early intermodal

Tom Crofton Jun 20, 2019

  1. Tom Crofton

    Tom Crofton TrainBoard Member

    55
    28
    3
    I am fine tuning my planning for my layout
    In a 50's to mid 60's ERA I plan to use early piggyback concepts in a small TOFC yard.

    In researching what types of cars and trailers were used and how they changed I decided to create a yard that ships delicate material from a local factory on my short line to connect to several major RR that have different types of TOFC or early COFC operations. I will build the yard to handle
    chained trailers, circus loaded
    hitch mounted trailers, circus loaded
    flexi van
    clejan, circus loaded
    (basically a track for 2 or 3 of each type)

    the narrative is that reduced handling in specially cushioned trailers offers a way to get material door to door, and the yard has been built to serve those different main lines

    are there more possibilities? I'm limiting my choices to before 1965.

    I'm planning on through trains coming from staging to the big yard and getting split up with local cars added to go to different destinations back in staging, with a small number of each type of TOFC coming and going to local businesses. I will also have some local to local movement, sand and aggregate to redi mix; logs to sawmill, wood chips to power plant: bio diesel to fueling area etc.
     
  2. Kitbash

    Kitbash TrainBoard Supporter

    1,478
    413
    34
    Most of the large Eastern RR's had late 50's into mid 60's TOFC service. A service yard modeled on the east coast could probably justify quite a few roads. Although, western railroads certainly had their share. Seems logical, but I don't know. I do model the C&O and don't model the TOFC traffic because I stop around '55, '56. However, I've read quite a bit about the C&O's service through the C&O Historical Society. As a matter fact, that would be a great place to start research. Most flag-ship RR's of that era have good to excellent historical societies with quite a bit of photo's and articles on various operations. The C&O's society is actually thorough and excellent.

    Another traffic model that came along at the same time as TOFC was the "Less Than Car Load" services. The C&O actually started this a year before TOFC. I am modeling a LCL depot, although it is "slightly" past the transistion era that I model. There were quite a bit of innovations that occurred in the late 50's due to competition heating up with trucking and interstate highways. Researching a few historical societies of whatever road(s) interests you will probably give a lot of information.

    There's quite a bit of information out there. Good luck, sounds like a good project.

    Also...Pick up a copy of "Piggybacks and Containers, a History of Rail Intermodal on America's Steel Highway" by David J. Deboer. I believe it is available on Amazon.
     
  3. Tom Crofton

    Tom Crofton TrainBoard Member

    55
    28
    3
    Thanks Kitbash
    I was amazed at the ideas attempted, especially the Flexivan and Clejan systems. I have found a few pictures of the details on each. They should be relatively easy to model. I'm going to use Tichy flatcars for the earliest chained down trailers and progress to the first (75'?) flats with hitches.
    The special tractor used on Flexivan containers should be easy enough to create
    For LCL are we talking about 28' trailers or boxcars unloaded into a terminal?

    I will get the book too
     
  4. Kitbash

    Kitbash TrainBoard Supporter

    1,478
    413
    34
    LCL (Less than Car Load) service was a practice some RR's instituted to compete w/ the growing trucking industry in the 50's (in addition to TOFC). LCL involved specially painted box car fleets and the deal was to fill (or just partially fill) box cars, allowing shippers to ship smaller loads. The RR's would combine several small loads into box cars and quick ship them to strategic destinations where the loads could then be short hauled by truck to their destination.

    I have a spot on my layout reserved for an LCL depot where I can gather LCL box cars at the staging yard and then move to the depot. I can also group LCL cars into various freight trains, send to interchange tracks, etc. (Not unlike moving regular freight around really).

    The C&O had them, the B&O had their "Time Saver Service" cars, the NYC had the red "Pacemaker" cars, Southern Pacific had the "Overnights" thing, MoPac had "Merchandise Service" cars, etc. All mid 50's to early 60's stuff.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019

Share This Page