• Short Summary

    IT'S CALLED A "ONE-SPOT" CAR SHOP, AND IT'S ONE OF THE SPEEDIEST SERVICE STATIONS IN THE WORLD -- CANADA'S FIRST AUTOMATED CAR-REPAIR FACILITY AT THE AGAIN COURT YARDS IN TORONTO, ONTARIO
    From St.

  • Description

    IT'S CALLED A "ONE-SPOT" CAR SHOP, AND IT'S ONE OF THE SPEEDIEST SERVICE STATIONS IN THE WORLD -- CANADA'S FIRST AUTOMATED CAR-REPAIR FACILITY AT THE AGAIN COURT YARDS IN TORONTO, ONTARIO
    From St. john's, Newfoundland, on the east coast of Canada to Prince Rupert, British Columbia, on the west coast, is a distance of approximately 4500 miles.

    There are two major railways in Canada - the Canadian National Railway and the Canadian pacific Railway. 41% of Canadian cargo is moved by rail - the principal commodity being wheat, closely followed by iron ore, lumber and coal. The Canadian Pacific Railway operates on 16,662 miles of track in Canada. It maintains and operates 81,000 freight cars, including box cars, piggyback flat cars, tankers, hopper cars etc.

    The vital job of keeping rail freight cars in the prime of condition is being handled in a unique, new way by two workshops almost fifteen hundred miles apart.

    Quick repair is the specialty of the two "one-spot" Canadian Pacific Railway repair debts at the Toronto yards and in the Weston shop at Winnipeg, Manitoba. The repair depots have proved themselves so successful that the company has started work on a third shop at Vancouver and has plans for others at scattered points on the trans-continental system.

    The principle of "one-spot" depots is based on the idea of bringing the job to the tools, rather than vice versa. Freight cars are "fed" automatically on four tracks into the work sheds, where men await with all the material and facilities within easy reach to tackle any faults. (The sheds hold a maximum of 10 cars on the 4 tracks) The depot handles all defective cars in its yard.

    A new boxcar costs $17,800. to build and it goes without saying that a damaged boxcar is a consideration drain on revenue for as long as it is idle. The task then, of getting freight cars back on the rails as swiftly as possible, is a major concern of the repair shops. Needless to say, there are many railway companies operating in the United States and Canada, and their trains carry a wide variety of freight cars belonging to other companies. Under a mutual agreement, defective American cars in Canada are repaired in this country's sheds in order to keep the stock rolling, and vice versa. Our footage includes a number of American cars attached to a CPR freight.

    A yard maintenance check is made of boxcars and defective ones (flat wheels, worn brake shoes, to mention only two of many disorders which may occur) are reported to the control tower by the yard man over a walkie-talkie. A "bad order" card is tacked onto the box-car.

    The "one-spot" shops were set up to tackle repairs in the "light" category, and the target is to have a freight car cleared through the shops and back on the rails in an hour or less. Four men may be called upon to work on one car, inspecting all parts as well as repairing the reported faults.

    Ranks of freight cars are drawn up outside the shop on all four tracks.

    The cars are uncoupled singly, and then automation takes over.

    A small but powerful arm, called a "rabbit", is located in the centre of each set of tracks. It springs into play by engaging the rear axle of the car, and pushing it into the shops. The vast doors at each end of the shop are controlled in conjunction with the "rabbits", so that a freight car cannot be pushed forward unless the door is open.

    Inside the shops, a mechanic governs the operation from a master console, handling the doors and the inbound, cable-powered rabbit. He can position a car exactly on the spot where the work will be done.

    Large electric jacks are then used to raise the car (full or empty) from its trucks so that mechanics can move in to examine the journals (the part of the axle that rests on the bearings); the axles and wheels. At each location, overhead jib cranes can be used to re-assemble the trucks.

    The actual repair station on each track is equipped with a wide range of power tools on steel arms which swing out over freight cars to the exact area of repair. In this manner, compressed air, lubricants, power hoists and acetylene torches are instantly available to repair to repair staffs. A repair record is stencilled onto the car.

    The speed of the operation, from the moment a car rolls to rest int he work area, leaves a laymen astonished. But despite the swiftness, efficiency and thoroughness are not sacrificed. The mechanics employ work sheets that illustrate a total of 71 possible faults to be examined or repaired.

    When the car is cleared, and lowered back on its renovated wheels (or new set of wheels), another rabbit -- also controlled from the console that opens the exit doors -- connects with the axle to push the car out -- and make room for another.

    From the shops, the freight cars roll gently (not over 4 miles an hour) into a storage area where they are subsequently coupled to a yard engine, and pulled back into service.

    At peak activity--operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week--a four-track repairs depot could put over 100 damaged freight cars a day back into service.

    By keeping out-of-service time to a minimum, the shops safeguard the Company's reputation for customer service and ensure the best possible provision of rolling stock to handle Canada's ever-increasing transportation needs.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA1XMQZE1FGZQRACR3AR0CTUNXC
    Media URN:
    VLVA1XMQZE1FGZQRACR3AR0CTUNXC
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    01/01/1966
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:05:43:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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