New Narrow Gauge Hopper Cars

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New Narrow Gauge Hopper Cars

  • I just watched a CSX train go through Somerset on the S&C Branch. The train was hauling roughly 20-25 new narrow gauge hopper cars from Johnstown America (or whatever it's new name is). Does anyone have any idea who the cars are for? Also, all the cars had a standard couplers but on one end the coupler was red, why is that?

    Brian
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  • ...Boy, Brian that is encouraging....To hear they still are transporting the new builds up the S&C to Rockwood to continue their journey to whatever....It would still be a surprise to see a train of such on the branch.

    Quentin

  • Quentin -

    It was a surprise to see such a train. Personally, I've never seen any narrow gauge trains before and to see those cars being hauled up the S&C was certainly a thrill! I'm still curious to know who/where they were being shipped to. I didn't think new narrow gauge equipment was being made anymore.

    Brian
  • Central America, South America, Australia, New Zealand, and Switzerland all have substantial narrow-guage rail systems. I'm certain that the marketing and P.R. people at Johnstown America would just love to brag about satisfying the needs of a new client.........All it takes is a phone call!

    Sincerely, Ross R. Moore, Jr.
  • ...Brian: How were they being transported....Did they simply have the standard gauge trucks under them or were they on low flat cars. I remember seeing the coal cars at the narrow gauge EAST BROAD TOP RR years ago and they seemed to be about the same width as the standard gauge....How did you ID them as narrow gauge...? On second thought, the cars I saw in Orbisonia, Pa. were used both on the Pennsylvania and the EBT but they simply changed the trucks when they moved from one line to the other....A cumbersome job in my opinion.

    Quentin

  • Quentin -

    The cars were transported on CSX bulkhead flat cars. The reason I'm calling them narrow gauge is because they looked like N scale cars riding on HO scale cars. Maybe not quite that drastic but they were physically smaller than the counterparts they were being transported on and definately more narrow.

    At first sight I thought they were roll off dumpsters used by garbage trucks until I got close and could see what they actually were. Was definately something to see.
  • QUOTE: Originally posted by rossrobertmoorejr

    Central America, South America, Australia, New Zealand, and Switzerland all have substantial narrow-guage rail systems. I'm certain that the marketing and P.R. people at Johnstown America would just love to brag about satisfying the needs of a new client.........All it takes is a phone call!

    Sincerely, Ross R. Moore, Jr.


    Ah! Never thought about railroads outside the US. Perhaps that's where their destination is.

    Thanks for the reply.
  • ...10-4 Brian...Understand. Just think of those EBT cars I mentioned. Std. width cars with 3 ft. gauge trucks under them....Now that is a bit scary. One wonders how they managed to keep them upright. [:0]

    Quentin

  • Brazil..
    I have a buddy down there who sends me photos of their railroads all the time..

    Quite a lot of the tracks there are dual guage, standard and 1 meter...

    They buy a bunch of older GE and EMD locomotives to...pretty odd to see a big ole Dash 9 sitting on four two axel narrow gauge trucks...

    We just sent some CP SD40s and a bunch of Rio Grande SD40-T2s to them...

    Want photos, contact me at

    renaissance-man@sbcglobal.net

    Ed

  • I would say no to Brazil ,Switzerland ,New Zealand ,etc. These are all highly industrialized countries that certainly would not have to pay the freight on what is basically an empty box. Any of them could easily build their own. Think mining. Narrow gage is VERY common in underground mines.

    First they came for the communists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.

    Then they came for the socialists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a socialist.

    Then they came for the trade unionists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

    Then they came for me,
    and there was no one left to speak for me.

  • Actually, yes, Brazil...

    As industrialized as they are, they dont have a car maker, or a locomotive builder able to meet their needs.

    They have purchased, last year alone, over 100 locomotives..

    I can send you a roster, if you like.

    Almost all are older GEs, and a good mix of EMD SDs...

    Looked at the roster, 453 locomotives purchased from the US and Canada.

    Quite a lot of the trackage there is narrow gauge, in a lot of places, it is dual guage.

    Their original rail network, which was narrow gauge, is still intact.

    They added the third rail to fit standard gauge so they could interchange with their neighboring countries without having to switch trucks or transload the car......they even have a neat little idler car called a mamba, with dual guage trucks and off center couplers, so they can run both gauges at the same time in consist.

    Ed

  • Brazil, no. There is a world of difference in building a hopper car and a locomotive. In addition the used loco is much cheaper than new. Whereas a hopper 's freight to Brazil would probably exceed the cost of materials and remember that labor there is a fraction of ours. Brazil has a large and thriving steel industry. I could believe that some components, such as couplers ,brake valves,and trucks might be imported but the whole car would not make sense. All thats needed to build the hopper carbody is a shear, press brake and welding equipment. It doesn't make sense that a country that can export airliners trucks and firearms to the U.S. would have to import something as simple as an empty steel box.

    First they came for the communists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.

    Then they came for the socialists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a socialist.

    Then they came for the trade unionists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

    Then they came for me,
    and there was no one left to speak for me.

  • That a good idea country like Brazil is buying are older locomotives from the US railroads for there use down in Brazil, and buying new hoppers car from the U.S. Firms too. Do you make them Locomotives New again before they are export to Brazil from Houston TX?
  • No, we dont rebuild them here in Houston.
    Most of them come rebuilt from NREX., HLCX, LRCX and ATGX.....

    Last month we sent them quite a few old coil cars...they were welded together with straps, stood on the sides, and tied down on a few 89 foot flats...the trucks were in a pair of old E,J&E mill gons...


    But then again, your asking the wrong guy...

    You might want to talk to tdmidget...the "real railroader" here, he should know...

    After all, I just take this stuff out to the docks and watch them load it into ships...

    Ed

  • I ran into a guy from our train club today. I told him about the narrow gauge cars and he thought that perhaps they were going to narrow gauge line in Colorado. He mentioned that there were a few shipments like this last summer and that's where their destination was. Again, no certainty just speculation.

    The ironic thing is that I went to Rockwood (PA) today to see if by chance they were sitting there. The flat cars they were transported on were there but the cars were gone. No signs in the snow of any equipment being moved in to unload them. I'm guessing that they went somewhere else to be unloaded and the flat cars were then brought back to Rockwood. Can't understand why CSX wouldn't just ship them on the cars that were loaded, if indeed they were unloaded and reloaded onto other RR cars.

    Brian