Santa Fe reefer questions


D. Scott Chatfield
 

When did the Santa Fe rebuild their reefers so the hatches opened toward the center of the car, like almost all other reefers?  I know they did it so mechanized icing chutes had easier access to the bunkers.  Just don't know when.

Would any of the various Rr-2x classes have been rebuilt that way?  (C&BT models)  I built one years ago (20 years?) following the same ideas Tony Thompson gives in his blog.  Now I'm building the other one I bought.  The first (Rr-25 #33628) has a reweigh date of SB 4-55 but this second kit (Rr-23 # 31677) has a date of SB 5-62 and will run on a friend's 1962 era B&O layout. 

I doubt they would still have Andrews trucks by then.  There's two pics on Fallen Flags of Rr-2x reefers (a 22 and a 23?) taken in Toronto in the '50s.  Both have later plain bearing trucks.  Was there a program of truck swaps or was it hit or miss?  Did Santa Fe have a favorite replacement truck?

Richard would have popped off an answer and gently chided me for forgetting that he covered this in a clinic at Naperville back in, well, a while back.  Too many beers ago.  Miss him.....


Scott Chatfield


Tony Thompson
 

Scott Chatfield wrote:

 
When did the Santa Fe rebuild their reefers so the hatches opened toward the center of the car, like almost all other reefers?  I know they did it so mechanized icing chutes had easier access to the bunkers.  Just don't know when.

     Santa Fe, like other major reefer owners, began to install icing machines in 1949 and 1950. Soon after, they BEGAN to convert their cars to have conventional hatch-opening toward the car end. A lot of this was done in the next two or three years, but there are photos of SFRD cars some years later with unconverted ice hatches. 

Would any of the various Rr-2x classes have been rebuilt that way?  (C&BT models)  I built one years ago (20 years?) following the same ideas Tony Thompson gives in his blog.  Now I'm building the other one I bought.  The first (Rr-25 #33628) has a reweigh date of SB 4-55 but this second kit (Rr-23 # 31677) has a date of SB 5-62 and will run on a friend's 1962 era B&O layout. 

       My own opinion would be that 1955 is pretty darn late for more than an occasional inward-opening hatch. I am open to correction by Santa Fe mavens. You can of course consult the SFMS book by Richard, Keith Jordan, John Moore and Dean Hale for specifics.

Richard would have popped off an answer and gently chided me for forgetting that he covered this in a clinic at Naperville back in, well, a while back.  Too many beers ago.  Miss him…..

       Very true, Scott, and well said. My own first instinct on a question like this is to pick up the phone and dial Richard . . .

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






Tim O'Connor
 


I have an image of SFRD 10356, an Rr-46 with the old "backwards"
SFRD hatches, still in service. Also a 1969 image of SFRD 9040, an
Rr-43 with its original hatches - But this particular car carries a
recently applied "MDSE SERVICE RETURN TO AGENT SAN ANGELO TEXAS"
stencil. Merchandise service!

Other 1960's photos with the "normal" ice hatches are all from the
later Rr-5x classes.

Tim O'


Tim O'Connor
 

I have an image of SFRD 10356, an Rr-46 with the old "backwards"
SFRD hatches, still in service. Also a 1969 image of SFRD 9040, an
Rr-43 with its original hatches - But this particular car carries a
recently applied "MDSE SERVICE RETURN TO AGENT SAN ANGELO TEXAS"
stencil. Merchandise service!

Other 1960's photos with the "normal" ice hatches are all from the
later Rr-5x classes.

Tim O'


Steve SANDIFER
 

Reefers were often used in LCL service.

 

Out of season, they were common on branch lines where the LCL was pretty light. You needed a car to carry LCL, but not much of it. The only problem was the 5' door (ATSF) and higher inside floor.

 

On the main line, most reefer traffic was from west to east, so LCL was a way to use the cars headed back west if they were not needed in a big hurry. Magazines and paper product were heavy and needed a clean dry car. Folks like Sears, Montgomery Ward, etc. liked them because they received two for the price of one box car and could load them for specific markets, bypassing regional freight houses.

 

__________________________________________________

J. Stephen Sandifer

 

From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2017 9:49 PM
To: stmfc@...
Subject: [STMFC] re: Santa Fe reefer questions

 

 

I have an image of SFRD 10356, an Rr-46 with the old "backwards"
SFRD hatches, still in service. Also a 1969 image of SFRD 9040, an
Rr-43 with its original hatches - But this particular car carries a
recently applied "MDSE SERVICE RETURN TO AGENT SAN ANGELO TEXAS"
stencil. Merchandise service!

Other 1960's photos with the "normal" ice hatches are all from the
later Rr-5x classes.

Tim O'


charles slater
 

Tim I have 2 cars in my collection that still had reverse hatches after the mid 1950's. They are;

Rr-23 32432 in L.A. coach yard Dec. 1981 Think it was used to store Ice

Rr-48 11334 Painted at SB 11-64 and condemned at Argentine in 7-1973 this was one of the three white painted reefers and it lasted a long time.

Charlie Slater

Bakersfield, Ca.


Sent from Outlook




From: STMFC@... on behalf of Tim O'Connor timboconnor@... [STMFC]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2017 1:52 AM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Santa Fe reefer questions
 
 


I have an image of SFRD 10356, an Rr-46 with the old "backwards"
SFRD hatches, still in service. Also a 1969 image of SFRD 9040, an
Rr-43 with its original hatches - But this particular car carries a
recently applied "MDSE SERVICE RETURN TO AGENT SAN ANGELO TEXAS"
stencil. Merchandise service!

Other 1960's photos with the "normal" ice hatches are all from the
later Rr-5x classes.

Tim O'


Tony Thompson
 

Steve Sandifer wrote:

 
On the main line, most reefer traffic was from west to east, so LCL was a way to use the cars headed back west if they were not needed in a big hurry. Magazines and paper product were heavy and needed a clean dry car. Folks like Sears, Montgomery Ward, etc. liked them because they received two for the price of one box car and could load them for specific markets, bypassing regional freight houses.

    One thing an unloaded ice reefer was NOT was dry inside. The retired PFE guys I interviewed said that the cars were damp inside all their lives. But cargo like magazines and other printed matter was wrapped in bundles with heavy paper if moved in reefers. There was plenty of that traffic, as Steve says.
Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705         www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history






Jared Harper
 


A former brakeman/baggageman on Alma branch trains 95/96 said in an interview that a reefer was sometimes used as an LCL car.  Like other cars used for LCL on the Alma branch it was kept spotted near the depot to be loaded or unloaded from a Santa Fe Trailways truck.  Except for this one reference from a former Alma branch train crew member I have no other information on the use of reefers in LCL service.

Jared Harper
Athens, GA

---In STMFC@..., <steve.sandifer@...> wrote :

Reefers were often used in LCL service.

 

Out of season, they were common on branch lines where the LCL was pretty light. You needed a car to carry LCL, but not much of it. The only problem was the 5' door (ATSF) and higher inside floor.

 

On the main line, most reefer traffic was from west to east, so LCL was a way to use the cars headed back west if they were not needed in a big hurry. Magazines and paper product were heavy and needed a clean dry car. Folks like Sears, Montgomery Ward, etc. liked them because they received two for the price of one box car and could load them for specific markets, bypassing regional freight houses.

 

__________________________________________________

J. Stephen Sandifer

 

From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2017 9:49 PM
To: stmfc@...
Subject: [STMFC] re: Santa Fe reefer questions

 

 

I have an image of SFRD 10356, an Rr-46 with the old "backwards"
SFRD hatches, still in service. Also a 1969 image of SFRD 9040, an
Rr-43 with its original hatches - But this particular car carries a
recently applied "MDSE SERVICE RETURN TO AGENT SAN ANGELO TEXAS"
stencil. Merchandise service!

Other 1960's photos with the "normal" ice hatches are all from the
later Rr-5x classes.

Tim O'


Bruce Smith
 

Folks,

I think it might be in order here to note the difference between backhaul, as described by Steve and LCL as described by Jared.  


LCL would have been on-line pickup at multiple stops. Backhaul is would have been a single source carload, usually from somewhere near there the reefer had delivered a refrigerated or "protected" cargo, and would often be interchanged across multiple railroads.  I was well aware of backhaul traffic in reefers but LCL seems like it would be much more unusual, as it really wouldn't fit the traffic pattern of a reefer.  I could see LCL assignments for reefers during off seasons, or after the car was removed from regular service.  


As a note, backhaul would have been arranged by the reefer's owner, PFE, SFRD, FGE, etc... LCL would have been arranged by the railroad. Wouldn't a car being used for LCL need to be owned or leased by the railroad from the refrigerator car company?


And then there is the strange case of the ex-SFRD RR-23, lettered for the PRR and used for ice service for cabin cars and yard locomotives in Jersey City, New Jersey. 


Regards

Bruce Smith

Auburn, AL


From: STMFC@... on behalf of harperandbrown@... [STMFC]
Sent: Friday, March 17, 2017 5:29 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: RE: [STMFC] re: Santa Fe reefer questions
 



A former brakeman/baggageman on Alma branch trains 95/96 said in an interview that a reefer was sometimes used as an LCL car.  Like other cars used for LCL on the Alma branch it was kept spotted near the depot to be loaded or unloaded from a Santa Fe Trailways truck.  Except for this one reference from a former Alma branch train crew member I have no other information on the use of reefers in LCL service.

Jared Harper
Athens, GA

---In STMFC@..., wrote :

Reefers were often used in LCL service.

 

Out of season, they were common on branch lines where the LCL was pretty light. You needed a car to carry LCL, but not much of it. The only problem was the 5' door (ATSF) and higher inside floor.

 

On the main line, most reefer traffic was from west to east, so LCL was a way to use the cars headed back west if they were not needed in a big hurry. Magazines and paper product were heavy and needed a clean dry car. Folks like Sears, Montgomery Ward, etc. liked them because they received two for the price of one box car and could load them for specific markets, bypassing regional freight houses.

 

__________________________________________________

J. Stephen Sandifer

 

From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2017 9:49 PM
To: stmfc@...
Subject: [STMFC] re: Santa Fe reefer questions

 

 

I have an image of SFRD 10356, an Rr-46 with the old "backwards"
SFRD hatches, still in service. Also a 1969 image of SFRD 9040, an
Rr-43 with its original hatches - But this particular car carries a
recently applied "MDSE SERVICE RETURN TO AGENT SAN ANGELO TEXAS"
stencil. Merchandise service!

Other 1960's photos with the "normal" ice hatches are all from the
later Rr-5x classes.

Tim O'




Dennis Storzek
 




---In STMFC@..., <smithbf@...> wrote :


As a note, backhaul would have been arranged by the reefer's owner, PFE, SFRD, FGE, etc... LCL would have been arranged by the railroad. Wouldn't a car being used for LCL need to be owned or leased by the railroad from the refrigerator car company?

========================


Depends... keep in mind some railroads did own their own reefers, Santa Fe, for one, NP...


The Soo Line leased reefers from URTX, but owned their own milk cars (ten). When there was no milk to move, the cars could be found being used a storage mail, LCL, or company material service.

========================

And then there is the strange case of the ex-SFRD RR-23, lettered for the PRR and used for ice service for cabin cars and yard locomotives in Jersey City, New Jersey. 

========================


Very likely a case of a damaged car written off the owner's books, re-purposed by the railroad that paid for it.


Dennis Storzek


Richard Townsend
 

Somewhere I have a document from the Colorado & Southern setting lcl policies. It says refrigerator cars could be used for lcl if they were headed in the direction of their home rails. This implies foreign road reefers being used. It also described what can and can't be put in reefers, with things likely to rust being barred, as were matches, and any kind of stinky stuff. Specifically mentioned was limburger cheese.
 
Richard Townsend
Lincoln City, OR
 
 

-----Original Message-----
From: destorzek@... [STMFC]
To: STMFC
Sent: Fri, Mar 17, 2017 4:24 pm
Subject: Re: [STMFC] re: Santa Fe reefer questions

 



---In STMFC@..., wrote :


As a note, backhaul would have been arranged by the reefer's owner, PFE, SFRD, FGE, etc... LCL would have been arranged by the railroad. Wouldn't a car being used for LCL need to be owned or leased by the railroad from the refrigerator car company?
========================

Depends... keep in mind some railroads did own their own reefers, Santa Fe, for one, NP...

The Soo Line leased reefers from URTX, but owned their own milk cars (ten). When there was no milk to move, the cars could be found being used a storage mail, LCL, or company material service.
========================
And then there is the strange case of the ex-SFRD RR-23, lettered for the PRR and used for ice service for cabin cars and yard locomotives in Jersey Ci ty, New Jersey. 
========================

Very likely a case of a damaged car written off the owner's books, re-purposed by the railroad that paid for it.

Dennis Storzek


D. Scott Chatfield
 

Follow up question.  When the cars were retrofitted with new hatches were the running boards changed to steel?  The model has wood boards.


Scott Chatfield