Topics

Gun Flats


Paul Kattner
 

I am currently researching the PRR's F23/F22 Gun flats. I plan to model three of them. One will be the one that the MC&CL acquired and converted into a snowplow/line car (an F23, the last gun flat in existance as far as I have been able to find out-should be in a museum) and the other two will be carrying a large naval cannon. It looks to me like there isn't a whole lot else needed to create a layout quality basically accurate model from this kit other than replacing the trucks, adding a new deck, and reshaping the side sills. Should be and excellent opertunity to learn how to make Rivets. Does anyone know what would be the appropriate Arch bar trucks for this car? I think that Tichy's 100 ton arch bars would be the closest but am not 100% sure. What type of H-O scale trucks would be most suitable for these flats after Archbars were outlawed for the F23? Also what is the closest availible trucks to the ones used on the -22. According to prr.railfan.nets page on the F22, they were equipped with a 2F-F2 truck on the -23 and a 2F-F1 on the -22.

Also, does any one know of any photos on line or have published that show these cars loaded with cannon? I have found builders photos at
http://prr.railfan.net/freight/classpage.html?class=F23
and
http://prr.railfan.net/freight/classpage.html?class=F22.

I know that Railworks is coming out with brass versions of these cars, but I am on a bit of a budget and would rather spend that kind of money on things that have trolley poles.

Thanks in Advance
Paul Kattner
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Richard Hendrickson
 

Paul, I have only one photo of these cars, showing PRR 435362 in the early
1940s, and it isn't loaded. However, the cast steel trucks are clearly
shown; they're basically a heavy duty, six-spring version of the PRR 2DF4
(or ARA Type Y). Probably the closest model truck in HO (not very close)
is the Eastern Car Works 70 ton truck. You can get a copy of the photo
from Jay Williams, who advertises regularly in Mainline Modeler as Big Four
Graphics. And I agree that the Tichy 100 ton arch bar truck is as close as
you're going get in HO scale to original trucks with which these cars were
delivered.


Richard H. Hendrickson
Ashland, Oregon 97520


byronrose@...
 

Hi Paul,

Funny you should ask about these cars. They too are on my list of
patterns to make.

I'll spare you a long history of my research on the FMs, F22s, and F23s,
which BTW are all related, by saying that the MDC 30 foot flatcar is a
good stand-in for the F22. The F23 is whole 'nuther ball game. I think
that converting any model of the F22 to an F23 will be a rather difficult
proposition. The top deck of the F22s was wood boards, like most flat
cars. These cars were not considered gun cars but were used as typical
flats, only shorter. One common use was as idler cars next to mill
gondolas with loads hanging out beyond their dropped doors. The F23s
were the gun cars and had a flat riveted plate steel surface which was
tucked under the rolled top edge of the car sides. Loads on these cars
were either bolted thru the deck or welded to it. I haven't been able to
come up with a way to model it yet, even if I had an F-22 to start with,
which I won't have until RailWorks or Sunshine or Bowser or I make a
model of it.

Rich Burg has several photos of the F22/23s in service. I don't have his
address handy but I'm sure some good soul reading this does and will pass
it on. Rich does NOT have email although he does have a computer, a 386
machine I believe. I have a couple of detail and loading drawings for
all these flats that I got from the Pennsylvania (both state and
railroad) Archives in Harrisburg, a place definitely worth visiting for a
real serious Pennsy freight car modeler. There are some neat pix of
these cars carrying some really interesting loads; anchors, bridge
components, cannons, etc., etc. Also 2 or 3 cars being used to carry
long loads that would be put on an 85' flat today. Heck, 3 F22s at 33'
per would give them 5 more feet of load capacity.

And I don't recall seeing any photos of them in service with arch bar
trucks. But I'll check my photo file ASAP. Some of those photos online
are not builders photos, at least those taken in 1940. Use caution on
that web site, a lot of it is wishful thinking and guesswork.

I'm glad to hear that there is one of these still extant. I may have to
make a pilgrimage this summer. Can you tell me what and where the MC&CL
is?

And remember that you can't put a trolley pole on a Pennsy flat, you have
to use a pantograph.

Byron Rose


On Sat, 13 Jan 2001 13:29:57 "Paul Kattner" <paulkattner@...>
writes:
I am currently researching the PRR's F23/F22 Gun flats. I plan to
model
three of them. One will be the one that the MC&CL acquired and
converted
into a snowplow/line car (an F23, the last gun flat in existance as
far as I
have been able to find out-should be in a museum) and the other two
will be
carrying a large naval cannon. It looks to me like there isn't a
whole lot
else needed to create a layout quality basically accurate model from
this
kit other than replacing the trucks, adding a new deck, and
reshaping the
side sills. Should be and excellent opertunity to learn how to make
Rivets.
Does anyone know what would be the appropriate Arch bar trucks for
this
car? I think that Tichy's 100 ton arch bars would be the closest
but am
not 100% sure. What type of H-O scale trucks would be most suitable
for
these flats after Archbars were outlawed for the F23? Also what is
the
closest availible trucks to the ones used on the -22. According to
prr.railfan.nets page on the F22, they were equipped with a 2F-F2
truck on
the -23 and a 2F-F1 on the -22.

Also, does any one know of any photos on line or have published
that show
these cars loaded with cannon? I have found builders photos at
http://prr.railfan.net/freight/classpage.html?class=F23
and
http://prr.railfan.net/freight/classpage.html?class=F22.

I know that Railworks is coming out with brass versions of these
cars, but I
am on a bit of a budget and would rather spend that kind of money on
things
that have trolley poles.

Thanks in Advance
Paul Kattner
_________________________________________________________________
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Paul Kattner
 


I'm glad to hear that there is one of these still extant. I may
have to
make a pilgrimage this summer. Can you tell me what and where the
MC&CL
is?
The MC&CL (Mason City and Clear Lake) flat is usually located at the
Iowa Traction Railroad shops in Emery, Iowa which is half way between
Mason City & Clear Lake. this railroad is notable as being one of
three common carrier freight railroads still using 600 volt DC
overhead wires. It has a small fleet of Baldwin-Westinghouse
Steeplecab 50 & 60 ton locomotives. The F23 flatcar still has its
heavy duty Archbar trucks and was acquired (alledgedly LaSalle &
Bureau County style) before WWII. From the late 60's to a couple of
years ago, this car sported a large platform for working on the
overhead wire. This platform was removed and mounted on one of the
other IATR flats. The cities of Mason City and Clear Lak, Iowa are
located at the Junction of U.S. Highway 18 & Interstate 35 in North
Central, Iowa.

And remember that you can't put a trolley pole on a Pennsy flat,
you have
to use a pantograph.

Byron Rose
Funny

Thanks for the Info!
Paul Kattner


Stafford F. Swain <sswain@...>
 

. . and while you are there (assuming you are a 1950s R'nR fan like myself and two other listers I know of - right Al and Tony), check out the Surf Ball Room in Clear Lake which is famous as being the venue that Holly, Valens and the Bopper played in just before getting a ride with the wrong plane/pilot in the wee morning hours of Feb. 3/59.

>
I'm glad to hear that there is one of these still extant. I may
have to
make a pilgrimage this summer. Can you tell me what and where the
MC&CL
is?
The MC&CL (Mason City and Clear Lake) flat is usually located at the
Iowa Traction Railroad shops in Emery, Iowa which is half way between
Mason City & Clear Lake. this railroad is notable as being one of
three common carrier freight railroads still using 600 volt DC
overhead wires. It has a small fleet of Baldwin-Westinghouse
Steeplecab 50 & 60 ton locomotives. The F23 flatcar still has its
heavy duty Archbar trucks and was acquired (alledgedly LaSalle &
Bureau County style) before WWII. From the late 60's to a couple of
years ago, this car sported a large platform for working on the
overhead wire. This platform was removed and mounted on one of the
other IATR flats. The cities of Mason City and Clear Lak, Iowa are
located at the Junction of U.S. Highway 18 & Interstate 35 in North
Central, Iowa.

And remember that you can't put a trolley pole on a Pennsy flat,
you have
to use a pantograph.

Byron Rose
Funny

Thanks for the Info!
Paul Kattner



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Stafford Swain
26 Kenneth Street
Winnipeg, MB, Canada
R3T 0K8
(204) 477-9246
sswain@...


Jack Priller <Gndlfstram@...>
 

--- In STMFC@..., "Paul Kattner" <paulkattner@h...> wrote:
The F23 flatcar still has its
heavy duty Archbar trucks and was acquired (alledgedly LaSalle &
Bureau County style) before WWII.

Thanks for the Info!
Paul Kattner
Have a spare set of LS&BC decals, as well as my membership in the
LaSalle & Bureau County Model Railroad Club. Need any boxcars? Got
any spare pantographs?


Jack "The trolley nut" Priller
Honorable Association of Good Guys and Irreverent Souls
"To comfort the afflicted, and to afflict the comfortable."


Bob Johnson <bobjohnson@...>
 

Richard and list,

Regarding the trucks on PRR Class F22 and F23 flat cars, I agree with
Richard's comments about the appearance of the cast trucks. However,
there was no such class as 2DF4. PRR truck classification was a five
character system. The class was 2D-F4. The dash was not optional. It
meant the truck was equipped with standard ARA (later AAR) axles. A
number in the third position meant a deviation from standard.

All 124 F22 cars and all 6 F23 cars were built (in 1913) with arch bar
trucks of Class 2E1F1. These trucks had 5'-7" wheelbase and Number 8A
axles. The nominal capacity was 75 tons.

Beginning in 1924, the nominal capacity of some of the cars began to be
increased to 95 tons, presumably by change of trucks. All six F23 cars
were 95 ton by the end of 1925, but it took until early 1930 for all the
F22 cars to be so equipped. I don't know what truck class was used for
the early conversions. PRR truck classification drawing D70003B shows
Class 2F-F1 crown cast steel trucks as applied to F22 and F23 built
after 3-16-15. However, no F22 or F23 cars were built after 1913, so
this must have been an intention that was never carried out.
Furthermore, a note on a subsequent truck classification drawing
(D74604F 2-6-1929) states "F22 and F23 with 2F-F1 trucks have been
crossed off on account of this class of truck having never been applied
to these cars."

Drawing D74604G indicates that truck class 2F-F2 has been added for F22
and F23 and class 2E1F1 has been crossed off as of 12-16-29. Class
2F-F2 is the cast steel truck Richard described. It had a 5'-8"
wheelbase. A later truck classification drawing (C422800A 11-11-40)
shows that Class 2F-F2 could be equipped with either coil springs as
Richard described or with coil-elliptic springs. These latter had a
leaf or elliptic spring between the outer sets of coil springs. Photos
show both styles of springs in use.

Bob Johnson


Richard Hendrickson wrote:


Paul, I have only one photo of these cars, showing PRR 435362 in the early
1940s, and it isn't loaded. However, the cast steel trucks are clearly
shown; they're basically a heavy duty, six-spring version of the PRR 2DF4
(or ARA Type Y). Probably the closest model truck in HO (not very close)
is the Eastern Car Works 70 ton truck. You can get a copy of the photo
from Jay Williams, who advertises regularly in Mainline Modeler as Big Four
Graphics. And I agree that the Tichy 100 ton arch bar truck is as close as
you're going get in HO scale to original trucks with which these cars were
delivered.


Bob Johnson <bobjohnson@...>
 

Byron and list,

While I agree that F22 had a wood floor and F23 had a steel floor, I do
not agree that F23 was a gun car and F22 was not. All known issues of
PRR's "Classification of Cars" show F22 as a flat car with center plate
for twin loads and F23 as a flat car with steel floor. From photos we
know that the center plate was often removed from F22 cars.

Although one can't necessarily trust the listings in ORER's, it's
interesting to note that from 1913 through 1968 Class F23 was listed as
a Flat Car of MCB or AAR Mechanical Designation FM - never as a gun car.

The F22 cars built for PRR Lines East (435287-435400) were first listed
in the ORER in 1913 as Flat Cars, MCB FM. In 1914 this was changed to
Gun & Flat, still MCB FM. By 1916 the description had been revised to
Flat & Gun, still MCB FM. In 1924 the MCB Designation was changed to
FG. The Flat & Gun description with MCB FG lasted into 1967. By 1968
it was changed to Flat, but the AAR designation was still FG.

Oddly enough, the F22 cars built for Lines West (925526-925535) used a
different description. Like the other cars, they started as Flat Cars,
MCB FM. Starting in 1924 they were described as Gun Cars, but still MCB
FM. The MCB designation was changed to FG in 1925. The description was
changed to Flat, Gun in 1927 with MCB FG. This remained in effect
through 1967. There are lots of photos of pairs of F22 cars carrying
large caliber gun barrels, not published, unfortunately.

Bob Johnson


byronrose@... wrote:

I'll spare you a long history of my research on the FMs, F22s, and F23s,
which BTW are all related, by saying that the MDC 30 foot flatcar is a
good stand-in for the F22. The F23 is whole 'nuther ball game. I think
that converting any model of the F22 to an F23 will be a rather difficult
proposition. The top deck of the F22s was wood boards, like most flat
cars. These cars were not considered gun cars but were used as typical
flats, only shorter. One common use was as idler cars next to mill
gondolas with loads hanging out beyond their dropped doors. The F23s
were the gun cars and had a flat riveted plate steel surface which was
tucked under the rolled top edge of the car sides. Loads on these cars
were either bolted thru the deck or welded to it. I haven't been able to
come up with a way to model it yet, even if I had an F-22 to start with,
which I won't have until RailWorks or Sunshine or Bowser or I make a
model of it.


Bob Johnson <bobjohnson@...>
 

Paul and list,

There's a problem with a PRR F23 being acquired by the MC&CL before
WWII. All six Class F23 cars were still in service on the PRR as late
as 10-1-1952 according to internal PRR reports on file in the PA State
Archives. One was dropped from the roster during the month of October
1952. It seems unlikely that anyone could have pulled a LaSalle &
Bureau County-type theft and have hidden the car for over 11 years while
the Pennsy continued to carry it on the books. That sort of thing
happened in Penn Central days. If the car is a PRR F23, it was probably
acquired in the 50's.

Bob Johnson


Paul Kattner wrote:


The MC&CL (Mason City and Clear Lake) flat is usually located at the
Iowa Traction Railroad shops in Emery, Iowa which is half way between
Mason City & Clear Lake. this railroad is notable as being one of
three common carrier freight railroads still using 600 volt DC
overhead wires. It has a small fleet of Baldwin-Westinghouse
Steeplecab 50 & 60 ton locomotives. The F23 flatcar still has its
heavy duty Archbar trucks and was acquired (alledgedly LaSalle &
Bureau County style) before WWII. From the late 60's to a couple of
years ago, this car sported a large platform for working on the
overhead wire. This platform was removed and mounted on one of the
other IATR flats. The cities of Mason City and Clear Lak, Iowa are
located at the Junction of U.S. Highway 18 & Interstate 35 in North
Central, Iowa.


byronrose@...
 

Bob,

My comment about car names wasn't intended as Pennsy fact, although I can
see it being taken that way. I was simply stating my description of the
various cars usage, as based on photos and loading diagrams. I have a
gun loading drawing for use with 3 F23s, therefore I consider it to be
thought of as a "gun flat." The F22s had a wood deck just like their big
brothers, the FMs, therefore they appear to be usable as general service
flats, only shorter. I never even thought to see what the MCB or ARA or
AAR listing might be.

The pennsy had a way with words that doesn't always follow logic. Like
calling hopper cars type "G." And yes I know the genesis of the letter
"G" usage. I also don't know how the Pennsy works.

Didn't the Pennsy also use "FG" classes for flat cars built from gons?
Or was it GF for gons built from flat cars? Or all of above? None?

T - t - t - that's all folks.

BSR


On Mon, 15 Jan 2001 23:35:52 -0500 Bob Johnson <bobjohnson@...>
writes:
Byron and list,

While I agree that F22 had a wood floor and F23 had a steel floor, I
do
not agree that F23 was a gun car and F22 was not. All known issues
of
PRR's "Classification of Cars" show F22 as a flat car with center
plate
for twin loads and F23 as a flat car with steel floor. From photos
we
know that the center plate was often removed from F22 cars.

Although one can't necessarily trust the listings in ORER's, it's
interesting to note that from 1913 through 1968 Class F23 was listed
as
a Flat Car of MCB or AAR Mechanical Designation FM - never as a gun
car.

The F22 cars built for PRR Lines East (435287-435400) were first
listed
in the ORER in 1913 as Flat Cars, MCB FM. In 1914 this was changed
to
Gun & Flat, still MCB FM. By 1916 the description had been revised
to
Flat & Gun, still MCB FM. In 1924 the MCB Designation was changed
to
FG. The Flat & Gun description with MCB FG lasted into 1967. By
1968
it was changed to Flat, but the AAR designation was still FG.

Oddly enough, the F22 cars built for Lines West (925526-925535) used
a
different description. Like the other cars, they started as Flat
Cars,
MCB FM. Starting in 1924 they were described as Gun Cars, but still
MCB
FM. The MCB designation was changed to FG in 1925. The description
was
changed to Flat, Gun in 1927 with MCB FG. This remained in effect
through 1967. There are lots of photos of pairs of F22 cars
carrying
large caliber gun barrels, not published, unfortunately.

Bob Johnson
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Ben Hom <bhom3@...>
 

Funny how information just falls into your lap sometimes - got my
copy of the February 2000 RMC the other day and finally got around to
reading it. Railworks' ad on page 21 includes a picture of PRR
925532, Class F22, 2F-F2 trucks in a cut of at least 3 gun flats with
a large naval or coast defense gun load clearly showing the blocking
and tie rods restraining the load. The ad gives a release date of
January 2001 for Class F22, F28, F29, and FD1 flatcars.


Ben Hom


Bob Johnson <bobjohnson@...>
 

Byron,

Well, there were the following flat cars rebuilt from gondolas: FGR,
FGR-1, FGR-2, FGR-3, FGRa, FG27, FG27a, and FG27b. And, flat cars
rebuilt from box car underframes - FXL. I don't know of any gondolas
rebuilt from flat cars. Would you settle for a gondola rebuilt from a
box car underframe - the truly weird GXL? And then, there's the cabin
cars rebuilt from box cars - the eagerly-awaited NX23.

Bob Johnson


byronrose@... wrote:

The pennsy had a way with words that doesn't always follow logic. Like
calling hopper cars type "G." And yes I know the genesis of the letter
"G" usage. I also don't know how the Pennsy works.

Didn't the Pennsy also use "FG" classes for flat cars built from gons?
Or was it GF for gons built from flat cars? Or all of above? None?