Autos To Auto-Max or Not

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  • Member since
    June, 2003
  • From: South Central,Ks
  • 6,075 posts
Autos To Auto-Max or Not
Posted by samfp1943 on Wednesday, September 13, 2017 8:44 PM

Lately, I have been noticing some solid auto rack moves through here; they seem to be the firstones, about daylight, so they get attention while on the first cup of the day.

The prime type through here seems to be the standard, tri-level car. The rack portion owned by a railroad company, and the bottom level owned by Trailer Train Corp (TTX, et al.). 

photo linked @

The there are a scattering of the Auto-Max Types ( enclosed, multi-level, carriers;articulated in two cars seperated by a center truck(?) Rarely, do they seem to come through here in larger numbers. Mostly, as a single unit, or occasnally, a number of units.  They are KCS, BNSF mostly, and a few are AOKX, but no  railroad ownership is announced.

see photo linked@ 

My question is: I am seeing a number of obviously 'new' tri-level style auto racks,and most of the Auto-Max cars, observed around here, seem to be victims of 'taggers' and generally show a pretty 'scruffy' exterior condition. The KCS Auto-Max cars seem to enjoy untouched exteriors. 

Are the Auto-Max cars owned, partly- owned,or partly-leased like the tri-levels? Which is the better system for the railroads?  Just curious.






  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: NW Wisconsin
  • 3,640 posts
Posted by beaulieu on Thursday, September 14, 2017 11:42 PM

The Automax cars are in dedicated service for Honda Motors and are equipped with non-standard tie downs. Also the rack is not a separate piece from the flatcar, so the reporting marks are for the car owner. There are also a small number of SOO cars in the pool(5 or 10). 

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