Topics

Block of cars


C J Wyatt
 

On Wed, Aug 5, 2020 at 02:47 PM, Dave Nelson wrote:

Anyone know when the term ”Block”, describing a set of cars headed to the same location, came into general use?  Or whether that concept is in use outside of North America?  

 

Dave Nelson


If you go back to early in the 20th Century, you will see more talk about "classification" than "blocking", but there really is not much difference.

Also in Droege Freight Terminals & Trains, you will find mention of a gravity yard built in Germany in 1846, so I think the Europeans understood the concept of classification in the mid-19th Century. Droege talks a lot about classification, but scanning the yard section, I did not see mention of "blocking". However my search was far from comprehensive.

My wild ass guess is that in the USA with the emphasis on fast freight in the 1920s,  "blocking" came in use as a term which the shipping public more easily understood. But like I said ....

If anyone can come up with the first usage of the term blocking, I'd like to know myself, but it probably post-dates the concept of "classification"

Jack Wyatt


Robert Allan
 

No historical context here, but on the Missouri Pacific (and subsequently the Union Pacific) the car scheduling system used "Yard Block" (YBLK) as a term since the 1960's. The classification of a shipments characteristics in the the hierarchy of yard block definitions was a first step in the scheduling process. Still is as far as I know.

Bob Allan
Omaha


Rufus Cone
 

Dave Nelson <Lake_Muskoka@...> asked:

Anyone know when the term ”Block”, describing a set of cars headed to the same location, came into general use?  Or whether that concept is in use outside of North America?  Similar question regarding lcomotives, where I recall hearing the term “lashup” to refer to a set of locos.  Or are these just railfan/model railroader terms?
John H. Armstrong in The Railroad What it Is, What It Does, 3rd Ed. Simmons-Boardman, 1990, page 169, says, "The next step in terminal operations is to assemble the cars from various sources into blocks ... headed for individual destinations; ...."  This is in Ch 12 entitled Classification and Blocking.

Coughlin, Freight Car Distribution, 1956 gives a specific example of blocking from the B&O.

You might try these, but the pdf's are not searchable.

  • Railroad Freight Transporation, Loree, 1922
  • Freight terminals and trains, Droege, 1912, available on Internet Archive and elsewhere online and published in multiple editions.

A Google search on "locomotive consist" gives a "consist" discussion like that mentioned by Richard Townsend

http://cs.trains.com/mrr/f/88/p/135239/1516637.aspx

along with a lot of official looking railroad industry web pages.

-- 
Rufus Cone
Bozeman, MT


Richard Townsend
 

Many years ago MR published a very indignant letter to the editor castigating the magazine for using the term"lashup" and asserting that the only correct term was "locomotive consist." Why this has stuck with me for all these years is unknown.

Richard Townsend
Lincoln City, OR


-----Original Message-----
From: Schuyler Larrabee via groups.io <schuyler.larrabee@...>
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Sent: Wed, Aug 5, 2020 4:51 pm
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Block of cars

From what I’ve read, and heard, “Lashup” is a model railroad term.  Not used by railroaders IRL (In Real Life).
 
Now, I don’t KNOW about “block,” but it seems to me to be a common term to describe arranging a number of objects with some degree of commonality together.  In the case of freight cars (that IS what we’re talking about, right?), that commonality would be a destination, or a consignee.
 
I admit that the brain cells are Blocked (😊 ) from coming up with an example, but still . . .
 
Schuyler
 
From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dave Nelson
Sent: Wednesday, August 05, 2020 5:46 PM
To: STMFC <RealSTMFC@groups.io>
Subject: [RealSTMFC] Block of cars
 
Anyone know when the term ”Block”, describing a set of cars headed to the same location, came into general use?  Or whether that concept is in use outside of North America?  Similar question regarding lcomotives, where I recall hearing the term “lashup” to refer to a set of locos.  Or are these just railfan/model railroader terms?
 
Am debating these matters on another list and nobody participating, myself included, knows the answer.
 
Dave Nelson


Schuyler Larrabee
 

From what I’ve read, and heard, “Lashup” is a model railroad term.  Not used by railroaders IRL (In Real Life).

 

Now, I don’t KNOW about “block,” but it seems to me to be a common term to describe arranging a number of objects with some degree of commonality together.  In the case of freight cars (that IS what we’re talking about, right?), that commonality would be a destination, or a consignee.

 

I admit that the brain cells are Blocked (😊 ) from coming up with an example, but still . . .

 

Schuyler

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dave Nelson
Sent: Wednesday, August 05, 2020 5:46 PM
To: STMFC <RealSTMFC@groups.io>
Subject: [RealSTMFC] Block of cars

 

Anyone know when the term ”Block”, describing a set of cars headed to the same location, came into general use?  Or whether that concept is in use outside of North America?  Similar question regarding lcomotives, where I recall hearing the term “lashup” to refer to a set of locos.  Or are these just railfan/model railroader terms?

 

Am debating these matters on another list and nobody participating, myself included, knows the answer.

 

Dave Nelson


Dave Nelson
 

Anyone know when the term ”Block”, describing a set of cars headed to the same location, came into general use?  Or whether that concept is in use outside of North America?  Similar question regarding lcomotives, where I recall hearing the term “lashup” to refer to a set of locos.  Or are these just railfan/model railroader terms?

 

Am debating these matters on another list and nobody participating, myself included, knows the answer.

 

Dave Nelson