Hopper Reporting Information

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by Fluesheet, Jun 28, 2006.

  1. Fluesheet

    Fluesheet Member

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    I recently purchased serveral Accurail 55ton hoppers with 1931 build dates. After I got them home, I realized they had a rebuild date well beyond the era I want to model (mid-twenties - mid-thirties). I know very little about the information on the side of a freight car (other than the obvious weights and build dates) - what do I need to mask / modify on this car to make it look like it was just built? Simply paint over the rebuild date? Photo attached below.

    And I used to buy cars just because they looked "right"... :D

    Attached Files:

  2. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

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    getting rid of the rebuild date is what i would do :)
  3. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

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    I never even thought of the build date oin the cars. I also just bought them cause of there looks.
  4. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    Just taking odd the RB date will probably satisfy most people.
    You may be able to find out what N&W did when they rebuilt them. They may have made major changes to the bodywork, or just welded in new patches. The class may have changed.
    You may want to just run them as they are (with the one deletion), but know what went on.
    Or quote Col. Bloodnock: "I don't want to know that!"
  5. zedob

    zedob Member

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    Weather the heck out of them and cover the rebuld date in the process.

    You could take a heat gun and warm the plastic up to a pliable state and bulge out the areas between the side ribbing. The older you want them, the more the bulge:thumb:
  6. Fluesheet

    Fluesheet Member

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    :D

    Thanks to everyone for the feedback!
  7. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

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    I think the idea here is to make the cars look new.
  8. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    If I'm not mistaken, the date that you're referring to is not a rebuilt date, but rather a reweigh date. Freight cars had to be reweighed at regular intervals (I'm not sure what the intervals were, but they did change over the years). Either remove the reweigh date and station (the two letters), or change the reweigh date to something more in line with your timeframe.

    Wayne
  9. zedob

    zedob Member

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    Ah yes, you are right.
  10. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

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    I have some photos of a H4 hopper before and after a rebuild and where the RO date is on the two bay above , before the rebuild it has NEW 1 44 after the rebuild it has RO 8 51 . also have a photo of a H2 class three bay and it has LP 6 53 in that spot. just for your info.:)
  11. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Jim, I think that "New" refers to the car weight: when the car was new, its weight was as shown. When "New" appears on the car, the date that follows will be the same as the "Built" date. Once the car comes in for reweighing, "New" will be painted over and re-stencilled with a station symbol (to indicate where the reweighing was done) followed by the date when this occurred. When a car is rebuilt, either the "Built" date is painted over and the date of the rebuilding restencilled in its place, or the whole "Built", followed by the date is painted over and replaced with "Rebuilt", followed by a new date.
    On the car shown in this thread, simply remove the "RO 7-44" and replace it with "New 1-31" in order to make this represent a new or fairly new car in your chosen era.
    I'm certainly no expert on the N&W, but the RO most likely refers to Roanoke, Virginia, and has nothing to do with rebuilding.

    Wayne
  12. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

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    Wayne I.m not either just ran into the photos while looking for somthing else but I'm shure your right about the RO standing for the Roanoke shop because thats where the H4 were rebuilt on interisting point i found that the H4's were composite cars when rebuilt to steel the light weight was 2000 lbs lighter.:)
  13. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    I'm not familiar with the myriad classes of N&W hoppers, but if the above mentioned H4 was new in 1944, and was a composite car, it was most likely a "War Emergency" car. After the war, many of these cars were rebuilt with steel sides.
    The car shown in the first post in this thread is an H26, which were, I believe, originally Virginian cars. It appears to be a standard USRA 50/55 ton all-steel design, and thousands were built long after dissolution of the USRA. While many of these cars may have been rebuilt during their lifetimes, they would have been restencilled to show a revised "Built date", to reflect the actual date of rebuilding, or a "Rebuilt date" would've been stencilled onto the car in addition to the original "Built date". The former would have been the more common practice.
    The placement of the dates near the dimensional data indicates a connection to that data, whereas the "Built date" is located towards the other end of the car.
    Cars could be extensively reworked without actually being considered "rebuilt", and there are cases where only the original frame or trucks from a car were reused in its rebuilt form.
    The example that you cite about the rebuilt all-steel car being 2000lbs lighter than the composite car certainly demonstrates why these cars were rebuilt as soon as steel became more readily available, as a 2000lb reduction in tare translates into a 2000lb increase in revenue-producing payload. N&W was rostering all-steel 90 ton capacity coal gondolas as early as the mid-teens, and the Virginian was running 120 ton hoppers not much later.
    Fluesheet, Champ makes reweigh data useable for all areas of North America, and in various eras. Many different reweigh station symbols are included, but you can also cobble together the correct info from just about any dimensional data decal set.

    Wayne
  14. Fluesheet

    Fluesheet Member

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    I had assumed the RO was "Repair Order" or something similar - Wayne, your explanation regarding re-weights sounds very plausible (in spite of your "no expert" claim :) ). In any case, the idea is to remove any anachronistic information from this car, and this information will help me do this more accurately.

    Thanks again to everyone for the feedback - I hadn't checked this thread in a few days as it seemed to have died. The "second wind" it got has been very educational!
  15. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    It occurred to me after I posted that last comment that if you really wanted to make this car more prototypical for your era, you'd have to re-letter it for the Virginian. :rolleyes:
    The information that I cited about this car was taken off the N&W Historical Society's website, and if I interpreted it correctly, the H26 hoppers were ex-Virginian cars and wouldn't have been lettered for N&W in the 1930s. Since most non-N&W modellers would not likely be aware of this (I wasn't), if I were you I'd simply remove the reweigh station symbol and date and replace them with "NEW 1-31".
    If you're more particular than that, you could do some more research and find out if the N&W had any of these USRA 50/55 ton hoppers (they probably did, but again, I don't know). Simply find out what class they were, then reletter the "H26" to suit.
    I guess that you could file this under "A little learning is a dangerous thing....", but I hope all this doesn't make you sorry that you asked. :D :D
    I've got quite a few cars lettered for my own roads that have built or reweigh dates that are too modern for the era that I'm now modelling, and these cars were all lettered by yours truly. A while back, I redid some of them, but I quickly discovered that there is a dearth of "3"s in most decal and dry transfer sets, probably because for a good part of the '30s, there was not much new freight car construction. Cutting up "8"s to make "3"s gets tedious pretty quickly, especially when they're dimensional data size. The Champ reweigh/repack data sheets should alleviate this problem when I get some time to tackle some more cars.

    Wayne
  16. Fluesheet

    Fluesheet Member

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    That's a fact - one reason I don't subscribe to more magazines than I currently do. It makes me start asking too many questions, which leads to greater expense!

    No, not sorry - thanks for the info Wayne.

    Matt
  17. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

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    I thought the six-axle "battleships" that came in 1917 were 105-ton.
  18. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    With a handle like Triplex, you may be right.:) I got that information from the N&W site also, while I was trying to find out more about the H26 hoppers.

    Wayne