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What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?
The AFV ASSOCIATION was formed in 1964 to support the thoughts and research of all those interested in Armored Fighting Vehicles and related topics, such as AFV drawings. The emphasis has always been on sharing information and communicating with other members of similar interests; e.g. German armor, Japanese AFVs, or whatever.
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Dontos
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 1:50 am
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

- Doug_Kibbey
I love this board....I'm learning a ton of stuff about trains here that I never even thought of!


Don't get me started on the "JODI - WHISTLE" or the "JODI - TRAIN"

Confused

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oldtop
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 2:16 am
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

Got to say this having loaded and unload countless tanks, SP, amtracks, and @#$#@ Ontos (pigs) on flatcars,flatbed trucks,and LST as well as LPHs how, does a gun tube swing free, I mean if the travering gears are engaged (to unengage them you must drop the gears). if the travering gears and drive motor were removed and the turret lock was relested and the gun tube taken out of travel lock (which is checked by the railroad load master before the shippment moves) and the gun is free swing it would swing all the way to the rear after it hit the first what-ever along side the roadbed ( one man can move the turret on a M109 by pushing it..yes it is that well balanced. So what we see is that someone has got on the vehicle and relested the travel lock, and hand elevated that gun and then traversed the tube to the side. By the way if the travel lock is unoperatable or missing the loadmaster requiers you you "dog" the gun tube to the hull with chains or cables...I'm not nit picking it just when I know better I must say something!
..Now I did have an M60A1 break its tie down chains on a hill in the middle of SanDiego (this was the hill where 6 interstates and Hiways come together) and roll off the lowboy truck trailer and go roaring down the hill. The little elderly couple in the car behind the lowboy liked to have a heartattack when they saw the monster coming at them, but the hand of god intervened I guess and for some reason the tank swerved off the road just before it got to them . I tried to tell the truck driver (a non military contractor) that you couldn't get away with dogging a 56 ton tank down with 3/8" chains, he told me he had been hauling heavy loads for 20 years and knew what he was doing...That night the headline news ch 8 opened with "and the Marine are looking for a few good tanks".
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bsmart
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 8:43 am
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

[quote="binder001"][quote="C_Sherman"]
- bsmart

I've seen pictures of what happens when a vehicle or part of a vehicle (turret, crane, cargo, etc.) comes adrift during rail transport, and it ain't pretty. If you are lucky, no one gets kilt...and the best result is just extensive damage to unit property. Unlucky? Well, that can get really ugly.



One time several years ago when I was 'train spotting' at an out of the way junction of Norfolk Southern and CSX tracks a signal maintainer for CSX came by to check out a trackside telephone that was broken. after quickly fixing the problem (a rodent had made a nest inside the phone box under the handset and raised the handset so it was 'off hook') we talked for a couple minutes. then a train could be heard pulling up the grade and he stopped and started counting the cars. When the train went by he got on his radio and told his dispatcher where he was, how many cars had been in the train and that there were 'no hangers'. He explained that it was policy that whenever a train went by any worksite everyone was to stop work and watch the train for loose items hanging over the side and that a couple years before his division had made it policy to also call in a car count after a local train that was picking and dropping cars at business sidings had had a car become disconnected and sitting on the mainline (He also said that that was a strange set of incidental mistakes and was almost impossible to happen on anything but a local switcher) The main emphasis was on loads like lumber and pipe where a load band would break and a pipe or telephone pole would angle out from the train and act like a scythe as the train continued running at speed. He said one time they had to replace several miles of telephone poles in the boonies of Western Maryland after one end of a load of poles on a train broke loose.

Also about humping trains. I suspected that any military unit would be handled in a unit train but I remember years ago (Like in the 60s) weeing flat cars with trucks and artillery mixed in with regular freight. Most would be 3 or 4 cars all of like equipment. This was all around the Baltimore area and I remember my father at the time saying it was equipment being shipped overseas from the factory. That made sense at the time. I never remember seeing any tanks in shipment but a lot of tactical trucks and occasional towed artillery.

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Maple_Leaf_Eh
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 7:03 pm
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

- Roy_A_Lingle
Hi Folks!

As best I can remember, every rail movement I was part of, the required number of flat cars would be placed against a ramp at the end of the rail line and each vehicle would drive from the ramp crossed all the flat cars until it reached the one it would be traveling on.

My 2 cents,
Sgt, Scouts Out! Smile


I remember watching the best driving conceivable as truck after truck with trailers BACKED down the length of a section of rail cars after RV89 in Wainhole, Alberta. Backing a normal vehicle is small corrections to the wheel as ground guides relay instructions back and forth between themselves, and to the driver. Now, hold the bottom of the wheel and make twice as many small corrections to point a whippy uncooperative 1 1/2ton trailer down the line.

The CF had forgotten how to load trains in Canada until the biannual RV series of exercises from '81 to '93. Then we got mixed up in Bosnia and who knows if there are 5% of the guys in the units who can remember half the lessons learned.

One thing that was learned after 1991, was don't leave loaded trains immobile in railyards on Indian Reserves. It seems that after 5 Brigade helped put a lid on the so-called Oka Crisis with the Mohawks in '91, they picked up the training cycle for the fall season. There is a big railyard on the Kahnewake Reserve just outside Montreal ... An ABLOY padlock only keeps honest thieves out ...
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Dontos
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 10:09 pm
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

- oldtop
Got to say this having loaded and unload countless tanks, SP, amtracks, and @#$#@ Ontos (pigs) on flatcars,flatbed trucks,and LST as well as LPHs how, does a gun tube swing free, I mean if the travering gears are engaged (to unengage them you must drop the gears). if the travering gears and drive motor were removed and the turret lock was relested and the gun tube taken out of travel lock (which is checked by the railroad load master before the shippment moves) and the gun is free swing it would swing all the way to the rear after it hit the first what-ever along side the roadbed ( one man can move the turret on a M109 by pushing it..yes it is that well balanced. So what we see is that someone has got on the vehicle and relested the travel lock, and hand elevated that gun and then traversed the tube to the side. By the way if the travel lock is unoperatable or missing the loadmaster requiers you you "dog" the gun tube to the hull with chains or cables...I'm not nit picking it just when I know better I must say something!


I hear ya 'ole top'. I'm searching for 'proof'. I've seen photos of the event in question, long ago, online.

The story was 'lore' for Soldiers & the civilians alike. I will find the photos.

Don

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C_Sherman
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 11:14 pm
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

Most folks don't know that only certain routes have been cleared for military vehicle flatcars, because they are often "oversized". The problem is that the dimensions of some older railroad tunnels and grade curves are less than required for the vehicles to pass safely.

It isn't unusual for the front or back of a vehicle to hang over the end of a railcar, or for a boom or gun tube to extend over the next car. The problem crops up when the extended end of a vehicle, boom or gun tube hangs out over the edge of the railcar because of a sharp curve. If there is anything beside the track, the protrusion will hit it. This can happen even when the equipment is properly secured and nothing comes unshipped.

A few years back, a trainload was accidentally diverted onto unapproved grade by a busy dispatcher. As the train entered an underpass on a curve, the front end of a PLS truck hung over the edge of the car enough to catch the upper curve of the underpass. This ripped the upper corner of the cab off the PLS. The PLS was loaded with a CONEX shipping container, and the underpass caught the upper corner of it, too. The container was driven backwards THROUGH the cab of the PLS behind it, and the chain reaction continued for about 6 containers and several other trucks behind.

The various containers were all torn open to some extent, some literally peeled open like aluminum pop cans. In the photos I saw, the vehicles and containers looked like they'd been headed for the shredder at a salvage yard. The unit's gear was spread along nearly 5 miles of track in a not-unpopulated area, since it took a fairly long time to stop the train once the conductor realized there was a problem.

It took nearly a month to account for the gear, and some of it was never found. The unit had done a good job of their packing lists for the containers, so the Commander got all his missing gear back...lucky goat. A good deal of personal stuff never was replaced, though.

Even when you do everything right...!

C

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bsmart
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:10 am
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

'It took nearly a month to account for the gear, and some of it was never found. The unit had done a good job of their packing lists for the containers, so the Commander got all his missing gear back...lucky goat. A good deal of personal stuff never was replaced, though.'

Not to question the honesty of the unit but did anyone figure how much space would be taken up by all the equipment that was missing from the containers?

I remember one time when several mobility containers werelost on a 1st TFW TDY that went to several African and West Asia back in the late 70s/early 80s. Once the containers were lost we started compiling the 'official ' packing lists (The Mobility boxes were lost on the return trip after making several stops and having the deployed unit split and reformed several times so the nice neat ones we made when we sent it had been messed up scribbled on or lost so we were allowed to 'reconstruct' them)

Well Lets just say we made up a lot of shortages and missing equipment Smile


The Mobility box was a big roll around box about 6' high 30" deep and almost 6' long. They were originally sized to fit in a B-29 bomb bay since that was the early Air Force mobility platform. Well we figured from the amount of equipment we had accepted on the 'lost' list that the reasonthey were lost was the C-141 had to jettison it because it couldn't climb over the mountains! each container was holding about 3 tons and 300 Cubic feet!

Sometimes an account custodian loves an accident as long as no one is hurt Smile

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C_Sherman
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:30 am
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

- bsmart
'
Not to question the honesty of the unit but did anyone figure how much space would be taken up by all the equipment that was missing from the containers?


Why, I have no idea what you could mean by that! Wink Cool

C

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timroberts
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 7:15 pm
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

Hi Geoff
These things hold Russian/Warsaw Pact Tanks down on flatcars
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oldtop
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 12:37 am
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

I guess they were one up on us huh, they sure would have saved me a lot of work and splitters.
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GerryChester
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2006 3:51 am
Post subject: Re: What holds freight down on Railway flatcars?

Hi.

While many things change, the loading of tanks on to flat-cars seems to be the same as it was during WW II.

Here's a photo, taken in 1942, of Churchills (the early version) of my regiment, the North Irish Horse, being loaded:
www.nih.ww2site.com/ni...a/gwr.html

Cheers, Gerry
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