Figure 1.4. Multilevel Rack Car.
adequate and efficient rail transportation. Movements of new automobiles
from factories to dealers in rack cars are steadily increasing; the number
of automobiles carried runs into several million annually.
The piggyback car, shown in part A of figure 1.5, is noted for its
shockabsorbing qualities. They are provided by the mechanism shown in part
B of figure 1.5; the encircled numbers in it are referred to in the next few
sentences. On either side of the center sill (A) is a cushioned rub rail
(B) with a pocket (C) every 12 inches. A special tiedown device (D) is
snapped securely into place in one of the pockets. Two chains (E) are
fastened to both the tiedown device and the equipment being shipped. After
that, the device is locked. When the car is subjected to a substantial
impact, springs in the chains expand as much as 8 inches to absorb possible
shock to the loaded equipment. The devices and chains eliminate the usual
blocking required in rail shipments, thereby saving loading time and costs.
Results of test loads of military vehicles and guided missile systems on
rubrail cars reveal that the damaging forces ordinarily present in rail
shipments are substantially lessened by the shockabsorbing feature of the
cushioned rub rails.
c. Caboose. Attached to the rear of the train is the caboose; a
typical one is shown in figure 1.6. The train conductor and the rear
brakeman ride the caboose, and emergency and safety equipment is stored in
it. With the engineer, the fireman when on board, and the head brakeman
riding in the locomotive cab, the train is easily protected at both ends
when an emergency or unscheduled stop occurs on the main line. The
caboose's cupola and lookout windows provide the occupants with a unique
vantage point from which to view the train.