Topics

Gun Flats


Bob Johnson <bobjohnson@...>
 

Paul,

The photo of MC&CL #104 sure looks like a PRR 30' flat car. The shape
of the side sills is right, as are the number and spacing of the stake
pockets. The trucks also appear to be PRR Class 2E1F1, although the
angled view makes it a little hard to tell.

These trucks were removed from the cars by 1930. However, they were
probably put into MW service, perhaps as spares in wreck trains. The
1937 date may well be correct, but not for an F23. From diagrams and
side view builders' photos, it looks like the F23 body rode lower on the
trucks than did the F22. The lower edge of the F23 side sill comes very
close to the top of the arch bar trucks. There's a noticeable gap
between the bottom of the F22 side sill and the top of the truck. The
photo of MC&CL #104 shows a gap typical of an F22. Perhaps Byron can
check the detail drawings of these cars to confirm this difference
between F22 and F23.

While all the F23 cars remained in service on the PRR into 1952, several
F22 cars were dropped from the roster in the late 1930's. Many cars of
that vintage were sold to railroad equipment dealers who resold them to
short lines. The Pennsy probably wouldn't have sold the relatively-new
cast steel trucks and substituted the old original arch bar trucks
instead - perfectly usable for MW service.

It would be interesting to check a few things to confirm that MC&CL #104
is a PRR car. The castings should have PRR and a pattern number
(typically beginning with a V) in raised characters. Is the arch bar
truck wheelbase 5'-7" (which I think is a relatively unusual size)?
What is the height from the rail head to the top surface of the floor?
If it's an F23, this dimension should be 3'-4 7/8". If the car passed
all the other checks and this dimension is a couple of inches greater
than 3'-4 7/8", then it is probably a former PRR F22 that somehow got a
steel floor. Does the steel floor look like a real steel floor with a
multitude of rivets, or does it look like a slab of steel put on for
weight and/or to replace a rotted-out wooden floor?

As you say, a lot of questions, indeed.

Bob Johnson


Paul Kattner wrote:

The car being stolen is somewhat of a local legend--no way of verifying its
truthfulness. It strikes me as kind of funny-little MC&CL swiping a car
from the giant PRR. The evidence that I have that the car was on the MC&CL
before WWII is the date of the photo at
http://donross.railspot.com/mccl104.jpg
which is dated as August 4, 1937. I realize that dates are sometimes
wrong.... Another piece of evidence is the continued presence of arch-bar
trucks on this car. Wren't Arch-bars banned from interchange in 1941?
These flats had realtively high loading capacity for their time. They were
clearly special purpose cars. Wouldn't PRR have swapped out the arch-bars
for something a little more road-worthy well before WWII? Also if the MC&CL
was looking for freight car to use as a basis for a snowplow (to be
purchased) why did they not buy one off of the four railroads that they
interchanged with?

A lot of questions for a rather modest little car!


Paul Kattner
 

I host the Iowainterurbansandstreetrailways mailing list. I will ask
there and see if anyone has information on what type of deck the
gun-flat has on it. In all my years of looking at it, I never noted
whether or not it had a wooden deck......

Kicking myself.....

Paul Kattner

--- In STMFC@..., Bob Johnson <bobjohnson@a...> wrote:
Paul,

The photo of MC&CL #104 sure looks like a PRR 30' flat car. The
shape
of the side sills is right, as are the number and spacing of the
stake
pockets. The trucks also appear to be PRR Class 2E1F1, although the
angled view makes it a little hard to tell.

These trucks were removed from the cars by 1930. However, they were
probably put into MW service, perhaps as spares in wreck trains.
The
1937 date may well be correct, but not for an F23. From diagrams
and
side view builders' photos, it looks like the F23 body rode lower on
the
trucks than did the F22. The lower edge of the F23 side sill comes
very
close to the top of the arch bar trucks. There's a noticeable gap
between the bottom of the F22 side sill and the top of the truck.
The
photo of MC&CL #104 shows a gap typical of an F22. Perhaps Byron
can
check the detail drawings of these cars to confirm this difference
between F22 and F23.

While all the F23 cars remained in service on the PRR into 1952,
several
F22 cars were dropped from the roster in the late 1930's. Many cars
of
that vintage were sold to railroad equipment dealers who resold them
to
short lines. The Pennsy probably wouldn't have sold the
relatively-new
cast steel trucks and substituted the old original arch bar trucks
instead - perfectly usable for MW service.

It would be interesting to check a few things to confirm that MC&CL
#104
is a PRR car. The castings should have PRR and a pattern number
(typically beginning with a V) in raised characters. Is the arch
bar
truck wheelbase 5'-7" (which I think is a relatively unusual size)?
What is the height from the rail head to the top surface of the
floor?
If it's an F23, this dimension should be 3'-4 7/8". If the car
passed
all the other checks and this dimension is a couple of inches
greater
than 3'-4 7/8", then it is probably a former PRR F22 that somehow
got a
steel floor. Does the steel floor look like a real steel floor with
a
multitude of rivets, or does it look like a slab of steel put on for
weight and/or to replace a rotted-out wooden floor?

As you say, a lot of questions, indeed.

Bob Johnson