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Railcar Bridges

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Joseph Grill wrote:

"A couple of weeks ago someone posted a question about railroad cars
used =
as bridges.  I've never done anything with this, but as I was cleaning =
my home office this weekend I ran across an envelope with a brochure =
inside that I had received several years ago when I was working up =
north.  The company I was working for had a client who was considering =
this for a project.  Anyway, I don't know if it is too late for =
information, but this company does what they call "recycled flatcar =
bridges".  The companies name is Skip Gibbs Company and they are located
in Redwood Valley California.  The telephone (at least in 2001) number =
was 707-485-5822.  Hope I'm not too late with this.
J. Grill"

You're not as late as me.

Many years ago, I worked on a flatcar conversion for a county engineer.
I don't know if that flatcar was typical, but it consisted of one
central beam, quite strong, with arms cantilevering off it to each side.
At the end of the arms, there was another stringer which was pretty
light (one along each side of the car, or bridge--he was only looking
for one lane).  To cut to the point, the whole scheme depended on the
connection of the arms to the central beam, which I didn't have much
information on.

Make sure you get a chance to inspect the actual steel in detail before
you approve anything.  Also be aware that these tend to be pretty
non-redundant, unless you can put a bunch of them side by side; and
they've been through a lot of fatigue loading before they get sold as
scrap to you.  Lastly, I don't remember what the steel was, but it
wasn't A36.  Have some testing done.


Mike Hemstad, P.E.
St. paul, minnesota

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