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How would they unload this gondola?

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  • How would they unload this gondola?



    It's a general service drop-bottom gondola with extension sides used for wood chips. I have about a dozen of these cars and was going to incorporate a means of dumping them

    I did a web-search for paper mills and found that rotary dumpers were used a lot for wood chips. Then it dawned on me, these are drop-bottom cars. Why would a road go to the expense of buying drop-bottom cars and then build a rotary dumper?

    So how would a road dump wood chips out of these type cars. Would the cars go up a ramp and open the bottom doors and fill a pit with wood chips or would they rotary dump them anyway
    John

  • #2
    unless im wrong, the cars built FOR woodchips dont have bottom unloading doors, and there for have to be tiped, but i think these trypes are modified to hold wood chips but still unloaded the same way as others

    but hold me to it

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    • #3
      Gondolas with high sides and boxcars with roofs removed are or were used locally to haul wood chips. They were usually emptied with large vacuum hoses from above. Could be happening with this type too I suppose.

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      • #4
        John, While living in Washington State, I found those same cars used as sugar beet cars. I got mine from Red Caboose. Their website gives a "HISTORY" 0f the cars; Railroading, like other industries, has continually changed as processes, needs and ideas have evolved. Drop bottom gondolas evolved as well. In the early years, dirt, gravel and other commodities were shoveled onto and off of flat cars. It was realized early that much of the shoveled on load was lost as the car was moved and the carried load shifted and slid off. Solution, adding sides which brought the first gondola. It was also learned that if the sides were removed, the load could be unloaded easier. This idea evolved into cars with side doors. At about the same time, it was also realized that if doors were added to the bottom of the car the load could be unloaded or "dropped" even faster. Seeing you have an SPS car I would guess that it was for their sugar beets. But they also was big into the lumber and wood so a wood chip car is also a possibility.




        Louis L&R Western Railroad
        Pacific Northwest Logging in the East Coast

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        • #5
          Louis,

          Very interesting, these cars, while used for wood chips could easily haul sugar beets, I looked at Southern Pacific's sugar beet cars on the internet and they look exactly like the wood chip cars. I think some wood chip cars have higher side boards because of the weight (Or lack of it).

          So then, did you see how they emptied sugar beet cars while you were in Washington
          John

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          • #6
            quote:


            Originally posted by jaynjay


            Louis,

            Very interesting, these cars, while used for wood chips could easily haul sugar beets, I looked at Southern Pacific's sugar beet cars on the internet and they look exactly like the wood chip cars. I think some wood chip cars have higher side boards because of the weight (Or lack of it).

            So then, did you see how they emptied sugar beet cars while you were in Washington


            From the mid 60's to the early 90's Southern Pacific lead the way always coming out with higher sides and longer gondolas for sugar beets. Their cars load limits were up to 70-tons and even heavier loads were permitted on SP Lines.

            Where I was in Othello Washington, the cars bottom dropped the loads in to a pit/beet hopper were a conveyor took the beets through a washer for cleaning and into an area where they were cut and sliced, then into huge vats of boiling water.


            Louis L&R Western Railroad
            Pacific Northwest Logging in the East Coast

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            • #7
              The SP pretty much used composite side (wood with metal framing) gons and wood extensions for sugar beet service. Steel sided gons caused heat damage to the beets in transit. At the end of the SP sugar beet era, they went to more modern designed cars, and I have no idea what kind of sides they had. All the SP beet gons were bottom dump.

              These particular cars may or may not match up with a specific prototype car. Chips could go out the bottom or sucked out the top. Beets and most heavy commodities would go out the bottom. As an aside I would guess that sucking chips out the top might be as efficient as out the bottom.
              Don\'t push me bureaucrat, I\'ve got a bit of hangover

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