Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

Friction Bearings Banned

6023 views
29 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    June 2001
  • From: Anderson Indiana
  • 1,181 posts
Friction Bearings Banned
Posted by rogerhensley on Thursday, September 21, 2017 5:38 AM

Friction Bearings Banned

Q) When were friction bearing (solid journal) trucks banned from interchange service?

A) Friction bearing trucks were banned from interchange service on 1/1/91 for cars carrying hazardous materials. All other non-hazardous carrying cars equipped with friction bearings were banned from interchange on 1/1/94. Cars with converted friction to roller bearing side-frames were banned from interchange on 1/1/95.

There were some instances of exemptions granted for shippers in "hardship circumstances" who could not comply with these dates. So, some cars did linger a little longer in interchange after the actual deadline dates.

Q) I understand the logic behind eliminating solid journal (friction) bearings from interchange service, but what was the reason for outlawing trucks with conversion roller bearings?

A) Hot bearing detectors couldn't "see" them when they overheated.

From information supplied by Ed Kaminski, ACF Industries

Roger Hensley
= ECI Railroad - http://madisonrails.railfan.net/eci/eci_new.html =
= Railroads of Madison County - http://madisonrails.railfan.net/

  • Member since
    September 2003
  • From: California - moved to North Carolina 2018
  • 4,241 posts
Posted by DSchmitt on Thursday, September 21, 2017 6:20 AM

http://mrr.trains.com/~/media/import/files/pdf/4/c/c/mr_pi_5-06_freightcartrucks.ashx

"Roller-bearing trucks have been around since the turn of the 20th century - began to see common use in the 1930s on passenger cars. - weren’t widely used on freight equipment until the late 1950s and 1960s. - New cars built after 1966 were required to have rollerbearing trucks - solid-bearing trucks were banned from interchange service after 1980."    Found a thread on another Forum  that says in a later reprint "1980" changed to "1990"

 --------------

I think this is the answer

http://modelingthesp.com/Operations/ARA-AAR_Rules_by_Year.html

ARA-AAR Interchange Rules by Year

Just for informational purposes, this comes off another list. It might shed some light on practices as they apply to modeling. 

  1. Ken Harrison

1972   "Roller bearings required for all cars w/6-1/2x11 journals" 

1974    "Cars w/axle load >55,000 lbs must have roller bearings

1991    "Plain-brg trucks banned from interchange"

 

 

 

I tried to sell my two cents worth, but no one would give me a plug nickel for it.

I don't have a leg to stand on.

  • Member since
    August 2010
  • From: Henrico, VA
  • 8,955 posts
Posted by Firelock76 on Saturday, September 23, 2017 8:56 PM

Several years ago "Trains" ran an atricle about a short-line railroad in Florida that was still using hopper cars with friction bearings.  This was an agricultural/industrial 'road that did not interchange with any other railroad at all.  The hopper contents went straight from the loading area to the processing area several miles, don't remember how many, and no further.

Sorry, but I don't remember the name of the railroad.

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Saturday, September 23, 2017 10:45 PM

If a railroad doesn't interchange a car, it can run it any way it wants.  That includes truss rods, wood  beam trucks, no air brakes at all.  It's when it is interchanged that rules start applying.  

 

Ed

  • Member since
    January 2017
  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
  • 5,726 posts
Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, September 24, 2017 12:53 PM

United States Sugar in Florida still has some equipment with older "friction" trucks. It all operates on private rail. The primary load is bringing sugar cane in from the field to the mills. This might be what you are talking about.

.

-Kevin

.

Wink Happily modeling my STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD. A Class A line located in a personal fantasy world of semi-plausible nonsense on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954.

  • Member since
    February 2002
  • From: Reading, PA
  • 26,693 posts
Posted by rrinker on Sunday, September 24, 2017 1:45 PM

7j43k

If a railroad doesn't interchange a car, it can run it any way it wants.  That includes truss rods, wood  beam trucks, no air brakes at all.  It's when it is interchanged that rules start applying.  

 

Ed

 

 Interesting tidbit I just picked up - truss rods themnselves were never specifically outlawed. It was wood frame cars that were outlawed, and since steel cars don't need truss rods, they sort of disappeared on their own. This is in Tony Koester's new book, Modeling the Transition Era.

                            --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

  • Member since
    August 2010
  • From: Henrico, VA
  • 8,955 posts
Posted by Firelock76 on Sunday, September 24, 2017 4:00 PM

SeeYou190

United States Sugar in Florida still has some equipment with older "friction" trucks. It all operates on private rail. The primary load is bringing sugar cane in from the field to the mills. This might be what you are talking about.

.

-Kevin

.

 

Thanks!  I believe that's exactly who it was.

  • Member since
    January 2004
  • From: Canada, eh?
  • 9,768 posts
Posted by doctorwayne on Sunday, September 24, 2017 4:36 PM

rrinker
....Interesting tidbit I just picked up - truss rods themnselves were never specifically outlawed. It was wood frame cars that were outlawed, and since steel cars don't need truss rods, they sort of disappeared on their own....

Between 1922 and 1926, the Southern Railway took delivery of almost 15,000 SU class boxcars.  These had truss rods and steel underframes....

Wood-framed cars, including those with steel-girthed centre sills, were banned from interchange on January 1st, 1940.  Truss rods were still allowed on composite underframes.

On January 1st, 1952, cars with composite underframes were banned from interchange.

The definition of "composite underframe" is unclear to me - since the wood-framed cars were covered in the 1940 ban, does composite refer to steel-framed cars with truss rods?  I can't see why it should, as it's unlikely that the steel frame would be negatively affected by the truss rods.  The lack of clarity does seem to suggest, though, that truss rods may have been banned from interchange by that latter edict.
The Southern's SUs began to be scrapped after WWII, but some of them went to the Atlantic & Danville and the Lancaster and Chester.  There are photos of the latter two in Ted Culotta's Steam Era Freight Cars Reference Manual - Vol. 1, both taken in 1952, which makes me wonder if the ban prompted photographers to "get 'em while ya can".
The Monon had 500 similar cars, built in 1923, and the Mobile & Ohio (under Southern control at the time) had at least 1400 40' versions of the same car, 500 of which were originally automobile boxcars.

Wayne

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, September 24, 2017 5:09 PM

Wood underframes have a structure primarily made of wood.

Composite underframes have a structure that is made of both wood and steel.

Unless someone can turn up some sort of official declaration (ICC, and all that), it's still pretty open about truss rods, and any declaration against by officialdom.

I would propose that truss rods may have become "inappropriate" for car design, not forbidden.  In that case, they disappeared because no one wanted to build cars using them.

 

Ed

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Sunday, September 24, 2017 5:13 PM

rogerhensley
Cars with converted friction to roller bearing side-frames were banned from interchange on 1/1/95.

There are some DODX heavy duty flats (12 axle) that retain their converted solid journal bearing trucks to this day.  

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, September 24, 2017 6:31 PM

BMMECNYC
 

There are some DODX heavy duty flats (12 axle) that retain their converted solid journal bearing trucks to this day.  

 

 

But are they in interchange?

 

 

Ed

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Sunday, September 24, 2017 8:58 PM

7j43k

 

 
BMMECNYC
 

There are some DODX heavy duty flats (12 axle) that retain their converted solid journal bearing trucks to this day.  

 

 

 

 

But are they in interchange?

 

 

Ed

 

Edit

Middle axle of each truck retains the converted plain bearing box.  All others have normal roller bearings. DODX 39912(-19).  And yes they are interchange, considering they have been photographed on P&W, NS and CSX.  Im guessing there is some sort of exception for these cars.

 http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1095073

 

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    August 2003
  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
  • 9,014 posts
Posted by gmpullman on Sunday, September 24, 2017 9:18 PM

BMMECNYC
Middle axle of each truck retains the plain bearing box.

Those are actually roller bearing modified journal boxes. These were pretty common in the Sixties. The railroad would remove the journal cover and bore a large hole where the oil well was so water wouldn't collect in there.

Tough to find an example. Scroll down to fourth from last photo here:

http://www.angelfire.com/il/CNW/caboose.html

Rapido made some 70 ton examples in HO but they're hard to find. I hope Jason reruns them soon!

https://rapidotrains.com/ho-scale-freight-car-trucks/#barb3

Regards, Ed

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Sunday, September 24, 2017 9:24 PM

gmpullman

 

 
BMMECNYC
Middle axle of each truck retains the plain bearing box.

 

Those are actually roller bearing modified journal boxes. These were pretty common in the Sixties. The railroad would remove the jouirnal cover and bore a large hole where the oil well was so water wouldn't collect in there.

Regards, Ed

 

Typo on my part.  Changed to converted plain bearing journal box.

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    August 2003
  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
  • 9,014 posts
Posted by gmpullman on Sunday, September 24, 2017 10:06 PM

BMMECNYC
Typo on my part.  Changed to converted plain bearing journal box.

...and a slight misreading on my part Embarrassed

We're on the same page now!

Ed

  • Member since
    October 2008
  • From: Calgary
  • 1,882 posts
Posted by cx500 on Sunday, September 24, 2017 11:14 PM

I suspect most restrictions preventing use in interchange service are actually established by the AAR rather than the government, which is why restricted cars can still be used on the owning railroad.  The ban is not absolute, but before such a car can go off-line the receiving road has to agree to handle it, and that is unlikely to happen except in very special circumstances.

The last plain bearing car I saw in regular operation was an air-dump on CPR, back in 2012.  Others in worktrain use had been converted to roller bearings but somehow this one had escaped.  The next year (2013) a pair of CN 40' boxcars renumbered for OCS service appeared in the local yard, complete with high brake wheel and running boards on the roof (but roller bearings).  Quite a blast from the past!

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, September 24, 2017 11:27 PM

If that DOD flat is riding on trucks converted from plain bearings, just how did they convert the outer axles?  

Or is someone claiming that the trucks originally had plain bearings on the center axle and roller bearings on the outer?

 

Ed

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, September 24, 2017 11:32 PM

I found this publication online:

 

https://www.railinc.com/rportal/alf_docs/MARK/RailroadsGuide.pdf

 

Ed

  • Member since
    August 2003
  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
  • 9,014 posts
Posted by gmpullman on Monday, September 25, 2017 11:07 PM

7j43k
just how did they convert the outer axles?

I'm of the opinion that the shop probably removed the non-integral journal boxes and applied the necessary adapters to accept the roller bearing wheelset. The center axle journal box is cast integral with the carrier so was modified (see procedure below).

Here's a closer view of the trucks under the DODX 39918:

http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/usa/dodx39918adk.jpg

These photo show that on some later-design Buckeye sideframes, the journal box could be removed from the side frames.

http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/usa/dodx36537ajc.jpg

http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/usa/dodx38597jca.jpg

https://www.flickr.com/photos/fan-t/5323750190/in/album-72157624046164043/

I say "some" because I believe the designs of the truck evolved over the years. In 1944 the Buckeye tender trucks under this particular Berkshire were cast with integral journal boxes and clasp brake assemblies.

You can see the original journal box wall section. The protruding part of the box has been milled off.

Below are instructions for making the conversion yourself, should the need ever arise.

 

7j43k
Or is someone claiming that the trucks originally had plain bearings on the center axle and roller bearings on the outer?

If you were refering to me, I never made that claim...

Happy Railroading,

Ed

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 2:19 PM

gmpullman
Here's a closer view of the trucks under the DODX 39918: http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/usa/dodx39918adk.jpg

Closerer view:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=3630062

 

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    August 2003
  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
  • 9,014 posts
Posted by gmpullman on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 2:27 PM

BMMECNYC
Closerer view:

Neat! Cool

Here's a sad look at what's left of Columbus Castings, AKA Buckeye Steel Castings:

http://abandonedonline.net/locations/industry/buckeye-steel-castings/

They had a pretty rocky go of it the past few years. Supposedly, demolition is under way.

Regards, Ed

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 2:56 PM

BMMECNYC

 

 
rogerhensley
Cars with converted friction to roller bearing side-frames were banned from interchange on 1/1/95.

 

There are some DODX heavy duty flats (12 axle) that retain their converted solid journal bearing trucks to this day.  

 

 

DODX 39918, the car in the photo that was supplied as an example, was delivered after 1986.  There is no way that car ever had plain bearings in its trucks.  And therefore, the bearings were never converted to roller bearings.  They were always roller bearings.

 

Ed

  • Member since
    January 2017
  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
  • 5,726 posts
Posted by SeeYou190 on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 4:15 PM

Firelock76
Thanks! I believe that's exactly who it was.

.

And I will bet that will be the only time I know the answer for a question about a prototype railroad!

.

Glad I could help.

.

-Kevin

.

Wink Happily modeling my STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD. A Class A line located in a personal fantasy world of semi-plausible nonsense on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954.

  • Member since
    August 2003
  • From: Collinwood, Ohio, USA
  • 9,014 posts
Posted by gmpullman on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 4:58 PM

Handy CSX interchange refence:

https://www.csx.com/index.cfm/library/files/customers/safety-and-security/tank-cars/aar-rule-90/

Certain truck sideframes and wheels shown as specifically banned.

Ed

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 6:44 PM

7j43k
DODX 39918, the car in the photo that was supplied as an example, was delivered after 1986.

Ed,

Look at this photo.  

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=3630062

In the photo there is a stencil that says PM (then three letters washed out) below it says 7-86 (see upper left hand corner).

Its sister car 39919 has dates going back earlier than that. They are indentical cars, built for identical purpose(s).  I specifically remember looking at the stenciled PM markings and thinking the cars were getting close to the 40 or 50 year mark.

The casting date on the right hand side of the truck frame says 8-87.

Why does the center wheelset (on all trucks of all cars in this series) appear to have a converted plain bearing box?

In the linked photo it appears that the center section is bolted? to the outer two sections.

Next time I get the chance I will note the earliest date painted on the car (and the cast in date on the trucks).  I would speculate that these are not the original truck for the flat car.  

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 7:29 PM

gmpullman

Handy CSX interchange refence:

https://www.csx.com/index.cfm/library/files/customers/safety-and-security/tank-cars/aar-rule-90/

Certain truck sideframes and wheels shown as specifically banned.

Ed

 

Im guessing Rule 90 n (equipped with on board detectors) is how they can use the center casting design. 

B-800 is not on the list (which is what I think I saw in the photo of the truck side frame).

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 7:35 PM

gmpullman

 

 
BMMECNYC
Closerer view:

 

Neat! Cool

Here's a sad look at what's left of Columbus Castings, AKA Buckeye Steel Castings:

http://abandonedonline.net/locations/industry/buckeye-steel-castings/

They had a pretty rocky go of it the past few years. Supposedly, demolition is under way.

Regards, Ed

 

I was just there in June.  Got photos of the roundhouse at the nearby CSX yard and of all the Buckeye trucks that were around the area (two or three sets all painted up on display), and a couple of the buildings (once I realized what I was looking at, it took a moment).

 

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 7:38 PM

BMMECNYC

 

 
7j43k
DODX 39918, the car in the photo that was supplied as an example, was delivered after 1986.

 

Ed,

Look at this photo.  

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=3630062

In the photo some sort of repairs or inspections were done 7-86 (seeupper left hand corner)

Its sister car 39919 has dates going back earlier than that. They are indentical cars, built for identical purpose.  

The casting date on the right hand side of the truck frame says 8-87.

Why does the center wheelset (on all cars in this series) appear to have a plain bearing box?

 

 

 

 

DODX 39918 and 39919 are not in the October 1986 ORER (DODX 39911 through 39917 are.).  The two cars do appear in the October 1990 ORER.  Hence my statement.  I suppose DOD could have held them back after receipt; thus they would have had them, but they would not show in the ORER.  But then the would not have been available for interchange.  Which was kind of where we started.  

Regrding the center "bearing bump":

One possible reason for the bump is that it was on the pattern that was chosen for the truck castings.  Having the bump does not demand having plain bearings, as the photos demonstrate.  Perhaps the choice was expedient.  Anyway, if this were the case, the trucks would have always been roller bearing.

Another possibility is that the trucks were remanufactured from plain bearing trucks.  Other Ed has shown two pictures of plain bearing Buckeye trucks, and it's not hard to imagine changeing out the bearings.  In this case, the "bump" would also stay; while the bumps on the outer axles would disappear.  And one would get a truck similar to the ones on DODX 39918.  Except for one difference.  You will see in Ed's photos that all the bearing boxes have drain holes.  I have examined photos of this batch of cars on rrpicturearchive--no drain holes.  And there's no way they would have plugged them.  So, it's possible (if you ignore the drain hole problem) that these cars ALWAYS had these remanufactured trucks.

So, that's the two ways I can think of for these cars to have received these trucks.

What I do assert is that DODX 33918 NEVER had plain bearings.  Funny looking truck or not.

 

Ed

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • From: various locations
  • 2,165 posts
Posted by BMMECNYC on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 8:16 PM

7j43k
What I do assert is that DODX 33918 NEVER had plain bearings.  Funny looking truck or not.  

I don't think that I actually said that the car had plain bearings, just that the truck appeared to have converted plain bearing castings.

Given that the outer plain bearings were removable from the side frames (and not cast in place), and that the center axle bearing appears to have a cast in place box.  I submit that the original truck casting may have been modified (meaning the drain hole was cast into the bottom of the box of the center of the truck by Buckeye)  (the water that will collect in there has to have a way out) instead of being built as a plain bearing then drilled out.  "The government does always go with the lowest bidder."

Anyway, next time I get the chance I will note build date and PM dates (the car I saw had not been repainted and had stencils showing the military planned maintenance system (stenciled when maintenance completed) going back several many years.

Does a similar car appear under possibly a USNX or USAX reporting mark prior to 1986?  

Edit: nope, change over to DODX should have been completed by 1975.  

http://www.railgoat.railfan.net/other_cars/dodx_cars/dodx/dodx.htm

This website says that 39911 was built in 1953.

I dont think that 39912-917 are that old, and it is possible that I saw 917 or some car from this group.

There is a photo of 39913 in 1983 on RR-fallen flags.

That having been said.  

They all appear to have identical (or nearly so) trucks.  

 

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.

https://www.facebook.com/elkcreekloggingcompany/

https://www.facebook.com/SilvertonLakeCityandNorthern/

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • 6,169 posts
Posted by 7j43k on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 8:54 PM

January 1976 ORER had none of the cars of interest.

April 1980 had 39911-39913.

I think the Railgoat date is an error.

And, yes, there were no USAX or USNX cars showing in 1976.

 

Ed

Subscriber & Member Login

Login, or register today to interact in our online community, comment on articles, receive our newsletter, manage your account online and more!

Search the Community

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
Model Railroader Newsletter See all
Sign up for our FREE e-newsletter and get model railroad news in your inbox!