Photo: Leveling The Grain:


Bob Chaparro
 

Photo: Leveling The Grain:

Photo from Classic Trains:

https://www.trains.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/20210730.jpg

Caption:

“It was important for boxcar loads of grain to be level. Sometimes workers had to enter the cars and level the loads by hand, as with this carload of wheat. Jeff Wilson collection”

Bob Chaparro

Hemet, CA


John Mateyko
 

Bob,
Why would the grain need to be level?  Bulk potatoes usually are shipped humped in the center.  

John Mateyko


Brian Carlson
 

Grain that was at unequal levels inside the car could cause disastrous damage upon a quick stop or even hard coupling. 

Brian J. Carlson 

On Aug 14, 2021, at 7:38 PM, John Mateyko <rattler21@...> wrote:



Bob,
Why would the grain need to be level?  Bulk potatoes usually are shipped humped in the center.  

John Mateyko


David Soderblom
 

Could this have possibly mattered? After an hour over jointed rail on branch line track all would have worked itself out.

Sent from my tricorder


Douglas Harding
 

My guess is the load was leveled to see if the load limit of the car had
been reached. Boxcars intended for grain loading had lines painted on the
inside of the car lining indicating the max limit for different kinds of
grain. Attached is a photo showing four different lines for four different
kinds of grain.

Doug Harding
www.iowacentralrr.org

-----Original Message-----
From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of David
Soderblom
Sent: Saturday, August 14, 2021 8:54 PM
To: main@realstmfc.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Photo: Leveling The Grain:

Could this have possibly mattered? After an hour over jointed rail on
branch line track all would have worked itself out.

Sent from my tricorder


earlyrail
 

Level the grain to see how deep it is.  Then you can calculate weight (roughly)
'That is what the markings on the inside are for.
You want to make sure you load as much grain as possible without overloading.
Each grain has a different height marked.

Howard Garner


Ray Hutchison
 

fun work on  95 degree day on the prairie...


Tim O'Connor
 


Bingo!  ( I agree with you. )  :-)

I watched a truck filling with cement from a railcar once. The driver put a stick
in the ground below the belly of the trailer. He said when the belly reaches the stick,
he has reached his load limit.

Tim O'Connor



On 8/14/2021 10:29 PM, Douglas Harding wrote:
My guess is the load was leveled to see if the load limit of the car had
been reached. Boxcars intended for grain loading had lines painted on the
inside of the car lining indicating the max limit for different kinds of
grain. Attached is a photo showing four different lines for four different
kinds of grain.

Doug Harding
www.iowacentralrr.org


Attachments:
Grain lines boxcar interior.jpg: https://RealSTMFC.groups.io/g/main/attachment/186580/0


--
Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts


Thomas Klosterman
 

How would this guy get out of the car when he was done?
Tom Klosterman


Douglas Harding
 

Grain doors did not enclose the entire opening. A space was typically open at the top of the door opening, large enough for a man to crawl through. The attached photo shows a man taking a grain sample, but you can see the height of the grain door, and the opening that is above it.

 

Doug Harding

www.iowacentralrr.org

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Thomas Klosterman
Sent: Sunday, August 15, 2021 2:10 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Photo: Leveling The Grain:

 

How would this guy get out of the car when he was done?
Tom Klosterman


Brian Shumaker
 

I’d think he’d have a ladder for this, OSHA would have a fit!


Douglas Harding
 

Osha did not exist at the time of the photo. If fact it did not exist during the time period of this group.

 

Doug Harding

www.iowacentralrr.org

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Shumaker
Sent: Sunday, August 15, 2021 4:56 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Photo: Leveling The Grain:

 

I’d think he’d have a ladder for this, OSHA would have a fit!


Alex Huff
 

The man is a grain inspector.  Note the small empty bags tucked in his belt.  The tool he is holding is a cylindrical grain probe.  Several feet long. the tool consists of two nested tubes with several matching oblong openings the length of the tube.  The far end has a cone shaped cap threaded to the outer tube. The end in the man's hand has a brass handle attached to the inner tube.  The probe is shoved into the grain with the inner tube's oblong holes rotated so they don't match the outer holes.  Once fully inserted in the grain, the inspector turns the inner tube so the holes align.  Grain fills the tube, taken from different levels simultaneously.  The inner tube is rotated, closing the oblong holes.  After the inspector pulls the probe out of the grain, I presume he steps down to firmer footing, unscrews the cap and tilts the tube's contents into an empty sample bag.  The sealed sample bag is then sent to a Federally licensed grain inspection company.  The carload is then sold on the market as origin grade, destination weight.

Elevators sampled the grain as it was being loaded. An employee with an empty coffee can would pass it quickly several times through the stream of grain being aimed into the boxcar with a flexible metal spout.  The procedure was to aim the spout toward the end of the boxcar and then shift the spout to the other end to approximately equalize the load over each truck.  That remains a concern today with covered hoppers.  I have cautioned elevator employees to load evenly particularly with wheat, relatively dense at 60#/bu.         

Railroads offer an advantage to the market, both buyer and seller know the inspected grade.  Trucking is faster, but grain is sold on the basis of destination grade and weight.  Elevator managers have stories of a "good" truckload leaving the elevator and failing inspection at the delivery end.  It was relatively easy for a driver to stop at a "cousin's place", dump the load and reload with trash grain.       


Dennis Storzek
 

On Sun, Aug 15, 2021 at 05:30 PM, Douglas Harding wrote:

Osha did not exist at the time of the photo. If fact it did not exist during the time period of this group.

Right you are, Doug. We tend to forget how little concern there was for employee welfare sixty years ago.

However, I have seen photos of short ladders with hooks on one end that hooked over the top grain door and let the guy at least climb down to within jumping distance of the ground. Keep in mind that grain doors were nailed to the INSIDE of the door posts. The first side was easy, but the top panels on the second side weren't. Since the grain door panels were only 16 or 20 inches wide, use of the ladder allowed the reaching over the top to nail them on.

Dennis Storzek


Douglas Harding
 

Dennis here is an early photo of a boxcar being loaded with grain, clearly showing a ladder leaning against the grain door for checking the load. I know I’ve seen a photo of the type of ladder you described, just can’t locate it.

 

Doug Harding

www.iowacentralrr.org

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dennis Storzek
Sent: Monday, August 16, 2021 4:15 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Photo: Leveling The Grain:

 

On Sun, Aug 15, 2021 at 05:30 PM, Douglas Harding wrote:

Osha did not exist at the time of the photo. If fact it did not exist during the time period of this group.

Right you are, Doug. We tend to forget how little concern there was for employee welfare sixty years ago.

However, I have seen photos of short ladders with hooks on one end that hooked over the top grain door and let the guy at least climb down to within jumping distance of the ground. Keep in mind that grain doors were nailed to the INSIDE of the door posts. The first side was easy, but the top panels on the second side weren't. Since the grain door panels were only 16 or 20 inches wide, use of the ladder allowed the reaching over the top to nail them on.

Dennis Storzek