LIRR Slang Updates

nyandw Dec 16, 2012

  1. nyandw

    nyandw TrainBoard Member


    "The cut"
    "Talcum Powder Express"
    "Run/dash for the Hole"
    "Pouring Seashore"
    "Frog Holler Job"
    "Put on your Gun"
    "Drag her Out"
    "Bat out the Drag"
    "Shoving a Double up the Feeder"
  2. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    There are some quite unique terms listed. I do see others which were and still are used elsewhere.
  3. nyandw

    nyandw TrainBoard Member

    You are correct. Please advise which ones? I would believe that: "hole", "reacher car", etc. are not LIRR unique for example. I wait for the input/corrections/additions. :)
  4. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    I would not refer to these as corrections. Just input.

    I have heard these terms in person, on railroad radio, from railroad industry friends, etc, around the USA. Some must be almost universal and possibly spread around by boomers, past and present:

    Cut off and run around
    Dump the train (Dump the air, big hole it, etc)
    Flyer (There were passenger trains with this name. I believe the Katy had one?)
    He's a little low on air. (Have also heard a variant using a poorly fired steam boiler...)
    High baller
    In the hole
    Irregular trains
    Juice (Milwaukee Road electric, electrification, various interurbans....)
    Making a hitch
    Milk run
    Motors (MILW electrics were noted by this term. Various interurbans. Chcago Great Western RY called their diesels motors and addressed them as such in train orders until the end or very close, mid-1968.)
    On the ground (Very common derailment lament.)
    On the hump
    On the pin
    Ping-pong (Have heard this used in slang about various commuter runs in the USA.)
    Pull the pin (I have a friend who will be doing this in 2013. He'll then be making a journey my way for some railfanning.)
    Reacher car (Also known as an idler car)
    Scoot (Very long time common use around Chicago. C&NW, CB&Q and these days Metra.)
    Switch tender (Not as any trainman. A specific person sent to throw a switch. May be a one time, temporary or assigned job.)
    Tell Tale (Very common use. Northern Pacific RY employee magazine once used that name.)
    Tie it down (Power, train, cars)
    Tie up (Heard especially with relief or some joy, as done for a crew to head to beans. Or better yet, to go home after the shift is done.)
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 17, 2012
  5. nyandw

    nyandw TrainBoard Member

    Thanks! I changed the page title to: "Railroad slang usage past and present on the LIRR - Both unique and in general railroad use" Great point. To clarify:

    Ping-Pong: Back and forth (not LIRR specific) and on LIRR termed push-pull for commuter runs, but:

    "Ping Pongs" P54 coaches were named ping-pongs because of the way they rode; bouncing back and
    forth among the older heavyweight coaches. This came from the fact they were built very lightly - they weighed only 40 tons soaking wet, compared to nearly twice that weight for the heavyweight coaches. The ping pong effect came from a car nearly half the weight between cars of nearly twice the weight, which of course controlled the momentum of the train!
    Info: Art Single

    Perhaps a LIRR unique phrase as the commuters knew they were "bouncing/ping-ponged" around.

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