Prototype inside stake wood gondolas

Prototype gondola designs ran the gamut with wood and steel components. These cars were everywhere in the early 20th century and had many different features. Steve Hedlund has gathered details for an inside stake wood gondola review. This design was popular with a number of railroads. The Missouri Pacific rostered 6,000 of these at one time. Steve covers several other railroads plus a few gondolas that look similar but had slight differences. Westerfield Models offers an HO scale kit for this type of gondola.

This resource PDF document is available on the Freight Car Fleets page. We hope you find it useful to add a couple more gondolas to the fleet.

Many thanks to Steve Hedlund for this fine prototype car review.


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Truss Rod end freight cars

from Car Builder’s Dictionary, 1906

It’s time for another freight car resource file. Ray Breyer has compiled information on truss rod end freight cars. We think of truss rods supporting freight car underframes but they were also used in other applications. Ray presents lots of photos and data covering these uses in a handy document.

Ray’s resource PDF is available on the Freight Car Fleets page. We hope modelers find it useful to build early wood boxcars for their fleets. We have more railroad fleet data and details coming soon.

Many thanks to Ray for pulling the data and images into one document.


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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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