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MEC woodchip...





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#1 sunshine coast

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Posted 30 September 2010 - 13:44

Just came across this photo...MEC woodchip...dated 1970 ...easy conversion of 40' box car,looks like they just cut the roof off and added some timber extension boards ...one to add to my "one day" list... :rolleyes:

There are a lot of "new" photos added to the Nerail photo site this year ..worth a bit of time exploring for those interested in the North Eastern Railroads..

Regards Trevor ... :D
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#2 highpeak

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 14:25

MEC was quite resourceful in modifying cars for specific traffic needs. They had quite a few traffic flows that stayed on their home rails, so they could be quite flexible in negotiating rates with shippers since there was no division with other roads to worry about. To make it profitable, Waterville shops would turn out cars modified for the traffic. Wood chips were a significant source of revenue. They had quite a few boxcars with the roof removed and those extension pieces fitted, some would have the doors sealed up as well. A number of three and four bay hoppers also got modified with rather crude wooden plank extensions that added around 6 feet to the height. The extensions look to have been made from 6x2s with metal strapping. The grab irons at the side and end continue up the extension.
There were also some hoppers with steel extensions that oddly enough didn't last as well as the wooden ones.
The ultimate in custom jobs were perhaps the four two-bay offset-side hoppers that became covered hoppers for dedicated service carrying clothespin blanks from a sawmill in Mattawamkeag to a finishing plant in Wilton. The first pair converted had the height raised by 22 inches with six hatches on top, the second pair received 45 inch extensions. The cars ran into the early 80s.
George Melvin had an interesting piece on these conversions in the September 1989 issue of Model Railroading.
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#3 highpeak

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 15:14

I finally found the picture I was looking for, one of the PTM woodchip hoppers being scrapped at Rigby in the early 80s.
PTM_woodchipHopper.jpg
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#4 highpeak

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 15:27

The practice of chopping the roof off cars for further use wasn't new either, as these pictures from the 30s show (photographs by Robert C Baker Sr, my collection)

MEC_pulpwoodBoxcar.jpg
MEC6789_pulpwoodCar.jpg
MEC_old_pulpwoodCar.jpg
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#5 highpeak

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 23:53

These are desperately poor photos taken on a gloomy winter afternoon in conditions that made it difficult to get a good photo, but they illustrate a different conversion done to get a woodchip car.
MEC57110.jpg
MEC57110_door.jpg
The cars used for the conversion were received in 1939 from Magor, 50' cars with two doors built to the 1932 AAR design and originally intended for automobile loading. As built they looked like this (photo: September 14, 1939 in Wilton, ME by Robert C. Baker Sr, my collection)
MEC9023_new.jpg
In 1967 eighteen of them had the roof removed and a 34 inch metal extension fitted. The sliding doors were removed and plywood hinged doors added. The original number series was 57000 to 57017 but at some point between 1967 and 1976 they were renumbered to 57100 et seq.
One of the batch underwent a simpler conversion in 1967, retaining the two sliding doors and simply having the roof removed. This was used for peeled pulpwood loading.
The cars also needed cross members to retain some sort of structural integrity. The 6900 looks to have had four equally spaced angle-iron cross braces and a vertical brace in the middle of the door opening.
The 40' car in the linked photo was originally part of a batch of cars (4248 to 4499) delivered in 1939, also built by Magor to the 1932 AAR design. Between 1961 and 1964 33 of them were modified as shown with a one foot extension.

(Information source: Northern New England Color Guide to Freight and Passenger Equipment, Sweetland and Horsley, Morning Sun Books ISBN 1-878887-36-4)
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#6 sunshine coast

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 08:15

Highpeak,

Thank you once again for some excellent photos and information on the MEC stock ,I am trying to squirrel this info away to give me projects for years ahead ...much appreciated

Regards Trevor... :D







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