Schoen and Pressed Steel Car Company hoppers

It’s time for another freight car resource. Steve Hedlund sent a wonderful summary of Schoen Pressed Steel and Pressed Steel Car Company hoppers. These companies built some of the earliest all-steel hoppers starting in the late 1890s. They built more than 18,000 of these hoppers, which were used by a dozen different railroads. The Pennsylvania Railroad GL class cars were very similar but deserve a separate review.

This resource PDF document is available on the Freight Car Fleets page. We hope modelers find it useful as they build early steel hoppers for their fleets. We have more railroad fleet data and details coming soon.

Many thanks to Steve for pulling the data and images together.


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Lehigh Valley boxcar fleet

Lehigh Valley boxcars seem to appear frequently in pre-Depression era railroad images. I’ve inquired many times about their pre-1930s boxcar fleet details but most of the Lehigh Valley fans and modelers I’ve met know little about the early 1900s fleet.

The October 1926 ORER lists 13,144 boxcars in the LV fleet. Only 2,040 of those have a 40-foot interior length, most of those are automobile boxcars. The rest of their boxcars have interior lengths of 36-foot, 6-inch, or less. Nearly 3,500 cars in one number series had a 34-foot interior length, which is shorter than I expected for a mid-1920s fleet.

Ray Breyer and I have discussed the elusive Lehigh Valley boxcar fleet over the years. He has pulled data from ORER listings and other sources to summarize the Lehigh Valley boxcar fleet of 1925. This PDF document is available as a resource on the Freight Car Fleets page. We hope modelers find it useful as they build Lehigh Valley boxcars for their fleets. We plan to add more railroad fleet data and details in the future.


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1926 B&O freight car fleet – 3

B&O class N-12e 322841 is a 1921 product of the Pressed Steel Car Company.

Do you recognize this coal hopper? I know you recognize the railroad name, but do you recognize the car design? It looks similar to many hoppers used in the first four decades of the 20th Century. The B&O had more than 1400 of these N-12e class cars listed in the October 1926 Official Railway Equipment Register (ORER). There were 14,364 overall N-12 class cars. Are you surprised?

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Port Richmond yard images

Port Richmond, November 15, 1926. Collection of Eric Hansmann.

I picked up a few neat photos at the St Louis RPM┬álast summer. I used these in my RPM Chicagoland┬ápresentation and thought I’d share them with some notes. Photographs were often taken to document projects in many cities. In these cases, the Reading Company hired a photographer to snap progress photos of a new project at their Port Richmond yards along the Delaware River in Philadelphia. You can see some concrete footers extending through the above image that will connect a new grain pier with a grain elevator. Click on any image here to view a larger size.

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RPM addendum

I enjoyed another RPM Chicagoland meet┬árecently. A number of Pre-Depression Era modelers (the Pirates) attended, as seen in the lead image. That’s me, down in front. Two Pirates were missing at the time of the photo shoot. It was great to catch up with this group in face-to-face conversations and enjoy meals and drinks together. It’s been nine years since a couple of us began corresponding about railroads and industries of the 1900-1930 decades. We’ve learned a great deal from our collective and advanced our individual modeling skills.

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