"Duh!" questions #1 and 2

Bookbear1 Mar 24, 2005

  1. Bookbear1

    Bookbear1 TrainBoard Supporter

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    I just KNOW there is a really obvious answer to these, but........

    #1 What are the tubes (wires?) that are supported off the roof of a number of Budd smoothside and corrogated observation, dining, and Dome-Lounge cars? Usually in a straight line down the center of the roof, sometimes in a U shaped line. Is it a radiator of some sort? I doubt a/c ducting, but maybe antenna of some sort?

    #2 What kinds of loads would a gondola car have carried in the '50's? Would it be ok to have crates and stacks of plywood (tied down or braced, of course) on a gon? How about a load of metal scrap?

    Inquiring minds want to know.... [​IMG]
     
  2. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Should be an induction type radio system.

    :D

    Boxcab E50
     
  3. Tony Burzio

    Tony Burzio TrainBoard Supporter

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    Granville T. Woods: Inductive telegraph called the Synchronous Multiplex Railway Telegraph which allowed telegraph communication to and from moving trains (very useful when two trains are heading toward each other on the same track), for which he successfully fought off two patent challenges from Edison. Connected to the telegraph wires via inducing a current. Massive noise on radio frequencies (think lightning!)

    Gondolas in that era before the specialization of car types would carry anything that did not need cover. This included scrap, coal, limestone, uranium ( :eek: ), wood, you name it!

    Tony Burzio
    San Diego, CA
     
  4. Len

    Len TrainBoard Member

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    Gons were definitely scrap carriers. I used to see scrap metal loads when I was a kid. as well as in recent years.

    Len
     
  5. Bookbear1

    Bookbear1 TrainBoard Supporter

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    Re: the synchronous multiplex railroad telegraph... fascinating! Nice to know the little guy was able to beat the behemoth Edison became and retain rights to his invention. A couple more questions then: Why is this only found on observation, dining, and Dome-Loounge cars, never on Dome-Chair , chair, or sleeper cars? And if it generates a magnetic field, wouldn't this have played hob with any on-board music/radio/pa systems?

    [ March 24, 2005, 04:56 PM: Message edited by: Bookbear1 ]
     
  6. John Moore

    John Moore TrainBoard Supporter

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    Why is this only found on observation, dining, and Dome-Loounge cars, never on Dome-Chair , chair, or sleeper cars? And if it generates a magnetic field, wouldn't this have played hob with any on-board music/radio/pa systems?

    Because those were the cars that generally had some sort of desk space set up, generally in a forward corner of the obs car, where you had a typewriter, railroad stationary, and envelopes for use of the rider, etc. This allowed the traveling businessman the ability to send messages and do work along the way. Any radio system on the train would have been insulated as is your car radio from the effects of your coil and spark plugs.
     
  7. Bookbear1

    Bookbear1 TrainBoard Supporter

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    Thanks! [​IMG]
    Like I said, I *knew* there was an obvious answer! This is such a cool resource...
     

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