from the 1930's.  The coastal tankers and ocean tankers would come to the tank farms in Providence to deliver their loads. I would see Texaco and Mobil tankers all the time.  I am not sure how ESSO and Sunoco gasoline moved into New England.  Gulf oil came in Gulf lettered, railroad tank cars.
 
From the tank farms, railroad tank cars were loaded and shipped, as well as trucks.  I remember seeing the silver tank cars with TEXACO in large letters.  Also black TEXACO tank cars.
 
During WW2, when the German U-boats were sinking the coastal tankers, the New Haven bought a fleet of tank cars to deliver oil to their customers.  The tank cars lettered NEW HAVEN are really accurate.  They were an eclectic collection of tanks. They lasted after the war in company service.
 
The New Haven and B&M DVD's from the period show freight trains and one can see the cars used at the time.
 
Brad Smith
Franklin, WI
 
In a message dated 6/23/2015 12:48:56 P.M. Central Daylight Time, STMFC@... writes:

 

Tim:

You make a good point, but I think it depends a bit on region and era, and how you define "local".  I model New England in the  mid-1930s.  Petroleum products arrived by both rail and boat, with the latter coming into just a handful of ports.  Some was of course used locally, including bunker-fuel facilities in the harbors proper, but a great deal went out to the inland areas by rail (we had no pipelines yet AFIK).  And of course there was a major curtailment in boat transport during the war, with a corresponding surge in rail traffic.

Or lo ok at it this way:  in the 1945 ORER I can easily get to 100,000 tank cars in service just by counting the obvious players, all companies.primarily in involved petroleum products (as opposed to chemicals).  As I recall, you came up with something in the 200-300 range for cars dedicated to TEL transport.  So maybe 400:1?

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


Tim O'Connor
 

Dave

I suspect that heating oil, gasoline, diesel fuel, etc almost all arrived at
Bridgeport, New Haven, New London, Providence, Fall River, Hyannis, Boston,
Charleston, Marblehead, Portsmouth, Portland, and various lake ports (including
Lake Champlain ports including Burlington VT) by boat or barge -- And that truck
hauls within 100 miles of a port would be able to reach a good 90% of the population
if not more -- in the 1930's.

In fact oil barges still ply the Connecticut River -- I don't know how far they
used to go but perhaps at least as far as Hartford CT or even Springfield MA.
There is some kind of rail transfer operation at Bellows Falls VT for heating
oil and there was a similar operation at Burlington VT.

The reason that railroads were able to muster the thousands of tank cars to
replace coastal tankers at the start of America's entry into WWII was precisely
because there were so MANY unemployed tank cars !! They had been built to move
crude oil etc in the 1900's to 1920's but pipelines displaced them extremely
rapidly and by the 1930's tens of thousands were surplus.

I always found it interesting that pipeline "ton-miles" were (and still are) not
counted in statistics about "ton-mile market share". If pipelines were counted,
by the 1950's they moved more freight more miles than any other form of transport.

Tim O'Connor

You make a good point, but I think it depends a bit on region and era, and how you define "local". I model New England in the mid-1930s. Petroleum products arrived by both rail and boat, with the latter coming into just a handful of ports. Some was of course used locally, including bunker-fuel facilities in the harbors proper, but a great deal went out to the inland areas by rail (we had no pipelines yet AFIK). And of course there was a major curtailment in boat transport during the war, with a corresponding surge in rail traffic.

Or look at it this way: in the 1945 ORER I can easily get to 100,000 tank cars in service just by counting the obvious players, all companies.primarily in involved petroleum products (as opposed to chemicals). As I recall, you came up with something in the 200-300 range for cars dedicated to TEL transport. So maybe 400:1?

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA


tbarney2004
 

Fuel barges still run the Hudson too, bringing petroleum products up from NY harbor to (amongst other places) Newburgh, and Albany. A quick search turns up about half a dozen fuel terminals, most in the Albany/Renssellaer area. Not sure what impact/involvement traffic by rail would have been for the area in our time frame however, either from possible NYC West Shore line interchange with the U&D or the O&W in Kingston or barge to rail transfer. I know there are two tank farms in Kingston, one opposite the former U&D right of way along the Strand on Rondout Creek, the other at Kingston Point which the U&D had track in the vicinity of (but I don't know when either farm dates to) just south of the old brick plant. There is also a single tank in Kerhonkson, not far from where I live in Ellenville that could possibly have been in reasonable proximity to the O&W Kingston branch if it existed in or prior to the 1950s.

Tim Barney

On 6/23/2015 7:42 PM, Tim O'Connor timboconnor@... [STMFC] wrote:
Dave

I suspect that heating oil, gasoline, diesel fuel, etc almost all arrived at
Bridgeport, New Haven, New London, Providence, Fall River, Hyannis, Boston,
Charleston, Marblehead, Portsmouth, Portland, and various lake ports (including
Lake Champlain ports including Burlington VT) by boat or barge -- And that truck
hauls within 100 miles of a port would be able to reach a good 90% of the population
if not more -- in the 1930's.

In fact oil barges still ply the Connecticut River -- I don't know how far they
used to go but perhaps at least as far as Hartford CT or even Springfield MA.
There is some kind of rail transfer operation at Bellows Falls VT for heating
oil and there was a similar operation at Burlington VT.

The reason that railroads were able to muster the thousands of tank cars to
replace coastal tankers at the start of America's entry into WWII was precisely
because there were so MANY unemployed tank cars !! They had been built to move
crude oil etc in the 1900's to 1920's but pipelines displaced them extremely
rapidly and by the 1930's tens of thousands were surplus.

I always found it interesting that pipeline "ton-miles" were (and still are) not
counted in statistics about "ton-mile market share". If pipelines were counted,
by the 1950's they moved more freight more miles than any other form of transport.

Tim O'Connor



You make a good point, but I think it depends a bit on region and era, and how you define "local". I model New England in the mid-1930s. Petroleum products arrived by both rail and boat, with the latter coming into just a handful of ports. Some was of course used locally, including bunker-fuel facilities in the harbors proper, but a great deal went out to the inland areas by rail (we had no pipelines yet AFIK). And of course there was a major curtailment in boat transport during the war, with a corresponding surge in rail traffic.

Or look at it this way: in the 1945 ORER I can easily get to 100,000 tank cars in service just by counting the obvious players, all companies.primarily in involved petroleum products (as opposed to chemicals). As I recall, you came up with something in the 200-300 range for cars dedicated to TEL transport. So maybe 400:1?

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA

------------------------------------
Posted by: Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...>
------------------------------------


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Yahoo Groups Links




Dave Parker
 

Tim Barney:

You might check out Historic Aerials

Depending on the area of interest, the photos go back as far back as 1938.  Tank farms are easy to spot.  Sometimes I can even count the number of tanks and guesstimate the storage capacity of the facility.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA



On Tuesday, June 23, 2015 7:07 PM, "Timothy Barney tbarney@... [STMFC]" wrote:


Fuel barges still run the Hudson too, bringing petroleum products up
from NY harbor to (amongst other places) Newburgh, and Albany.  A quick
search turns up about half a dozen fuel terminals, most in the
Albany/Renssellaer area.  Not sure what impact/involvement traffic by
rail would have been for the area in our time frame however, either from
possible NYC West Shore line interchange with the U&D or the O&W in
Kingston or barge to rail transfer.  I know there are two tank farms in
Kingston, one opposite the former U&D right of way along the Strand on
Rondout Creek, the other at Kingston Point which the U&D had track in
the vicinity of (but I don't know when either farm dates to) just south
of the old brick plant.  There is also a single tank in Kerhonkson, not
far from where I live in Ellenville that could possibly have been in
reasonable proximity to the O&W Kingston branch if it existed in or
prior to the 1950s.

Tim Barney


On 6/23/2015 7:42 PM, Tim O'Connor timboconnor@... [STMFC] wrote:
> Dave
>
> I suspect that heating oil, gasoline, diesel fuel, etc almost all arrived at
> Bridgeport, New Haven, New London, Providence, Fall River, Hyannis, Boston,
> Charleston, Marblehead, Portsmouth, Portland, and various lake ports (including
> Lake Champlain ports including Burlington VT) by boat or barge -- And that truck
> hauls within 100 miles of a port would be able to reach a good 90% of the population
> if not more -- in the 1930's.
>
> In fact oil barges still ply the Connecticut River -- I don't know how far they
> used to go but perhaps at least as far as Hartford CT or even Springfield MA.
> There is some kind of rail transfer operation at Bellows Falls VT for heating
> oil and there was a similar operation at Burlington VT.
>
> The reason that railroads were able to muster the thousands of tank cars to
> replace coastal tankers at the start of America's entry into WWII was precisely
> because there were so MANY unemployed tank cars !! They had been built to move
> crude oil etc in the 1900's to 1920's but pipelines displaced them extremely
> rapidly and by the 1930's tens of thousands were surplus.
>
> I always found it interesting that pipeline "ton-miles" were (and still are) not
> counted in statistics about "ton-mile market share". If pipelines were counted,
> by the 1950's they moved more freight more miles than any other form of transport.
>
> Tim O'Connor
>
>
>
>> You make a good point, but I think it depends a bit on region and era, and how you define "local".  I model New England in the  mid-1930s.  Petroleum products arrived by both rail and boat, with the latter coming into just a handful of ports.  Some was of course used locally, including bunker-fuel facilities in the harbors proper, but a great deal went out to the inland areas by rail (we had no pipelines yet AFIK).  And of course there was a major curtailment in boat transport during the war, with a corresponding surge in rail traffic.
>>
>> Or look at it this way:  in the 1945 ORER I can easily get to 100,000 tank cars in service just by counting the obvious players, all companies.primarily in involved petroleum products (as opposed to chemicals).  As I recall, you came up with something in the 200-300 range for cars dedicated to TEL transport.  So maybe 400:1?
>>
>> Dave Parker
>> Riverside, CA
>
>
> ------------------------------------
> Posted by: Tim O'Connor <timboconnor@...>
> ------------------------------------
>
>
> ------------------------------------
>
> Yahoo Groups Links
>
>
>
>



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Tim O'Connor
 


That web site is soooo slow I'm tempted to shoot myself waiting for
the screen to refresh ...

Ok, maybe not that bad. But it's pretty awful. Look for the Ethyl plant
in Baton Rouge LA -- I think I found it, a gigantic facility next to an equally
gigantic storage tank farm.

The plant exploded in 1961 -- sending a mushroom cloud 3,000 feet into the air.




Tim Barney:

You might check out Historic Aerials


Dave Parker
 

Tim O:

Yes it is, no doubt.  But some very interesting historical images of tank farms, wharves, yards, tracks, etc., etc. that can be compared to contemporary land uses in Google Earth.

Dave Parker
Riverside, CA