Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Canada Day 2017: CANADA 150 Great Things about Canadian Railways

How to celebrate this most auspicious anniversary, this most Canadian commemmoration, this century-and-a-half sesquicentennial? Easy! Canada. Railways. Why so great? What makes them great? What one word or phrase, muttered to rail enthusiasts anywhere in the world would elicit a one-word response: CANADA!! Thank goodness VIA Rail Canada marked the year, adorning their equipment with colourful, celebratory logos:
Meanwhile, CN and CP are busy being so corporately pan-North American that they can't even slap a wrap on a locomotive, freight car or container. Each year I've celebrated Canada Day here on Trackside Treasure, and this 2017 would be no different! Onwards!
Notebook in hand, sitting on a bench merely a shell casing's throw from the Royal Canadian Horse Artillery memorial in Kingston's City Park, a mere airhorn bleat away from Canadian National's double-track Kingston Sub, originally completed by the Grand Trunk Railway in the 1850's, it struck me that both institutions were hirsutely historic, like Confederation itself! History! Geography! If geography is transportation, history and geography are Canadian railroading. It took me one in-park hour to list my 150 Great Things about Canadian Railways. (They were only Googled to spell-check and fact-check.) OTOH, Off Top Of Head, or Ottawa Tip Of Hat, here we go!

All eras. All parts of Canada. General headings are: places, people, nicknames, books and authors, logos and developments, locomotives and freight cars, passenger cars and named trains, railway names, preservation and model railways. Maybe you know them OTOH. If not, perhaps they'll get them scurrying to your favourite mode of research to brush up.
  • Lethbridge Viaduct
  • Sir William Cornelius Van Horne
  • Province's Greatest Expense (PGE)
  • Van Horne's Road
  • the CNR Maple Leaf
  • White Pass & Yukon Railroad
  • the Draper Taper
  • 'Canada' grain cars
  • The Scotian
  • Greater Winnipeg Water District
  • Exporail
  • Rapido Trains Inc.
  • Cisco, BC bridges
  • Donald Gordon
  • Bennett's Crazy Railway (BCR)
  • Canadian Steam!
  • Beaver shields
  • rail ferries to PEI and Newfoundland
  • comfort cabs
  • Manitoba Buffalo boxcars
  • The Canadian
  • Prairie Dog Central
  • Bytown Railway Society
  • Stafford Swain
  • Chateau sleepers
  • Spiral Tunnels
  • N.R. 'Buck' Crump
  • To Hell & Back (TH&B)
  • The People's Railway
  • World's Greatest Travel System
  • GMD-1's
  • Supertherm
  • The Rapido
  • Essex Terminal Railway
  • Canadian Railroad Historical Association
  • Canadian Railway Modeller magazine
  • Sceneramics
  • Kicking Horse Pass
  • Sir Sandford Fleming
  • The Kick & Push (Kingston & Pembroke)
  • Dean & Hanna
  • The Wet Noodle
  • CPR D-10's
  • Mandarin Orange Express
  • The Super Continental
  • Temiscouata Railway
  • Upper Canada Railway Society
  • Aberfoyle Junction O-scale layout
  • E-series sleepers
  • Tete Jaune Cutoff
  • Sir John A Macdonald
  • The Lazy Three Route (CN)
  • Greg McDonnell
  • BCR's Dogwood 
  • Royal Hudsons
  • Pointe St Charles cabooses
  • The Atlantic Limited
  • Steamexpo '86
  • Northern Alberta Railway
  • Trevor Marshall
  • Tempo!Turbo!
  • Transcona Shops
  • Charles Melville Hays
  • Route of the Black Bear (ACR)
  • Pierre Berton
  • ONR's chevron scheme
  • CPR Selkirks
  • Angus Shops vans
  • The Ocean Limited
  • CPR 1201
  • George's Trains
  • British Columbia Railway
  • Alyth Yard
  • Andrew Onderdonk
  • Prince George Eventually (PGE)
  • Anthony Clegg
  • The Land of Evangeline Route
  • CP M-640 4744
  • CPR's snow melter
  • The Panorama
  • CNR 6060
  • Sydney & Lousiburg Railway
  • Angus Shops
  • the Pacific Scandal
  • The Leaky Roof Railway
  • Ian Wilson
  • CP Rail's multimark
  • Gordon Lightfoot's Canadian Railway Trilogy
  • Buster Keaton in The Railrodder
  • The Last Spike
  • SW1200RS's
  • SCLAIR orange covered hoppers
  • The Skeena
  • Countess of Dufferin
  • Newfoundland narrow gauge
  • Don McQueen
  • the Mississauga derailment
  • Quebec Railway Bridge
  • Silver Streak
  • Charles Bohi
  • the Hinton crash
  • Light Rapid Comfortable
  • Dofasco cylindrical ore cars
  • The Muskeg Mixed
  • CPR 374
  • Cartier Railway
  • Manor sleepers
  • Spadina Shops
  • Bayview Junction
  • Signatures in Steel
  • icicle breakers
  • CPR miniboxes
  • Mount Macdonald Tunnel
  • Lines of Country
  • the Canoe River crash
  • Gare Centrale
  • Lepkey & West
  • CN Tempo RS18m's
  • The Rocky Mountaineer
  • The Spirit of Sir John A.
  • Quebec, North Shore & Labrador
  • Craigellachie, BC
  • Connaught Tunnel
  • Duncan DuFresne
  • ditchlights
  • Dayliners and Railiners
  • Windsor Station
  • 1958 firemens' strike
  • Omer Lavallee
  • Spans the World
  • CPR 4-4-4 Jubilees
  • The Northlander
  • Fred Angus
  • Champlain & St Lawrence Railroad
  • GO Transit bilevels
  • Trackside with VIA - the series!
  • A-1-A RSC-24's
  • The Dominion
  • CPR oval switch targets
  • Symington Yard
  • The Polar Bear Express
  • octagonal water towers
  • The Trans-Canada Limited
  • CP Bygones
  • (Nicholas) Morant's Curve
  • Governor-General's cars
  • Canadian Trackside Guides
  • Great Slave Lake Railway
  • Kettle Valley Railway
  • The Confederation Train
Previous years' Canada Day posts - our Canada Day Top Nine List:
  • 2016 Canada Day Montreal to Vancouver
  • 2015 simply Canada Day again
  • 2014 Canada Day and RCMP
  • 2013 simply Canada Day
  • 2012 Canada Day by Train IV
  • 2011 Canada Day by Train III
  • 2010 Canada Day by Train II
  • 2009 Canada Day by Train - the original!

Friday, June 23, 2017

CN Wheel Flatcars

CN uses former revenue cars in shop service, delivering new and used wheelsets to its system shops on regular freight trains. These eye-catching open loads are often-photographed and easily-modelled. CN's wheel flatcar fleet initially comprised 1960's era shorter flat cars, now with 89-foot flats and even some former ingot cars thrown in! CN 49473 heading for Taschereau Yard on CN No 318 May 28, 2000 (top photo). CN 49435 has wheels for the shop forces at Garneau, QC on CN No 364 March 4, 2001:
CN 49258 in April, 2010 (below):

CN 49250 on CN No 317 on July 18, 1999:
CN 48991 on CN No 321 on March 18, 2000:
CN 48983 on CN No 321 on March 9, 2001:
 CN 49277 and 49398 are on CN No 363 on a snowy February 8, 2009:
 along with black 89-foot CN 48970:
CN 49323 carries locomotive traction motors at Belleville yard on May 1, 1999.

CN 618069 and 618032 retain their revenue service numbers with  'Maximum 2 rows high when loading wheels' lettering on CN No 305, May 23, 2015 at Bayridge Drive overpass (above and below): 
These were formerly in aluminum ingot service. Comparing them with a photo of freshly-repainted CN 618149, still hauling ingots in April 2015, it appears lengthwise racks were added to the deck to accommodate the new cargo.
CN 618087 with a load of wheels on CN No 306 at Kingston on September 8, 2017.
CN 48960 at Belleville, Oct 14 2016, also a former ingot car. Notice the smaller diameter auto rack wheels in the middle of the load:
CN 49475 and CN 48960 are together, ahead of Distributed Power on CN No 376 on February 22, 2019:
Former ingot car CN 48945 on CN No 306 at Kingston on July 13, 2018:
Another unusual addition to the CN wheel car fleet is BCOL 990336 - what may be a former DWC bulkhead flat car (Tim Reid photo):
Here's lower-bulkhead BCOL 990337 trailing CN 618022 westbound on May 22, 2019:
BCOL 330340 eastbound through Belleville in April 2021 (Image courtesy RailStream, LLC):
Another CN predecessor road represented - IC 100447 in February, 2021. (Image courtesy RailStream, LLC)
In HO scale, here's CN 49389 on my Vancouver Wharves layout:
My CN wheel flatcar observations: date, car number, CN train on, remarks:
Feb 17/92 CN 49259, CN 49494
Jun 23/92 CN 49290 WB
May 10/95 CN 49278 T.E. on WB
Mar 2/96 CN 49278 at Belle
Jun 25/96 boxed traction motor transport FL on T.E. of WB
Mar 27/97 CN 49394
Apr 5/97 CN 49326
May 24/97 CN 49516
Jun 7/97 CN 49470
Jul 5/97 CN 49423 on No 367
Aug 27/97 CN 49493, 49420, 49511 on No 367
Sep 21/97 CN 49278 on T.E. No 307
Feb 21/98 CN 49515 H.E. No 302
Mar 22/98 CN 49275, 49249 H.E. No 204
Apr 10/98 CN 48997 black 89' FL plus two other wheel FL No 302
May 29/98 CN 49311 'diesel wheel FL' on No 307
Aug 5/98 CN 49321 ety on No 367
Sep 6/98 CN 48987 89' black wheel FL on No 318
Sep 18/98 CN 49318 traction motor FL on No 306
Oct 15/98 CN 49479 ety No 310
Dec 13/98 CN 48975 black 89' wheel FL No 318 

Using CN's public tracing page, I was able to continue tracking CN 48975 from that day in 1998 to January, 2001. On each trip, CN 48975 left track W067 at Transcona Shops in Winnipeg:
-to Montreal Taschereau Yard Loaded, returned Empty
-to Montreal Intermodal Terminal L, returned L
-to Toronto MacMillan Yard L, returned L
-to Prince George BC L, returned L
-to Montreal Taschereau Yard E, returned L
-to Edmonton, AB L, returned E
-to TORMACYAR L, returned L
-to TORMACYAR L, returned L
-to TORMACYAR track W109, returned L
-to TORMACYAR L, returned L
-to Vancouver Thornton Yard L, returned L
-to TORMACYAR L, returned L
-to Pointe Ste Charles L, returned E
-to TORMACYAR L, returned L
-to VANTHOYAR L, returned L

Ian Campbell kindly shared a photo of wheel cars, rail flatcars, switch panel cars and other CN work flatcars at Transcona shops in summer, 2016. Ian notes that cars often bring in wheelsets from which the wheels are are removed, reprofiled or scrapped, then new wheels are pressed onto the axle (or a new axle) with new bearing caps added. Thanks, Ian! 

Feb 10/99 CN 49269 on No 301
May 1/99 CN 49323 on No 366 (see photo in this post)
Jul 18/99 CN 49250 with 12 wheelsets on No 317 (see photo in this post)
Oct 17/99 CN 49293 LD on H.E. No 318
Oct 30/99 CN 49318 traction motor transporter E on No 306, west on No 321
Feb 25/00 CN 48997 on No 301
Mar 18/00 CN 48991 LD on H.E. No 321 (see photo in this post)
Mar 26/00 CN 49486 on No 366
May 28/00 CN 49473 No 318 dest. MONTASYAR (see photo in this post)
Jun 30/00 CN 49300 on No 321
Jul 19/00 CN 48987 LD on No 365
Aug 24/00 CN 49262 on No 366
Sep 17/00 CN 49287 H.E. No 320
Sep 24/00 CN 49300, 49317, 49455 ety wheel FL on No 365
Mar 4/01 CN 49489 on No 364 then WB Mar 9 on No 369
Mar 9/01 CN 48983 black 89' on No 321 (see photo in this post)
Mar 10/01 CN 49393 on No 377
Oct 20/01 CN 49494
Mar 21/02 CN 49283 on No 307
Apr 26/02 CN 49463 on No 366
Jul 7/02 CN 49468 
Aug 3/02 CN 49480 LD
Apr 17/04 CN 49390 on No 368
Mar 11/06 CN 49260 on No 309
May 8/06 CN 49250 on No 362
Mar 17/07 CN 49495 on No 321
Oct 3/07 CN 4948x loaded on No 376
Jul 19/08 CN 49496 at St Lambert
Jan 8/09 CN 49497
Feb 8/09 CN 49277, 49398, 48970 black 89' on No 363 with dimensional loads (see photo in this post)
Feb 22/09 CN 49277 
May 4/09 CN 49456 (photo'd with GTW 57907 FL with covers) and 48972 89' on No 376
May 25/09 CN 49507 on No 376
Aug 18/09 CN 48991, 48995 89' on No 376
Jan 14/10 CN 49480
Apr 24/10 CN 49258 (see photo in this post)
Apr 24/10 CN 48990 (89') on No 369
Feb 25/12 CN 48499, 48989 black 89'
Apr 6/12 CN 49499
Sep 28/13 CN 49395 LD 
Mar 7/15 CN 48944 89' WB
May 23/15 CN 618069, 618032 stencilled 'Max 2 rows high when loading wheels'
Jun 14/15 CN 48956 'short' new paint

Jim Burnside shared this down-on view of a CN wheel car on a CN Sprague Sub train at Winnipeg's Perimeter Highway. Thanks, Jim!

Running extra...

I don't often link to blog partners' posts, but when I do, it's Prairie grain elevators in 1950! Photos taken on a box Brownie by my Dad while travelling aboard CP, recently scanned and posted in my brother Dave's Rolly Martin Country blog post. Almost like being there! Portage la Prairie's Victoria Grain Co. elevator:
We're almost on the eve of CANADA 150 - watch for Trackside Treasure's annual Canada Day post! There will be lots of celebratory EtOH consumption, but this upcoming post will instead comprise OTOH - 150 of 'em! 
Eventually enthralling. Having sold off my bargain-basement Life-Like All-Door boxcars (I'll never need those again; this was before the change of my modelled locale to Vancouver!!)  I'm in the market for some of these Proto1000 bad boys:

Saturday, June 17, 2017

CN International Service Cabooses

With the advent of U.S. Federal Railroad Administration Safety Glazing Standard Part 223 for cabooses operating in the United States, CN modified some of its 1970-74 built Pointe St Charles cabooses for international service, many drawn from the 793xx and 794xx ranks. Beginning in December 1982, CN glazed the windows of thirty cabooses, renumbered 78100-78129 to denote this new service. The FRA standard required such equipped cabooses to be modified by a June 30, 1984 target date. Later, CN 78130-78135 were also converted in 1987, followed by 78135-78140 (including 78139) in 1989. Visually, the cabooses were made instantly identifiable (and tempting targets for trackside photographers!) by painting the cupolas yellow and adding International Service lettering on or around the cupola.  CN 78106 tails a westbound freight at Kingston on June 30, 1983 (top photo by L.C. Gagnon)

Specific testing requirements for side- and end-facing glazing involved a 22 calibre long rifle projectile moving at 960 feet per second and a 24-lb cinder block impact! "Good morning America, how are you!?" The cabooses were used in service across the border to Maine, Massachusetts, and Minnesota; often seen in terminals like Sarnia, Montreal, Winnipeg, Niagara Falls and Fort Erie.

CN 78118-78120 were modified to fit through the tunnel between Sarnia, ON and Port Huron, MI. Operating thence on GTW between Port Huron and Chicago, the trains were cabooseless. (Also, CN 79719 shows similar, perhaps earlier modification.) Some of the International Service cabooses were equipped with central red marker lights, likely flashing, and the centrally-lettered road number moved to one side of the roof end. Some cupolas bore horizontal white striping.

Interestingly, CN 79548, 79549, 79550 and unknown others were lettered International Service with partially-yellow cupolas as early as 1973, for service on the DW&P. Kevin Toulouse kindly shared this photo of CN 79548 at Chatham, ON in January, 1981:
As time went by, and with the phasing-out of cabooses in the 1990's, the specially-equipped International Service cabooses were found on regular freights and locals, such as CN 4136-78132 at Kitchener in August, 1992 (below), and eventually even work trains into the new millennium.

My CN International Service caboose sightings with date, car number and remarks:

May x/83 CN 78100 and 78120
Aug 31/83 CN 79550 which I noted as 'Ex-I.S.'
Mar 9/84 CN 78108 on an eastbound freight at Dorval -- ironically on one of the last trains I photographed with my Kodak Hawkeye!)
Sep 18/84 CN 78111 at Symington Yard, Winnipeg
Sep 20/84 CN 78112 on a westbound freight at Portage la Prairie, MB
Feb 9/89 CN 78121 on a wayfreight switching Kingston's DuPont nylon plant
Jul 16/89 CN 79549 on westbound freight
Aug 25/92 CN 78132 at Kitchener
Jan x/94 and Jul 8/94 CN 78109 on wayfreight at Kingston
Oct 13/95 CN 78100 derailment on wayfreight at Kingston
Nov 5/95 CN 78100 on wayfreight at Kingston
Apr x/96 CN 78100 on wayfreight at Belleville

Interestingly, here's CN 78100 at Belleville in 1997 likely taken near the station, on the wayfreight to Cobourg - online auction site photo:
Additional online auction site photos:

CN 78100 at Bayview Junction in August 1983:
Oops! CN 78133 in January 1988 at London. It had been involved in a collision with VIA 6902 the month before near Komoka, ON:
CN 78138 in October 1989:
Another, undated view of CN 78138, not looking quite as minty:
78120 trailing intermodal traffic in well cars in 1985 at Bayview Junction:
CN 78113 in 1983:
CN 78113 at Ajax, ON in 1983:
Jim Parker kindly shared this undated view of CN 78124 from the Bill Grandin collection:

Running extra...

CANADA 150 is on, and July 1 is coming soon. Watch for Trackside Treasure's annual Canada Day post...150 great things about Canadian railways. Or if I get lazy in the nice weather, the consist of a passing 150-car CN freight! Thank goodness VIA did something, because corporate Canada constituents seems to be doing their own thing, virtually at the last minute! Kingston, being Canada's short-lived first capital city, features City Hall's clock tower:
There are expensive commemmorative coins and stamps being issued. For Canada's Centennial, my Dad reused the cardboard from an old Kleenex box to make his own presentation set box for each of us. A cotton-batten lined lower half contained the minted Centennial coins, while the upper section displayed the Centennial stamp issues. On the cover, our name emblazoned in commemmorative pencil on masking tape!

Saturday, June 10, 2017

CN Nova Scotia Gypsum Shipments to Ontario

A fleet of CN open triple hoppers carried Nova Scotia gypsum to Woodstock in southwestern Ontario for several years. My observations were in the ten years 1993-2002. It's possible that CP carried this business pre-1992. The cars were usually seen on Halifax-Toronto train Nos 307-308, singly or in small groups. CN 328215 was eastbound at Belleville, ON on CN train No 308 August 4, 2001 (above).

Built by Hawker-Siddeley in Trenton, NS in the summer of 1964, these cars were 39 feet long with a 3000 cubic foot capacity. Previously numbered in the 326000-series, and originally in the 111100-series, the cars were renumbered into the 328000-series in 1985-86. An interesting survivor from an online auction photo site, captioned as 1996 in Belleville, ON:
The CN logo always looked a little higher than usual on these diminutive cars, and the lettering block font was unique. As the CN cars aged out, reaching the end of their service lives, Illinois Central hoppers were in use. The gypsum traffic ended in 2006.

An article by Craig Dunn in Canadian Railway Modeller Train 13 Track 5 (December 2004-January 2005) profiles the gypsum rock discharge pit that these cars were destined for - north of the CN mainline between Woodstock and Ingersoll. The pit operated from May to October, with four cars being spotted by CN at night. The gypsum was dropped into the pit, from which a front-end loader transferred the gypsum to waiting tandem trucks. The author notes that any cars he noted being unloaded entered service in 1964. Visible in an article photo is CN 328045 and three others.

CN 328208 at Rockingham/Halifax NS July 28, 2002 Matt Keoughan photo:
  • A CP covered hopper on the unloading track, on the north end of Tecumseh Street near the overpass in Woodstock, now filled in.
  • CN 328085 interior view of gypsum dust
  • Later life as CN 91302
My Kingston observations, with date, car number, CN train on, remarks:

Jun 23/92 CN 328592, 328609, 328620 **black hoppers (ex-C&O purchased in 1988)
Jun 26/92 CN 328623, 328614, 328638, 328651 **black hoppers
Aug 9/92 CN 328523, 328556, 328519 **black hoppers
Mar 25/93 CN 330011, 330181 new hoppers
Oct 14/93 CN 330159, 330226 white covered hoppers
Aug 17/97 CN 328081 and 3 others, No 307
Sep 13/97 CN 328213, 328208 No 308
Sep 21/97 CN 328227, 328177 Dest Woodstock, ON ,No 307
Feb 8/98 CN 328225, No 307
May 31/98 CN 328004, 328178, 328120, 328230 Dest Windsor, NS empty, No 308
Jul 29/98 CN 328004, 328230, 328110 and 1 other, No 307
Aug 1/98 CN 328178, No 308 and CN 328037 on No 307
Aug 16/98 CN 328029, 328209 and 2 others, No 307
Jun 24/99 CN 328209 and 5 others, No 305
Jul 18/99 CN 328213, 328010, 328183 Dest Woodstock, ON
Aug 14/99 CN 328118, 328124, 328110, 328227, No 308
Dec 12/99 CN 328188 on No 321
Mar 13/00 CN 328209, 328128 on No 311
Mar 24/00 CN 328199 eastbound
Apr 9/00 CN 328290, 328124, 328110 on No 321
Apr 23/00 CN 328136
May 20/00 CN 328215, No 308
Aug 27/00 CN 328227, 328278, 328199, 328203, Dest Windsor NS, No 306
Jun 24/01 CN 328208, 328037 on No 307
Aug 4/01 CN 328215, 328027, 328177, 328186, 328201, No 308
Aug 25/01 CN 328110, 328230 and 4 others, No 307
Jun/02 CN 328178, 328180 and 2 others
Jul 28/02 CN 328194, 328215 and 7 others, No 307
Sep 30/06 IC 387027, 387221 and 2 others, No 308
Aug 3/08 IC 389289, 389529, No 305

I painted up a no-longer-justifiable former Ontario Northland Playart hopper as CN 328157 in HO scale:
Thanks to the ebullient Bob Fallowfield for his assistance with this post! Bob took a trip out the disused gypsum pit site and captured the site as it is today. Nature takes over the scene quickly! Thanks, Bob!
The unloading area (above) with safety railing.
 Looking in both directions along the CN mainline (above and below).
  The grown-over dumping pit, showing the same safety railing as above.

Running extra...
VIA's CANADA 150 wraps program may be complete, but now the hustle to hostle has begun. This past week, a quartet has been running the length of the Corridor in Ontario: 6437 leading anagramatic 3476 with coaches 3357 and 3343, with Ren coach 3332 trailing. Thanks to heads-ups from Jesse and John, I caught the consist on June 5. Railfans, to the ramparts! Tally ho trackside!

The City of Kingston's K&P Trail Urban Launch is today. This recently completed rail-to-trail extension runs from downtown Kingston to Highway 401. Parts of CN's Hanley Spur and CP's ex-Kingston & Pembroke line into Kingston are now under pavement. A May pre-launch stroll past Quattrocchi's Produce at Montreal and Railway Streets gave me pause for a before-and-after:
Where once San Luis Central carloads of spuds were spotted, now a black drainage pipe and trail roadbed run. When I transit the trail, thoughts of lone engine-led several car consists switching these spurs are top-of-mind. Highly modellable!