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AB brake component location on the SP A-50-4


kevinhlafferty
 

I have just started building the Speedwitch SP A-50-4 kit and would like to update it with AB brakes. The kit is supplied with K brakes and states that no A-50-4s made it past 1953 as there is no evidence of them being equipped with AB brakes. Since the kits manufacture, Tony Thompson has posted a blog with car maintenance records for some of the cars in the class, and it is clear that indeed at least some of the class did receive AB brakes and continued to operate beyond 1953. I'm just wondering if anyone on the list would have any info regarding correct component location. I would assume that the cylinder would be mounted in the same location as the original but what about the triple valve and the reservoir? I could guess at where these would be based on common practices but was hoping someone might have more detailed info. Thanks,
Kevin Lafferty


Tim O'Connor
 


Lots of A-50-6 box cars got AB brakes, and they were mounted in a conventional
way as you can see in this photo. The A-50-6's were rebuilt for "hog fuel" (wood chips)
and lost their roofs. If any A-50-4's got AB brakes I feel sure they would have the same
brake arrangements.

There are no A-50-4's left in the 1955 roster (ORER). I wonder if the modified cars
were only intended for MofW (company) service.

An example of this would be SP 63298, which became SPMW 1168 on January 21, 1953
and was assigned as a "tool car".

Tim O'Connor


On 3/4/2021 12:31 PM, kevinhlafferty wrote:

I have just started building the Speedwitch SP A-50-4 kit and would like to update it with AB brakes. The kit is supplied with K brakes and states that no A-50-4s made it past 1953 as there is no evidence of them being equipped with AB brakes. Since the kits manufacture, Tony Thompson has posted a blog with car maintenance records for some of the cars in the class, and it is clear that indeed at least some of the class did receive AB brakes and continued to operate beyond 1953. I'm just wondering if anyone on the list would have any info regarding correct component location. I would assume that the cylinder would be mounted in the same location as the original but what about the triple valve and the reservoir? I could guess at where these would be based on common practices but was hoping someone might have more detailed info. Thanks,
Kevin Lafferty



--
Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts


Scott Kremer
 

I just completed two Great Northern hog fuel cars.  Forty foot cars made from old flat cars.  AB brakes as well.  What I am curious about is that they too had the top of the ends painted white, exactly like this SP car.  Usually I would have thought it was for an excess height car but neither the GN cars or this car are of unusual height.  Was it to designate that there was no roof?  Had not seen this before.

Thanks,
Scott Kremer



Douglas Harding
 

In the days of running boards, may have been a warning to brakemen that no running board existed on that car. They were banned on new cars in 1966.

 

Doug Harding

www.iowacentralrr.org

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Scott Kremer
Sent: Thursday, March 4, 2021 1:36 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] AB brake component location on the SP A-50-4

 

I just completed two Great Northern hog fuel cars.  Forty foot cars made from old flat cars.  AB brakes as well.  What I am curious about is that they too had the top of the ends painted white, exactly like this SP car.  Usually I would have thought it was for an excess height car but neither the GN cars or this car are of unusual height.  Was it to designate that there was no roof?  Had not seen this before.

 

Thanks,

Scott Kremer

 

 


kevinhlafferty
 

Thank you Tim, that's actually very helpful (or at least provides me a source of plausible deniability). I would suspect that you are correct and the configuration would be very similar to the A-50-6. I took a look at the 1/53 ORER and found 28 A-50-4s still in interchange. Tony Thompson's blog on this class shows several being retired in '53 and '54, probably the last survivors. It's interesting to note that at least a couple of these cars were equipped with AB brakes in '53 according to the car ledger sheets that Tony Thompson quoted. Seems those improvements were rather short lived, unless they went to MOW. Thanks again for the help.